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Table of contents

  1. Preface
  2. Welcome
  3. Platforms
  4. Primary Course Components
  5. Projects and Deadlines
  6. General Grading Breakdown — Percentages
  7. Specific Grading Breakdown — Points
  8. Grading Bins
  9. Exam Clobber Policy
  10. DSP Accommodations
  11. Extension Requests
  12. Lateness Penalties
  13. Academic Integrity
  14. Diversity and Inclusion Statement
  15. Academic Accommodations Hub
  16. EECS Student Climate & Incident Reporting Form


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Welcome to CS10: The Beauty and Joy of Computing!

We’re really excited to have you on board with us this Spring for a gentle, but thorough introduction to Computer Science. Our course will start out in the block-based language Snap!, but will transition into Python once you’ve learned some fundamentals of programming. By the end of the course, we hope you’ll walk away with a deeper understanding of the ideas that have come to define computer science, the ability to build your own programs, and the confidence to apply these skills in whichever field you choose to pursue.


This Spring, CS10 will run fully in-person. Consequently, remote (or hybrid) students can not be supported.

  • Course Website: The day-to-day happenings of the course (and links to all the platforms below) can be found at Consult the daily schedule to find the times/locations for all synchronous course engagements.
  • Edstem: This will be our main Q&A platform, where you can ask (and answer) questions, see announcements, and read Weekly Blasts, which are required readings in CS10. Click the Ed Discussion tab on the left to navigate to Edstem.
  • Gradescope: This is where you will submit Projects 1-4, and the Final Project. Click the Gradescope tab on the left to open Edstem. Submission instructions can be found here.
  • Youtube: Lecture recordings can be found on this Youtube playlist, generally within 24h of lecture. You will have to be logged into your Berkeley email to access the recordings.
  • PrairieLearn: Project-5, Pyturis, will be submitted via PrairieLearn. A setup guide can be found here.
  • IClicker: You are required to create a free iClicker account and download the free iClicker app. Then, you should aready be enrolled in CS10. To get credit for attending lecture, please open the app once you’re seated in the lecture hall and mark your attendance. If for some reason you are not enrolled, use this join link.

Primary Course Components

  • Lecture: Lectures will be live and in-person in Soda-306 Mondays and Wednesdays, 1300-1400hrs. They will be recorded, and recordings will be posted on Youtube (see platforms section.) Lectures aim to introduce concepts and provide a “big-picture view” of material from a theoretical standpoint. Attendance (in-person) is required as part of your grade and will be tracked via iClicker. Further, for every lecture, there will be a corresponding quiz on Gradescope due the day of the following lecture at 2359hrs. On this quiz, we will ask questions about lecture content. No extensions are provided on these quizzes.

    Your lowest 3 lecture-quiz scores will be automatically dropped — so you can miss up to 3 lectures (or skip 3 quizzes) without penalty, and you don’t need to inform us when you miss class. These drops are not intended to be “free-passes” to skip lectures: please reserve them for unexpected emergencies / sickness / … since missing out on content will only disrupt your learning. If there are extenuating circumstances which cause you to miss more than 3 lectures (like prolonged sickness, family emergencies, etc.) then you should visit Support OH.

  • Lab Sections: Labs are the primary place you will learn to program. Note that you are required to complete all labs with a partner, and that partner-matching threads will be added to our Edstem Forum. If you attend synchronously, then on the first day of lab, the Teaching Assistants (TAs) will help you find a partner in your lab section.

    Lab assignments will be submitted to Gradescope. There will be two assignments for each lab: one wherein you’ll submit the code you wrote, and one with conceptual checkoff problems. If you get a full score on both Gradescope assignments, you will get credit for that lab. Labs are graded on an all-or-nothing basis, which means if you don’t get a full score on either (or both) of the two assignments, then you won’t get credit for that lab. In our synchronous lab section (which is held in Moffit 145), the TA and some Tutors will be available to help you with the problems.

    Lab X will be due the day that Lab X+1 is scheduled, at midnight. That is, each lab is due at midnight on the day that the next lab is released. For example, if Lab-12 is scheduled on Monday, and Lab-13 is scheduled on Wednesday, then Lab-12 will be due at midnight on Wednesday.

    Your lowest 2 lab scores will be dropped.

Lab submission instructions can be found here.

  • Discussion Sections: Discussion sections are where you will delve into the content more deeply with worksheets in traditional “pen-and-paper” style. This is where you will develop the theoretical computational skills needed to understand the basics of programming and to prepare for our exams. Attendance is required as part of your grade and will be tracked. If you attend in-person, you will fill out a Google Form with a password to receive credit. If you attend asynchronously, you will watch the recording, fill out the worksheet, and submit it to Gradescope by midnight the day of the next discussion.

    You can miss up-to 2 discussion sections without penalty (you don’t need to tell us that you’re missing class). Please reserve these drops for unexpected emergencies / sickness / … If there are circumstances which cause you to miss more than 2 discussions (like prolonged sickness, family emergencies, etc.) then you should email your Discussion-TA and they’ll discuss other options.

