CSCI 320: Business Programming in COBOL
Class Syllabus

I. General Info:

Professor: Mr. David Tucker
Office Location: Doucette Hall, Room 203

Office Hours:

9:00-10:00 and 2:00 - 3:00 am Monday, Wednesday
2:30 - 3:30 Tuesday & Thursday
Meet in my office at 203 Doucette Hall

Office Phone: (814) 732-2550
E-Mail Address:

Course Web Page:
Note: Check the site frequently for up-to-date information.

Class Meetings:  
Tuesday & Thursday 3:30-4:45; we'll probably be meeting in Dundee lab both days.

II. Catalog Description of Course:
This course introduces the student to business programming concepts using the COBOL programming language. Topics will include data validation, table handling, sorting and merging techniques, interactive input and output, sequential, indexed sequential and relative file organizations, and writing and linking subprograms. Prerequisite: CSCI230

Additional Items To Note:

III. Course Textbook:
Stern, Stern, & Ley; COBOL for the 21st Century 11th edition.

IV. Course Objectives:

Successful completion of the course will be based upon the following objectives:
V. Required Materials:
In addition to the text currently being used, which should be brought to all class meetings, you will need to bring the following to each class:
  1. You'll probably want a flash drive, but most of your programs will be stored on the VAX.
  2. You'll find handy A continual supply of printing privileges on the computer science lab server.

VI. Assessment and Evaluation:

A. Projects: 
There will be 5 programming assignments due throughout this session.  The assignments and due dates will be posted later on the web site.  You are expected to check the web site to see what the assignments are and when they are due.  There will be a 20% late penalty per day.

B. Examinations: 
There will be three (3) major exams
.  Don't miss any of the exams

C. Quizzes/Lab Exercises
There will be some lab assignments that may be done during the lab time.  I will randomly choose some of these labs and have you demo it for me during the lab period for a grade.  This grade is also partially for attendance, so if you miss a lab, excused or not, you cannot make up the lab exercise.  For this reason I will drop your lowest lab grade when determining final grades.

VII. Derivation of Final Grades:

Weights for Determining the Final Grade:
5 Projects - 50% of your grade
Quizzes, Lab Exercises, and Homework 10%
Exam 1 10%
Exam 2 10%
Exam 3 20%

The final score will be converted to a letter grade using the following scale:
90 < score < 100 A
80 < score < 89 B
70 < score < 79 C
60 < score < 69 D
0 < score < 59 F

- Incomplete grades will be assigned only if proper documentation is presented and the student has a passing grade in the course at the time of withdrawal (very rare).
- All assessment is based on results as it is unfair for the instructor to subjectively evaluate effort for each student in the class. 
- At the end of the course I usually give a curve, this will be given to students who have not missed more than one weeks worth of class, therefore in this class that means only one class!. This is very important, could be the difference between a letter grade.

VIII. American Disabilities Act Statement:
Any student who has a physical or learning disability which requires special accommodations should make an appointment to discuss this with the instructor.

IX. Academic Integrity:
You are expected to do all of the assigned work on your own.  Any student found to be cheating or plagiarizing with respect to any component of the course will be subject to immediate failure from the course.  This is very important in this course because of the tendency to help/give a copy of a project to another student.  This usually does more harm than good and will always reflect in your test score.  If you're getting A's on your projects but failing the exams, clearly you are copying your projects, because I base the exams heavily on the understanding of the projects.

X. Some Final Comments:
It is the instructor's intention to provide an environment that is relaxed and academically stimulating. You will be encouraged to ask questions and participate in the lecture.  

It is very clear that high performance in a class is linked with consistent attendance and reasonable effort. I do expect you to attend all classes and you are responsible for knowing about any announcements or assignments made during class. If missing a class is unavoidable, the student is expected to copy the lecture notes from one of her/his peers. Handouts distributed can be obtained from the instructor during office hours.  

Please do not use office hour time to make-up excessive unexcused absences. This course is taught in a lecture/laboratory style. While the instructor is lecturing, it is EXPECTED that no one will be working on the computers. It's rude and disruptive to both other students and the instructor.  Students are expected to use the lab time wisely while the instructor is there assist. Additionally, you should set several hours aside each week when you can come to one of the labs (or use an adequate home system) to finish the laboratory problems.  You can expect that this class will take many additional hours of out of class time to complete the projects.