CIS 505/705, (Introduction to) Programming Languages, Fall 2015


Course Communication: Instructor: Torben Amtoft
Email: tamtoft hat ksu dot edu
Office: Nichols 219C
Office Hours: Tuesdays 2-4pm, and by appointment
Phone: 532-7917

Lecturer: Sam Procter
Email: samprocter hat k-state dot edu
Office: Nichols 324K

Teaching Assistants:

Required Textbook (available online): Programming Languages: Application and Interpretation, Shriram Krishnamurthi (2nd edition).

References: CIS505 Lecture Notes: Introduction to Programming-Language Paradigms, David Schmidt.

Prerequisites: Students are expected to have the following background:

Expected Outcome:

Students should know and understand important concepts (such as scope and types) involved in the design and implementation of programming languages.

Course Structure and Grading
While these will mostly be lectures, some of them will end with quizzes/exercises.
Programming Exercises
There will 6-8 of those over the semester; you may be allowed to do them with a partner.
Assignments that are late will be graded but, unless in case of documented medical or family emergencies, with a penalty of 20 % per day.
There will be a final exam (following the general K-State schedule), and also two midterms (tentatively scheduled for September 30 and November 4).
Graduate work
CIS705 students are supposed to do a bit of extra work so as to merit graduate credit, for example to read and summarize a research paper.
Final letter grades are based on the programming exercise work (about 45%), exam scores (about 40%), and in-class exercises (about 15%). Letter grades are not fixed to 90-80-70% or 80-60-40% cutoffs but are "curved" by taking into account the difficulty of the coursework. If you want an indication of your performance you may compare to the class average (available on K-State Online). In general, my approach to grading is expressed well by this piece by S.A. Miller.

Statement Regarding Academic Honesty
Kansas State University has an Honor and Integrity System based on personal integrity, which is presumed to be sufficient assurance that, in academic matters, one's work is performed honestly and without unauthorized assistance. Undergraduate and graduate students, by registration, acknowledge the jurisdiction of the Honor and Integrity System. The policies and procedures of the Honor and Integrity System apply to all full and part-time students enrolled in undergraduate and graduate courses on-campus, off-campus, and via distance learning. The Honor and Integrity System website can be reached via the following URL: A component vital to the Honor and Integrity System is the inclusion of the Honor Pledge which applies to all assignments, examinations, or other course work undertaken by students. The Honor Pledge is implied, whether or not it is stated: "On my honor, as a student, I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid on this academic work." A grade of XF can result from a breach of academic honesty. The F indicates failure in the course; the X indicates the reason is an Honor Pledge violation.

You are very welcome to discuss the course material, as well as specific questions, with your fellow students. However, all submitted answers must be your own work (or of your partner if you are allowed a such): you are not allowed to show your answers to anyone else, or look at the answers of any other student; neither are you allowed to consult previous model solutions that may be around, or solicit the Internet for solutions to specific homework problems.

If you are in doubt about what is permissible, please ask me. I very much hope that it will not be necessary to file any honor pledge violation reports during the semester!

Statement Regarding Students with Disabilities
Students with disabilities who need classroom accommodations, access to technology, or information about emergency building/campus evacuation processes should contact the Student Access Center and/or their instructor. Services are available to students with a wide range of disabilities including, but not limited to, physical disabilities, medical conditions, learning disabilities, attention deficit disorder, depression, and anxiety. If you are a student enrolled in campus/online courses through the Manhattan or Olathe campuses, contact the Student Access Center at, 785-532-6441.

Statement Defining Expectations for Classroom Conduct
All student activities in the University, including this course, are governed by the Student Judicial Conduct Code as outlined in the Student Governing Association By Laws, Article V, Section 3, number 2. Students who engage in behavior that disrupts the learning environment may be asked to leave the class.

Much of this syllabus is adapted from the course taught by David Schmidt.

Statement for Copyright Notification
Copyright 2015 (Torben Amtoft) as to this syllabus and all lectures. During this course students are prohibited from selling notes to or being paid for taking notes by any person or commercial firm without the express written permission of the professor teaching this course.

Torben Amtoft