Course Overview

In this course, students will learn the methodology behind experimental research in computer science. The course will cover topics such as planning a new research project, designing experiments, enabling repeatable research, and effectively presenting your results. It will also provide practice with the four skills critical to being an effective researcher: reading, writing, speaking, and thinking creatively.


  • You should have gotten an email inviting you to our Zotero group. Install the program and join the group!


Note: This schedule may not include all project deadlines!

Week 1
Wed. Jan 16
Intro to Research Methods and Reading Papers
Week 2
Wed. Jan 23
Selecting Research Projects and Computer Science as Science
DUE before class: Read Loehle’s paper on creativity and take this survey
Week 3
Wed. Jan 30
All About Papers and Conferences
DUE Sunday 1/27: Project Report 0
Week 4
Wed. Feb 6
Why Science is Hard
Week 5
Wed. Feb 13
Writing Well - Abstracts
DUE before class: Review your video and Project Report 1
Week 6
Wed. Feb 20
No Class - attend CS colloquiums!
Week 7
Wed. Feb 27
Experimental Design
Week 8
Wed. March 6
Presenting Clearly
DUE before class: Project Report 2
Week 9
Wed. March 13
No Class - Spring Break
Week 10
Wed. March 20
No Class - attend CS colloquiums!
Week 11
Wed. March 27
Statistics - Guest Lecture by Dr. Pablo Frank Bolton
DUE before class: Project Report 3
Week 12
Wed. April 3
Presenting Clearly
Week 13
Wed. April 10
Research Recipes, Personal Productivity, and behind the scenes of CS hiring
DUE before class: Project Report 4
Week 14
Wed. April 17
Visualizing Your Research and Grant Writing
Week 15
Wed. April 24
Grant Writing
Week 16
Wed. May 1
No Class
DUE before class: Final Report


This course includes materials drawn from similar courses by 
David Jensen, UMass and Omprakash Gnawali, University of Houston.