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 world—you cannot cram a three-month design assignment into the last night—so you may as well work this way now. Plus, you will understand the material better. If you leave the homework for Thursday night, then you will not have time to 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. Essentially, you are learning a 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. 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 you have available to you. These includes a schematic editor, state diagram editor, waveform display, word processor, etc.
We will post solutions for the assignments in a timely
47%: weekly assignments
47%: biweekly quizzes
6%: course participation
We will grade all your assignments and quizzes numerically: 40 points per assignment, 80 points per quiz, and 40 points for class/section participation. At the end of the term we will sum the total points, normalize the sum (choose X and Y), and assign a final numeric grade as follows:
We will round up or down using standard conventions: 3.84Þ3.8; 3.85Þ3.9
Please review the assignment solutions carefully before questioning a grade with either the instructor or the teaching assistants.
If you miss an assignment as a result of unavoidable circumstances, send the instructor a one-line email asking for an extension, the reason for your request, and the date you anticipate handing in the assignment. You know which circumstances are avoidable and which are unavoidable.
If you have a reasonable but avoidable reason for requesting an extension, send email to the instructor at least 24 hours before the assignment is due, citing a reason for the extension as above. Assume the extension is granted, unless the instructor responds to the contrary. Avoidable extension requests made after the assignment is due will generally be rejected.
If you have a reasonable but avoidable reason for missing a quiz, discuss the situation with the instructor at least 24 hours before the quiz. Requests made after the class takes the quiz will generally be rejected. For reasonable requests, the instructor will grant permission to take a makeup quiz during finals week.
Please review the quiz solutions carefully before questioning
a grade with either the instructor or the teaching assistants.
Quizzes: A quiz is a short exam—no collaboration
or discussion is permitted. If you have a question during a quiz,
ask the instructor.
To avoid creating situations where copying can arise,
never e-mail or post your solution files. You can post general questions
about interpretation and tool use but limit your comments to these categories.
If in doubt about what might constitute cheating, send the instructor email
describing the situation.