Information and Coding Theory
M460, Spring 2015

Professor: Dr. Rachel Pries
e-mail: pries ATSYMBOL math DOT colostate DOT edu
web page:
office: Weber 205A, office hours: Wed 10-11, Thurs 2-3 or by appointment.

Lecture: MWF 9:00-9:50, Eng E206.

Tentative syllabus:

Course description:
Information theory and error-correcting codes are fundamentally important for data transmission and storage. In this course, we will use probability to study entropy, which measures the uncertainty of a random variable and is used for lossless encoding and compression of data. We will study error-correcting codes using number theory and linear algebra. Error-correcting codes are ubiquitous in modern society; they are used for many applications including cell phone and satellites.

Prerequisite: M360 and M369 or equivalent experience.

Textbooks: Steven Roman. Introduction to Coding and Information Theory.
Website: Error correcting codes

Grading: The course grades will be computed as follows:
20% homework; 15% midterm 1; 20% midterm 2; 20% midterm 3; 25% presentation and project.
Borderline grades will be decided on the basis of class participation.

Homework and group work: About 5 assignments. Homework is the most important part of this class. Doing homework problems is crucial for doing well in this class. The process of doing homework will help you solve unfamiliar problems on the tests. The homework problems will help you develop skills in algebraic computation and logical reasoning. The grader will only grade homework which is neat, legible, and stapled. I encourage you to brainstorm the problems in groups and write up your solutions independently.

Homework assignments:

Project: There are many amazing topics in Information and Coding Theory which we will not have time to cover fully. Each person will write an 10-12 page report and give a presentation. This gives everyone a chance to explore a topic in a new way.

Examinations: There will be three midterms in class on Monday 2/16, Friday 3/27 and Friday 5/1. The project is due at noon Thursday 5/14.
There is no final exam in this course.

Sample Quiz 1:

Sample Quiz 2:

Information about projects:

Sample Quiz 3:
There are no makeups for missed exams, regardless of the reason for absence. You must take the final examination at this time scheduled by the university; no final exams will be given earlier. Examinations will not be rescheduled because of travel arrangements. It is your responsibility to schedule travel appropriately.

CSU Honor Pledge: Academic integrity is important to me. Paraphrasing the words of Greg Dickinson, Director of Graduate Studies; Professor, Dept. of Communication Studies:
Plagiarism is the unauthorized or unacknowledged use of a person's academic or scholarly work. Regardless of how it occurs, plagiarism is a theft of intellectual property.
Academic integrity means having a true educational experience. It involves doing your own reading and studying. It includes regular class attendance, careful consideration of all class materials, and engagement with the class and other students. Academic integrity lies at the core of our common goal: to create an intellectually honest and rigorous community.
Because academic integrity is so central to our mission as students, teachers, scholars, and citizens, we will ask you (but not require you) to sign the CSU Honor Pledge when completing all major assignments.
"I have not given, received, or used any unauthorized assistance."
If you plagiarize in your work you could lose credit for the plagiarized work, fail the assignment, or fail the course. Each instance of plagiarism, classroom cheating, and other types of academic dishonesty will be addressed according to the principles published in the CSU General Catalog (see page seven, column two:

Help: Help is always available if you have trouble with homework or lecture material. If your classmates can't answer your question, come ask me! Office hours are Wed 10-11, Thurs 2-3 or by appointment, in Weber 205A.