CMPS1023 : Computing for Science Majors

Instructor: Richard P. Simpson, Bolin 126E; Tel.: 397-4191;

Lab Assistant : TBA

email : Time : MWF 11:00-11:50 

Texts: Online Python book by Allen Downey, We also will be using other OER(Open Educational Recources)to support the class.

Tutorials: 5 Best Websites to Learn Python Programming

Prerequisites: A reasonable knowledge of College Algebra and Office

Open Educational Resources: OER are teaching, learning, and research resources that reside in the public domain or have been released under an intellectual property license that permits their free use or re-purposing by others.  Open educational resources include full courses, course materials, modules, textbooks, streaming videos, tests, software, and any other tools, materials, or techniques used to support access to knowledge.

General: This course is designed as a first course in computing for Science Majors. It’s focus will be on the techniques and software associated the modern computing. This will include application software (Graphing, Image manipulation, 3D modeling programs, curve fitting)  as well as system software (operating systems such as Windows, Linux as well as programming languages, Python, etc).  Several software packages that support science in general will be studied.  What exactly is computer science will be addressed.

Course Content: 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 Python programming and other software. In addition to the above we will work with the well-known scripting language Python 2.7. This language has become quite popular in Mathematics, Physics, Medicine and Biology.  Its mathematical support libraries make it (in the view of some) a free alternative to packages such as Mathematica and MatLab. As a result it is becoming the go to scripting language for many of the sciences.

Course Grade Calculation
Major Examinations (3)
Final Exam (1)
Homework & Projects

Attendance: Attendance will be taken at each class meeting by having students sign a roll sheet. Some 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. Often new topics are introduced and the knowledge is necessary for subsequent classes. In other words it is very important that you attend every class and arrive on time. If late arrivals become a problem then the teacher will be forced to fix the situation. Capice?!

Homework: 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.

Laboratory: There is no official laboratory. We will use the lab in class and homework can be carried out on the students home computer (windows 7 or 8 system) or in one of the labs on campus.

NOTE: All students should refer to the current MSU Student Handbook and Activities Calendar for university policies related to class attendance, academic dishonesty, student responsibilities, rights and activities.

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