Course Administration  What you need to know about the course.


Scott Anderson
Office: E114 Science Center
Email: scott.anderson AT wellesley DOT edu
Office Hours: Mon 3:45-4:45; Tues 3:45-4:45; Wed 3:45-4:45; Fri 3:45-4:45 or by appt. Also Wednesday evenings after 9pm when there is an assignment.

Anna Loparev
Office: 133 Science Center
Email: aloparev AT wellesley DOT edu
Office Hours: Mon 2:00-3:30; Tues 2:30-4:00; Wed 2:00-3:30 or by appointment

Jean Herbst
Office: E129 Science Center
Email: jherbst AT wellesley DOT edu
Office Hours:Mon 5:00 - 7:00, Tue 3:00 - 4:00, Fri 3:00 - 4:00, or by appt

Supplemental Instruction (SI) Leaders

This semester we have a supplemental instruction (SI) leader, Maggie Jennings. She will attend lectures, lead SI sessions and hold drop-in hours:

  • SI sessions in SCI 257:
    • Monday 7-8pm, and
    • Thursday 6-7pm
  • Drop-ins in SCI 257, Tuesdays 6-7pm

An SI session is a second presentation of the lecture material, and the SI leader will explain things in her own words and use her own examples, in consultation with the CS 110 faculty. The SI sessions are not remedial, and they are not just for students who are struggling. The nature of computer science, like almost any complex topic with crucial details, is one where re-reading and practice are necessary. Even CS faculty expect to re-read passages several times and try things out before skills click. The SI sessions formalize that process for CS 110. We highly recommend them.

Tutors & Drop-in Hours

We have several student tutors who will hold weekly drop-in hours in SCI 257: Aoi Yamamoto, Meredith Accum, Meg Roberts, and Vivian Zhang.

  • Sunday 6-8pm, Meg Roberts
  • Monday 8-10pm, Meredith Accum
  • Tuesday 7-9pm, Aoi Yamamoto
  • Wednesday 7-9pm, Vivian Zheng

On occasion, this schedule might change and you will be notified by email.

If you need additional help after taking advantage of the drop-in hours and your instructor's office hours, you may request a one-on-one tutor from the Pforzheimer Learning and Teaching Center.


There are several textbooks that we will be using this semester. If you were to buy only one book, we recommend the first one from the list below. The books that are not in the College Bookstore, can be easily found online, sometime at discounted prices for used copies (check also the Books Buy/Sell Google group of the College) . Additionally, you can find other books on HTML, CSS, and Javascript/jQuery through the Library.

A wonderful book that we used in the past, but decided to drop only because of the scarcity of time is Blown to Bits: Your Life, Liberty, and Happiness after the Digital Explosion, by Hal Abelson, Ken Leeden, and Harry Lewis (Addison-Wesley, 2008). All chapters of this book are available online. You might treat yourself to some reading from that book.

Course Work

Course work includes exams, quizzes, homework assignments, in-class discussions, and a term project. How these contribute to your grade is described in the section on grading policy.


The homework assignments are listed on the course schedule. They are based on the lectures and readings and are designed to help you with the reading and to develop your skills as web designers and programmers. They range from straightforward to challenging.

The assignments are posted approximately a week before their due dates in the course schedule.

Lateness Policy

When planning your schedule, keep in mind that computers and printers take a special joy in breaking down when you are most desperate. Try to leave time to deal with last-minute emergencies, and remember that outside of laboratory hours, you may have to compete with other students for a machine.

Nevertheless, if you must turn in work late, it will be accepted with a 10% penalty. You have up to 24 hours after the time it's due, so if it's due on Wednesday at midnight, you have until Thursday at midnight.

We recommend that as a part of your normal work habits, you routinely upload to the server. Don't wait until something is done to upload it. That way, if something prevents you from getting to a computer, your partial work is already turned in.

Of course, once you have turned something in, you should not modify it after the deadline has passed, so that when we grade it, we will not think that you turned it in late.

Note that any change that you make after the deadline makes the assignment late. So, be thoughtful about whether fixing some small error is worth the lateness penalty. We hate to discourage you from fixing bugs, but the deadline is real.

This lateness policy applies to all homework assignments and to project work.

In extenuating circumstances (e.g., sickness, personal crisis, family problems, religious holidays), you may request an extension. The instructors in the course will decide as a group whether to grant extensions.

Class Participation

We expect that you come to class prepared, having completed the assigned reading in advance (lecture notes or book chapters). Then, a portion of class time will be spent with quizzes (using clickers) where you can first test your knowledge individually, then have a chance to discuss the answer with your peers and then redo the question. Such quizzes will be a constant feauture of all ''lecture'' class meetings.

Quizzes are not graded; they are only there to help you grapple with the material and learn by thinking about things and, sometimes, talking with other students.

In addition to answering quiz questions, we will be using the clicker technology for taking class attendance. Every student will be assigned a clicker for the whole semester (the clickers remain with the instructors). Attendance will be a part of our evaluation of your class participation, which may affect your course performance if you fall between the boundary of two grades.

