Questions tagged [algorithms]

This tag is for questions about presenting specific algorithms or general principles of algorithmic design and analysis to students. It IS NOT for questions about writing or fixing algorithms.

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Suggestions to improve my algorithm coding skills

I have a PhD in computer science (A fresh graduate). My bachelor's major is similar to CS but without algorithms (It's a discipline between business and CS). I am quite good at AI research but my ...
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4 votes
3 answers
145 views

How to teach algorithms in an interactive way

I am faculty of computer science. Currently, I am teaching a design and analysis of algorithms course to second-year undergraduate students. This is my second semester of teaching before this I have ...
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0 votes
0 answers
49 views

Resource for practicing algorithms without programming? (migraine sufferer)

Does there exist a resource for exercises and problems of the form "design a program with the following specifications in time/space O(f(n))"? I am aware of competitive programming websites ...
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1 vote
1 answer
56 views

How to learn asymptotic notations rigorously?

Is there any good tutorial about how to make asymptotic notations rigorously? I think the way from Turing machines to the analysis of pseudocode is quite a big. Or is the situation that there are some ...
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17 votes
8 answers
4k views

Teaching algorithmic thinking without a programming language

I am to teach Algorithms and Data Structures. There are lots of books that teach how to do algorithms in language X or Y. But I would like to teach algorithmic thinking per se, independent of the ...
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  • 343
4 votes
1 answer
72 views

Example of amortized analysis of algorithms rather than data structures

Amortized analysis is often taught in algorithms classes, with the different methods (aggregate, accounting, potential). It is very important when discussing some data structures and their use in ...
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  • 171
3 votes
4 answers
159 views

Greedy Algorithm Approach

One of the popular algorithm design techniques is the Greedy Algorithm. Do we have real-world examples of Greedy Algorithm which we can teach Undergraduate students? I know the famous Djikstra's ...
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3 votes
0 answers
212 views

Divide and conquer for subset sum problem

I want my students (equivalent first-year college students) to work on algorithmic paradigms during a 2 hours practical programming session in OCaml. I chose the subset sum problem since it can ...
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  • 150
2 votes
2 answers
72 views

Any tools or frameworks for visualisation of algorithms?

I would like to make animation of algorithms in order for students to see the flow of an algorithm in a visual way. Like an alternative to https://visualgo.net/en I want to make custom animations like ...
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2 votes
1 answer
181 views

Textbook or video lectures to develope intuition for solving any unseen Graph Theory problems

Background Hello, I am a third year undergraduate in CS. I am eager to pursue higher education from one of the best institutes in out country. For that I need to write a competitive exam, named GATE ...
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1 vote
2 answers
61 views

Algorithm Design challenges

In my course we discuss algorithms (greedy, dp, div & conquer, etc.) and efficiency. Do you have any experience with assignments that consider also time of execution as a criterion for grading? Do ...
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7 votes
6 answers
232 views

What are good, practical labs and activities for unnested loops?

I am teaching some high school students, also the first time programmers, some basic programming concepts and applications. When introducing loop I find that using it to check prime number (or find ...
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1 vote
1 answer
182 views

Cormen's "Algorithms" pre-requisites

What to recommend as a pre-requisite reading before Cormen's "Algorithms" to make this book easier to get through for 10-12th graders? Any courseware available for kids, books, courses, etc.?...
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4 votes
1 answer
81 views

Feedback request: an assignment on programming a research paper

I am teaching an elective course on algorithms for 3rd year undergraduates. There are 12 weekly assignments, each of which is worth 1% of the grade, and a final exam which is worth 88%. I would like ...
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4 votes
5 answers
406 views

First Time Learning Non-Linear Data Structures

I'm looking for effective strategies and projects for introducing non-linear data structures to students. I currently teach linked lists, stacks, and then introduce binary trees. A lot of students ...
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  • 321
4 votes
1 answer
106 views

Looking for good Master Theorem examples

I'm teaching an Algorithms class (junior/senior level), and we've just proved the validity of the Master Theorem. I'd like some good questions on it, both for homeworks and for exam questions. Problem ...
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5 votes
3 answers
201 views

Algorithmic Game Theory as an undergrad

I am an undergrad going into my junior year this semester. I really wanted to explore algorithmic game theory, as my university has some excellent professors in that field. However, as my undergrad is ...
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26 votes
11 answers
4k views

When mentoring individuals, teach clean coding and simple/effective thinking or let them do it their way?

