General Class Rules


Instructor: Gregor Kovacic
Office: 420 Amos Eaton
Phone: 276-6908
Office hours: Click here.
E-mail: kovacg at rpi dot edu

Attendance Policy

There is no requirement to attend class (or recitations, when the class has them). This said, however, long-time experience shows that students who do not attend class (and/or recitations) usually do poorly in the course. Neither the instructor (nor the teaching assistant, when the class has one) is in any way responsible for briefing students who missed class on the missed material and/or announcements.

Academic Integrity

Student-teacher relationships are built on trust. Acts, which violate this trust, undermine the educational process. The Rensselaer Handbook of Student Rights and Responsibilities defines various forms of Academic Dishonesty and you should make yourself familiar with these.

Copying from fellow students' work or from unallowed aids during a quiz or an exam, as well as using electronic means to contact helpers outside the examination room, is a breach of academic integrity. If caught, you will earn 0 points for that quiz or exam. If caught again, you will be sent to the Dean of Students with the recommendation that you be expelled from the class with a failing grade.

I strongly encourage collaboration on any assigned homework. You are encouraged to work in groups in which you discuss the problems and help each other out if you are stuck. However, copying is forbidden, as is partitioning the homework among several students without everybody's participation on every problem. All of these are considered breaches of academic integrity. More precisely, you may collaborate as much as you want, as long as in the end you write your homework up without looking at someone else's paper. All those who submit identical solutions will earn 0 points for the identical problem(s).

It is strictly forbidden to fish for old solutions of recycled problems and copy them into your homework, if it will be graded. It is also strictly forbidden to resubmitt a quiz or a test for regrading with changed answers. Such behavior will be considered the highest breach of academic integrity. More than likely, it will land you in the office of the Dean of Students with the recommendation that you be expelled from the class with a failing grade. It will also earn you zero points for the entire assignment on which the copying occurs.

You are also strictly forbidden from posting homework solutions on various social media, so that other students can use them to copy and cheat, regardless of whether you are still in my class or not. Not only do I consider such an act to be the highest breach of academic integrity, but also a deliberate undermining of the learning process. Therefore, if I find out that you posted my solutions, I will send a request to the dean of students that a permanent demerit be put on your RPI record.

Standard Institute procedure for academic integrity breaches will be followed.

Computing the Current Grade

Take the grading policy in your specific course (whether the grade depends only on exams, or also quizzes and/or homeworks, whether the lowest exam, quiz or homework grade is dropped; this is written on your specific course page) and use it to compute your current average. At worst, your grade corresponds to the following cutoffs

92-10090-9287-8982-8680-8277-79 72-7670-7267-6960-66< 60

In the end, the cutoffs will most probably be more lenient, but I won't know where exactly they will be until the very end.

Grade Appeals

Grades should first be appealed to the instructor. You have 5 business days from the day the homework/exam in question was handed back in class to appeal its grade. The fact that you were not in class on that day is not an excuse for an extension. No appeals will be granted by the instructor after that period. Any further appeals should be directed through the office of the department head.

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