CPSC 681: Graduate Seminar
Course Homepage
Fall 2009

Class Meeting:
Mondays and/or Wednesdays, 4:10-5:25pm, 124 HRBB

Course homepage: CPSC 681
Seminar Schedule: http://www.cs.tamu.edu/research/seminars/681seminar

Nancy Amato
office: 425H Harvey R. Bright Bldg
email: amato [at] cs.tamu.edu
url: http://parasol.tamu.edu/~amato
office phone: 979-862-2275

Lawrence Rauchwerger
office: 425E Harvey R. Bright Bldg
email: rwerger [at] cs.tamu.edu
url: https://parasol.tamu.edu/~rwerger
office phone: 979-845-8872

Special Announcements

Course Goals: The purpose of the course is to expose you to a broad range of current research topics in computer science and related fields. Every graduate student in the department must register for the seminar at least once during their graduate studies.

All graduate students are encouraged to attend as many seminars as possible, not only during the semester(s) during which they are registered. It is useful for you to attend even when the topic seems unrelated to your research - indeed, seminars provide the best way for you to round out your knowledge by exposing you to current research in areas that are not directly related to your own research.

Course Content and Schedule: This course consists of seminars which will be presented roughly once a week, on a monday and/or a wednesday. Generally, after the speaker is finished, there will be a question and answer period where the audience can ask any questions they might have that were not answered during the seminar. This is often quite interesting and is considered part of the seminar (so you should not leave until it is over).

You are responsible for checking the seminar schedule on the web ( http://www.cs.tamu.edu/research/seminars/681seminar) and your email (announcements will be sent to mailing list for all graduate students) for up to date information. Be sure to check each monday and wednesday as sometimes seminars will be announced/cancelled at the last moment.

Although you should reserve the entire scheduled time slot (4:10-5:25), in most cases the seminars will finish around 5:00pm. If the speaker is not finished, or if the question and answer period is ongoing, you are expected to stay until the end, or until 5:25pm, whichever comes first. If this is a problem for you, please see the instructor. If you are in the seminar, you are expected to pay attention and refrain from activities such as doing other work, reading the newspaper, or sleeping. Behavior such as this gives speakers a bad impression of our graduate program and students. Students noticed exhibiting such behavior will not receive credit for attending that seminar. Thus, if you are not interested in a particular seminar, then don't attend - and attend a make-up seminar instead.

Mechanics and Grading: To receive credit for this course you must satisfy all of the following requirements:

Paper Summaries

To receive credit for a paper summary, students should select a technical paper authored by the speaker, read it, prepare a summary as outlined below, and submit it at the beginning of class in 124 HRBB (i.e., they can only be done for CPSC 681 seminars and must be turned in before the presentation starts). The paper should have appeared in (or accepted to) a peer reviewed conference or journal. Papers should be technically rigorous for the field (e.g., typically papers published in magazines would not be appropriate, but papers in IEEE or ACM journals or conferences would be appropriate); if you are unsure if a particular paper would be acceptable, please contact the instructor.

The goal of the one-page summaries is to allow students to become familiar with the topic of the presentation prior to the presentation. This will enable them to better understand the talk and will give them time to formulate questions. Students are encouraged to discuss a given paper with other students in the course for better understanding of the paper content; each student, however, is required to write an independent paper summary.

Each paper summary will receive a grade of 1, 2 or 3. You must receive a grade of 2 or 3 on the paper summary to receive credit for it towards the 6 required summaries.

The paper summary should be 1-2 pages in length (in addition to the coverpage) and should include the other clearly labeled sections listed below:

Seminar Reports for CPSC 681 seminars

To receive credit for attending a regular CPSC 681 seminar (this includes distinguished lectures presented during the normal CPSC 681 time slot), students must prepare a short report of the seminar on a form that will be available at the beginning of the seminar. The completed forms are due at the conclusion of the seminar (after the conclusion of the final question and answer session) and will be collected in HRBB 124.

Seminar Reports for Make-Up Seminars

Students will be allowed to make-up for up to 3 missed seminars by attending other relevant seminars. (Note, paper summaries cannot be done for make-up seminars, only for regular CPSC 681 seminars.) A seminar report form must be completed for make-up seminars. In this case, the students should print out a copy of the form (available here) and should return the completed forms to the instructor's mailbox (in the 3rd floor mailroom) or they can slip the forms under his office door (414B HRBB). These reports are due within 3 days of the seminar (e.g., on Monday for a seminar on Friday).

Seminars which are automatically approved are listed below. For other seminars, please see (or email) the instructor for approval.

Lawrence Rauchwerger(rwerger@cs.tamu.edu)