Compilers (CSC-362 98F)

Expectations of Student Responsibilities, Revisited

My discussion of teaching, learning, and grading includes a short section describing general issues on how I expect students to work. This document is an attempt to further explain some of my thoughts on how you should behave in my classes.

This is a 300-level course in a top liberal arts college. Hence, at this point in your careers, I expect you to be relatively independent learners. What do I mean by that? I mean that it is no longer my role to hold your hands and carefully guide you throw the standard aspects of learning.

In particular, I will not assign readings at a very fine-grained level. Each time we enter a new large topic, I will suggest a chapter to read, rather than give you individual readings for each class. I encourage you to read the chapter all at once, record questions, attend the classes in which we cover the topics of the chapter, ask questions in those classes, and then reread the chapter. Because the class will go faster if you read the text in advance, I will give quizzes to ensure that you are doing the readings.

I also will not assign piddly-shit problems to help you learn a concept, algorithm, or programming language. You should now have the skills to read a language manual, write and experiment with small sample programs, try sample inputs to an algorithm, implement algorithms to further your understanding, and otherwise ``play with'' concepts in computer science. When you come to me with a question, I begin by asking you what you've done to help yourself answer the question.

I also expect you to be good programmers. What does that mean? Your code should be elegant, robust, well-designed, well-formatted, and well-commented. If you make regular modifications to a program, you should keep a historical log of those modifications (either through a section of comments at the beginning or end of the document or by regular use of rcs).

I will be away a number of times this semester. I am unlikely to schedule replacement classes for those times. Instead, you are expected to make appropriate use of the times to work on your assignments and discuss problems with other members of the class.

Disclaimer Often, these pages were created "on the fly" with little, if any, proofreading. Any or all of the information on the pages may be incorrect. Please contact me if you notice errors.

Source text last modified Fri Aug 28 11:36:55 1998.

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