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Lecture Notes]
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Course Info:
  [Texts & Links]
  [Outcomes Matrix]
  [Class Protocols]
  [HW/Quiz Info]
  [Exam Info]
  [Additional Policies]

HW Assignments:
  [Hw1]  [Hw2]  [Hw3]
  [Hw4]  [Hw5]  [Quizzes]

Practice Exams:
  [Midterm]  [Final]


CS146 Spring 2014 Sec5 and Sec6 Home Page/Syllabus

Data Structures and Algorithms

Instructor: Chris Pollett
Office: MH 214
Phone Number: (408) 924 5145
Office Hours: MW 5-6pm
Class Meets:
Sec5 MW 6:00pm-7:15pm in MH225
Sec6 MW 7:30pm-8:45pm in MH225


To take this class you must have taken: Math 30 , Math 42 , and CS49J , and CS46B with a grade of C- or better.

Texts and Links

Required Texts: Introduction to Algorithms, 3rd Ed.. by Thomas H. Cormen, Charles E. Leiserson, Ronald L. Rivest and Clifford Stein
Online References and Other Links: Java 7 SDK Download.
Java SE 7 Class API Documentation.

Topics and Outcomes

Implementations of advanced tree structures, priority queues, heaps, directed and undirected graphs. Advanced searching and sorting techniques (radix sort, heapsort, mergesort, and quicksort). Design and analysis of data structures and algorithms. Divide-and-conquer, greedy, and dynamic programming algorithm design techniques. By the end of this course, a student should be able to: (1) Implement lists, stacks, queues, search trees, heaps, union-find ADT, and graphs and use these data structures in programs they design. (2) Prove basic properties of trees and graphs. (3) Perform breadth-first search and depth-first search on directed as well as undirected graphs. (4) Use advanced sorting techniques (radix sort, heapsort, mergesort, quicksort). (5) Determine the running time of an algorithm in terms of asymptotic notation. (6) Solve recurrence relations representing the running time of an algorithm designed using a divide-and-conquer strategy. (7) Comprehend the basic concept of NP-completeness and realize that they may not be able to efficiently solve all problems they encounter in their careers. (8) Comprehend algorithms designed using greedy, divide-and-conquer, and dynamic programming techniques.

Below is a tentative time table for when we'll do things this quarter:

Week 1: Jan 27, Jan 29 Read Ch 1 CLRS, Introduction to Algorithms
Week 2: Feb 3, Feb 5 Read Ch 2 CLRS, Designing and Analyzing algorithms
Week 3: Feb 10, Feb 12 Read Ch 3 CLRS, Growth of Functions
Week 4: Feb 17, Feb 19 Read Ch4 CLRS, Divide-and-Conquer
Week 5: Feb 24, Feb 26 Read Ch6 CLRS, Heapsort
Week 6: Mar 3, Mar 5 Read Ch 7 CLRS, Quicksort
Week 7: Mar 10, Mar 12 Read Ch 8 CLRS, Sorting in Linear Time
Week 8: Mar 17, Mar 19 Review
Week 9: Mar 24, Mar 26 Spring Break
Week 10: Mar 31 (C. Chavez Day), Apr 2 Read Ch 10 CLRS, Elementary Data Structures
Week 11: Apr 7, Apr 9 Read Ch 12 CLRS, Binary Search Trees
Week 12: Apr 14, Apr 16 Read Ch 13 CLRS, Red-Black Trees
Week 13: Apr 21, Apr 23 Read Ch 15-16 CLRS, Dynamic Programming and Greedy Algorithms
Week 14: Apr 28, Apr 30 Read Ch 22-23 CLRS, Elementary Graph Algorithms, Spanning Trees
Week 15: May 5, May 7 Read Ch 34 CLRS, NP-completeness
Week 16: May 12 Review
The final will be Monday, May 19 from 5:15pm-7:30pm (Sec5), 7:45-10:00pm (Sec6)


HWs and Quizzes 50%
Midterm 20%
Final 30%

Grades will be calculated in the following manner: The person or persons with the highest aggregate score will receive an A+. A score of 55 will be the cut-off for a C-. The region between this high and low score will be divided into eight equal-sized regions. From the top region to the low region, a score falling within a region receives the grade: A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-. If the boundary between an A and an A- is 85, then the score 85 counts as an A-. Scores below 55 but above 50 receive the grade D. Those below 50 receive the grade F.