It is a violation of the Wellesley Honor Code to impersonate a friend by using their clicker to submit answers.


There will be one in-class midterm examination. See the course schedule for the date of this exam. There will be no makeup examination without prior arrangement with your instructor.

There will be a self-scheduled final exam during the final exam period.

Both exams are open book, open notes. However, no electronic devices such as a laptop, smartphone, ebook reader, etc. are allowed in the exam. . You may bring a timepiece.

You may not bring a calculator. If the calculation you need to make is big, such as 320 * 160 * 3, you may leave it in expression form like that. We know you know how to use a calculator. If the calculation is small, we expect you to do it by hand and to show your work. For example, converting the hex number B5 to decimal involves computing 11*16+5=181. If you write the correct expression and then do the math incorrectly, you'll get full credit.

Our reasoning behind the open-book policy is that we feel strongly that CS110 material is not the sort of stuff that should be memorized. You will naturally, effortlessly, memorize things you use all the time, but there's no reason you shouldn't look up something that you need a reminder about. We do it all the time!

Additionally, we believe that the exams are a way for you to demonstrate that you are able to apply the knowledge you have constructed during the course in a new context (for example, a problem you haven't seen before), and not simply regurgitate back information from the readings.

Term Project

CS110 has a Term Project. Class members form teams of two students. Each team finds a client or other resource person to help design, develop, and demonstrate a web presence. The project should be related to an area in which you (and your partner and client) have some special interest.

The projects proceed in several phases, and the due dates for each phase may be found in the course schedule. You will receive detailed instructions for each phase of the project. All project deadlines are firm. They serve as milestones in your project and will be evaluated after every deadline.

More information about the Term Project is available via the project link in the navigation bar at the top of every page.

Grading Policy

This course complies with the Wellesley College policy. While that policy asks faculty to hold each 100- and 200-level course with 10 or more students to an average of no higher than 3.33, it does not require faculty to grade on a "curve." There is no arbitrary limit on the number of A's, B's, C's etc., and every student will be assigned the grade she earns and deserves according to the grading standards of the college. As a reminder, here is the explanation of the most important grades:

  • Grade A (4.00) is given to students who meet with conspicuous excellence every demand that can fairly be made by the course.
  • Grade B (3.00) is given to those students who add to the minimum of satisfactory attainment excellence in not all, but some of the following: organization, accuracy, originality, understanding, insight.
  • Grade C (2.00) is given to those students who have attained a satisfactory familiarity with the content of a course and who have demonstrated ability to use this knowledge in a satisfactory manner.
  • Grade D (1.00) is a passing grade. there is no grade of D+ or D-.

The final grade in the class will be computed as a weighted average of each of the course requirements above. The relative weight of each component is outlined below:

Homework   30%
Midterm Exam   15%
Term Project   30%
Final Exam   25%

Honor Code

The Honor Code applies to this course. You are encouraged to discuss assignments with other students, the tutors, and with your instructors. However, you must solve, write up, debug, test and document the assignment on your own. In other words, it is acceptable to talk with other students in English (or any other human language), but not acceptable to use any formal language and especially not HTML, CSS or JavaScript. You should not be looking at other peoples' code or showing them yours. If you worked with others or you have obtained help from any source, you must acknowledge their contribution in writing.

Homework assignments must be your own work. You may not look at solutions from other students, either from the current offering of CS110 or from past offerings.

Exams may use our materials and your own notes, but no electronic help or notes from other students are permitted.

Your project work will comprise both the content of the site and the coding of the site. Content consists of things like text, pictures, PDF. For example, if your project is the website of a student organization, it might include the organization's constitution, descriptions and pictures of their activities. The constitution will, of course, not be your work. Some of the pictures may have been taken by members of the organization. It would make no sense to forbid you from using this content. However, all the coding of the site should be your work: the HTML coding, the CSS coding, the JavaScript coding must all be the work of your team. If you find some coding from a website other than the CS110 website and you would like to borrow it, you must clear this with your team advisor. You must carefully document what code is to be borrowed or modified, giving proper credit both in the coding files themselves using comments, and in your P3_changes.html document. You must document where you got the code from and how you adapted it for your project. Human memory is fallible, so it is not acceptable to get your advisor's verbal agreement: You must get prior, written authorization, and then carefully document this, so there is no question of proper authorship.

Furthermore, because project work is done by a team, you must make clear who did each part of the project. If one partner did all the work for a particular page, her name can be put in comments at the top of the code file for the page stating this. If work on a page was divided, that must also be carefully documented with comments in the code. For co-authored documents, namely the requirements, design and testing documents, both students must contribute to the document. Both names being on the document means that both teammates contributed to it, so it is a violation of the honor code to have your name on the document if you did no work and it is a violation to put your teammate's name on it if she did no work.

You will be assigned a course account on the CS file server that includes a password to access the account. It is a violation of the honor code to share this password with anyone.

Students with Special Needs

If you have special needs of any kind, please meet with your instructors to discuss accommodations that may be helpful to you.