Course Syllabus

This graduate-level course will involve reading research papers and submitting reviews, participating in class discussions, presenting a paper topic, and a final research project. This page explains each of the parts, and has the overall schedule for the class (see below). For a high-level view of the class, visit the home page. 

  • Paper Reading and In-class Discussion: For each class, there will be 2 research papers assigned which will be discussed in class. These readings and in-class discussion/activities are the key learning tool in this class and so it is very important to keep up with the reading and make a strong effort in class to fully participate. The theme of this class is interdisciplinary, so the papers are drawn from several disciplines in biology, applied math, artificial intelligence, networking and robotics. You are assigned two papers each week, where one paper is the primary research paper and the second paper is to supply context. See Assignments for the papers for each day, and see Modules for lecture notes after class.
  • Paper Reviews: Before each class, you will write a short review for one of the papers assigned for that class, but you should read both and can draw on insights from both. Reviews should preferably be submitted by MIDNIGHT the day before class, but must be submitted before 7am to be counted. See the "how to write a review" guidelines page on how to write and submit your review; the focus should be on demonstrating depth and insight rather than overview. 
  • Presenter Days: In the last section of the class, pairs of students will be responsible for presenting the assigned research papers. As a presenter, you will be expected to do extra reading on the topic beyond the assigned papers - the goal is for you to educate the class on a more advanced topic they have not read about.
  • Final project: Finally, everyone will undertake a final research project in pairs. Read the "final project guidelines" webpage to see what is involved and see the "gallery of past projects". The guidelines webpage lists several potential project ideas related to topics in the class, but groups can choose their own topics to work on. There will be a proposal, presentation, and final paper. See schedule for due dates.
  • Grading: The final grade will take into account each of these aspects. Note: this is not a traditional pset+exam class. Your grade will be based on how well you demonstrate your understanding of the material --- in class through discussion, in the written form through the reviews, in your topic presentation, and in the final project. Typically 1/2 of the grade is based on the papers, reviews, and presentation, and 1/2 of the grade is based on the final project. (Grading rubric)


Course Summary:

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