CMSC/Math 456, Cryptology, Fall 2011: Tue, Thu 9:30-10:45AM

Instructor: Aravind Srinivasan
Office: AVW 3263, Phone: 301-405-2695
Instructor's office Hours: Thu 2:45-4:45 PM in AVW 3263
TA: Arun Balasubramanian, arunb.umd AT
TA's office Hours: Wed, Fri 2:30-3:30PM in AVW 1112 or 1114
Course Time and Location: Tue, Thu 9:30-10:45AM, CSIC 2107
Book: Introduction to Modern Cryptography (ISBN: 978-1584885511) by Jonathan Katz and Yehuda Lindell; see also the errata.
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%, Two Midterm Tests (30% total), Final: 40%. Homework should be stapled and submitted on time; late homework will not be accepted. Your lowest homework score will be dropped.

General Info:


  1. Homework 1, due Sep. 15th.
  2. Homework 2, due Sep. 27th.
  3. Homework 3, due Oct. 6th.
  4. Homework 4, due Oct. 27th.
  5. Homework 5, due Nov. 8th.
  6. Homework 6, due Dec. 13th. (Problem 2 updated on Dec. 8th.)

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

Course Evaluation

Students are strongly encouraged to complete their course evaluations; please do so at the CourseEvalUM website.

Mid-Terms and Final Exam

The mid-terms and final exam will be closed-book and closed-notes; calculators and other computing equipment will not be permitted.
Mid-term I will be held in class on Oct. 13, and Mid-term II will be held in class on Nov. 17.

The chapters from the textbook for the first mid-term are:

The chapters from the textbook for the second mid-term are: According to the university schedule, the final exam will be in class 8-10 AM on Friday, December 16th; the full list of book-sections to read for the final is here.

Excused Absences

See the university's policy on medically-necessitated absence from class. The "Major Scheduled Grading Events" for this course are the mid-term and final exams; students claiming an excused absence from these events 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)."

A Useful Cryptology Link

  • David Wagner's posts on cryptography
  • Web Accessibility