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 CSC 131 - Introduction to Computer Science (Honors)

Course Syllabus Fall 2018


Section Day

Section Time

Section Location

CSC 131-300


9:00am - 10:40pm

BR 165

Schedule (link removed)


Curry Guinn
Office hours:  MTR 11:00am-12:00pm and by appointment
Phone: (910) 962-7937


Problem-solving methods and algorithms in a modern high-level programming language. Introduces one or more programming environments. Emphasis on a programming style and the design, coding, and testing of complete programs. Recommended primarily for computer science majors.

A grade of C (2.00) or better is required for taking any course for which CSC 131 is a prerequisite.

Satisfies University Studies I: Foundations/Mathematics and Statistics. Satisfies University Studies IV: Building Competencies/Quantitative and Logical Reasoning. Partially satisfies University Studies III: Transdisciplinary Cluster/Modeling.

Prerequisites: MAT 111 or MAT 115.


How to Think Like a Computer Scientist: Interactive Edition (Required)

Free online interactive textbook available at

(Registration and Login Instructions: Click Here)

Natural Language Processing with Python (Required)

Free online book available at


The Language Instinct: How the Mind Creates Language, by Steven Pinker (Required)

Not free book available at UNCW Bookstore and other retailers.

ISBN-10: 0393334775

ISBN-13: 978-0393334777



         Downloading Python. Follow the steps below.



The Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) for CSC 131 are:


1        Students demonstrate an understanding of basic programming concepts including data types, variables, modularity, parameters, conditional statements, iteration, and arrays.

2        Students demonstrate program development techniques to describe and understand the problem statement, think through input/process/output, leading to problem representation and finally coding.

3        Students demonstrate the ability to use program control structures (i.e., iteration, conditionals).

4        Students develop and use algorithms to solve a variety of problems, for instance those related to array processing, statistical calculations, image and audio processing, and text processing.

5        Students practice modular programming by developing, debugging and integrating modules into a larger program.

6        Students demonstrate the ability to use programming language specific software libraries.

7        Students demonstrate the ability to use basic file input and output.

8        Students demonstrate the ability to use software development tools from command line compile and run commands to an integrated development environment.




90 - 100 A

80 - 89.5 B

70 - 79.5 C

60 - 69.5 D


Late Policy


Canvas-administered quizzes must be taken before the time they close on Canvas. Quizzes will not be reopened after the due date. Pay attention to the schedule.


Homework assignments submitted electronically are due at the time specified in Canvas. You may submit a homework assignment as many times as necessary before the due date.

After the due date, homework assignments are penalized -10 points per day (Saturday/Sunday count as one day) up to 5 days late. A homework assignment more than 5 days late will receive a score of 0 and will not be graded.




Academic Integrity

University Policy on academic integrity will be followed for this course. Cheating will be taken very seriously, resulting in harsh penalties. Since the skills required in this class are also required in the next class, cheating in this class will seriously hamper your ability to pass the next class.


Appropriate Collaboration

         Sharing class notes with another student.

         Discussing anything that was covered in class.

         Helping a fellow student locate a bug in their program, provided the following is true:

         You never type or dictate code for the student. You may help the student resolve a particular issue. You may not solve large parts of the programming problem for him/her.

Inappropriate Collaboration

         Showing another student (who has not completed the assignment) your code.

         Copying code from another student.

         Verbally providing other students with the solution to the program. (This would be along the lines of giving them the key to solving the problem when they need to think it through themselves.)

         Helping other students during a test or quiz.

         Doing another student's work.

Any of these constitutes cheating and will be reported to the academic integrity council.



Help Debugging from Instructors

You may ask for debugging help from your instructor or TA. However, debugging is a skill that can be developed only by practice. It is vital for you to learn how to successfully struggle through problems on your own. If you are genuinely stuck, we will be willing to help you as far as your code matches the techniques described in class. If you write your program with an approach that is a complete departure from the way described in class, you are responsible for fixing any resulting problems.



The University of North Carolina Wilmington is a community of high academic standards where

academic integrity is valued. UNCW students are committed to honesty and truthfulness in academic inquiry and in the mastery of existing knowledge. This commitment begins when new students matriculate at UNCW, continues as they create work of the highest quality while part of the university community, and endures as a core value throughout their lives.


It is the responsibility of every faculty member, student, administrator and staff member of the

university community to uphold and maintain the highest academic standards and integrity of the

university. Any member of the university community who has reasonable grounds to believe that an infraction of the Honor Code has occurred has an obligation to report the alleged violation to the faculty member teaching the class who, in turn, must report the allegation to the Office of the Dean of Students. This obligation is a core value of the Honor Code, and must be fulfilled by each and every member of the university.


Special Needs

If you have a disability and need reasonable accommodation in this course, you should inform the instructor of this fact in writing within the first week of class or as soon as possible. If you have not already done so, you must register the Office of Disability Services in DePaolo Hall (ext. 2-3746) and obtain a copy of your Accommodation Letter. You should then arrange a meeting to make mutually agreeable arrangements based on the recommendations of the Accommodation Letter. At least a week prior to any test or exam, you should work with the instructor and the Office of Disability Services to arrange a mutually agreed arrangement for accommodation.


Title IX

UNCW takes all forms of interpersonal violence very seriously. When students disclose, first- or third-hand, to faculty or staff about sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence and/or stalking, this information must be reported to the administration in order to ensure that students' rights are protected, appropriate resources are offered, and the need for further investigation is explored to maintain campus safety.


There are three confidential resources who do not need to report interpersonal violence: UNCW CARE, the Student Health Center, and the Counseling Center. If you want to speak to someone in confidence, these resources are available, including CARE's 24-hour crisis line (910-512-4821). For more information, please visit or