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Topics in Computer Science- Honors

Course Details

Course Number
Section Number
Spring 2013
Bolin Hall
Classroom Number
Days & Times

MWF 10:00 am

Richard P. Simpson (view Profile)

Course Attachments


Course Objectives

This course is designed as a first course in computing for Honor students. It’s focus will be on the software and hardware associated the modern computing.  The course will essentially be a bottom up approach.  We will start with the structure of a simple processor (hardware) and work upword to higher levels of software in order to gain a big picture view of computing.

The material which constitutes this course will include lectures, software tutorials, films, and homework. Students are responsible for all material regardless of class attendance. The class will meet in BSH 103 laboratory where hands on work will be done with the relevant software.  We will begin the course studying what a Von Neumann computer is as well as how it works.  A machine simulator will be utilized in order to get a better grasp on how a CPU actually operates. We will work with several languages and operating systems.   Languages that we will study include Assembly language, NetLogo, Perl, and C++. The Perl language has become quite popular in Medicine and Biology as well as in textural processing of large text files.   Operating  Systems will include DOS, Linux, Windows and Virtual Box if we get time.

Course Expectations

Prerequisite: College Algebra

Exams: 3 Exams and 1 Final

Homework: 10-15 homework/projects are required.

Class Participation is expected

Grading Standards

30% major exams (3)

15% final

15% Homework and classwork

30% Software projects

10% class Participation

Final Exam 05/08/2013 10:30 AM
Submission Format Policy


Note: You may not submit a paper for a grade in this class that already has been (or will be) submitted for a grade in another course, unless you obtain the explicit written permission of me and the other instructor involved in advance.
Late Paper Policy

Assignments be regularly given to be done outside of class either in the labs on campus or at home on the students personal computer. All homework assignments must be turned in at the beginning of the class period in which they are due. Late homework will be penalized. Not turning in the homework will result in a severe reduction of the students grade.

Plagiarism Policy

Plagiarism is the use of someone else's thoughts, words, ideas, or lines of argument in your own work without appropriate documentation (a parenthetical citation at the end and a listing in "Works Cited")-whether you use that material in a quote, paraphrase, or summary. It is a theft of intellectual property and will not be tolerated, whether intentional or not.

Student Honor Creed

As an MSU Student, I pledge not to lie, cheat, steal, or help anyone else do so."

As students at MSU, we recognize that any great society must be composed of empowered, responsible citizens. We also recognize universities play an important role in helping mold these responsible citizens. We believe students themselves play an important part in developing responsible citizenship by maintaining a community where integrity and honorable character are the norm, not the exception.

Thus, We, the Students of Midwestern State University, resolve to uphold the honor of the University by affirming our commitment to complete academic honesty. We resolve not only to be honest but also to hold our peers accountable for complete honesty in all university matters.

We consider it dishonest to ask for, give, or receive help in examinations or quizzes, to use any unauthorized material in examinations, or to present, as one's own, work or ideas which are not entirely one's own. We recognize that any instructor has the right to expect that all student work is honest, original work. We accept and acknowledge that responsibility for lying, cheating, stealing, plagiarism, and other forms of academic dishonesty fundamentally rests within each individual student.

We expect of ourselves academic integrity, personal professionalism, and ethical character. We appreciate steps taken by University officials to protect the honor of the University against any who would disgrace the MSU student body by violating the spirit of this creed.

Written and adopted by the 2002-2003 MSU Student Senate.

Students with Disabilities

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the Disability Support Services in Room 168 of the Clark Student Center, (940) 397-4140.

Safe Zones Statement

The professor considers this classroom to be a place where you will be treated with respect as a human being - regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, political beliefs, age, or ability. Additionally, diversity of thought is appreciated and encouraged, provided you can agree to disagree. It is the professor's expectation that ALL students consider the classroom a safe environment.

Contacting your Instructor

All instructors in the Department have voicemail in their offices and MWSU e-mail addresses. Make sure you add your instructor's phone number and e-mail address to both email and cell phone lists of contacts.

Attendance Requirements

Attendance will be taken at each class meeting by having students sign a roll sheet. Many of the classes will have an in class exercise that is turned in. If you are not in class you will not get credit for these exercises. A few of the in-class exercise grades will be dropped to allow for a few special circumstances. In other words it is very important that you attend every class and arrive on time.

Other Policies
Writing Proficiency Requirement

All students seeking a Bachelor's degree from Midwestern State University must satisfy a writing proficiency requirement once they've 1) passed the 6 hours of Communication Core and and 2) earned 60 hours. You may meet this requirement by passing either the Writing Proficiency Exam or English 2113. Please keep in mind that, once you've earned over 90 hours, you lose the opportunity to take the $25 exam and have no option but to enroll in the three-credit hour course. If you have any questions about the exam, visit the Writing Proficiency Office website at, or call 397-4131.

Campus Carry

Senate Bill 11 passed by the 84th Texas Legislature allows licensed handgun holders to carry concealed handguns on campus, effective August 1, 2016. Areas excluded from concealed carry are appropriately marked, in accordance with state law. For more information regarding campus carry, please refer to the University’s webpage at

If you have questions or concerns, please contact MSU Chief of Police Patrick Coggins at