CS 374 A
CS/ECE 374 A — Fall 2023

Upcoming Deadlines and Exams

Thu Dec 7
Reading day
HKN review session, 12:30–3:00 in ECE 1002
Deadline for ICES Online, TA feedback, and CA feedback surveys
Deadline for PrairieLearn and extension policy surveys (extra credit if >160 responses!)
Fri Dec 8
Final exam: 8–11am, location TBA

Recent Announcements

Wed Dec 6
As everyone already knows, the final exam will be offered this Friday, December 6, from 8am to 11am. More information is available on the exams page, but here are a few important logistical announcements.
  • The final exam will be held in following locations; please go to the room assigned to the first letter of your last (family) name. Nobody is in the same building as either Midterm 1 or Midterm 2. You may find these floor maps for all buildings on campus helpful.
  • Everyone who registered for the conflict final exam has been contacted with scheduling information. However, we are leaving the conflict registration form open through Friday to accommodate students with unexpected emergencies.
  • Please read and understand the exam policies. In particular, you can bring two double-sided 8½"×11" handwritten cheat sheets to the exam.
  • HKN is hosting a final-exam review session tomorrow (Thursday), 12:30–3:00 in ECE 1002.
Other announcements:
  • All office hours will continue as usual through the end of the day tomorrow (Thursday). However, there will not be a "homework party" Thursday evening. There will be no regular office hours after the final exam begins.
  • There are obviously a large number of outstanding regrade requests (and reregrade rerequests), especially for Midterm 2, and we anticipate a similar volume of regrade requests for the final exam. All regrade requests will be answered eventually, but starting Friday afternoon, grading the final exam and computing final course grades will take higher priority. We will prioritize regrade requests from students with lower exam scores / course averages. If a regrade requests changes a student's course grade, Jeff will submit a grade change request (which usually takes effect in only a few days) and notify the studentby email.

Sun Dec 3
  • Study problems and first practice exam (answer booklet) for the final exam are available. Jeff will go over this practice exam in class on Tuesday. Another practice exam will be posted tomorrow, with solutions released on Thursday. Watch the exams page for more information.

  • Midterm 2 grades have been released on Gradescope.
    • Regrade requests can be submitted until Monday, December 18 at 11:59pm.
    • Here is the distribution of midterm grades and estimated course averages:

      The orange curve shows computed course averages (35% Homeworks 1–9 and GPS 1–9 + 65% Midterms 1–2) for all students who took both midterms, in sorted order. These averages were used to define the vertical letter-grade boundaries. The blue dots show the sum of both midterm scores for the corresponding students. Dots further above the orange curve indicate lower homework averages.

      Assuming a HW+GPS average of 87% (the class median assuming no drops), a total midterm score of at least 84 is consistent with an A, a total midterm score between 60 and 83 is consistent with a B, and a total midterm score between 38 and 53 is consistent with a C.

      Please keep in mind that this is an extremely rough prediction of your final course grades, based on roughly 65% of the overall work. In particular, these estimates were computed without dropping any homework or GPS scores and without incorporating survey extra credit, so they should be considered conservative. Past experience suggests that most students‘ final course grades will be within half a letter grade of these estimates, but differences of a full letter grade (in either direction) are common every semester.

      Here is a scatterplot showing Midterm 1 scores versus Midterm 2 scores:

Mon Nov 27
  • Coursework:
    • Guided Problem Set 11 is available on PrairieLearn. This is the last guided problem set, and it is short.
    • Homework 12 is available. This homework is for practice only; solutions will be posted next Monday.
  • Course logistics:
    • There is a new reregrade rerequest form for submitting followup regrade requests after the two-week Gradescope window closes.
    • The final exam will be held on Friday, December 8, from 8am to 11am. If you need to take a conflict exam, please fill out the conflict registration form no later than Monday, December 4. We will announce the date and time of the conflict exam on Tuesday, December 5, based on the forms submitted by that time. (The registration form will be left open until the regular final exam begins, to accommodate people with last-minute emergencies.)
  • Teaching evaluations

    • ICES Online forms are available through Thursday, December 7 (reading day). Your feedback is extremely important, especially critical narrative feedback. Please submit forms both for Jeff and the course as a whole, and for the TA who leads your registered lab section. (Please also submit evaluations for all your other courses!)
    • ICES only supports evaluation of teaching assistants who are official instructors of a discuss or lab section, and only by students registered for that section, and it does not suport evaluation of undergraduate course assistants at all. Separate surveys are available to collect informal feedback for/about any member of the course staff. These surveys are also available through Thursday, December 7 (reading day).
  • Surveys: We're also asking for feedback on specific aspects of the course. For each of these surveys, the entire class will receive a small amount of extra credit if at least half of the students submits a response before the final exam.
  • Hiring: The PrairieLearn development team for CS 374 is hiring new developers for next semester. If you are interested, please fill out the application form!

Earlier announcements

Si maintenant vous me donnez une équation que vous aurez choisie à votre gré, et que vous desirez connaître si elle est ou non soluble par radicaux, je n’aurai rien à y faire que de vous indiquer le moyen de répondre à votre question, sans vouloir charger ni moi ni personne de la faire. En un mot les calculs sont impracticables.

Algorithms are for people who don't know how to buy RAM.

The only way to learn is by playing, the only way to win is by learning, and the only way to begin is by beginning. So without further ado, let's begin.
— Sam Reich, Game Changer (2019–present)