Theory and Application of Complex Networks
Office: Second Floor, Turrets Annex
Phone: x249, 276-5284
Mailing List: email@example.com
Teaching Assistant: Sam Heller
Office Hours: Wed, 6:30-8:00 in Tab and by appointment
Students who successfully complete this course will gain:
The first part of the course will be somewhat lecture-heavy, as I want
to cover a lot of material fairly quickly. As the course progresses,
however, I expect the class to shift from lecture to seminar-style
- a broad conceptual and technical introduction to the modern
theory and applications of complex networks,
- experience critiquing scientific and social scientific papers,
- experience using tools to find, organize, and share online references,
- experience working with large, complex data sets,
- experience with several short forms of technical writing, and
- an increased understanding of probability, statistics, inference,
and model validation.
Required Text: None. There will be quite a few handouts and
lots of online papers. You might want to get a binder.
Your evaluation will be based loosely on the following:
I will assign grades (for those who so opt) by following the guidelines
on page 8 of the COA Course Catalog. I do not have any quota of A's,
B's, etc. In general, I recommend against grades; I believe they are
more likely than not to interfere with genuine, reflective
- Homework Assignments: 50 percent.
- Blog Writing: 15 percent.
- Wikipedia Writing: 15 percent.
- Class Presentations and Participation: 20 percent.
Policies, Advice, etc
- The final version of this and related documents can be found on
the course web page, http://hornacek.coa.edu/dave/Teaching/Networks.08.
- There will be approximately five required homework assignments.
Chronically late homework assignments may result in me mentioning
this in your narrative evaluation and may result in a lowering of your
- You are strongly encouraged to work together on homework. You
can also consult me, other faculty, the TA, friends,
and family. However, the homework you hand in must represent
your own understanding.
- Information on what is expected in homework solutions can be
found in a separate document.
- Information on what is expected for your blog writing can be
a separate document.
- Information on what is expected for your wikipedia writing can be
found in a separate document. (Coming soon.)
- As I plan on sending out homework assignments and other
information via email, it is important that you check your email
regularly. You should also read the blog frequently, roughly every
- I expect you to attend class.
- Academic misconduct -- cheating, plagiarizing, etc. -- is bad. Any
cases of academic misconduct will result in a judicial hearing, as per
pp. 14-15 of the COA handbook. Possible consequences range from
failure of the assignment to expulsion. For more, see the revised
statement on academic integrity passed by the faculty several
- I haven't taught this class before, so I'm not certain how it will
go. I'm quite confident, however, that it will go very well and be a
lot of fun.
- I think this class will teach you a lot about networks, which is a
fun, widely applicable, accessible, and rapidly developing area of
study. You will also learn some broadly applicable mathematics, learn
about the culture and practice of scientific research, and gain
insight into what distinguishes excellent research from mediocre
- I have constructed this class to allow you to connect the central
content of the course with other interests of yours. Through your
blog posts and class presentations, you will teach others in the
class. The success of this course thus depends on everyone in the
class engaging the material and bringing energy, enthusiasm, and
intellect to class activities.