The course consists of the following elements:
We will try to ensure that the workload is typical for a four-credit course, namely, eight to ten hours per week outside of the lectures. If we do not succeed, please let us know in whichever way you feel the most comfortable (person-to-person, e-mail, etc.) and explain which parts of the course are causing you to spend too much time non-productively.
We have structured the course so that spending an hour or two per day will maximize your efficiency. You will work this way in the real worldyou cannot cram a three-month design assignment into the last nightso it is good to work this way now. Plus, you will understand the material better. If you leave the homework for the night before it is due, then you will not have time to do the reading or study for the quizzes, and you will not have time to ask questions when (not if) the software misbehaves.
Software tools frequently consume more time then they should. We have designed the assignments to get you up to speed gradually (over the period of a few weeks), but undoubtedly there will be some start-up cost (as with any new tool). Essentially, you are learning a new language, a compiler, and getting familiar with a process. Every tool imposes a certain model. Your frustration can be high until you assimilate that model and learn to use it effectively. Be sure to use the tutorials, and do not spend countless hours making no progress. Ask for help.
Your assignments must be neat and legible. We will not spend time trying to decipher messy work. We urge you to use the graphical and word processing tools that are readily available to you in the labs in the department. These includes a schematic editor, state diagram editor, waveform display, word processor, etc..
We will try to make solutions for the assignments and quizzes available in a timely fashion. Please try to find the time to review these before the quizzes and the final exam.
We will compute your course grade as follows:
The weekly assignments are due at the beginning of class on the assigned due date. Assignments handed in during or immediately after class will incur a 10% penalty. We will not accept assignments after we have left the classroom.
Assignment problems will sometimes be graded on a random basis. To get full credit for an assignment, you must have made a good-faith effort on all problems, and must have a correct solution to the problems which are graded in detail. You will not know in advance which problems are going to be graded in detail!
If you have a question with assignment grading, please first review the assignment solutions carefully, then speak with the person who graded it.
There will be no makeup for missed quizzes. If you miss a quiz, you will receive a score of zero so please plan your schedule carefully.The lowest mini-quiz will be dropped. I do not have the resources to be able to give make-up quizzes. Please review the quiz solutions carefully before questioning a grade with either the instructor or the teaching assistants.
The final exam will only be given on the official date at the official time: Wednesday, December 19, 2:30-4:20 pm. Please do not make plans which would require you to miss this date. If you have more than two exams officially scheduled on one day, you can petition for an exception.