Union College
Fall 2007


Kristina Striegnitz

518 388 6554
Steinmetz 233

Office hours: Mo 11:30-1, Thu 3:30-5, and by appointment

Where and when

Mo 3:05-4:45, We: 3:05-4:45

Bailey 201

Textbook and other material

The following textbook is required.

Michael Sipser (2005). Introduction to the Theory of Computation (2nd edition). Thomson Course Technology.

There will be additional readings for a few classes. I will make them available on this course's blackboard site. I will also post my slides there.

You can find pointers to additional material (books and software) on the course's website under resources.

Course Structure

The classes will consist of a mixture of lectures, exercises and proofs that we do together and exercises that you do in groups or pairs.

Every week, you will get a sheet with assignments. The assignments are due each Monday before class starts.

I will give you 6 quizzes during the term. They will be approximately 15-20 minutes long, in the beginning of class. I will let you know a week before the quizz that it is coming up. Check the schedule online regularly to know when these quizzes will be.

There will be a final exam.

What you need to do

  • First of all: ask questions! During class, if I say something that you don't understand, ask me. If you realize after class that there is something you didn't understand, come see me during my office hours and ask me, or write me an email.
  • You need to come to all classes. If you have a good reason for not being able to attend a class, please, let me know in advance so that we can discuss how you can make up the missed material. If you miss more than twice without an excuse, your final grade will go down by 5% for each missed class session.
  • Hand in your homework on time. I will not accept late homework.
  • Also, while I often do want you to work in groups during class, you should do your homework on your own. It's okay to discuss general solution strategies with your class mates, but then you should go and write your own answer. You need to be able to explain and justify your answer if I ask you.
  • Check the course web site and its blackboard site regularly. The schedule will be adapted during the term and may, therefore, change several times. I will also post dates of quizzes and any other news items or announcements there. Lecture slides, homework assignments, and additional readings will be posted on blackboard.

Evaluation and Grading

  • homework: 40% (I will only use your 9 best homework grades.)
  • quizzes: 20% (I will only use your 5 best quizz grades.)
  • final exam: 40%

Special accommodations

If you will need any special accomodations during the term (because of a disability, because you are an athlete, or because of any other circumstance that you already know about), please come to talk to me at the beginning of the term.

© 2007 Kristina Striegnitz