UMBC CMSC451, Automata Theory and Formal Languages, Summer 2001,
Introduction to Automata Theory, Languages and
Computation (second edition), Hopcroft, Motwani and Ullman. Addison
The most important prerequisite for this course is CMSC 203 Discrete
Structures. You will be expected to read, write and understand mathematical
proofs. Although CMSC 202 Computer Science II is formally a prerequisite
for this course, this prerequisite is mostly for programming maturity
rather than technical content. In particular, no programming projects will
There are two objectives for this course: 1) to introduce the student to
the concepts in automata theory and formal languages; and 2) to continue
the development of the student's skills in reading, writing and
understanding mathematical proofs.
Your final grade will be based upon homework assignments (40% total) and
two exams (30% each). It is very important that you do the weekly homework
assignments. The homework assignments count for a major portion of your
grade --- more than each exam. Your grade is given for work done
during the semester; incomplete grades will only be given for
medical illness or other such dire circumstances.
Your final letter grade is based on the standard formula:
0 <= F < 60, 60 <= D < 70, 70 <= C < 80, 80 <=
B < 90, 90 <= A <= 100
Depending upon the distribution of grades in the class, there may be a
curve in your favor, but under no circumstances will grades be curved
Lecture and Homework Policy.
You are expected to attend all lectures. You are responsible for all
material covered in the lecture as well as those in the assigned reading.
However, this subject cannot be learned simply by listening to the lectures
and reading the book. In order to master the material, you need to spend
time outside the classroom, to think, to work out the homework and
understand the solutions.
There will be a total of 5 homework assignments. Homework is due at the
beginning of lecture --- this is so you do not work on your homework
during lecture. Late homework will not be accepted --- this is to
allow for timely grading and discussion of the homework solutions.
Since you will be given partial credit for serious attempts, you should
simply turn in whatever you have accomplished for the homework set when it
You are encouraged to work with other students and
to consult other reference books. However, you must acknowledge your
collaborators and reference materials by listing them on the last page of
your homework. Also, you must write up your homework independently.
This means you should only have the textbook and your own notes in front of
you when you write up your homework --- not your friend's notes, your
friend's homework or other reference material.
You should not have a copy of someone else's homework under any
circumstance. For example, you should not let someone turn in your
homework. Cases of academic dishonesty will be dealt with severely. At the
very least, students who submit copied homework assignments will
receive a grade of 0 for that assignment --- this applies both to the
person who copied the homework and to the person who allowed the his/her
homework to be copied.
29 Jun 2001 10:15:45 EDT
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