A Study Guide---
edited by A. Heddaya
This document is intended primarily for undergraduate Computer Science
students, although others---especially CS grad students---may find it
If you would like to pitch in, please
Teaching or Learning?
The teacher teaches, the student learns, then the teacher certifies
the success of this joint enterprise.
The three activities of teaching, learning and evaluation, compete
for the attention of students and faculty, often distracting
students away from the centrality of their own learning process.
For example, certain artifacts of the school organisation, such as
the classroom setting, or the fact that the teacher is also the
evaluator, seem to put teaching and the teacher in the central
Students often respond by asking "what does the teacher want me to
do [in order to give me the grade]?" instead of "how can I use
the teacher to help me learn".
Checking: always check a problem's solution by applying it to
examples, whether you're learning a new concept, or solving a
The community trusts its members to honor the notion of giving credit
where credit is due: so, please acknowledge any sources you use in
your course work.
This requires proper citation of the source, and clear delineation of
the material (e.g., code, algorithm, design idea,
paraphrase, quotation, etc.) obtained from it.
Students are usually encouraged to collaborate in studying
and on homeworks.
To avoid gaining an unfair advantage (i.e., cheating or
plagiarism) the rule is simple: produce the actual solution
in isolation from others' work.
That is, what you submit should be entirely your original expression,
except for what you specifically credit to other sources.
For example, copying without attribution any part, however small, of
someone else's program constitutes plagiarism---even if you modify
it, and even if the source is a textbook.
(((Weekly, at midterm, and at final.)))
Read all questions before answering any.
If anything is unclear, ask the examiner.
Address the easy questions first.
Read each question twice before answering it.
Identify what's required, and ask the examiner if unsure.
When stumped or out of time on a question, sketch your
approach to the answer, then revisit the question at the
end of the exam.
At end of exam, check your answer by applying it to
If you discover an error or an inconsistency in your answer, and you
don't have time to fix it, then report your error.
Never leave an exam early.
Stretch before you read the questions, then again
every 15 minutes, surveying the whole room to rest your eyes from
constant focus at short range.
If the grader can easily fix it, then you get most of the credit.
You receive non-zero (usually 10-20%) grade for any serious attempt.
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