    From experience, we’ve observed that students who regularly attend and pay attention in discussions tend to do better on exams.

  • Office Hours (OH) There will be three kinds of OH, described bellow. These will start in week-2. The times and locations for all OH will be posted under the ‘daily schedule’ tab on the course website. You don’t need to email / obtain an appointment. You can attend any and all OH that work for you (i.e. you don’t just have to attend your TA’s OH.)

  • Staff OH: During staff OH (which will run in-person on campus in SDH-200), you can meet with our Tutors for help with course material, assignments, or bigger picture questions.

  • Instructor OH: Professor Garcia will be hosting Instructor OH (Fridays 1-2PM in Soda-777), which you may attend for more conceptual help (for instance, if you’re confused about some topic, or want to go over practice problems) or to discuss more general topics (e.g. college advice or how you’re doing in the class.) For help with specific assignments (labs and projects), you should attend Staff-OH.

  • Support OH: Vedansh will host support OH (Thursdays 5-6PM in Cory-367), which you may attend for non-conceptual / assignment help: to discuss further extensions, ask for advice about the course / life / … or to check-in if you’re feeling overwhelmed!

  • Reading Quizzes: Are short weekly reading assignments that are submitted to Gradesscope. There are no extensions on RQs.

  • Projects: These assignments will be one of the best ways for you to apply what you have learned in lecture, lab, and discussion. These will be a bit more time intensive than the other assignments and will require you to be caught up on the other components of the course.

Project submission instructions can be found here.

  • There will be 3 Snap! projects, 1 Python project, 1 Essay project, and 1 project wherein you can use a language of your choice to build something of your choice. The number of points per project is listed in the Grading Breakdown. Project specs will be released on the website and on Edstem, and you should always read them before starting to work on a project.

Projects and Deadlines

ProjectSubmission Deadline
Project 1: Wordle™-liteMON 1/29 on Gradescope
Project 2: Spelling-BeeTR 2/15 on Gradescope
Project 3: 2048TR 2/29 on Gradescope
Project 4: Explore PostFRI 3/15 on Edstem AND Gradescope
Project 4: Explore Post CommentsMON 3/18 on Edstem AND Gradescope
Project 5: PyturisMON 4/1 on PrairieLearn
Project 6: Final ProjectWED 4/24 on Gradescope

All deadlines are at 2359 hrs (11:59:00 PM.)

  • Exams: There will be three take-home, untimed, online, open-note exams (Quest, Midterm, and Postterm):

    Quest: Week-4

    Midterm: Week-8.
    Postterm: RRR and finals week. Specific dates and more logistics for the exams will be released closer to the exam date. The best way to prepare is to utilize the practice exams posted under resources and the practice exams we’ll release on PrairieLearn.

General Grading Breakdown — Percentages

ComponentPercentage Weighting
Attendance / Participation5%
Reading Quizzes2%
Final Exam20%

Specific Grading Breakdown — Points

Project 1: Wordle™-lite10
Project 2: Spelling-Bee20
Project 3: 204845
Project 4: Explore25
Project 5: Pyturis50
Final Project80
Attendance / Participation25
Reading Quizzes10

Total: 500 Points

Grading Bins

Letter GradeRange

Your total points will be rounded to the nearest integer when we compute letter grades. 0.5 will round to 1, but 0.49 will round to 0. We will not shift the bins / curve the class / ooch or round your grade beyond the listed rounding scheme, so please don’t ask.

Exam Clobber Policy

If your percentage score on a latter exam is higher than your percentage score on a prior exam, then we’ll replace your percentage score on the prior exam with the percentage score on the latter exam. The clobber can never hurt your grade: if you score lower, no replacement will be done.

DSP Accommodations

If you have a DSP accommodation through the university, please be sure to submit your official letter through the DSP portal. Once you have done so, we will be able to accommodate you. If you have an accommodation but are unable to promptly submit the letter for whatever reason, please reach out to cs10@.

Extension Requests

We understand that circumstances may arise that may cause you to not be able to meet assignment deadlines.

For extension requests on LABS, please use this Extension requests form. The policy for extension requests on labs are as follows:

  • An extension request will grant you an extra lab section in order to complete the lab assignment without any lateness penalties. For instance, if you ask for an extension on lab-12, which is generally due on the day that lab-13 is scheduled, then it will now be due the day that lab-14 is scheduled.

For extension requests on PROJECTS, please use this Extension requests form. The policy for extension requests on projects are as follows:

  • An extension request will automatically extend your project submission deadline by 72 hours without any lateness penalties. For instance, if a project is due by Monday at midnight, then the project will now be due by Thursday at midnight.

You’re also allowed to retroactively obtain extensions without penalty: i.e., you can obtain an extension even after the deadline of a lab/project, but not after the extended deadline for that assignment. The extended deadline for labs, as noted above, is the day that the next lab is scheduled, at 2359 hrs; for projects, it’s 72h after the original deadline.

NOTE: If you added the course late, please use your updated deadline as the ‘original due date’.

Important: While extensions may not be visible on PrairieLearn/Gradescope (a.k.a your assignments may be marked as ‘Late’), they will be factored in when we compute your final grade. Extensions are AUTO-approved after filling in the form.

