Grading Policies


Your grade is composed of the following components:

Percentage Component
2.5% Participation
50% Homework
23.75% Mid-term project 1
23.75% Final project 2
7% Extra credit project

There are no exams in this course.

Added May 6 11:55pm: 7% of extra credit (above and beyond the 100% sum above, potentially to compensate for points lost earlier in the semester) may be obtained by submitting work on an additional final project topic. A submission bin is now available on the class web page. End Addition

Grading Scale

All your grade components will be added up with the percentage weights indicated and result in a single number. This number will determine your letter grade, according to the following scales:

Grade Range
A [90, 100)
B [80, 90)
C [70, 80)
D [60, 70)

It is likely that +/- grades will be assigned, with thresholds announced at a later date.

Grade Acceptance and Complaint Period

After grades are released for any homework set, project, or in-class activity, you have three weeks in order to clarify any misgivings you may have about the grade you received. Once three weeks have passed, the assigned grade is considered accepted and no further complaints will be considered.


Note that being "enrolled" in the course on this site has no administrative significance to the university. What matters as far as your participation appearing on your transcript is enrollment as shown in the UIUC self-service application.


There will be two moderately open-ended "project assignments" throughout the semester, one due about half-way through the semester, the other due at the end. These will have longer deadlines and require some independent work which you will summarize in a report that you should turn in along with accompanying code.

General homework load will be lighter (but not absent) during project periods.

Participation Grade/In-Class Activities

We will have occasional in-class activities that contribute to your participation grade. These may happen at any time during the class, and their purpose is to encourage attendance and help you verify understanding of material that was covered recently in the class.

These consist of multiple-choice or short-answer questions and will be open-everything, including discussion with neighbors. They will generally consist of about four questions, and you will be allowed 10 minutes to complete them. You will receive credit for attempting the activity, whether or not you get the answers right does not influence your grade.


There will be generally biweekly longer-form homework sets over the course of the semester. Their due dates are shown in the class calendar and upon starting and reviewing each assignments.

Late homework

Homework submitted after the deadline will count for half of its original worth. This offer is good for up to one week after the original deadline. After that, no late work will be accepted.

Homework will typically come out during the day on Fridays and be due two Fridays after, as indicated in the class calendar. Each homework set will typically consist of a combination of coding and written responses.


You get exactly one submission per homework set. In particular, this means that:

Collaboration on Homework

Student responsibilities

Please read and understand the UIUC student code (link opens PDF).

In particular, make sure to read and understand Paragraph §1‑402. The rules there along with the rules in this tutorial form the foundation for making sure you and everyone else in the class receive a fair, transparent grade. Please see also the Collaboration on Homework Section above.