Algorithms and OOD (CSC 207 2013F) : Assignments

Assignment 1: Administrivia and Survey

Due: 10:30 p.m., Sunday, 1 September 2013

Summary: In this assignment, you will gather information about the structure of the course and then respond to a few basic questions about the course and about yourself.

Purposes: To encourage you to learn about the structure of the course and the course web. To give me a bit more information about you.

Expected Time: One to two hours for parts one and two.

Collaboration: Each student should turn in his or her own responses to this assignment. However, you may certainly work with other students as you review the course materials and answer the questions. You may discuss the assignment with anyone you wish. You may obtain help from anyone you wish, but you should clearly document that help.

Citation: Since this assignment explicitly asks you to read and summarize pages on the course web, you need not cite such pages. However, if you rely on pages from outside the course web for information, you should cite those pages.

Submitting: Email your answers to . More details below.

Warning: So that this assignment is a learning experience for everyone, I may spend class time publicly critiquing your work.


Part One: The Course

As you might have been able to tell from the first day of class, I have a wide variety of opinions about learning and teaching in CS which are reflected in how I run the class. You can (and should) learn more about these perspectives from the course web. In this portion of the assignment, you will review the course web and answer some basic questions.

First, read the following items

Next, answer the following questions.

  1. What should you do to prepare for each class meeting?
  2. Suppose you get everything correct on a homework assignment. What grade should you expect to receive on that assignment? What does that grade mean?
  3. What happens if you turn in homework late?
  4. Explain what an eboard is (or seems to be) and list a few ways one can get the eboard for a particular class.
  5. How can you figure out what assignments you have due?
  6. When can you work with other students in the class and when can you not work with other students?
  7. How can you obtain help from me?
  8. Who else can you rely upon for help in this course?
  9. Other than simply selecting Print from the File menu, are there other things you should do (or think about doing), when printing documents for this class?
  10. Do you agree to abide by my policies on academic honesty? If you feel that you can't agree with them, we'll need to have a meeting ASAP to discuss your concerns or questions, as these polices are in effect for the course. (If I feel that your concerns or questions are reasonable, I may revise the policy.)
  11. What are two other important things you learned in this part of the assignment?
  12. What are two important things you learned on the first day of class?
  13. Why do you think I gave you this assignment?
  14. What questions about the course do you have that are not answered by the Web site?

Part Two: About You

As I start a new course, I like to learn a little bit about each student in the course. I find that knowing more about my students helps me teach better. Hence, I provide a short survey.

  1. What is your name?
  2. What is your preferred gender pronoun?
  3. What phone number should I use when I want to contact you? (I used to rely upon the campus directory, but evidence suggests that most students disconnect their campus phones.)
  4. Optional: Where can I find your PGP key?
  5. Optional: What's your IRC username on freenet?
  6. Optional: What is your github account?
  7. What is your major (or intended major)? And yes, it's okay to say “I have no idea.
  8. Who is your academic advisor?
  9. What courses are you taking this term? Please include meeting times. I prefer course names to course abbreviations, although you should feel free to include abbreviations in addition to names.
  10. Why did you register for CSC 207?
  11. What do you hope to learn or gain from this course?
  12. Do you anticipate taking more courses in computer science after CSC 207?
  13. Tell me a little bit about your background with computers.
  14. What were your biggest challenges in CSC 151 and CSC 161?
  15. What programming languages do you know? Of those, which is your favorite, and why?
  16. What are your biggest concerns for this course?
  17. What do you like most about Grinnell? (If you don't like anything about Grinnell, what do you dislike least?)
  18. What do you dislike most about Grinnell? If you like everything about Grinnell, what do you like least about Grinnell?
  19. Most surveys like this ask you to list your five favorite books, movies, TV shows, CDs, chia animals, buildings on campus, professors, scholars convocations, or whatever. I'll give you a little more freedom. Pick a category of objects (it can be one that I listed, it can be one that I didn't list), and list five of your favorite objects in that category.
  20. What else should I know about you?
  21. Since I'm asking you all of these questions, it is only fair that you get to ask me some questions. What, if anything, would you like to know about me?

Important Evaluation Criteria

I will evaluate your work on the seriousness with which you approach the assignment and your correctness in answering the questions. (And, yes, particularly clever or amusing answers are likely to earn you a modicum of additional credit.)

Submitting Your Homework

Please submit this work via two separate email messages to . The first should have a title of “CSC 207 Course Details (Your Name)” and should contain your answers to the first part of this assignment. The second should have a title of “CSC 207 Survey Answers (Your Name)” and should contain your answers to the second part of this assignment. For example, if I were to submit answers to the first set of questions, it would be titled “CSC 207 Course Details (Samuel A. Rebelsky)”.

Please send your work as the body of an email message. I don't like attachments and prefer not to receive them when they can be avoided.

Copyright (c) 2013 Samuel A. Rebelsky.

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit or send a letter to Creative Commons, 543 Howard Street, 5th Floor, San Francisco, California, 94105, USA.