If you do better than an A- in this class and want me to write you a letter of recommendation, I will generally be willing provided you ask me within two years of taking my course. Be advised that I write better letters if I know you to some degree.

Classroom Protocol

I will start lecturing close to the official start time for this class modulo getting tangled up in any audio/visual presentation tools I am using. Once I start lecturing, please refrain from talking to each other, answering your cell phone, etc. If something I am talking about is unclear to you, feel free to ask a question about it. Typically, on practice tests days, you will get to work in groups, and in so doing, turn your desks facing each other, etc. Please return your desks back to the way they were at the end of class. This class has an online class discussion board which can be used to post questions relating to the homework and tests. Please keep discussions on this board civil. This board will be moderated. Class and discussion board participation, although not a component of your grade, will be considered if you ask me to write you a letter of recommendation.

Course Requirements, Homework and Quiz Info

The university policy regarding credit hours for classes states:
"SJSU classes are designed such that in order to be successful, it is expected that students will spend a minimum of forty-five hours for each unit of credit (normally three hours per unit per week), including preparing for class, participating in course activities, completing assignments, and so on. More details about student workload can be found in
University Policy S12-3."

This semester we will have five homeworks and weekly quizzes. Every Monday this semester, except the first day of class, the Midterm Review Day, and holidays, there will be a quiz on the previous week's material. The answer to the quiz will either be multiple choice, true-false, or a simple numeric answer that does not require a calculator. Each quiz is worth a maximum of 1pt with no partial credit being given. Out of the total of twelve quizzes this semester, I will keep your ten best scores.

Links to the current list of homeworks and quizzes can be found on the left hand frame of the class homepage. After an assignment has been returned, a link to its solution (based on the best student solutions) will be placed off the assignment page. Material from assignments may appear on midterms and finals. The homeworks you turn in for this class should be your own individual work. You may discuss problems at a high level with your class mates, but you should not share code or use code from the web as your own.

Homeworks for this class will be submitted and returned completely electronically. To submit an assignment click on the submit homework link for your section on the left hand side of the homepage and filling out the on-line form. Hardcopies or e-mail versions of your assignments will be rejected and not receive credit. Homeworks will always be due by the start of class on the day their due. Late homeworks will not be accepted and missed quizzes cannot be made up; however, your lowest score amongst the five homeworks and your quiz total will be dropped.

When doing the programming part of an assignment please make sure to adhere to the specification given as closely as possible. Names of files should be as given, etc. Failure to follow the specification may result in your homework not being graded and you receiving a zero for your work.


The midterm will be during class time on: Mar 19.

The final will be: Monday, May 19 from 5:15pm-7:30pm (Sec5), 7:45-10:00pm (Sec6).

All exams are closed book, closed notes and in this classroom. You will be allowed only the test and your pen or pencil on your desk during these exams. The final will cover material from the whole semester although there will be an emphasis on material after the last midterm. No make ups will be given. The final exam may be scaled to replace a midterm grade if it was missed under provably legitimate circumstances. These exams will test whether or not you have mastered the material both presented in class or assigned as homework during the quarter. My exams usually consist of a series of essay style questions. I try to avoid making tricky problems. The week before each exam I will give out a list of problems representative of the level of difficulty of problems the student will be expected to answer on the exam. Any disputes concerning grades on exams should be directed to me, Professor Pollett.


If you believe an error was made in the grading of your program or exam, you may request in person a regrade from me, Professor Pollett, during my office hours. I do not accept e-mail requests for regrades. A request for a regrade must be made no more than a week after the homework or a midterm is returned. If you cannot find me before the end of the semester and you would like to request a regrade of your final, you may see me in person at the start of the immediately following semester.

Academic Honesty

Your own commitment to learning, as evidenced by your enrollment at San Jose State University, and the University's Academic Integrity Policy requires you to be honest in all your academic course work. Faculty members are required to report all infractions to the Office of Student Conduct and Ethical Development. The policy on academic integrity can be found at

Specifically, for this class, you should obviously not cheat on tests. For homeworks, you should not share code or problem solutions! At a minimum a 0 on the assignment or test will be given. A student caught using resources like Rent-a-coder will receive an F for the course and be referred to University for disciplinary action.

Additional Policies and Procedures

The campus policy to ensure compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act is:
"If you need course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability, or if you need special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please make an appointment with me as soon as possible, or see me during office hours. Presidential Directive 97-03 requires that students with disabilities register with
Accessible Education Center to establish a record of their disability."

More information about SJSU policies and procedures can be found at the following links: