Computer Science 225
Advanced Programming

Spring 2017, Siena College



Dr. Darren T. Lim, Roger Bacon 316, (518) 782-6807
Electronic mail: dlim AT
Twitter: @DrDTL
Office hours: Monday 3:30-5, Tuesday 2:30-5
Instructor: Dr. James D. Teresco, Roger Bacon 321, (518) 782-6992
Electronic mail: jteresco AT (best contact method)
Twitter: @JTerescoSienaCS
Office hours: Tuesday 10-11, Wednesday 2-3:30, Friday 9-10, and by appointment
Class URL: [Link]
Class hour: Monday, Friday 10:20-11:20 or 11:30-12:30, Roger Bacon 302
Lab meetings: Wednesday 10:30-12:30, 1:30-3:30, or 3:50-5:50, Roger Bacon 306


Everything on this syllabus is subject to change. Changes will be announced in class and updated in the online version of the syllabus.

Course Objectives

From the course catalog: "This course continues previous work in using an object-oriented language in problem solving, and will consist of two parallel strands: the development of students' expertise in advanced features of the language, and the further exploration of software engineering methodologies, such as UML. The two strands will be developed in the context of a large-scale team-based project."

Course Goals

  1. To enhance your problem solving abilities, with an emphasis on recursive design.
  2. To introduce you to advanced programming concepts in the Java programming language
  3. To prepare you for the Oracle Certified Professional, Java SE 8 Programmer Exam
  4. To introduce software engineering methodologies in order to reshape and nurture your programming style.

This course will cover the fundamentals of object-oriented programming, using the Java programming language. We will discuss UML, a modeling language used for describing software concepts. We will also discuss advanced topics in Java, such as Class Inheritance, Polymorphism, Interfaces, regular expressions, and Swing. Finally, this course will discuss issues of software design and development. The class will be split into teams for the final two homework projects, the last of which will be presented during the final week of class. As a result of this course, students will understand the principle concepts of an object-oriented language, become expert programmers in the Java Programming Language, and build collaboration skills through working with other students in labs and in projects.



The required text for the course is Big Java: Early Objects, Sixth Edition (Wiley, 2016, ISBN 9781119056447) by Cay Horstmann. This is available from the Siena Bookstore (and elsewhere). If you buy elsewhere, be sure to get the correct edition.

We will also have some readings from and refer to a reference text, The Elements of Java Style (Cambridge, 2000, ISBN 0521777682) by Allan Vermeulen, Scott W. Ambler, Greg Bumgardner, Eldon Metz, Trevor Misfeldt, and Jim Shur.

Other readings may also be assigned from freely available sources.


Everyone is expected to attend class and participate in discussions. There is no formal attendance policy, but a lack of regular attendance is certain to result in lower grades on assignments and exams. Do not expect sympathy if you are struggling but are rarely seen in class and during office hours. Office visits are always seen as evidence that you care about your work and are engaged in the course. Be prompt, prepared, and ready to focus on the day's topics. This should go without saying, but this means your phones and other devices not being used exclusively to follow along with class materials and/or to take notes must be powered off. You may bring food or drink to class, as long as you are not a distraction to your classmates or instructor.

The lecture and reading schedule lists the readings, and has a link to a web page for each lecture highlighting the day's topics, listing class examples, and upcoming assignment and lab due dates. Some notes will be available as PDF files linked from the lecture and reading schedule. You are responsible for everything covered in class, whether or not you are physically present.


We have the advantage of weekly meetings in a computer lab. It may be possible to complete labs during the meeting, but some weeks you will likely need to continue to work on your own and turn them in later. Most weeks, you will be assigned a partner randomly. If you arrive late for a lab, you will not be assigned a partner and must complete the lab on your own.

All labs are to be submitted using the procedure specified on each assignment handout. Late lab submissions cannot be accepted for credit.


There will be approximately 4 large scale homework projects which will be assigned throughout the semester and one final project. Each one will (hopefully) be an opportunity for you to demonstrate many of the concepts covered in lecture and in lab. On some, but not necessarily all, homework projects, you may be allowed to work in pairs. The final project will involve teams of 4 or 5 members working on all aspects of software design, including design, implementation, documentation, and testing.

