Written by Julie Zelenski

The exam schedule will be:

MIDTERM #1: Friday April 28, 12:30pm - 2:00pm
Location: NVIDIA Aud (last names A-R) and TBA (last names S-Z)

MIDTERM #2: Thursday May 25, 7:00-8:30pm
Location: TBA

FINAL: Wednesday June 14, 3:15-6:15pm
Location: TBA

Frequently asked questions about exams

What are the exams like? How do I best prepare for them?

The exams are designed to assess your mastery of the course learning objectives, with a particular emphasis on material that was prominent in the assignments and labs. A sample exam will be published to set expectations about coverage, format, and difficulty. Hoping to crush that exam? Check our page chock full of exam advice!

What resources can be used in the exams? Are exams open or closed book?

The midterms are closed-book (one double-sided page of notes) and the final is closed-book (two double-sided pages of notes). All notes are to be written on US Letter sized pages. No other paper or electronic resources may be used in a closed-book exam. The printed exam will include a reference sheet of essential details such as prototypes for standard library functions (e.g., strcpy, strlen, malloc) or a list of common x86-64 assembly instructions. The reference sheet will be posted in advance alongside the practice exams so you know what will be included.

How do exams figure into the course grade?

The exams collectively compromise 50% of the course grade, and the final is weighted at twice (25%) the midterms (12.5% each). Your exam aggregate must be passing work in order to receive a passing course grade. More details on how how course grades are determined. You may replace (at most) one of your midterm scores with your score on the final exam. If you need to miss a midterm exam for any reason (illness, emergency, conflict with another activity, etc.), or you simply do not score as well on a midterm as you do on the final, this policy will apply. You are not required to formally notify me of your desire to apply the policy; my spreadsheet that calculates final grades will simply apply the formula most favorable to you. It is my goal that the class averages for the three exams be similar, but this is not guaranteed.

What is the procedure for exam regrades?

When we return the graded exams, we will also distribute the exam solution and grading information. We attempt to be conscientious in consistently applying the rubric and calculating scores, but given the large number of students, we do occasionally slip up, and we are happy to correct our errors when notified of them. If you believe your exam has a scoring error, please request a regrade via the Gradescope website (NOT email). Your regrade request must include an explanation of your concern, clearly stated and in detail. Explanations that amount to "I think I should get more points" will not be honored, because the website rubric ensures that everyone who makes the same mistake misses the same number of points. So instead please explain why you think the mistake the grader identified in your answer was not a mistake in your answer after all. As a general principle, regrade requests open the entire exam for reexamination for all scoring errors and any necessary corrections will be applied. Regrade requests must be initiated within a week of exams being returned.