COM495: Research Seminar


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The CS faculty members at Connecticut College believe that undergraduate research is essential for CS majors.  Indeed, it is one of the major strengths of the Connecticut College Computer Science Program.  The ability to conduct independent research is probably the main characteristic of interest to employers who want innovative employees, as well as to universities when considering graduate school applicants.  Not only will undergraduate student research set you apart from other college graduates, the process will also greatly deepen and enrich your undergraduate education.  Since CS tends to be strongly interdisciplinary, you are encouraged to pursue cross-disciplinary work in your research projects.  Some common areas of collaboration are with art, music, biology, physics, economics, chemistry, neuroscience, psychology, and philosophy.



Mondays, 7 pm to 9:45 pm, in Shain Library DILLEY



Dr. Christine Chung

Bill Hall 315A

Office hours by appointment



Your grade in this class will be established through consultation with your research adviser.  It will be a reflection of your combined performance in this class and in your research.

Required for Computer Science Majors

COM495 (offered every Fall) and COM496 (offered every Spring) are required courses for computer science majors. Students who would normally take independent studies to do research will sign up for these courses. The faculty member assigned to the course will be the course coordinator.  Students will be doing research directly with faculty in their area of interest. Please see the CS Research Page for available areas of research.  It is required that students contact the faculty member they will be working with either before enrolling in the course (preferred) or within one week of the course’s first meeting date.


Course Description

Practicum in computer science research.  An introduction to research methods and implementation of a major research project. Students will read, present, and discuss technical papers; write a research proposal; make weekly reports; raise issues for class discussion; complete their research; write a technical paper; and do a public presentation. May be repeated unlimited times for credit.

Prerequisite: 300 level course in the area of computer science research or permission of instructor.

Student Learning Objectives


The course will meet weekly with a 2.5 hour session.  The weekly meeting will be for students to discuss their research projects (all the students in the class will present their progress and raise issues for discussion) and for one student to present a research paper pertinent to the topic they are studying.  The students will be required to develop a research timeline, write a research proposal, complete their body of research, write a technical paper, and give a presentation of their research at the end of the course.