CSC 301 Grinnell College Fall, 2013
Analysis of Algorithms

  Instructor   Textbooks   Course Work   Academic Honesty   Possible Class Formats   Schedule And Assignments
  Deadlines   Collaboration   Cell Phones   Accommodations   Grading   Student Comments on Readings


CSC 301 examines the design, implementation, and efficiency of algorithms, extending the study begun in CSC 151 and continued in CSC 161, CSC 207, and CSC/MAT 208 or MAT 218. The course has four main foci:


More specifically, CSC 301 has these high-level goals:


The objectives of CSC 301 include these capabilities:


Henry M. Walker

Office: Science 3811
Telephone: extension 4208

Office hours are posted weekly on the bulletin board outside Science 3811, with additional hours possible by appointment. You may reserve a half hour meeting by signing up on the weekly schedule, but please sign up at least a day in advance.


Thomas H. Cormen, Charles E. Leiserson, Ronald L. Rivest, and Clifford Stein, Introduction to Algorithms, Third Edition, Cambridge, Massachusetts: The MIT Press, 2009; ISBN 978-0-262-00384-8.

Additional Notes:


While the schedule for this course is expected to evolve, a Tentative Class Schedule is available in .dvi , pdf, and postscript formats.

Course Work

Course Work will involve a combination of the following activities.

Academic Honesty

The assignment page for this course specifies whether or not collaboration is allowed for each assignment.

In particular, this means that you may work in groups of two or three on selected assignments for which collaboration is allowed. For this course, academic honesty requires the following practices:


Late Work will not be accepted, as it interferes with normal grading and with preparation for other parts of this course.

Although dates for labs, programming assignments, tests, and the final exam are firm, I understand that circumstances arise when you are not able to attend class.

In addition, if an assignment involves programming or experiments involving MathLAN, then an extension of one class day is automatically granted if the department's Linux network is down for an unscheduled period of four or more hours during the preceding the assignment. Note that this exemption does not apply for assignments that can be handwritten.


Collaboration often will be allowed on some problems from the textbook and on some programming assignments. However, collaboration normally will NOT be allowed on supplemental problems, other programming assignments, and tests. To avoid confusion, the rules for collaboration on homework are included in the specification of each assignment.

Cell Phones, Text Messaging, and E-Community Devices

Cell phones, text-messaging devices, and other social-networking connections may not be used in this class. If you bring such equipment to the classroom, it must be turned off before the class starts and stay off throughout the class period. Use of such equipment is distracting to those nearby and will not be tolerated.


If you have specific physical, psychiatric, or learning disabilities and require accommodations, please let me know early in the semester so that your learning needs may be appropriately met. You will need to provide documentation of your disability to the Directory of Academic Advising. Feel free to talk to me if you have questions or want more information.


This instructor's grading philosophy dictates that the final grade should ultimately be based upon each student's demonstration of her or his understanding of the material, not on the performance of the class as a whole nor on a strict percentile basis. The following scheme is proposed as a base for how the various assignments and tests will be counted in the final grade.

Assignments: 35%     Small-group Presentations: 15%     Discussion Questions: 5%     Hour Tests: 30%     Exam: 15%    

This document is available on the World Wide Web as

created 15 April 2011
revised 17 June 2013
presentation grading clarified 30 October 2013
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For more information, please contact Henry M. Walker at