Syllabus: General Info for CISC 220 Data Structures, Spring, 2014

Course meeting times and places:: Lectures in 319 Willard MWF 11:15-12:05

Instructor: B. David Saunders
Saunders' office hours : Monday 2-3pm, Wednesday 4-5pm, and by arrangement (email or phone) and by luck(drop by).
Office: 414 Smith Hall; Phone: 831-6238, Email:

Teaching Assistant: Hogyeong Jeong    Email:
Office hours: Thursday 11am-1pm in 201 Smith Hall

Undergraduate Teaching Assistant: Matthew Hoffman, Email:
Office hours: Wednesday 1:15-3:15pm in 201 Smith Hall

Texts: These are freely available online. There is no text to buy (unless you want a printed copy).

Additional References:

  • The Standard Template Library implements a collection of important data structures and is documented at The STL documentation at SGI is also excellent. Much of what we do in this course serves to understand what is in the STL.

    This is a clicker course. Bring your clicker to every class. Either old or new clicker type may be used.

    For each data structure studied, we will consider (1) it's interface, (2) applications that use it, (3) implementation and performance issues. We will cover roughly one data structure topic from the following list per week, with a few getting further attention.

    Exam schedule:

    Wednesday, March 19 First Midterm Exam
    Wednesday, April 30 Second Midterm Exam
    To be determined: Final Exam Date.


    Midterms 30%, Final exam 20%, Homework and projects 45%, Class participation 5%.
    93-100 90-92 87-89 83-86 80-82 77-79 73-76 70-72 67-69 63-66 60-62 0-59
    A A- B+ B B- C+ C C- D+ D D- F

    If you have a disability that requires special accommodation, please contact me by email during the first week of class.


    NOTE: Students are expected to attend ALL lab sessions. Submitted work must be submitted no later than 11:55pm on the date it is due. Assignments that are late are assessed a 20% late penalty and will not be accepted more than 3 days late. after three days they will not be accepted. This policy is necessary because late assignments are burdensome for the TA, both in terms of separate handling and separate time grading.

    You should read each topic at least twice (and then review), once just before the lecture on the material and again just after. To assist with this, detailed reading assignments will be given at each lecture.

    NOTE: Students are required to attend ALL lectures. I may make announcements in class that I do not post on the website. Lecture material is critical for projects and exams, and useful everywhere else.

    Your Right to See and Question Your Grades:

    Students have a right to receive their graded assignments in a timely fashion. That said, remember that your TAs are students too, and have deadlines in other courses. The instructor and TAs will endeavor to get all assignments back to students within ten days of the submission date. If this date is not met, please bring it to the attention of the instructor.

    All students have the right to know how their grades are calculated, and if any student believes a mistake has been made, it is up to the student to contact the grader to discuss it within ONE WEEK of the return of the assignment. Contact the TA first for labs, homework, and projects. If you are not satisfied after discussing the grade with the TA, then you may bring it to the instructor. Bring exams directly to the instructor.

    The grade percentages are on this syllabus. Please use them to calculate estimates of your semester grade.

    Academic Honesty:

    I expect you to observe the highest ethical standards, avoiding even the perception of ethical compromise. You are expected to do your own work unless explicitly instructed otherwise. This includes programming projects, labs, quizzes, and examinations. All violations of academic honesty will be handled according to University policy.

    In addition, copying another person's work without proper acknowledgment is plagiarism, a serious offense, and the one most common to computer science courses. Anyone that aids another student with work that is expected to be done without collaboration is as guilty as the person who seeks help. Both will be prosecuted. It is strongly recommended that you familiarize yourself with the University's Policy on Academic Honesty found in the official Student Handbook. Any student who in any way facilitates another student's access to someone else's classwork is cheating, whether the classwork is written, electronic, verbal, or any other form.

    Furthermore, there have been rare instances of people claiming that their work was stolen. In these cases it is very hard to determine if the person gave their work to someone else, or if it was taken without their permission. If there is any doubt, I will always assume that the work was deliberately shared. It is thus your responsibility to safeguard your papers, your passwords, your computers, and any other means by which your work can be copied.

    Group or pair work is subject to the same rules, applied between groups or pairs.

    Latest Info:

    The course has a Sakai site where course info will be provided. This includes homework and reading assignments, lecture summaries, and sometimes lecture slides. The Sakai home page info will be updated frequently, at least once per week. It is also available here.

    University Catalog Course Description and prerequisites.