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COMP550 Algorithms & Analysis

·430 words·3 mins

Course information #

Formal specification and verification of programs. Techniques of algorithm analysis. Problem-solving paradigms. Survey of selected algorithms.

I took this course under Prof John Majikes.

Schedule #

Tuesdays & Thursdays

Time slot: 11:00am to 12:15pm

Course breakdown #

  1. In class worksheets 7%
  2. 5 Homework questions 20%
  3. 2 Midterms 45%
  4. Final Exams 30%

There is a total of 102% but it was graded out of 100. The 2% can be seen as bonus marks.

Prerequisites #


  • COMP 211 and 301 or COMP 410

A grade of C or better is required in all prerequisite courses.

Course details #

Topics which were tested:

  1. Summation Limits
  2. Asymptotic Limits
  3. Asymptotic Analysis
  4. Recurrence relations
  5. Divide and conquer
  6. Recursion Trees
  7. Master’s Method
  8. Dynamic Programming
  9. Median and Order Statistics
  10. Dynamic Programming
  11. Greedy algorithms
  12. Minimum Spanning Trees
  13. Linear Programming

Assignments #

Some perks about the test website #

The website makes use of hashes to store the answer to the test cases. The test cases are visible to the user and the answer is stored in the form of a hash.

The hashes used did not makes use of salts to make the answers harder to guess.

If the answer to the question is 1, the hash for the answer will always remain the same.

Just an interesting perk found during the course.

Ratings #

Workload 4/10 (Light workload) #

Personally, the workload for this course was on the lighter side if you have a good foundation on algorithms.

Organization 8/10 #

The course starts off with the relatively easier concepts before moving on to harder ones. Each subsequent topic has some relation to the previous topic.

Learning 8/10 #

I learnt a lot during this course about algorithms. The Professor was able to explain the algorithm in a clear and concise manner. To learn the contents of the course, I recommend programming the algorithms which were taught to fully understand how it works, as well as practice questions which you do not understand.

Reading up on the textbook is also recommended before attending any of his classes.

There was also an added bonus of learning about his work / PhD which he also talks about in class.

Enjoyment 8/10 #

Personally, I enjoyed the course a lot.

The algorithms were useful in the real world and his stories added some change to the otherwise mundane class.

Usefulness 8/10 #

This is very useful to make your functions go fast.

Overall 8/10 #

Overall, I enjoyed the class a lot and it was one of my favorite courses of the semester.

Final grade: A

  1. COMP550 Coursicle Website
  2. COMP550 Algorithm Implementations
  3. Intro to Algorithms Third Edition