Formal course description

Course Number: COMPSCI  96

Course Title: System Design Projects

Course Description: Cooperative formative research, design, development, and testing of a sizable and realistic sociotechnical system, i.e., a solution to a real-world problem that includes both technical and human components. Students work as a team with a client on a real-world open-ended problem, and gain experience in Computer Science (problem definition, software development, iterative design), and in other fields relevant to the problem. Both student participation in the classroom and effective teamwork outside the classroom are stressed. The specific challenge for Fall 2020 will be announced on the course website.

Course Instructor: Krzysztof Gajos

Teaching Fellow: Zana Buçinca

Enrollment: 15

Enrollment Limit: Limited Enrollment

Instructor Consent: Instructor Consent Required

Course Notes: Course is enrollment-limited by application

Recommended Prep: This course is primarily intended for juniors and seniors. Students from any field of study are welcome, though some prior exposure to CS is helpful.  

Informal course description and FAQ

How do I petition to join the course? I don't know yet. The plans for the next shopping period are still not finalized. I will post more information when I know more.

Can non-CS concentrators really take the course? Yes. We will most likely go after a timely societal challenge where technology can form an important part (but not the entirety) of the solution. We will need other perspectives and other kinds of expertise to devise an effective solution. 

I am potentially interested in the course. Can you keep me in the loop as more information becomes available? Yes. Join the cs96au20info google group. I will send an email there each time I have an important update. 

Will the course be held in-person or online? We will conduct all of our activities online.

Is attendance required? Yes. We will do a lot of collaborative work during class time so regular attendance is required.

On what days/times will the course meet? We do not know yet.

I have another question. Email me at