Lateness Penalties

Any labs or projects that are submitted late will receive half-credit, regardless of how late the submission is. For the project-4 and the final project, late submissions may not be graded since our grading staff has limited availability. If you need an extension, please utilize the extension request forms. No extensions are provided for Reading Quizzes, and late submissions are not graded.

If, after exhausting the initial extension, you still need more time — please visit us in Support-OH, wherein we’ll help you come up with a plan to catch up! Lateness penalties only apply if you don’t obtain an extension (by filling out the form or visiting Support-OH) and turn in work late.

Academic Integrity

Let’s get honest about being honest. It is truly a disappointment to catch students cheating. All we really want is for you to learn the material- and as both current and former students, we understand that oftentimes, juggling various assignment deadlines while keeping up with material can be stressful. If you feel overwhelmed in this class, reach out! We are here to support you.

Here, we will lay out our academic integrity policies which can help you distinguish between cheating (prohibited) and collaboration (encouraged.)

What constitutes cheating?

  • Copying part or all of another student’s project code with the exception of your partner(s) assuming that the project you are working on allows for partnered work. This includes students from previous semesters (we still have their code and will know if you do this).
  • Sharing or receiving the exact steps used to solve a project problem (even if code is not explicitly sent).
  • Copying part or all of another student’s exam answers.
  • Collaborating with another student when taking exams by receiving or giving assistance of any kind.
  • Copying code from online sources.

What constitutes collaboration?

  • Asking instead of telling. If you’re working with your friends and one of them is stuck on a part of an assignment, try to ask them guiding questions instead of telling them the answer.
  • Keeping things conceptual! It’s more beneficial to your learning if you come up with a solution yourself, rather than having it told to you. This also applies if you are helping someone else. We highly encourage collaboration, so let’s define what that means. Discussing approaches to problems is fine (in fact, we actively encourage it), as long as you eventually arrive at a good enough understanding of the problem that you are able to code the solution completely by yourself. You should not allow concerns about cheating to get in the way of discussing the class material with your classmates. It is okay if you have received some help with ideas along the way (but not a fully worked out solution).*

*This policy was adapted from Professor Alistair Sinclair’s policy for CS 172.

What happens if you cheat? We take cheating extremely seriously, and will almost always pursue the strictest consequences available to us. We have advanced cheating detection software, and will routinely run this to detect cheating. These are sophisticated tools that are pretty hard to fool- any attempts to obfuscate your code to avoid detection will likely fail, and instead may result in additional consequences.

Note that you will always have a chance to explain your actions before any action is taken. If you admit that you cheated, we will apply the necessary sanctions. If you’d like to meet with us to discuss your situation, we’ll set up a meeting. Afterwards, if staff determines that you cheated and you don’t agree with that decision, we’ll proceed with a Student-Conduct Investigation.

What are the sanctions?

On projects / other assignments, the minimum penalty is negative points on that assignment alongside a referral to the Office of Student Conduct. For repeated / more egregious offences, we may grant a failing grade in the class.

On exams, we will be absolutely unforgiving. Any instance of cheating results in an immediate F in the class alongside a referral to the Office of Student Conduct.

If at any point in the academic-integrity process, a student lies or attempts to mislead course-staff —thereby wasting everyone’s time— then in addition to the aforementioned sanctions, the instructor will write a recommendation for the student’s dismissal and submit it to the Office of Student Conduct.

Diversity and Inclusion Statement

We recognize that Computer Science is a demographically skewed field in the United States, and that even at Berkeley, minoritized students can find themselves feeling alone. It is our goal in this course to deliver an equitable learning experience for everyone involved. Concretely, this means a few things:

  • In addition to teaching the technical skills necessary for programming, we will also teach the social implications of computer science. In doing so, we will directly address the contributions of underrepresented groups to the field, which are often overlooked.
  • We will do our absolute best to show you that while bias, discrimination, and judgment still exist, they should not stand in the way of you learning Computer Science. While acknowledging the struggles many students may face, we also hope to show that computer science is a field anyone can be successful in (in other words, there is no innate “talent” or “trait” required to understand computer science). Of course, different people have different opportunities, but one of the goals of CS10 is to equalize the playing field.
  • Discrimination or disrespect on the basis of race, ethnicity, religion, socioeconomic status, ability, gender, or sexual orientation will not be tolerated under any circumstances. Should someone make you feel uncomfortable or disrespected in any way, please let the instructor know immediately via email (ddgarcia@) or by attending Instructor OH. You may also fill out the EECS Incident Reporting Form.

Academic Accommodations Hub

Here’s a link to the Academic Accommodations Hub.

EECS Student Climate & Incident Reporting Form

It is very important to the EECS Department that every student in the EECS community feels safe, respected and welcome. We recognize though that incidents happen, sometimes unintentionally, that run counter to that goal. The EECS department provides a secure and anonymous Incident Reporting Form that can be used to report incidents including (but not limited to) microaggressions, discrimination, marginalizing / alienating behaviour, etc.