Hi There!

I'm Dan Schlegel, an Assistant Professor in the Computer Science Department at SUNY Oswego

CSC241 – Fall 2018

Abstract Data Types and Programming Methodologies


Prof. Daniel R. Schlegel, 395 Shineman Center, daniel.schlegel@oswego.edu
Office/Lab hours: M 4-5pm; W 7-8am; Th 11:30-12:30; or by appointment
Section 810: MWF 3:00-3:55pm, Shineman 444

Course Description:

A developing computer scientist must understand and explain how their proposed data structures and algorithmic solutions compare to other solutions in terms of complexity, run time, and resource requirements. This course introduces students to traditional techniques used to describe such solutions. In addition, we will look at classic data structures and their applications in order to expand the depth and breadth of a student’s knowledge.

This course is intended to challenge the student to design and implement software based on specifications prepared by the instructor. Throughout the semester, each student will need to identify appropriate design elements and justify their selections.

Course Objectives:

To employ object-oriented design techniques to model problems and solutions.
To employ decomposition techniques to break a program into smaller pieces
To analyze algorithmic solutions using asymptotic notation
To demonstrate effective use of abstract data types (ADTs), e.g., stacks, queues, lists, hash tables, trees, etc., in their designs
To demonstrate correct use of recursive algorithms and data structures
To articulate the advantages and disadvantages of competing algorithmic solutions


Recommended: Koffman, E.B. and Wolfgang, P.A.T., Data Structures: Abstraction and Design Using Java, 3e. Wiley, 2015.

Useful Resources:

Introduction to Computer Science Using Java
Data Structures @ Wikibooks
Data Structure Visualizations
Java Tutorials @ Oracle
Java 8 Standard Libraries @ Oracle
Java on Lynda.com
GNU Emacs Reference Card
Compiling on the Command Line Workshop Activity (by Oswego CSA)

Attendance Policy and Classroom Etiquette:

As per college policy, attendance in all sessions is obligatory. If you cannot attend a class meeting due to religious, athletic, health related circumstance, or circumstance of particular hardship, please notify me in advance via email. Please be ready to present proof, if necessary. Cell phones and headphones should not be out or used during lecture, and laptops should only be used for taking notes. If use of any electronics becomes distracting to other students I reserve the right to discontinue the allowance of their use.


All assignments will be completed alone, but working together without writing or sharing code to come up with general solutions is encouraged. The assignments are difficult, and I recommend starting work on them early, avoiding any tendency toward procrastination. You should plan on spending at least 10 hours per week on course work outside of class.

You will complete all assignments using a text editor, NOT an IDE like Netbeans, Eclipse, or Visual Studio. I will use GNU Emacs much of the time, but you are free to use Vim or a less fully-featured editor like nano or Notepad++ (but don’t expect me to know how to use it :)).


Assignments will be submitted via Blackboard and graded according to the grading criteria. Code which does not compile or immediately crashes will receive no credit. There may be in-class presentations of your work. 

You will have 7 days to use throughout the semester to submit late work. A maximum of 3 days may be used on any one assignment. We will say that a span of days where the university is closed will count only as one day. Therefore if an assignment is due on a Friday, it may be submitted Saturday or Sunday using only one late day. A submission on Monday will use two, and so on. Outside of this late policy, no late assignments will be accepted.

It is expected that each person participate during each class. As discussed above, attendance is required.

Each exam question will be assigned a point value (generally some multiple of 3 depending on difficulty), where the following scheme will be used in grading it:

0 – Did not attempt / No serious attempt
1 – Mostly incorrect solution
2 – Somewhat incorrect solution
3 – Perfect solution

If the problem is a multiple of 3, then intermediate scores will be given as appropriate. The total points received on all questions will then be summed and divided by the points possible and scaled as appropriate according to the percentages given below.

Exam 115%
Exam 215%
Final Exam20%

You may not receive a grade more than one letter grade above min(exams, assignments). That is, if your exam average is D, the best grade you can achieve in the course is a C. Likewise if you receive an E average on your assignments, the highest grade you can expect is a D.

The default grading for the course will be along the university’s standard grading curve:

A: 93-100C+: 77-79
A-: 90-92C: 73-76
B+: 87-89C-: 70-72
B: 83-86D+: 67-69
B-: 80-82D: 60-66
 E: 0-59

A more generous curve may be used, but should not be expected.


During the semester we aim to cover the following topics:

Object Orientation
Problem-solving Techniques
Sorting Algorithms
Basic Search Algorithms
Lambdas and Streams in Java
Asymptotic Analysis
Data Structures

This syllabus and the course schedule are subject to change by the instructor. All changes and related justifications will be announced in class, and updates will be reflected in this web version.

