Research and Teaching in Computer Science and Engineering


Research and Teaching in Computer Science and Engineering

Fall 2014


Basic teaching techniques for teaching assistants, including responsibilities and rights of teaching assistants, resource materials, computer security, leading discussion or lab sessions, presentation techniques, maintaining class records, electronic handling of homework, and grading. The course examines research and professional training, including use of the library and online databases, technical typesetting, writing journal and conference papers, publishing in computer science and computer engineering, giving talks in seminars and conferences, and ethical issues in science and engineering. Required for all teaching assistants. 


Please note:  This course has a minimum attendance requirement.  You must attend a minimum of 8 out of the 9 class meetings to pass the class.  Attendance will be recorded at every class meeting.


General Information



Wang-Chiew Tan (tan at

Anujan Varma (varma at


Jeremy Baumgartner (jbaumgartner at


Physical Sciences 110


Tuesdays, 4:00-5:45pm


Pass/Fail only





Assignment 1: NSF graduate fellowship application - Due Oct 21 by 4pm

Assignment 2: Webpage and CV - Due Nov 4 by 4pm

Assignment 3: Presentation - Due Nov 18 by 4pm   Presentation Schedule (.xlsx) (plain text)

Assignment 4: Paper Review - Due Dec 2 by 4pm   Slides from 11/18 presentation

Turn in all assignments to eCommons (UCSC's online tool for teaching and collaboration).  Go to the site, log in, click the course on the top bar, click "Assignments" on the left side, and click on the relevant assignment to turn in.



Tentative Class Schedule


Lecture 1 (Oct 7)

Assignment 1 released

Class introduction

Computer Engineering requirements

Computer Science requirements

Discussion of Assignment 1 


Lecture 2 (Oct 14)

Baskin School of Engineering IT Services - Tim Gustafson

NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) discussion and panel


Lecture 3 (Oct 21)

Assignment 1 due

Assignment 2 released

Graduate Advisors Q&A - Tracie Tucker and Emily Gregg

Title IX officer talk (TA harassment and resources) - Tracey H. Tsugawa and Nancy Heischman

TA discussion and panel

Discussion of Assignment 2


Lecture 4 (Oct 28)

Introduction to LaTeX - Presenter TBD

How To Be a Good Graduate Student - Presenter TBD

Talk by Vice Provost and Dean of Graduate Studies - Tyrus Miller


Lecture 5 (Nov 4)

Assignment 2 due

Assignment 3 released

Introduction about being a Graduate Student Researcher (GSR)

GSR discussion and panel

Discussion of Assignment 3


No class (Nov 11) - Veteran's Day


Lecture 6 (Nov 18)

Assignment 3 due

Assignment 4 released

Technical Writing

Discussion of Assignment 4


Lecture 7 (Nov 25)

Faculty presentations - TBD

Student Elevator Pitches


Lecture 8 (Dec 2)

Assignment 4 due

Faculty presentations - TBD

Student Elevator Pitches


Lecture 9 (Dec 9)

Faculty presentations - TBD

Student Elevator Pitches



Important people who can help you


Your advisor - Check with your graduate advisor if you don't know who this is.

Tracie Tucker - ttucker at (Office: E2 298K) - CS/AMS/BME Graduate Advisor 

Emily Gregg - egregg at (Office: E2 298J) - CE/EE/TIM Graduate Advisor

Wang-Chiew Tan - tan at - CS Graduate Director

Katia Obraczka - katia at - CE Graduate Director

Hamid Sadjadpour - hamid at - EE Graduate Director

Ed Green - ed at - BME Graduate Director

Athanasios Kottas - thanos at - AMS Graduate Director

John Musacchio - johnm at - TIM Graduate Director





TA Starter Package

Graduate Student Handbook

CMPE Graduate Requirements

CMPS Graduate Requirements

Mendeley reference manager

Funny and often eerily accurate comic: PhD Comics


NSF GRFP example applications (since these were written, the essays have been consolidated from 3 essays to 2 essays)

UCSC Information Technology Services (ITS)

BSOE ITS Presentation (from class)

A 5 Step plan for better journal writing

Elements of Style

Research Skills by Simon Peyton Jones

The Baskin Center Policy about Cheating (postscript)



LaTeX User's Guide and Reference Manual by Leslie Lamport

Prof. David Helmbold's Introduction to LaTeX (and the tex source)

Introduction to LaTeX

Another Introduction to LaTeX

LaTeX package for Windows: MiKTeX

LaTeX package for Mac: MacTeX

Online collaborative LaTeX editors: ShareLaTeX and writeLaTeX

Use Detexify to quickly find LaTeX symbols (also on Android and iOS)

LaTeX beamer class and beamer primer

LaTeX package for making posters


Plagiarism Detection Tools: Great for comparing research pages or reports. Not so useful for code.

MOSS: Code comparison tool, works on C, C++, java, ML, lisp, scheme, pascal, ada, haskell, fortran, ascii, vhdl, html, perl, and matlab. You submit the files to their server and they email you a link to the results.

SIM: Default code comparison tool at UCSC.




Instructors and Assistants