All About Homework

All homework is due at 11:55pm on the due date, unless noted otherwise. I will grade and return these to you as quickly as possible. I’ll try for three class periods, but can’t guarantee it.

When you are asked to analyze something, or explain something, please be complete, and show your work (including any commands you give, and their output, to show how you did the problem). Otherwise, even if you get the right answer, you will get ZERO (that’s 0, zip, nada, rien, nothing) points. Think your answer through and do a rough draft. Students (and professionals, actually) often overlook this, but it is vital. Write clearly and cogently. If the question asks for an opinion, state your opinion clearly, justify it, and don’t ramble. Answers that start, “My opinion is yes …” and conclude with “… on the other hand it could equally well be no” won’t get much credit.

When you turn in homework, you must turn in an ASCII or a PDF version of your answers (you can use any text processor you like to generate these). Use an appropriate extension: “.pdf” for a PDF file and “.txt” for an ASCII file. Please do not submit Microsoft Word or Open Office files because they do not render consistently on different systems; if you do, I will return it without grading it.

Some assignments may require programming. When you submit your answers to such an assignment, include the program and any ancillary files. Your program should be commented, and you must include a Makefile and a README that says how to run the program and how the output is to be interpreted. Put these into a compressed tarball or a ZIP file with the extensions “.tgz” and “.zip”, respectively. I expect to be able to expand the file, change into the directory, and type make to compile the program.

Please turn in your work electronically through Canvas. If you need to turn in something on paper (for example, a diagram that you can’t draw using your text processing program), please hand it to me before the assignment is due, and put a note in what you submit electronically that you have done this. That way, I will remember to look for something written, rather than mark you off for that problem.


Your grades will be posted to Canvas when the homework assignment is graded. I will also post comments on why you gained, or lost, points.

Extra Credit

Extra credit is tallied separately from regular scores. It counts in your favor if you end up on a borderline between two grades at the end of the course. But not doing extra credit will never be counted against you, because grades are assigned on the basis of regular scores. You should do extra credit if you find it interesting and think that it might teach you something. Remember, though, it is not wise to skimp on the regular assignment in order to do extra credit!

Late Homework

As this is a graduate class, I expect that you can manage your own time. So if your homework is occasionally late, I will assume there is a very good reason. (If the reason is a a serious one, like a medical reason or a family emergency, I’d appreciate your letting me know.) I will not deduct points without warning you. If this becomes a problem for an individual or the class, I reserve the right to begin imposing penalties, so please do not abuse this!

Also, I will not post my answers until all homework has been turned in, so it is to your classmates’ benefit, as well as your own, not to be too late.

Grade Reviews

If you feel that there is an error in grading, please come see me and I’ll look over it (and possibly talk with you about it). However, don’t dally; any such request must be made within one week of when the grades were made available. After that, I won’t change your grade.

You can also obtain a PDF version of this. Version of January 2, 2019 at 3:46PM