You may develop your programs anywhere (Computers in the labs, your own PC, etc.) but grading will be done using the Siena College Computer Science systems unless otherwise specified. It is your responsibility to ensure that your program works on the grading platform. Programs will be graded on design, documentation, style, correctness, and efficiency. Unless otherwise specified, you are permitted (and are in fact, encouraged) to get help from your instructors. You may discuss the projects with your classmates, but the work you submit must be your own (and that of group members, for work done in groups when permitted).

Unless otherwise specified, late homework projects may be turned in with a penalty computed as 1.08h%, where h is the number of hours late. Extensions will only be granted in serious situations. You can find a Java program that prints out a table of the late penalties here. Work turned in after solutions have been made available cannot receive credit.

All homework projects are to be submitted using the procedure specified on each assignment handout.


There will be two evening exams during the semester, plus one during finals period. The regular exams are tentatively scheduled for late February and early April. The final exam will be scheduled by the registrar's office. All exams will be open book, open notes. Do not miss an exam. Make-up exams can only be given in extreme circumstances, and must be arranged in advance.


Grades for individual assignments and exams are not scaled. Any scaling deemed appropriate will take place at the end of the semester by adjusting the thresholds. The following thresholds may be adjusted downward (thereby raising grades) but will never be adjusted upward.


Homework Projects 35% A >= 93% A- >= 90%
Labs 10% B+ >= 87% B >= 83% B- >= 80%
Exam 1 15% C+ >= 77% C >= 73% C- >= 70%
Exam 2 15% D+ >= 67% D >= 65% D- >= 60%
Final Exam 25% F < 60%


Please be sure you are familiar with the Siena College Attendance Policy.

Every college student should be motivated to attend every lecture and lab meeting for all the right reasons (e.g., desire for knowledge, desire to get the most out of every very expensive minute, etc.). As experienced college students, you understand that regular attendance is essential to your ability to master the course material.

Therefore, there is no formal attendance policy. You are expected to attend regularly, and should still see the instructor about any excused absences. An excused absence may be any of the following:

  1. A documented athletic or academic event that conflicts with a class meeting. The required paperwork must be presented in person at least one week prior to the event.
  2. A family emergency. These must be documented through the Office of Academic Affairs (783-2307), who will then contact your instructors.
  3. Personal illness. These must be documented by the Office of Student Affairs (783-2328), who will then contact your instructors.

While there is no formal penalty for unexecused absences, missing class regularly, frequent tardiness, or being distracted in class (e.g., checking your phone or Facebook) will be considered a sign that you are not taking the course seriously. Common sense suggests and experience validates that students who are frequently absent, late, or inattentive perform poorly on graded work. Do not expect compassion when final grades are assigned or extensive extra help if you do not understand a topic that was covered while you were absent without a valid excuse.

Disability Accommodations

In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, Siena College is committed to ensuring educational access and accommodations for all its registered students.

Any student with a documented disability needing academic adjustments or accommodations should provide documentation of such during the first two weeks of class. All discussions will remain confidential. Accommodations must be arranged with Mr. Rob Bahny, Director of Services for Students with Disabilities (Foy 109, 783-4239).

Complaints about services provided or not provided may be brought to the attention of Public Safety at 783-2376 or Ms. Lois Goland, JD, Title IX Coordinator and Equal Opportunity Specialist (SSU 235, 782-6673).

Academic Integrity

You are encouraged to discuss the concepts related to course assignments and exams with your classmates. This is an essential part of a healthy academic environment. However, work submitted for grading must be your own (or the combined work of group members, for group assignments). Any unauthorized copying or collaboration is considered a breach of academic integrity and will not be tolerated. Academic dishonesty cases are unpleasant and uncomfortable for everyone involved. You are responsible for reading and understanding the document Academic Integrity and the Siena Student and the Computer Science Department's Academic Integrity statement. The minimum penalties for a first violation will include failure (0 grade) for the assignment or exam in question and the filing of a Academic Integrity Violation Accusation Form. A second violation will result in failure of the course and a formal letter describing your misconduct will be sent to the head of the Computer Science Department and the Office of Academic Affairs. Students suspected of violating academic integrity will be referred to the Academic Integrity Committee for final determination.

If there is any doubt about the degree of collaboration allowed or the permitted sources for a particular assignment, please ask for clarification before collaborating or consulting the source. Any such collaborations or sources must be cited properly.