Center for Integrated Design / College of Fine Arts
University of Texas at Austin
ITD 105 - Introduction to Computer Science Principles (Fall 2017)
Section: 21200, W 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM, GDC 5.302
Instructor: Dr. Shyamal Mitra
Office Hours: MWF 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM
Location: GDC 6.320
Student Assistant: Wenyuan Wu
Office Hours: GDC 5.302
Location: 5:30 pm - 6:00 pm
Text: None Required
Reading: Class Notes and Web Articles
Scope of the Course
Computational Thinking has been an integral part of all natural sciences
and engineering disciplines. And now all other disciplines require some
familiarity with computers and computational thinking. This course is
designed to introduce you to the fundamentals of computational thinking.
We will learn how to solve problems by building algorithms. We will
evaluate the algorithms in terms of their efficiency. We will examine
different paradigms for solving problems. We will look at two specific
areas in the computational domain - Graphs and Cryptography - and
analyze some of the representative algorithms in those fields. Some
familiarity with computers is needed but you do not need to know a
programming language nor will we teach you programming in this course.
There is no required text book for this course. We will rely heavily on
class notes and readings from the web. This course will be a hands-on
introduction to computational thinking. Unlike the traditional lecture
format, our classes will be a venue for solving problems and exchanging
ideas. Your attendance to the classes is mandatory.
There will be a home work assignment following every lecture. You will
start on the assignment in class and complete the exercises at home.
Home work is due the next class day. Late homework is not accepted unless
you have have been excused by the instructor.
Grade Dispute: You have one week from the date the assignment
is returned to you to dispute your grade. The student assistant will be
grading the assignments. Send the student assistant an e-mail and see if
you can resolve your differences. If you cannot resolve your differences,
you may send me an e-mail explaining the situation. We will not
entertain any grade disputes after one week.
We will be having a quiz every class day other than the first day. The
quiz will be administered at the beginning of class and will be based
on the lecture material of the previous class day. There are no
make-up quizzes. You have one week to dispute any quiz grade after
it is returned.
There will be one test at the end of the course.
- Final Test: Wed, 04 Oct 2017
A make-up test will be given only for the following reasons. In
all cases you must provide some form of documentation.
Having three tests on the same day is not official UT conflict!
For each test you may bring a non-programmable calculator.
- Ill health
- Family emergency
- Official UT conflict
Questions concerning test grades should be given to me in writing along
with your test within three days after the test results are announced.
We will not entertain any disputes after that time.
Your performance in this class will be evaluated using your scores for
quizzes, homework assignments, and final test. The weights of each of
these components are listed below. There are no extra credit projects
or assignments to improve your grade.
The weighted average is computed solely based on your performance
through out the semester on the quizzes, homework assignments, and final
test. There is no weight given on the number of hours that you have studied
or the number of hours you worked outside of class.
- Quizzes: 30%
- Homework Assignments: 30%
- Final Test: 40%
Please organize yourselves into study groups of ~5 students who will
meet once a week to discuss the course. Typically, you will review
the lectures, do the reading, and attempt the homework independently
before your weekly meeting with your study group. Studying for the test
together is permitted and encouraged. You may discuss solutions to
problems in simple English but cannot exchange the actual solution
for any assignment. If you are unsure about how to work together with your
friend in a legal, helpful manner, do come and talk with us. Remember,
it is always ok to "work together" with your professor or TA!
We will be using Piazza for
general discussion of class related questions rather than the discussion
board on Canvas. Please do not post solutions to any problems on Piazza.
Academic Misconduct Policy
While you are free to discuss the course material with your classmates
and are encouraged to form study groups for the test, direct copying of
solutions to homework assignments is not permitted.
Helping a friend understand the intent of a homework assignment specification
is permitted. But students who share their solutions should be aware that
this is a form of cheating called COLLUSION and is subject to academic
penalties. Penalties for academic misconduct include a failing grade in this
The homework assignments, quizzes, and test must be the work of students
turning them in. University policy (see Dean of Students' policies on
academic integrity) will be followed strictly. We will be examining
all submitted assignments for plagiarism. If we do detect any cases of
academic dishonesty, we will assign a grade of F to all students involved
and refer the cases to the Dean of Students.
Acts that exceed the bounds defined by the approved collaboration
practices will be considered cheating. Such acts include:
We urge everyone in the class to take appropriate measures for
protecting one's work. You should protect your files, homework
solution sheets, etc. as deemed reasonable.
- Copying solutions from someone else or giving someone else your solutions.
- Participation in a discussion group that develops a solution that
- Posting your solutions to homework problems on Piazza or Facebook.
- Copying solutions from the internet (e.g. from Piazza or Facebook or
other internet sites)
- Employing someone to write the solutions for you on homework
Your Responsibilities in This Class
- Your performance in this class will be determined by you! It will
require a strong dedication to learning the material and may require a
substantial time commitment to complete the programming assignments.
- You are expected to show up on time for class and stay for the whole
lecture. If you come more than 10 minutes late to class, I may ask you
- You are required to have your cell phones off and out of sight at
all times during the lecture. You may not make or receive calls on your
cell phone or send or receive text messages during lectures.
- You may not use a laptop in class unless told to do so.
- You are responsible for all material posted to the class web site
and sent as email. Ignorance of such material is no excuse.
- You are responsible for all material presented in the lectures.
Note that lectures will include some material that is not available
- You are responsible for turning in your own work on all assignments.
Unauthorized collusion is not allowed and constitutes a violation
of the university's policies on academic integrity. See above guidelines
for more information on what is or is not allowed.
- You are responsible for protecting your work from being copied
- Your conduct in class should be conducive towards a positive learning
environment for your class mates as well as your self.
Course Time Table
- 30 Aug 2017: First Day of Class
- 05 Sep 2017: Last day of official add / drop
- 15 Sep 2017: 12th class day, official enrollment
count is taken
- 04 Oct 2017: Class ends
If you are absent from class or test for the observance of a religious
holy day you may turn in your assignment or take the test on an alternate
date provided you have given me written notice fourteen days prior to the
class absence. For religious holy days that fall within the first two weeks
of class notice must be given on the first class day.
Students with disabilities who need special accommodations should contact
the Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) Office (471-6259 or