Posted by: atri | October 11, 2010

The mid term post

First, the midterm is on Monday, Oct 18 during the usual class timings (i.e. 1:00-1:50 in TALBERT 107). Below the fold are some comments that might be helpful to prepare for the mid-term.

  • Work through the sample mid-term. As I have mentioned multiple time in class, do not use the sample mid-term to deduce anything about the relative coverage of different topics. (See points below for more on the coverage.) The sample mid-term is meant for you to see the format of the questions and in general gauge the “hardness” of the problems.
  • If you need help attend the usual recitation, office hours or the office-hour-a-thon on Friday.
  • The exam will be closed book and closed notes. However, you can bring in one 8.5″ X 11″ review sheet. You can write anything that you want on the sheet as long as it is one sheet (you can use both sides). It can hand-written or typed up doesn’t matter– however, you are not allowed to bring in a magnifying glass. The review sheet is to make sure you do not spend time memorizing definitions etc. but can concentrate on the main ideas in the material we have covered. The exam (as you can probably make out from the sample mid-term) will focus on how well you understand the material and not how well you can memorize. However, see next point.
  • Do not spend too much time cramming stuff into the review sheet. In my experience (both as a student and instructor), it never helps. You should utilize your time trying to understand the material better.
  • The questions will be from all the material in Chapters 1,2 and 3 (except Sec 1.2). However, see the next couple of points.
  • Most of the questions will be from Chapter 1 and 3. (You could have guessed this from the time we spend on these chapters in class.) However, there will be some question(s) from Chapter 2.
  • We will not cover Sec 3.4 and 3.5 at all in class.  However, Sec 3.4 and 3.5 are very nice applications of the BFS/DFS and I would highly encourage you to read those sections to build more intuition on BFS/DFS algorithms.
  • Again I encourage you to contact us with your questions. However, please do not wait till the last moment. We cannot guarantee a timely reply if you send us an email after Friday 7pm.

If you have any questions, please use the comments section.

I know exams can tense you up. However, try to relax: practice some extra problems or re-read parts of book. Try to have fun during the exam and things should turn out for the better!

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