CSCI-GA.3250-001: Policies and Grading


Class participation


The final exam will cover all class material: readings, discussion, and labs. Open vs. closed book is TBD. Update (12/11/14): it will be open book, with the exception that you may not bring JOS source code into the exam.

Turn-in policy, slacking, lateness, etc.

The course permits two kinds of limited slacking:

  1. You can skip at most ONE class discussion during the semester, with no ill effects on the participation grade. You do not have to email us to let us know when you're exercising this option. Missed classes beyond one (or showing up without having done the assigned reading) will adversely affect your grade.
  2. You also get 72 late hours to use on labs throughout the semester. It is up to you how to divide these hours among the various lab assignments. After your late hours are exhausted, each additional day late will incur a full letter grade penalty. However, there is a floor: full credit on a lab will always result in a D.

Exemptions of the lateness rules will be allowed in three cases:

  1. Illness, which has to be documented by a doctor and approved by the university.
  2. Death in the immediate family.
  3. Accommodation for students with disabilities as prescribed by the university.

No extensions will be given for any other reason.

You are required to turn in every lab assignment, late or otherwise. If, by the end of the semester, you have not turned in all of the assignments, then 40% of your grade will be an F (borrowing weights from the other categories if necessary).

Collaboration, source material, and cheating

You can discuss the labs in general terms only with your classmates. A few notes on this policy, followed by more detail:

Below is more detail. You are responsible for knowing these policies.


You must do the work on your own. What does "on your own" mean? Here are some guidelines to keep you on the right side of the line:
  1. It is never okay to look at the written work of another person or show another person (other than the instructor or TA) your written work until after all grading on an assignment is completed. This includes looking at paper print-outs, sketching solutions on a white board or napkin, or looking at a screen to help debugging. Obviously, copying other people's code or solution sets is prohibited.
  2. Second, after discussing a problem with another student (or the course staff!), go do something else (read a book, watch a movie) for half an hour before going back to work on the assignment. If you can't remember what the person said after a half hour, you didn't really understand it.
  3. Third, everyone in the class is expected to take appropriate measures for protecting their work. For example, you should protect your files and printouts from unauthorized access. Students should not publish their solutions in publicly accessible places, such as github or stackoverflow.

Source material

You are welcome to use existing public libraries in your programming assignments (such as public classes for queues, trees, etc.) You may also look at operating systems code for public domain software such as Linux. Such activities qualify under approved collaboration practices, and you are welcome to take advantage of them. Consistent with normal academic practice, you should cite and give credit to any source that gave you code or an idea.

What you may not do is look at any course material relating to any project or lab similar to this course's assignments. For example, you may not look at the work done by a student in past years' courses, and you may not look at similar course projects at other universities. If you are unsure about whether a particular source of external information is permitted, contact the instructor before looking at it.


Note that the above guidelines are necessarily generalizations and cannot account for all circumstances. Intellectual dishonesty can end your career, and it is your responsibility to stay on the right side of the line. If you are not sure about something, ask.

Students who violate University rules on scholastic dishonesty are subject to disciplinary penalties, including the possibility of failure in the course and/or dismissal from the University. Because such dishonesty harms the individual, all students, and the integrity of the University, policies on scholastic dishonesty will be strictly enforced.


You can submit any graded item for a regrade, under the following conditions. First, you need to submit a clear, written statement that explains the request (what was wrong and why). Second, you must submit your request within one week of when the graded work was returned. Third, we will regrade the entire exam, homework, etc. (so a regrade can potentially decrease your grade.)

Last updated: Thu Dec 11 17:08:18 -0500 2014 [validate xhtml]