I have a background of 20+ years professional coding, but my heart is really in teaching. About three years ago, I started tutoring ages grade 6 through adult in coding topics. introduction to coding ...
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4 votes
0 answers
72 views

Error free solution manual for "Introduction to Algorithms" by Cormen et al. for self study or alternative method to tackle them single handed

I am a CS undergraduate student, strictly speaking I am fond of studying theoretical CS subjects, the corresponding books just attract me. Now in theoretical CS we probably have algorithm design and ...
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1 vote
1 answer
103 views

Coding assignments for algorithms and data structures?

Do you know of any online resource with ideas/projects for an Algorithms and Data Structures course? Topics in the course include: basic data structures (array, list, stack, queue, priority queue, ...
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4 votes
2 answers
220 views

What are some real life applications of the knapsack problems class?

Students are very happy when they see some real applications of the theory. Any suggestions for interesting examples of knapsack problems?
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3 votes
1 answer
157 views

Is it worth to learn to make a MD5-hash cracker?

I found a puzzling site where one puzzle was to find a string whose MD5-hash is given. Is such a puzzles good for learning? I mean, I believe that hash might be cracked by using enough computing ...
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1 vote
0 answers
54 views

How to teach linear programming and reductions?

Do you know any textbook with problems+solutions to support teaching of linear programming and reductions? In particular for: standard and slack forms, formulation of problems as linear programs, ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
3k views

Solutions to problems from Algorithms Jeff Erickson

Do you know of any website or other source with partial/complete solutions to problems from Algorithms book of Jeff Erickson?
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3 votes
3 answers
245 views

Any website/textbook with problems+solutions in algorithms?

I'm trying to find an online source or textbook with problems+solutions for problems in dynamic programming, number theory, graph theory, greedy algorithms, etc. Do you know of any?
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0 votes
2 answers
79 views

Is there any series of videos in which all the main algorithms are discussed without going into things like time complexity and space complexity

The course should be discussed in c language. I am presently learning basic computer programming through a book and while doing the questions from the book from a chapter say array, I found out most ...
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1 vote
4 answers
950 views

Fun way to teach algorithms

I will teach algorithms for 4 days for some students. It will be their first course in computer science before learning coding with Java. My fear is to bore them as I was bored at the university :( ...
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3 votes
2 answers
142 views

Understanding Introduction to Algorithms, 3rd Edition

I'm taking a course on data structures and algorithms and it follows the book Introduction to Algorithms, 3rd Edition (ISBN-10: 9780262033848) by Charles E. Leiserson, Clifford Stein, Ronald Rivest, ...
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4 votes
4 answers
569 views

What are competitive programming problems that require a tree data structure to solve them?

I want to practice my problem-solving skills that involve the usage of a tree data structure (e.g. Binary Search Tree, Heap, <...
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5 votes
2 answers
370 views

System to validate run time complexity requirements

TL;DR: Do you know of a method/system that can determine the run time complexity of code automatically? At our university we have a system in place that allows students to submit their code and get ...
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  • 221
3 votes
1 answer
109 views

What is the closest pair problem useful for?

The closest pair problem is the famous problem of finding out the closest pair of points given an arbitrary set of points on a plane. This problem has a divide and conquer algorithm and often is used ...
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3 votes
6 answers
11k views

A real world example for the divide and conquer method

Can someone give a real world example for the divide and conquer method? For example, I've heard the boomerang used to explain the idea of a loop back address. What is a real world example we can use ...
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3 votes
2 answers
157 views

How should one go into learning algorithms and data structures? What do you think is an efficient way to do so?

Should one first understand its logic and see its implementation? Or should one try to implement it first oneself? How should one learn so that one can quickly implement the algorithm or data ...
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24 votes
12 answers
711 views

Is it a good idea to teach algorithm courses using pseudocode instead of a real programming language?

