Course Syllabus – Big Data
CS 677-01 ⋅ Fall 2019 ⋅ 4 Credits
Lecture: Tuesday & Thursday ⋅ 4:35 – 6:20pm ⋅ LS 307
Communication: Piazza ⋅ Zoom Live Stream
Instructor: Matthew Malensek
Office: HR 406
Hours: T 2:30 – 4:00pm ⋅ Th 10:00 – 11:30am ⋅ F 2:00 – 3:00pm
Programming experience, preferably in Java or Python.
There is no textbook for this course. Instead, we will read and discuss research papers.
Nevertheless, here are some good resources:
- Data-Intensive Systems: Designing Data-Intensive Applications. Martin Kleppmann.
- Lambda Architecture: Big Data: Principles and best practices of scalable realtime data systems. Nathan Marz and James Warren.
- Distributed Systems: Distributed Systems: Principles and Paradigms. Andrew S. Tanenbaum and Maarten van Steen.
This course examines the algorithmic and systems challenges associated with big data. Topics include storage frameworks (key-value, in-memory, wide-column), scalable computing paradigms (MapReduce, Spark, stream processing), and analysis techniques (sentiment analysis, predictive modeling).
After completing the course, students will be able to:
- Explain the theory behind the I/O, memory, computational, and algorithmic trade-offs associated with big data
- Leverage big data frameworks and distributed systems to carry out analysis and gain insight
- Design and implement big data frameworks and algorithms
- Preprocess and prepare data for machine learning and visualization
- Summarize and critique research papers from the field
These outcomes will be assessed via programming assignments, scientific paper reviews, and quizzes.
The course will be graded on a A-F basis. The grade distribution is:
- Projects: 50%
- Research Paper Reports: 20%
- Quizzes: 20%
- In-class discussions, labs, team quizzes: 10%
Grades will be assigned as follows:
|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|
This scale is subject to change; scoring in the ranges above guarantees you will receive at least the grade listed.
Projects: The best way to learn is by putting theory into practice. This course features large projects that count for the majority of your grade. Remember to start early, ask questions, and go to office hours if necessary.
Scientific Research Papers: we will read several research papers throughout the semester. These assignments involve reading the paper and producing a written report outlining your analysis of the work, along with in-class discussion.
Quizzes: Your knowledge of the concepts covered in class will be evaluated via quizzes. These quizzes consist of two phases: individual and team, with a separate score for each. During the team phase of the quiz, you can discuss the questions with your teammates and come to a consensus on the answers. The individual and team portions of the quiz are turned in separately.
In-Class Discussion/Labs: beyond the research paper group discussions, we will also have small lab assignments or discussions in class to help reinforce content from the lecture.
- All assignments are due at 11:59pm on the date posted on Canvas.
- Do not cheat. Review the Honor Code, and if in doubt about whether or not something is cheating, ask the professor.
- The course staff will run cheat detection software that includes past assignments.
- If you cheat, you will get a 0 on the assignment or an F in the class.
- Submit code via GitHub. Commit your changes frequently as you work on the assignments.
- Assignment due dates are posted on Canvas.
- Late homework/lab assignments are not accepted.
- Projects turned in late are deducted a 10% penalty per day, for a maximum of three days. Beyond three days, late projects are not accepted.
- In the event of an excused absence, you may make up a missed individual quiz if arranged at least one week in advance.
You are here to learn. Be professional and courteous toward your peers, and help create a learning environment that supports diverse thinking, experiences, perspectives, and identities. If you need to use an electronic device during a lecture, do so in a way that doesn’t distract others. And most importantly, be excellent to each other.
- August 26 – Last day to add classes
- September 2 – No class, Labor Day
- September 6 – Census Date (last day to drop classes with a refund)
- October 14–15 – No class, Fall Break
- November 11 – Last day to drop classes or withdraw
- November 28–29 – No class, Thanksgiving Recess
- December 4 – Last day of class
- December 5 – Study/review day
- December 6–12 – Final exams
As a Jesuit institution committed to cura personalis — the care and education of the whole person — USF has an obligation to embody and foster the values of honesty and integrity. USF upholds the standards of honesty and integrity from all members of the academic community. All students are expected to know and adhere to the University’s Honor Code. You can find the full text of the code online at http://myusf.usfca.edu/academic-integrity/. The policy covers:
- Plagiarism – intentionally or unintentionally representing the words or ideas of another person as your own; failure to properly cite references; manufacturing references.
- Working with another person when independent work is required.
- Submission of the same paper in more than one course without the specific permission of each instructor.
- Submitting a paper written by another person or obtained from the internet.
- The penalties for violation of the policy may include a failing grade on the assignment, a failing grade in the course, and/or a referral to the Academic Integrity Committee.
Students with Disabilities
If you are a student with a disability or disabling condition, or if you think you may have a disability, please contact USF Student Disability Services (SDS) at 415 422-2613 within the first week of class, or immediately upon onset of disability, to speak with a disability specialist.
If you are determined eligible for reasonable accommodations, please meet with your disability specialist so they can arrange to have your accommodation letter sent to me, and we will discuss your needs for this course. For more information, please visit: http://www.usfca.edu/sds or call (415) 422-2613.
All students are expected to behave in accordance with the Student Conduct Code and other University policies (see http://www.usfca.edu/fogcutter/). Open discussion and disagreement is encouraged when done respectfully and in the spirit of academic discourse. There are also a variety of behaviors that, while not against a specific University policy, may create disruption in this course. Students whose behavior is disruptive or who fail to comply with the instructor may be dismissed from the class for the remainder of the class period and may need to meet with the instructor or Dean prior to returning to the next class period. If necessary, referrals may also be made to the Student Conduct process for violations of the Student Conduct Code.
Learning, Writing, and Speaking Centers
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Counseling and Psychological Services
Our diverse staff offers brief individual, couple, and group counseling to student members of our community. CAPS services are confidential and free of charge. Call 415-422-6352 for an initial consultation appointment. Having a crisis at 3 AM? We are still here for you. Telephone consultation through CAPS After Hours is available between the hours of 5:00 PM to 8:30 AM; call the above number and press 2.
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As an instructor, one of my responsibilities is to help create a safe learning environment on our campus. I also have a mandatory reporting responsibility related to my role as a faculty member. I am required to share information regarding sexual misconduct or information about a crime that may have occurred on USFs campus with the University. Here are other resources:
- To report any sexual misconduct, students may visit the Title IX Coordinator Leighia Fleming (UC 5th floor) or see many other options by visiting our website: https://myusf.usfca.edu/title-ix
- Students may speak to someone confidentially, or report a sexual assault confidentially by contacting Counseling and Psychological Services at 415-422-6352 or speaking to a clergy member in University Ministry at 415-422-4463.
- To find out more about reporting a sexual assault and resources at USF, visit USFs Callisto website at: https://usfca.callistocampus.org/.
- For an off-campus resource, contact San Francisco Women Against Rape (SFWAR) (415) 647-7273 (www.sfwar.org).
Student Accounts – Last day to withdraw with tuition reversal
Students who wish to have the tuition charges reversed on their student account should withdraw from the course(s) by the end of the business day on the last day to withdraw with tuition credit (census date) for the applicable course(s) in which the student is enrolled. Please note that the last day to withdraw with tuition credit may vary by course. The last day to withdraw with tuition credit (census date) listed in the Academic Calendar is applicable only to courses which meet for the standard 15-week semester. To find what the last day to withdraw with tuition credit is for a specific course, please visit the Online Class Schedule at www.usfca.edu/schedules.