This is a 4-unit course. Enrollment requires an application, linked on the homepage. CS106B is required. Team projects will involve programming.

Project and Grading

Students will be expected to complete the following:

  • Eight (1 individual; 7 group) assignments involving literature search, project reporting, and experiment design.
  • One group research project in the area of interest under the supervision of a graduate student teaching assistant. The project involves an oral presentation and a written final report.
  • Active participation in class activities and discussion.

Specific directions and expectations will be given for each assignment. We will aim to provide clear guidelines and expectations for each assignment that explain how you and the staff will grade your submission. If there are any questions, please feel free to ask for clarification.

To submit an assignment, go to our Canvas page. Then click on Assignments -> A1 (for example) (left menu) -> Submit Assignment (top right). After uploading your file, click Submit Assignment. For group submissions, only one member needs to submit the deliverables for the whole group.


Research is a collaborative effort. Attendance is required for both lecture and section. Lecture is important because it contextualizes the skills you need for all research endeavors. Section is important because it is how you make deeper progress on your projects. If you miss more than one class period, we will reach out and contact you to find out what’s going on.

You are allowed one excused absence for the quarter without penalty; thereafter you will receive zero credit for the missed section. To receive an excused absence, you must ask your section staff in advance and receive an acknowledgment. Excusable absences include family emergencies, athletic competitions, job interviews, and presenting at a conference. It does not include wanting to leave early for long weekend or vacation. Varsity athletes who would like to miss more than one section to participate in athletic competitions must make a direct request for an exception. Attending another class during section is not an excusable absence.

Grade Breakdown

  • Assignments: 60%
    • 2.5% Assignment 1: Reading a Paper
    • 10% Assignment 2: Related Work
    • 10% Assignment 3: Introduction
    • 2.5% Assignment 4: Progress Report I
    • 2.5% Assignment 5: Progress Report II
    • 2.5% Assignment 6: Progress Report III
    • 10% Assignment 7: Evaluation Plan and Progress Report IV
    • 10% Assignment 8: Draft Paper
    • 10% Assignment 9: Draft Talk
  • Group project: 30%
    • 10% Final Presentation
    • 20% Final Paper
  • Participation: 10%

Since this is a research-focused class, we will do our best to gear all feedback towards helping you make progress on your research project. We therefore use a bucket grading scale to focus attention on the qualitative rather than quantitative feedback:

  • ✓+ Satisfies all the requirements for the assignment. Nice job!

  • ✓ Meets the requirements for the assignment, with a few small problems or areas of improvement. Solid work.

  • ✓– Has problems serious enough to fall short of the requirements for the assignment. Needs improvement.

  • – Has extremely serious deficiencies, does not demonstrate significant effort and understanding. Danger.

  • 0 Not submitted.

Your TA will give feedback on each submission. To encourage mastery learning, we expect that you will address that feedback in your final version (final talk, final paper). If a section of the final paper improves on the original submission (e.g., Introduction assignment was a Check, but the Introduction in the final paper was a Check-Plus), we will upgrade the original assignment grade to the higher final grade. Conversely, final submissions that do not address feedback will be penalized in the final talk and final paper grades.

Late Policy and Regrades

Extensions on individual assignments will be granted only under extenuating circumstances with permission from the course staff. Otherwise, a penalty of 15% of the assignment's score will be assessed for each day it is late.

Extensions will not be granted for group assignments.

It is very important to us that all assignments are properly graded. The teaching staff works extremely hard to grade fairly and to turn around assignments quickly. We know what you work hard, and we respect that. Occasionally, mistakes happen, and it's important to us to correct them. If you believe there is an error in your assignment grading, please submit an explanation in writing to the staff within seven days of receiving the grade. We will regrade the entire assignment to ensure quality. No regrade requests will be accepted orally, and no regrade requests will be accepted more than seven days after receipt of the assignment. Regrade requests must be respectful; we will not consider any regrade requests containing disrespectful language.

The Stanford University Honor Code

The Honor Code is a part of this course. The Honor Code is the university's statement on academic integrity written by students in 1921. It articulates university expectations of students and faculty in establishing and maintaining the highest standards in academic work. The Honor Code is an undertaking of the students, individually and collectively: that they will not give or receive aid in examinations; that they will not give or receive unpermitted aid in class work, in the preparation of reports, or in any other work that is to be used by the instructor as the basis of grading; that they will do their share and take an active part in seeing to it that others as well as themselves uphold the spirit and letter of the Honor Code. The faculty on its part manifests its confidence in the honor of its students by refraining from proctoring examinations and from taking unusual and unreasonable precautions to prevent the forms of dishonesty mentioned above. The faculty will also avoid, as far as practicable, academic procedures that create temptations to violate the Honor Code. While the faculty alone has the right and obligation to set academic requirements, the students and faculty will work together to establish optimal conditions for honorable academic work.

Students with Documented Disabilities

Students who may need an academic accommodation based on the impact of a disability must initiate the request with the Office of Accessible Education (OAE). Professional staff will evaluate the request with required documentation, recommend reasonable accommodations, and prepare an Accommodation Letter for faculty dated in the current quarter in which the request is being made. Students should contact the OAE as soon as possible since timely notice is needed to coordinate accommodations. The OAE is located at 563 Salvatierra Walk (phone: 650-723-1066, URL:

Our Class Environment

Use the names and pronouns (e.g., they/them, she/her, he/him, just a name, or something else) indicated by your classmates and instructors for themselves. If you don’t want to share a set of pronouns for yourself, that is perfectly acceptable, too. If your name or pronouns change during the course, we invite you to share this with us and/or other students, so we may talk with you and refer to your ideas in discussion as you would wish.

It's possible for even well-intended students to accidentally alienate your peers. Comments can make unwelcome assumptions that don't fit some lives, and it's also possible for critiques and conversations to constitute what's called harassment. Harassment means unwelcome or even hostile behavior, including speech, that intimidates, creates discomfort, or interferes with a person's participation or opportunity for participation. That behavior will shut the person down in class, and that is simply not fair and not something we want. Harassment can involve nationality, age, color, creed, disability, gender, sexual orientation or any other protected status. It also extends to unwelcome sexual advances. A response that the participant was “just joking,” or “teasing,” or being “playful,” is not acceptable. If you have witnessed or experienced any harassment, please let an instructor know privately and promptly.

University employees – including professors and TAs – are obligated by Stanford to report what they know about incidents of sexual or relationship violence, stalking and sexual harassment to the Sexual Harassment Policy Office. If you would like to talk with a confidential resource you can contact the Confidential Support Team at their 24/7 hotline: 650-725-9955. You can read more at If you have any questions about responsible employee requirements or campus resources on sexual violence, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

Other Questions or Concerns

For other questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to the teaching staff. We encourage you to talk to us at office hours, via the staff email, or via Slack if there is something that has not been covered here or explained in the first week of classes.