Academic Honesty

The rules for Columbia University and the CS Department apply.
In classes that I teach, rules regarding academic honesty are simple:
  • Unless specifically stated otherwise, assignments are to be completed individually. You are encouraged to discuss the understanding of a particular issue or class material with fellow students, but code and solutions have to be your own effort.
  • If you collaborate on a homework problem and indicate all group members on the assignment, everybody will share the points for that problem. For example, if 3 students work on a programming problem worth 12 points, each student receives 4 points, assuming the solution is correct.
  • If you collaborate and do not indicate so, you will receive zero points and your action will be referred to the Dean of Students.
  • If you take another student's work without permission and submit it as your own, either with or without alterations, you will be referred to the Dean of Students, without exceptions. You will also receive zero points for the assignment.
  • If you copy material from text books, journal articles, manuals, etc., you must give proper credit to the source to avoid suspicion of plagiarism. (Standard references such as mathematical tables or dictionaries used to check spelling clearly do not have to be referenced explicitly.)
  • You must set permissions on any homework assignments so that they are readable only by you. You may ge reprimanded for facilitating cheating if you do not follow this rule.


  • Unless specified otherwise, assignments are due at the beginning of class on the due date.
  • 10% of your points are deducted for every day that the assignment is late. (5% for the first 12 hours.) Solutions will be posted approximately one week after the due date; no assignments will be accepted after solutions are posted.
  • Students are granted three (3) automatic late day "passes". You can spend your late days on any number of assignments or not use them at all. A pass applies to a whole or part of an assignment. Late days are integers; if any part of an assignment late, by whatever amount, your "account" is debited with one grace day.
  • Extensions without penalty are granted if you are ill or have other personal emergencies (death in the immediate family, child birth, etc.). Job interviews, work load and business travel are not acceptable excuses, as you need to factor these in before taking the class.
  • Class projects have to be turned in on time (with the standard late schedule above, but no late passes); no incomplete will be granted except in cases of unforeseen medical or family emergency.

Auditing, Pass/Fail

Students auditing a course are expected to achieve 50% or more of the points on the assignments.
Students taking the course as pass/fail will be treated the same as letter-grade students and must achieve 50% of the overall course points to pass the course.