CSCE 781 Spring 2011: Grading Policy (Subject to Update)

  • Homework (other than programs): 40%
  • Midterm: 20% (if two midterms, 10% each)
  • Final Exam: 30%
  • Research Presentation: 10%
  • Partly because of the replacement of the final exam with a final project, the grading scale was changed. Updated grading scale:
  • Letter grade of A requires all assignments to be completed with a grade of 70% or more and the midterm to be passed with a grade of 60% or more.
  • B if one assignment is not completed.
  • C if two assignments are not completed.
  • D if three assignments are not completed.
  • F if four or more assigments are not completed.
  • For the purposed of the scale, assigments include homework, midterm exam, presentation, and final project. An assignment is "completed" if a minimum score (23 for HW1, 20 for HW2, 9 for HW3, 27 for MT1, 2 for the presentation, 4 for the final project) is obtained. The midterm counts as an assignment. The extra credit assignment, if completed with a grade of 4 or better, replaces one of the other assignments.

    The numeric scores are translated to letter grades as follows: [90-100] = A, [87-90[ = B+, [80-87[ = B, [77-80[ = C+, [70-77[ = C, [67-70[ = D+, [60-67[ = D, [0-60[ = F. However, In order to pass the course with a grade of C or better, a minimum raw score of 60% on the midterm(s) and final exam is needed. There are different ways of computing this cumulative grade. I expect that it will be computed by weighing the percentage score of each test by its weight in the overall course score. In this way, for example, effects due to the different number of points assigned to each midterm are eliminated. The instructor has the final say in setting the algorithm for computing the cumulative test grade.

    Homework must be turned in typed; exceptions will be made for assignments requiring figures or unusual formatting. Homework turned in late is subject to a 5% per day penalty, subject to the provision that no credit is given to homework turned in after the beginning of class following the one when the homework is due.

    Each student is expected to attend all classes for this course and is responsible for all material covered in class or assigned. In particular, absence from more than nine scheduled classes, whether excused or unexcused, is excessive and may result in a grade penalty.

    Each student must follow the University Honor Code and turn in his or her work. You are encouraged to discuss the material you study, but you must do your homework individually, unless an assignment is explicitly designated as a team assignment. The minimum grade penalty for a violation will be a zero on the work involved. In addition, an honor code violation will be subject to the sanctions described in the USC Community Handbook and Policy Guide. The following paragraph, written by Professor Duncan Buell, clarifies the distinction between "learning from a discussion" and "turning in someone else's work": If, after having participated in a group activity, you can walk away, put the books down, have lunch, and then come back afterwards to re-create from your own head the material and techniques you discussed as a group, then you can legitimately say that you have learned from the group but the work you turn in is your own.