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CDA 3101

Introduction to Computer Organization

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Easiness0
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Reviews 4
1

Class Ratings

4Good Class
3Avg. Difficulty
5Very Interesting
4Useful

Professor Rating

3OK Prof

Prof: Cheryl Resch / Fall 2022

Jan 9, 2023

Comments on the course

This course can be very interesting or very boring. If you always wondered how computers worked at a lower level, this class can blow your mind. If you're only taking it as a requirement and not out of any interest in computer engineering, you might find yourself wondering if you'll ever use any information you learn there. This class is like learning about how a car works. You don't need to know the complicated processes going on under the hood unless you plan on building or working on a car.

Course Content

The course has 6 or so modules about various pieces of computer architecture. The Prof can spend anywhere between 1 to 3 weeks on each, since some are more complicated or extensive than others. You'll learn a subset of the ARM assembly language and how to program with it. I personally thought this was kind of useless, as you can't find much practical application with this low level language. It's more interesting as a sort of "Ah, that's how they do it." The class also uses Zybooks. The participation activities ARE graded and worth a surprising amount of your grade; however, you can just click through until you get the right answer.

Comments on the professor

I had this prof when I took programming 2 and didn't go to or watch any of her lectures. I had to go to them in person this time around (although the class is also zoomed and recorded) because I had a class right after. The only thing you lose out on by attending virtually is the questions that the in-person students ask, because she does not repeat them. I personally found her a little annoying. She has a terrible habit of laughing in her high-pitched way after saying some quip or whatnot. She also stops in the middle of sentences to read the Zoom chat if someone types something there, which gets annoying after she does it 3 or 4 times in a row. She also gets snippy or short-tempered if people keep asking the same questions over and over (this happened a lot with the Zoom people as they ...read more

Advice

If you took digital logic and computer systems (eel3701) and passed it, this class should be a walk in the park by comparison. That's not to say you *need* to take 3701 beforehand, because you certainly don't. It'll just make the module on digital logic a lot easier. Before each exam, go over the study guide slides she posts because they usually contain the same material you'll be tested on. Also, the final exam was EXACTLY like study guide she gave out, sometimes word for word. The exams are not open-note, but you are allowed 2 or so sheets of paper to fill out. Just copy the study guide stuff and you'll be golden. I did horrible on several of the later exams and still got an A- because she drops your lowest grades. Lastly, for the love of god, do not wait until the last minute to start...read more

Delivery: HybridGrade: A-Workload: ModerateTextbook Use: Yes
Participation Heavy
1

Class Ratings

4Good Class
4Easy
3Kinda Interesting
4Useful

Professor Rating

3OK Prof

Prof: Cheryl Resch / Fall 2022

Dec 20, 2022

Comments on the course

Overall, one of the easier CS courses (if with Cheryl). Somewhat content heavy, but manageable because quizzes and final exam were essentially open-note and TAs grade most coding/written assignments.

Course Content

The course is somewhat of a sampler platter of low-level programming and concepts, including computer architecture, circuits, ARM assembly, digital logic, data pipelines, and parallel processing.

Comments on the professor

Cheryl is an okay professor, to be honest. Lectures are tangent-heavy and hard to understand at times, but she structures the course to be relatively easy quiz/assignment/exam-wise.

Advice

Start things early. Become friends with your TA. Ask for clarification whenever and wherever needed.

Delivery: HybridGrade: AWorkload: ModerateTextbook Use: Yes
1

Class Ratings

2Bad Class
2Hard
2Boring
2Barely Useful

Professor Rating

3OK Prof

Prof: Prabhat Mishra / Spring 2022

Apr 17, 2022

Comments on the course

The course is hard but manageable. Be ready to rely on textbook for information because lecture quality is low.

Comments on the professor

Professor was knowledgeable on course material but was hard to understand and went on too many tangents.

Advice

Be prepared to work. The post-midterm Homeworks were really hard and take a long time.

Delivery: HybridGrade: Not sure yetWorkload: HeavyTextbook Use: Yes
Exam HeavyAssignment Heavy
3

Class Ratings

4Good Class
5Very Easy
3Kinda Interesting
4Useful

Professor Rating

4Good Prof

Prof: Cheryl Resch / Fall 2021

Jan 8, 2022

Comments on the course

It was an easy course consisting of a few projects an quizzes.

Delivery: HybridGrade: ATextbook Use: No

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