Course Number and Title: CS 385 Special Lecture Series in Computer Science
Location: Harney 235 Kudlick Classroom
Schedule: Mon or Wed 6:30 - 7:30 pm

Instructor: Patricia Francis-Lyon
Email: pfrancislyon (at) cs (dot) usfca (dot) edu
Phone: (415) 422-2810
Office: Harney Science Center 542
Office Hours: M 9:15-10:15 am, 1-3 pm; 6:30-9 pm (or if SLS speaker, then 7:30 - 10 pm), W 1-3 pm; F 1-2 pm; Also by appointment
Class email list: go to, list is CS 385

Course Goals and Objectives:
This weekly colloquium and discussion session on current developments will bring students up to speed with advances and progress in various aspects of computer science. Students will develop analytical thinking by listening, summarizing, critiquing the lectures. Students will also learn presentation skills by observation.


Attendance Due to the nature of the course, attendance is required for every lecture. If you are late by 15 minutes or more, or leave early by 15 minutes or more, this will count as an absence. If you have a legitimate reason to miss a lecture, you should provide a documentaion, e.g. doctor's note. The attendance sheet will be circulated at every lecture. You'll need to sign in yourself.

Discussion, participation:
Speakers are happy when the audience is engaged, so they appreciate thoughtful questions. Most speakers welcome questions during the lecture, and some might ask you to wait until the end of the lecture. Participate by asking questions in lecture. I make a note of which students ask the speaker questions, as this figures into your participation grade. (You may also discuss the lectures on Discussion board in Blackboard).

Lecture reports For every lecture, there is a report due by next lecture in class. If you did not pick up a report form at the lecture or misplaced it, there is a blank one in Blackboard. Remember to write in the date and the speaker's name. If you did not attend the lecture, your report is not accepted.

Extended report For the extended report, you will pick one of the three topics below, and write a 1,000 word essay. The final extended report is due at 11:55pm on Friday, May 10th, submitted through Blackboard. It will not be returned to you. Make sure that you list all the references you used in the end of your report. References do not count towards 1000 words. The deadlines are firm, i.e. there is no late day policy.

1. Describe your experience as CS major.
2. What problem or opportunity that computer technology brought to society this year has impressed you?
3. Pick one of the lectures and write an extended report on the same topic.

Academic Honesty We will adhere to the University's Student Academic Honesty Policy.
In this course you must do your own work on reports. Also, it's cheating to attempt to inflate your grade by having someone sign in for you when you were not in attendance at a lecture.

Laptop Usage in Class Do not use your laptop in class. During the lecture, please show respect to the speaker for the time put into preparing slides and coming to USF to present. Please give your complete attention to the speaker and presentation, which will be on the plasma screens and the student displays in front of you.

Mapping to Letter Grade
100 - 93.0 - A
92.9 - 90.0 - A-
89.9 - 87.0 - B+
86.9 - 83.0 - B
82.9 - 80.0 - B-
79.9 - 77.0 - C+
76.9 - 73.0 - C
72.9 - 70.0 - C-
69.9 - 67.0 - D+
66.9 - 63.0 - D
62.9 - 60.0 - D-
59.9 - 0 - F

Note: This syllabus is subject to change.