I am a young professor teaching a data structures course for the first time. I'm teaching at an engineering college that provides an academic degree, but the focus is preparing future computer ...
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  • 341
1 vote
2 answers
81 views

How to introduce problem solving to primary school pupils?

I'm interested into knowing your experiences about introducing problem solving to primary school pupils. I'm a PhD candidate in Operations Research and, together with my University or my public ...
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2 votes
1 answer
251 views

Pedagogical issues with Stack Implementation

I am new to teaching the particular syllabus I have been asked to teach and I am confused by the approach given for several of the algorithms. For example the stack implementation based on the course ...
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5 votes
1 answer
347 views

How to learn to solve trees, graphs questions for competitive programming

I learnt about trees and graphs from my textbooks (undergraduate level) last year. But now I'm doing competitive programming and unable to solve questions involving these concepts. I fail to ...
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3 votes
2 answers
194 views

Project based on game 2048

I'm thinking about an assignment based around the game 2048. This would be towards the end of a first programming course at the university level and assumes the students have been introduced to at ...
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8 votes
4 answers
1k views

First project in my second year data structures intro

I am currently teaching the pretty much normal second year Data Structures and Algorithms course. In this course there are four programming projects, with the first project completed the automated ...
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2 votes
1 answer
146 views

How to structure a Predictive Keyboard project similar to GBoard

Many are now familiar with GBoard, the Google / Android predictive Keyboard. I don't actually know how it works. Obviously it must gather usage data on the device where it is being used, but it ...
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19 votes
4 answers
677 views

Difficulty of algorithms homework problems

I have a question for educators, from the perspective of a TA. I'm happy to post my question elsewhere if it's not appropriate for this site. Homework problems in algorithms classes often involve ...
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8 votes
4 answers
608 views

Will you tell students that Algorithms + Data Structures = Programs now(21st century)?

Algorithms + Data Structures = Programs occurs in 1976 (in Niklaus Wirth's book). In the past, we (teachers) may usually cite this equation to emphasize the importance of algorithms/data structures. ...
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  • 267
6 votes
3 answers
151 views

"Computer sciency" and "practical" exercices involving dictionaries

I am teaching a course in data structures to a 2o semester. We hear often that the dictionary is a very versatile data structure, and solves quite so many problems. I'd like to illustrate that, but, ...
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  • 331
4 votes
4 answers
494 views

How to avoid misconceptions about while loop when using null loop

Is it problematic to teach students to use an empty while loop to create an until loop? If so, what learning progressions avoid ...
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5 votes
3 answers
186 views

Is there any pedagogically motivated reason to teach quadratic probing?

I'm currently preparing a unit on the implementation of hash tables for a data structures and algorithms course (this is a university-level class if it matters). Specifically, I'm focusing on ...
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  • 3,995
7 votes
6 answers
451 views

Single-dimensional array and simple looping activities of significance

I give a lab on single-dimensional loops and arrays. By "single dimensional loops", I mean that there is no nesting of loops. (I will later give a second lab on multi-dimensional loops and arrays, ...
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  • 31.2k
5 votes
3 answers
178 views

How do I construct a basic lesson on computational complexity and undecidability?

Essential Understanding 4.2 of the AP CS Principles curriculum is as follows: "Algorithms can solve many, but not all, computational problems." Among the topics I am expected to cover in the context ...
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  • 8,992
9 votes
3 answers
262 views

How to teach algorithms: implementation or application?

One unit of CS50 AP's curriculum focuses on three main sorting algorithms: bubble sort, selection sort, and insertion sort. There is also discussion of something more efficient like merge sort. One ...
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  • 8,992
25 votes
17 answers
9k views

How can I help my students to think algorithmically?

I teach 13-14 year old boys an "Introduction to Computer Science" course. For most of them, it is their first structured coding experience. Before we even touch an IDE, I have them walk through ...
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9 votes
5 answers
5k views

Pseudocode or Flowcharts?

For GCSE CS in the UK, students have to analyse, design, code, test and review a solution to a problem. For the design section of their project, students have to plan out the algorithm for each part ...
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