CPTR 247W  Data Structures

Writing Component


Informal writing component: 

The informal writing component in this course will consist of out-of-class assignments aimed at introducing you to relevant issues in computing.  Either a reading or video will be posted followed by one or more questions to which you are to respond.  Assignments will be posted every Monday on the course Moodle site and your written response will be due that Friday at 11:55pm.


Informal writing component submissions will be graded on a 0 – 3 basis with a grade of 3 being “exceeded expected effort,” a 2 being “expected effort,” 1 being “below expected effort,” and a 0 for non-submissions.  Since these are informal, grades will not be based on grammar or punctuation, but rather on content (accuracy of the material conveyed, amount of thought and effort put into it, etc.).  An average score of 2.00 on informal writing assignments will equate to an 85% on the grading scale.


Formal writing component: 

The formal writing portion in this course has two components.


The first component is a term paper detailing the impact that computers have had on some other discipline (of your choice), such as (but not limited to) art, astronomy, biology, business, chemistry, education, mathematics, music, or physics. 


Length and format:  The term paper must be a minimum of 8 pages including references, 12pt. Times New Roman, double-spaced. 1-inch side margins and 1-inch top and bottom margins.  Titles are to be centered, bold, 14 pt. Times New Roman with the student’s name directly underneath in 12pt. Times New Roman.  Include the bibliography (annotations removed) in the document.  All rough and final drafts must be in MS Word format and uploaded on Moodle. 


Mechanics:  Formal writing is a process.  Just as we would not write a program from beginning to end in one sitting, neither should we write a term paper in that fashion.  The process has been broken down into several steps.  See the attached calendar for important dates associated with each step.

·         Source gathering:  We will have one class period of library instruction focusing on research.  Annotated bibliographies are to contain at least 8 potential legitimate sources. 

·         Rough draft:  The bulk of the work on the term paper is to be completed in this step.  Each student will have at least one individual meeting with the instructor to review the rough draft.  More meetings may be scheduled as deemed necessary by the instructor.  Students are encouraged to schedule additional meetings if they feel the need. 

·         Final draft

Students must have their work reviewed at the Writing Center prior to each submission. 


The second component is a reference style web page explaining at least 30 Unix/Linux commands of your choice.  You are to include commands that you personally find useful and/or interesting.  As this is a document for your own personal use, references to sources are not necessary. 


Content:  You do not need to itemize all, or even any, options for the commands that you choose.  Present the commands as you use them, with a brief but useful description.  I expect to see 30 different commands.  However an occasional repeated command with different options will be acceptable.


Mechanics:  It is expected that this page will be developed gradually over the course of the semester, as the student finds various commands/options to be useful.  Students may use any tools they wish to create this web page, however the goal of this component is to have students research and learn a variety of system commands rather than to develop a fancy, dynamic web page.  Microsoft Word with your text saved as “Web page (*.htm, *.html)” will be sufficient for this task and can be found in the labs.  Name the page commands.htm and place it in your public_html directory on your H: drive.


See the attached calendar for important dates associated with the formal writing component.