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Unit of study_

COMP9007: Algorithms

The study of algorithms is a fundamental aspect of computing. This unit of study covers data structures, algorithms, and gives an overview of the main ways of computational thinking from simple list manipulation and data format conversion, up to shortest paths and cycle detection in graphs. Students will gain essential knowledge in computer science, including basic concepts in data structures, algorithms, and intractability, using paradigms such as dynamic programming, divide and conquer, greed, local search, and randomisation, as well NP-hardness.


Academic unit Computer Science
Unit code COMP9007
Unit name Algorithms
Session, year
Semester 1, 2020
Attendance mode Normal evening
Location Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney
Credit points 6

Enrolment rules

Assumed knowledge

This unit of study assumes that students have general knowledge of mathematics (especially Discrete Math) and problem solving. Having moderate knowledge about Data structures can also help students to better understand the concepts of Algorithms taught in this course.

Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff and contact details

Coordinator Mohammad Polash,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Final exam Final Exam
60% Formal exam period 2 hours
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO3
Tutorial quiz Quizzes
10% Multiple weeks Three short quizzes during tutorials
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO3
Small continuous assessment Assignments
30% Multiple weeks Three short assignments
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
  • Assignment: There will be three assignments in total, due in Week 4, 8, and 12 respectively. These assignments will focus on the design and analysis of algorithms.


  • Quiz: There will be three short quizzes in total, during tutorial times in Week 4, 8, and 12 respectively, on canvas. 

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

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


High distinction

85 - 100



75 - 84



65 - 74



50 - 64



0 - 49

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

For more information see

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:

Late penalty for any assessment is 20% per day: e.g. if your work would have scored 60% and is 1 hour late then you get 40%, if your work would have scored 70% and is 28 hours late then you get 30%.

Special consideration

If you experience short-term circumstances beyond your control, such as illness, injury or misadventure or if you have essential commitments which impact your preparation or performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website provides information on academic honesty, academic dishonesty, 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 dishonesty or plagiarism seriously.

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

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 1. Unit introduction; 2. Algorithms and complexity; 3. Motivation and course outline; 4. Stable matching Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 02 1. Algorithms design and analysis; 2. Asymptotic growth Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 03 1. Data structures; 2. Recursive algorithms Lecture and tutorial (3 hr)  
Week 04 Graph Algorithms: BFS and DFS Online class (3 hr)  
Week 05 Greedy algorithms: Interval scheduling, Kruskal's algorithm, Dijkstra's algorithm Online class (3 hr)  
Week 06 Divide and conquer: Recurrences, sorting, integer multiplication, selection Online class (3 hr)  
Week 07 Dynamic programming 1 Online class (3 hr)  
Week 08 Dynamic programming 2 Online class (3 hr)  
Week 09 Network flows 1 Online class (3 hr)  
Week 10 Network flows 2 Online class (3 hr)  
Week 11 Advanced topic e.g. NP-hardness Online class (3 hr)  
Week 12 Advanced topic continued and reviewed Online class (3 hr)  
Week 13 Review and outlook Online class (3 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

All readings for this unit can be accessed through the Library eReserve, available on Canvas.

  • Jon Kleinberg and Eva Tardos – Algorithm Design. Addison Wesley, 2006. 978-032129535-8

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 knowledge of fundamental algorithms for several problems, including graphs, greedy algorithms, divide-and-conquer, dynamic programming, and network flow as well as basic concepts of NP-completeness
  • LO2. collaborate in lectures/tutorials and exchange of ideas to solve algorithmic problems
  • LO3. understand and analyze given algorithms as well as ability to design algorithmic solutions for given problems
  • LO4. practice your writing presentation skills.

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
No changes have been made since this unit was last offered


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