Lecture slides will be maintained on Blackboard, but many lectures will include use of the whiteboard which may not be reflected in notes elsewhere.

1Monday8/27First day of class
Syllabus, Overview
Download and import the development environment VM!
Readings: Review Introduction to Computer Science Using Java parts 1-6,8-9
Be sure to answer office hours survey!
Wednesday8/29Development Environment
On your own: Development Environment Configuration
Reading: Read tutorials as necessary from the above configuration document (e.g., linux, emacs, ...)
Friday8/31Java Review - Anatomy of a Program
Readings: From this page, read Getting Started with Swing, and begin reading the first few sections in Using Swing Components
2Monday9/3No Class - Labor Day
Wednesday9/5Introduction to Swing
Class code: SwingHello
Readings: Introduction to Computer Science Using Java - Chapter 50 - Inheritance
Continue reading Swing tutorials
Thursday9/6Add Deadline
Friday9/7Drawing with Swing
Class Code: SwingPaintDemo
Assignment 1 due on Blackboard 9/23, 11:59pm
3Monday9/10No Class - Rosh Hashanah
Wednesday9/12Inner Classes, Anonymous Inner Classes, Lambdas Intro
Class code: Person
Reading: A Guide to Streams in Java 8; First 3 sections of SAX tutorial
Wednesday9/19No Class - Yom Kippur
Thursday9/20Drop Deadline
Friday9/21Two final stream examples
XML and XML Parsing using the SAX parser
5Monday9/24SAX Parsing, continued
Class code: XML Parsing
Assignment 2 due on Blackboard 10/9, 11:59pm
Wednesday9/26Asymptotic Analysis Introduction
Friday9/28Dynamic Arrays
6Monday10/1Dynamic Arrays, continued
Class code: DynamicArray
Java 8 ArrayList Source
Wednesday10/3Exam 1
Friday10/5Linked Lists Introduction
7Monday10/8Linked lists, continued
Primitive and reference types review
OO Concept review: Encapsulation
Wednesday10/10Linked lists, continued
Friday10/12No Class - Dan sick
8Monday10/15Linked lists, concluded
Class Code: LinkedList
Reading: Java Generics Tutorial
Assignment 3 due on Blackboard 10/29 10/30, 11:59pm
Wednesday10/17Linked List Variations;
Friday10/19No Class - Fall Break
Mid Term Grades Posted
9Monday10/22Stacks and Queues
Class Code: LinkedStack and LinkedQueue
Wednesday10/24Polymorphism; Generics
Polymorphism Example
Friday10/26Iterator and Iterable
Class Code: LinkedListIterable
Withdraw Deadline
10Monday10/29O(n^2) Sorting Algorithms: Selection Sort
Sorting Algorithm Visualizer
Wednesday10/31The Comparable interface
Abstract Classes
Assignment 4 due on Blackboard 11/18, 11:59pm
Friday11/2Exam 2
11Monday11/5Complete Day 1 of the Doubly Linked List Exercise
Dan at AMIA Annual Symposium
Wednesday11/7Complete Day 2 of the Doubly Linked List Exercise
Dan at AMIA Annual Symposium
Friday11/9Complete Day 3 of the Doubly Linked List Exercise
Dan at AMIA Annual Symposium
12Monday11/12Insertion Sort
n^2 Sorting Benchmarks
Binary Search Trees
Friday11/16BST Search / Insert
BST Visualization
13Monday11/19BST Insert (concluded), Traversal
Class code: BST
Assignment 5 due on Blackboard 12/9, 11:59pm
Wednesday11/21No Class - Thanksgiving Break
Friday11/23No Class - Thanksgiving Break
14Monday11/26BST Remove
Wednesday11/28Divide and Conquer Principle
Merge Sort
Friday11/30Merge Sort, continued
15Monday12/3Asymptotic Analysis of Merge Sort
Quick Sort Intro
Wednesday12/5Quick Sort
Final Exam Study Guide
Friday12/7A few final topics...
Class Code - O(nlogn) sorting algorithms and benchmarks
Last Day of Class
Finals WeekWednesday12/12Final Exam 2-4PM

Academic Integrity:

While it is acceptable to discuss general approaches with your fellow students, the work you turn in must be your own. You may not turn in code found on the internet. If you have any problems doing the assignments, consult the instructor. Please be sure to read the webpage, “Academic Integrity“, which spells out all the details of this, and related policies. See my page on plagiarism for an explanation of what I consider cheating.

Disability Statement:

If you have a disabling condition, which may interfere with your ability to successfully complete this course, please contact the Office of Disability Services at dss@oswego.edu and x3358.