CMSC 433, Spring 2006

Programming Language Technologies and Paradigms



Head First Design Patterns picture

Head First Design Patterns by Eric Freeman, Elisabeth Freeman, Kathy Sierra, and Bert Bates. ISBN 0-596-00712-4. Available from Amazon for $28.75.

Java Concurrency Picture

Java Concurrency in Practice by Brian Goetz, Tim Peierls, Joshua Bloch, Joseph Bowbeer, David Holmes and Doug Lea. ISBN 0-321-34960-1. This book is not yet released, but we will be using preprints of draft copies of the book.


The topics for the class are taken from a variety of sources.  There will be readings from both texts and web resources.  Here is the tentative topic list (likely to be changed as the semester progresses):


Most of the topics in the class you will learn by doing, so there will be a substantial emphasis on programming projects. The expected breakdown is shown below (we will inform you if it changes). The final grade will be curved, but you will get at least an A for 90-100, B for 80-89, C for 70-79, and D for 60-69 (i.e., the curve can only help your grade beyond this scale). We reserve the right to take into account circumstances other than the ones indicated below in calculating the grade (e.g., class participation, appearance at office hours, etc.).



% each

% total

Programming projects














Any regrades for project or exams must be requested within one week of the date your grade for the assignment or exam is given to you. When regrading, we may re-evaluate the entire assignment or exam, and as a result your grade may go up or down as appropriate.

Academic Dishonesty

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

Here are some highlights of this Code as it applies to this course:

Policies and Responsible Conduct

Cell phones. As a courtesy to your fellow classmates, pagers and cell phones must be off or on vibrate during class.  Having cell phones or pages ring during class repeatedly can result in points being deducted from a student's semester grade.

Office Hours and E-mail.  Questions concerning the content of the course or project should, as a general rule, be directed to the class discussion forum (media to be determined).  This allows questions to be answered by whoever is monitoring the forum, and the answer can benefit all students.  In general, e-mail should not be sent directly to Dr. Hicks or the TAs with technical questions.

The instructors (Dr. Hicks and the TAs) are happy to answer questions during office hours and on the discussion forum.  However, office hours and email are not intended as a replacement for attending lectures and recitations. As a result, instructors will only respond to questions, whether during office hours or on the newsgroup, from those students who regularly attend class.  Instructors may not respond to electronic questions instantly.  However, the instructors will try to respond to email by the next regularly scheduled office hour after it is sent.  If a student cannot make it to scheduled office hours, he or she is encouraged to make an appointment by e-mail or after class.

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.  (This is a department policy, and it is a higher standard than in some other departments.) 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.

Accommodating 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.

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