CMSC/Math 456, Cryptology, Fall 2008, TuTh 9:30-10:45AM

Instructor: Aravind Srinivasan
Office: AVW 3227, Phone: 301-405-2695
Instructor's office Hours: Thu 2-3 and Fri 12-1 in AVW 3227
TA: Barna Saha (barna AT, Office Hours Mon, Wed 4-5 PM, in AVW 1112
Course Time and Location: Tue,Thu 9:30-10:45 AM, CSI 2117
Book: Introduction to Modern Cryptography, First Edition (ISBN: 0-13-186239-1) by Jonathan Katz and Yehuda Lindell
Course Webpage:

Course Description:

Cryptology is the study of the design and analysis of various encryption schemes, and related topics. The plan is to study the basics of the subject and then touch on several recent developments.

Grading: Homework 30%, Midterm: 30%, Final: 40%. Homework should be stapled and submitted on time; late homework will not be accepted. Your lowest homework score will be dropped. Graduate students will be given additional problems in the homeworks and exams.

Approximate syllabus The following is a tentative syllabus. Chapter numbers refer to the table of contents available here.


All homework is due at the beginning of class on the due date.

Homework 1, due September 16th.
Homework 2, due September 25th.
Homework 3, due October 7th. (Exercise 3.17 has been removed from HW3, and appears instead in HW4.)
Homework 4, due October 14th.
Homework 5, due November 4th.
Homework 6, due November 13th.
Homework 7, due December 2nd.
Homework 8, due December 11th.

Mid-Term and Final Exam

The mid-term and final exam will be closed-book and closed-notes; calculators and other computing equipment will not be permitted.
The final exam is scheduled by the University to be on Tuesday, December 16, 2008, from 8-10 AM in the classroom. The mid-term will be in class at the usual class time (9:30 - 10:45 AM), on Thursday, October 16, 2008.

Course Evaluation

Students are strongly encouraged to complete their course evaluations; the site is here, and will be open in the first half of December.  

Excused Absences

Students claiming a excused absence must apply in writing and furnish documentary support (such as from a health-care professional who treated the student) for any assertion that the absence qualifies as an excused absence. The support should explicitly indicate the dates or times the student was incapacitated due to illness. Self-documentation of illness is not itself sufficient support to excuse the absence. An instructor is not under obligation to offer a substitute assignment or to give a student a make-up assessment unless the failure to perform was due to an excused absence.

Academic Accommodations for Disabilities

Any student eligible for and requesting reasonable academic accommodations due to a disability is requested to provide, to the instructor in office hours, a letter of accommodation from the Office of Disability Support Services (DSS) within the first two weeks of the semester.

Academic Integrity

The University of Maryland, College Park has a nationally recognized Code of Academic Integrity, administered by the Student Honor Council. This Code sets standards for academic integrity at Maryland for all undergraduate and graduate students. As a student you are responsible for upholding these standards for this course. It is very important for you to be aware of the consequences of cheating, fabrication, facilitation, and plagiarism. For more information on the Code of Academic Integrity or the Student Honor Council, please visit

To further exhibit your commitment to academic integrity, remember to sign the Honor Pledge on all examinations and assignments: "I pledge on my honor that I have not given or received any unauthorized assistance on this examination (assignment)."

Some Cryptology Links

  • Quadralay Cryptography Archive  This page is a very useful list of things associated with cryptography.
  • The National Security Agency
  • Web Accessibility