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Unit outline_

# COMP2823: Data Structures and Algorithms (Adv)

## Overview

This unit will teach some powerful ideas that are central to solving algorithmic problems in ways that are more efficient than naive approaches. In particular, students will learn how data collections can support efficient access, for example, how a dictionary or map can allow key-based lookup that does not slow down linearly as the collection grows in size. The data structures covered in this unit include lists, stacks, queues, priority queues, search trees, hash tables, and graphs. Students will also learn efficient techniques for classic tasks such as sorting a collection. The concept of asymptotic notation will be introduced, and used to describe the costs of various data access operations and algorithms.

### Unit details and rules

Academic unit Computer Science 6 Distinction level results in (INFO1110 OR INFO1910 OR INFO1113 OR DATA1002 OR DATA1902 OR INFO1103 OR INFO1903) None INFO1105 OR INFO1905 OR COMP2123 None Yes

### Teaching staff

Coordinator Andre van Renssen, andre.vanrenssen@sydney.edu.au

## Assessment

Type Description Weight Due Length
Final exam (Take-home short release) Final exam
Final exam
60% Formal exam period 2 hours
Outcomes assessed:
Tutorial quiz Quizzes
Weekly quizzes
10% Multiple weeks 15 minutes
Outcomes assessed:
Assignment Assignments
Fortnightly assignments
30% Multiple weeks n/a
Outcomes assessed:
= hurdle task
= Type D final exam

### Assessment summary

• Assignments: There will be five assignments in total, due every two weeks. These assignments will focus on the design and analysis of algorithms, alternating between paper based and programming.
• Quizzes: There will be 10 weekly multiple-choice quizzes in total.
• Final exam: Final written examination.

### Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a high distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range

Description

High distinction

85 - 100

Distinction

75 - 84

Credit

65 - 74

Pass

50 - 64

Fail

0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

It is a policy of the School of Computer Science that in order to pass this unit, a student must achieve at least 40% in the written examination. For subjects without a final exam, the 40% minimum requirement applies to the corresponding major assessment component specified by the lecturer. A student must also achieve an overall final mark of 50 or more. Any student not meeting these requirements may be given a maximum final mark of no more than 45 regardless of their average.

For more information see guide to grades.

### Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

• Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
• After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

This unit has an exception to the standard University policy or supplementary information has been provided by the unit coordinator. This information is displayed below:

These penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date. Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each of the first 4 calendar days after the due date. Submissions made after the 4th calendar day will receive 0 marks. Quizzes can do done any time during the week they are released.

### Academic integrity

The Current Student website provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

Use of generative artificial intelligence (AI) and automated writing tools

You may only use generative AI and automated writing tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator. If you do use these tools, you must acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section. The assessment instructions or unit outline will give guidance of the types of tools that are permitted and how the tools should be used.

Your final submitted work must be your own, original work. You must acknowledge any use of generative AI tools that have been used in the assessment, and any material that forms part of your submission must be appropriately referenced. For guidance on how to acknowledge the use of AI, please refer to the AI in Education Canvas site.

The unapproved use of these tools or unacknowledged use will be considered a breach of the Academic Integrity Policy and penalties may apply.

Studiosity is permitted unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission as detailed on the Learning Hub’s Canvas page.

Outside assessment tasks, generative AI tools may be used to support your learning. The AI in Education Canvas site contains a number of productive ways that students are using AI to improve their learning.

## Learning support

### Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

### Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

### Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

## Weekly schedule

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 1. Administrivia; 2. Definitions and precision regarding scalability and analysis of algorithms; Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 02 1. Abstract data structures; 2. Stacks and queues Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 03 1. Tree concepts and definitions; 2. Recursion on a tree; 3. Binary tree implementation, general tree implementation Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 04 1. Binary search trees; 2. Balanced binary search tree (AVL tree) Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 05 1. Simple map implementation by list (sorted and unsorted); 2. Priority queues; heap-as-a-tree and heap-in-array; sorting using priority queue Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 06 Hashing Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 07 1. Graph representations; 2. Graph traversals Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 08 1. Shortest path algorithm; 2. Minimum weight spanning tree algorithms Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 09 Greedy method Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 10 Divide-and-conquer Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 11 Divide-and-conquer Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 12 Randomised algorithms Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)
Week 13 Review of Unit of Study and exam preparation Lecture and tutorial (4 hr)

### Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

### Required readings

Recommended reading:

• Title: Algorithm Design and Applications
• Author/s: Michael Goodrich; Roberto Tamassia
• ISBN: 978-1-118-33591-8
• Publisher: Wiley
• Publish Year: 2015

## Learning outcomes

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

• LO1. demonstrate proficiency in organising, presenting and discussing professional ideas and issues in oral, written and graphic formats. Thorough descriptive reporting. With thorough consideration of format and audience requirements. Fluent presentation of engineering/IT concepts and issues to professional and non-professional audiences, using a varied range of professional communication tools and formats
• LO2. design an algorithmic solution to a problem, coding it, analysing its complexity, and evaluating its suitability to a context
• LO3. write code that recursively performs an operation on a data structure
• LO4. apply basic algorithmic techniques (e.g. divide-and-conquer, greedy) to given design tasks
• LO5. use notation of big-Oh to represent asymptotic growth of cost functions
• LO6. understand commonly used data structures, including lists, stacks, queues, priority queues, search trees, hash tables, and graphs. This covers the way information is represented in each structure, algorithms for manipulating the structure, and analysis of asymptotic complexity of the operations
• LO7. understand basic algorithms related to data structures, such as algorithms for sorting, tree traversals, and graph traversals
• LO8. use mathematical methods to evaluate the performance of an algorithm.

### Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

 GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline. GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem. GQ3 Oral and written communication Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context. GQ4 Information and digital literacy Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies. GQ5 Inventiveness Generating novel ideas and solutions. GQ6 Cultural competence Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues. GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries. GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context. GQ9 Influence Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

### Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities
GQ1 GQ2 GQ3 GQ4 GQ5 GQ6 GQ7 GQ8 GQ9

## Responding to student feedback

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

Implementation exercises and a detailed guide to reading algorithmic problems were created. Otherwise, no significant changes were made compared to last year.

## Additional information

IMPORTANT: School policy relating to Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism.
In assessing a piece of submitted work, the School of Computer Science may reproduce it entirely, may provide a copy to another member of faculty, and/or to an external plagiarism checking service or in-house computer program and may also maintain a copy of the assignment for future checking purposes and/or allow an external service to do so.

Computer programming assignments may be checked by specialist code similarity detection software. The Faculty of Engineering currently uses the MOSS similarity detection engine (see http://theory.stanford.edu/~aiken/moss/), or the similarity report available in ED (edstem.org). These programs work in a similar way to TurnItIn in that they check for similarity against a database of previously submitted assignments and code available on the internet, but they have added functionality to detect cases of similarity of holistic code structure in cases such as global search and replace of variable names, reordering of lines, changing of comment lines, and the use of white space.

All written assignments submitted in this unit of study will be submitted to the similarity detecting software program known as Turnitin. Turnitin searches for matches between text in your written assessment task and text sourced from the Internet, published works and assignments that have previously been submitted to Turnitin for analysis.
There will always be some degree of text-matching when using Turnitin. Text-matching may occur in use of direct quotations, technical terms and phrases, or the listing of bibliographic material. This does not mean you will automatically be accused of academic dishonesty or plagiarism, although Turnitin reports may be used as evidence in academic dishonesty and plagiarism decision-making processes.

### Disclaimer

The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.