Syllabus for CSE 6341

by Mike Bond

General Policies

We should all be respectful of everyone else's questions, comments, and, and opinions.

To avoid distracting yourself, your fellow students, and me, please do the following:

You are welcome to bring beverages such as water, coffee, and sodas to class. Food is okay if it's not messy or distracting.


CSE 3341/655 and 3321/625 (or similar material at another university). While the course is mainly for graduates, it's also recommended for undergraduates who did well in 3341/655 and 3321/625 and are interested in the foundations of programming languages.


The grader and I will give you feedback primarily in the form of graded assignments. You may of course request additional feedback.

You'll have the opportunity to give me anonymous feedback several weeks into the semester. The University requests formal course evaluations at the end of the semester. Feedback, concerns, and questions at all times are welcome and encouraged.

Discussing and Meeting

The best ways to ask questions and get help outside of class are to (1) post to Piazza or (2) visit office hours. Note that Piazza allows you to ask questions that are anonymous to other students.

Whenever possible, please post a public question to Piazza rather than posting a private question or sending e-mail, since many people may be interested in the discussion. You are also likely to get an answer sooner, since other students may answer the question before me—and may provide better and different ways of explaining concepts.

If you'd like to meet but you can't visit office hours, please request an appointment by making a private Piazza post. Include your available times for at least three upcoming weekdays.

When we meet, I'd like to be able to do so with my full concentration and for a nontrivial amount of time, so please avoid visiting outside of office hours without an appointment, and please do not call me on the phone, except in very urgent circumstances.


There will be several written homeworks and one programming project. You can submit homeworks in class, or under my office door if you need to miss class for some reason. You should submit the programming project via the submit program on stdlinux.

To help preserve the grader's eyes and sanity, :) please make homeworks readable and understandable, and staple multiple sheets together. Solutions that are typed (preferably in LaTeX) will receive 10% extra credit (i.e., extra points not used to compute the class curve) at the grader's discretion. If the grader has trouble reading your work or understanding what you've done, your answers will get little or no credit, even if it can finally be determined that they're correct.

Your homework solutions must be precise and detailed, in order to convince the grader that you've understood all the details.

You may discuss homeworks and the project at a very high level, but you must do the actual work alone. Assignments that show excessive similarities will be forwarded to the Committee on Academic Misconduct. See Academic Integrity below for more information.


There will be three exams. Each exam will focus on the material so far that wasn't covered on prior exam(s) (i.e., they're not intended to be cumulative/comprehensive), but prior material is still fair game. The third exam will either be on the last day of class or during the final exam slot assigned by OSU. For each exam, you're allowed to bring a one-page "cheat sheet" (8.5x11", double-sided).


Note that participation points are mainly to encourage you to attend class and to be engaged and participate in in-class exercises. You're not required to ask or answer questions in class; there are too many students to expect that of everyone.

Grading will be on a curve, with the average around B+. Since grading is on a curve, the grader and I will deduct points liberally. Our primary goal is to be fair and consistent when determining scores.

Regrade requests are handled by whoever did the grading. (The grader grades the homeworks and project, and I grade the exams.) We're happy to explain how we graded and to correct any mistakes we've made. However, to be fair to everyone, we generally won't adjust partial credit unless we misunderstood your solution or made some other mistake. Please keep that in mind before arguing about partial credit with us. You may request a regrade for up to one week after an assignment or exam is handed back.

Note that I grade the exams with your names hidden, to avoid any potential for bias. This knowledge may help you feel more comfortable asking questions in class and on Piazza.

Late and Missed Assignments, Class, and Exams

A late homework loses 33% of max points for each day late (or fraction thereof) for up to two days late. A late project loses 1% of max points for each hour late (or fraction thereof) for up to 99 hours late.

For fairness, late homeworks and missed exams will not be excused, except in the most extreme circumstances. Let me know as early as possible.


Any student who feels s/he may need an accommodation based on the impact of a disability should contact me privately to discuss your specific needs. Please contact the Office for Disability Services at 614-292-3307 in room 150 Pomerene Hall to coordinate reasonable accommodations for documented disabilities.

Academic Integrity

Representing someone else's work as your own is a seriously violation of academic integrity.

You may discuss homeworks and the project with other people at a very high level, but you must actually do each assignment by yourself.

Although you should avoid receiving significant, specific help from any source, if you do receive such help, you must explicitly acknowledge the source and nature of the help (i.e., add a written note on the assignment). In the worst case, you might lose some points—but there won't be any academic integrity consequences, since you've acknowledged the help you received.

I am obligated by University Rules to report any suspected violation to the Committee on Academic Misconduct (COAM). COAM decides whether a violation has occurred and, if so, what the penalty will be, which can include a failing grade and suspension or dismissal from the University.

Suggestions and Rules for maintaining academic integrity