The purpose of the CS Track Core Course is to provide an overview of fundamental problems
in computer science, and introduce to the students some key computational techniques that have
broad applicability.
Course goals. The key goals of the course are as follows:
• Develop solid foundation about reasoning and thinking about computational problems.
• Algorithmic approaches for problems that are both fundamental in computer science and
broad enough to be applicable to other disciplines of research.
• Build a community within the students through mini-projects.
Course structure. The course will be sub-divided into three segments. Each segment will focus
on some key topic of computer science. Each segment will be of 4 weeks (8 lectures). The topic
of each segment will be announced by the instructor in advance, and it will be ensured that it is a
central topic in computer science as well as of broad relevance.

Target group: Students planning to affiliate in a CS group

Prerequisites: The topics of the course will be theoretical in nature and suitable for students with background in
CS undergraduate, or students with strong background in mathematics with some exposure to CS.
The prerequisites for the course are as follows:
• Undergraduate CS: basic knowledge of algorithms and programming.
• Basic knowledge in probability theory.
• Basic knowledge of CS complexity theory.
An excellent book on the prerequisites is Introduction to Algorithms by Thomas H. Cormen,
Charles E. Leiserson, Ronald L. Rivest, and Clifford Stein. Some relevant chapters from the book
are Chapter 6-7 (Sorting), Chapter 10 (Elementary data structures), Chapter 15-16 (Algorithmic
techniques such as Dynamic programming), Section VI on Graph Algorithms, Chapter 29 (on Linear
programming), and Chapter 34 (Complexity). While all of the above are not strictly prerequisites,
basic knowledge about these concepts will definitely help.

Evaluation: The grading for the course will be done as follows:
• Homeworks: The homeworks will consist of solving theoretical exercises to provide hands-
on-experience to tackle theoretical problems and apply the techniques learnt in the course.
In addition there may be some programming assignments. The homework will be the major
aspect of the grading.
• Mini-projects: A part of the grading (in some segment) will consist of reading research papers in groups and presenting a write-up summary.
• Exam: In some segment a written/oral exam may be conducted.
The weight of the homework, project, exam will depend on the instructor of the segment,
and typically homeworks will be 60-100% of the grading. The instructor will present the precise
breakdown at the beginning of the respective segment.

Teaching format: Each segment will follow the same structure and will primarily consist of lectures
from the instructors. The lectures will be either blackboard lectures or slide presentation.

ECTS: 6 Year: 2020

Track segment(s):
CS-CORE Computer Science - track core course

Dan Alistarh Krishnendu Chatterjee Vladimir Kolmogorov

Teaching assistant(s):
Djordje Zikelic

If you want to enroll to this course, please click: REGISTER