If you have any questions or concerns, please ask in lecture, during office hours, or on Piazza.
Homeworks are graded by the entire course staff, directly within Gradescope. To keep grading consistent, each numbered problem is graded by some number of undergraduate CAs, under the supervision of a graduate TA, using a detailed rubric developed within Gradescope. Under normal circumstances, all homework should be graded within two weeks of submission.
Exams are graded by the instructors and the graduate TAs, also within Gradescope. Under normal circumstances, exams should be graded within two weeks.
Please check that your grades are tabulated and recorded correctly. If you notice a mistake, please use gradescope to ask for a regrade. Regrade period for homeworks/exams is one week after the grade is available.
Submit your regrade requests directly within Gradescope. If you have questions or concerns about any grade, we strongly encourage you talk with the course staff before submitting a regrade request. However, no grades will be changed in any student's presence; you must submit an official request via Gradescope.
Please double-check the posted solutions for correctness. If any posted homework solution contains a serious error, all students will receive a perfect score for that problem as extra credit. Yes, really.
Initial regrade requests for each problem will be handled by one of the graduate TAs. An instructor will handle all additional requests and/or disputes.
Regrade requests for any problem must be submitted within one week after the scores for that problem are released. We will not accept late regrade requests. We will consider regrade requests submitted (or still outstanding) after the final exam only if a successful regrade would change the student's overall course grade.
All regrade requests must include a brief written justification for the request. (Fill in the appropriate textbox on Gradescope.) Here are some examples of good justifications; this is not a complete list.
Regrade requests with poor or missing justifications will be refused.
- My answer agrees with the posted solution, but I still lost points.
- You took off points for missing the base case, but it's right here.
- I lost 4 points for incorrect time analysis, but the rubric says that's only worth 2 points.
- My answer is correct, even though it does not match the posted solution.
- There is no explanation for my grade.
- The official solution is incorrect; here's a counterexample. (Extra credit for everyone!)
- Wasting our time by submitting repeatedly unjustified regrade requests will result in losing all points on the question.
We can only grade what you actually submitted. You cannot get a higher grade by explaining what you meant, either in person or in writing. Your original submission must stand on its own.
If you submit a regrade request, we reserve the right to regrade your submission from scratch. Your grade can go down.
Final course grades
We will determine final course grades as follows.
(What do you expect from an algorithms course?)
- Compute raw totals from homework and exam scores, excluding extra credit. Course work is weighted as follows:
We will drop your lowest quiz score.
Aside from Homework 0, we expect to assign about 30 homework problems.
We will drop your six lowest homework problem scores starting from Homework 1 (not your six
lowest homework sets).
There will be two midterm exams, each worth 22% of your raw total, and a cumultive final exam, worth 28% of your raw total. We do not plan to drop any exam problems.
Exceptions: Any forgiven homeworks or exams will be treated as though they were never assigned; we will drop the same fraction of each student's unforgiven scores. On the other hand, we will not drop zeros that result from cheating offenses.
- Compute adjusted totals, which include extra credit points. Extra credit points are not necessarily worth the same as regular points.
- Remove outliers at both ends of the curve.
- Anyone with an adjusted total over 90% automatically gets an A+. This rule typically applies to the top 2–3% of the class.
- Anyone with an adjusted total below 33% or an adjusted
homework total below 50%,
or an adjusted exam total below a threshold to be determined based
on the difficulty of the exams, or who otherwise does not appear to be making a good faith effort, automatically gets an F. This rule typically applies to the bottom 2-3% of the class. These are not the only ways to fail!
- Determine letter-grade cutoffs from the raw totals. Outliers are excluded from the cutoff computation to avoid
unfairly skewing the curve.
By default, the mean is a borderline B–/C+, and each standard deviation is worth one full letter grade. For example, the B+/B cutoff is 2/3 standard deviations above the mean, and the D/D– cutoff is 5/3 standard deviations below the mean.
- Compute final letter grades (for non-outliers) from adjusted totals.
- Adjust grades upwards as necessary to account for
exam difficulty, student marked improvement, or to take into account
other miscellaneous factors.
Remember that the curve sets a lower bound on your grade in the class, not an upper bound.
In particular, if everyone does well, then everyone will get a good grade.