Final project guidelines

The final project for the course can either be a survey paper or an original research paper on any topic related to the course material. Projects may be done individually or in pairs, although expectations will be higher than that for projects done individually.

Some suggested topics

Survey paper

Write a survey on a specific topic, based on at least 2-3 papers chosen in consultation with me. Your exposition should demonstrate a solid understanding of the main ideas from the papers (e.g., how the results compare to previous works, what implications they have for applications, the main ideas of the proofs). In addition, the report should go beyond the papers in some way: e.g., fill in some missing proofs from the papers, strengthen a main result in an interesting special case, provide an empirical study of the proposed techniques in an application of interest. I anticipate a typical survey paper will be around 12 pages.

Original research

Propose a research project on a specific topic in consultation with me, carry out the plan as far as possible, and write a report describing your results. Both theory and non-theory projects are fine. The report should clearly describe the motivation for the project, demonstrate an solid understanding of prior work, and detail the methods and results of the project. These projects may be converted to a survey paper in case things don't work out---in such an event, the report should be like the survey paper (see above), but also describe what you did in pursuit of the research goals and any partial results.


Project proposal: due 10/23 (example proposal). Please submit these on Courseworks.

Final write-up: due 12/13 (instructions). Please submit a hard copy and on Courseworks.