CS 5970: Empirical Methods for Computer Science: Projects
The semester-long project constitutes a significant percentage of your
class grade and is intended as a venue in which you explore the
techniques that we have been discussing. The topic of your project
will be one of your own choosing (subject to approval). Ideally, the
research topic will be one in which you are already engaged and have
conducted experiments. The focus of your project should be on the
process of formulating hypotheses and experimental questions, and on
conducting and evaluating experiments. The focus should not be on the
design and implementation of the algorithms of study (although some of
this will probably be required).
Your project will be developed incrementally. Over the course of the
semester, there will be a total of five checkpoints. Each checkpoint
consists of an oral and a written component. The oral components are
presented in class (with slides) and will focus on the new work that
you have done
since the last checkpoint. The written component is a "living
document" that will evolve and be added to at each checkpoint. You
must make progress at each checkpoint in order to receive full credit.
Possible general topics include (these are not exclusive):
- Comparison of multiple algorithms
- Examining the architectural components to your model that are
key to the results that you see
- Examining parameter settings
Project Checkpoint 1: Proposal
Oral presentation: Sept 16th
Written document (incorporating feedback from presentation): Sept 23rd
- Define and justify the research domain and question
- Define the experimental questions
- Identify the experiments to be performed in your exploratory analysis
- What are the expected results? Why?
Project Checkpoint 2: Exploratory Analysis
Oral presentation: Oct 9th
Written document: Oct 14th. Include:
- Abstract (at this point, it can be somewhat anticipatory of
what you will show by the end of the semester)
- Proper references (use author-year citation format in the text)
- Endeavor to use active sentence construction (avoid passive
sentences and overuse of the third person)
- Do not use informal language (e.g., "run an algorithm")
- Check your spelling
At this checkpoint, you have completed an initial exploratory
analysis. In particular, you have examined a number of candidate
Report on the results of this first set of exploratory experiments:
- What are the experiments?
- What are the results?
- Why do you think that you see these results?
- Which experimental directions appear most promising for
- What is (are) your experimental hypothesis(es)?
- How much data do you think that you will need?
Project Checkpoint 3: Experimental Evaluation
Oral presentation: Oct 30th
Written document: Nov 4th
For this checkpoint, you have completed a first set of experiments,
focusing largely on the promising directions as identified in the
- Describe the experiments
- What are the detailed results?
- Do the results support your research question?
- Does your research question change in any way?
- What are the new experimental questions to be pursued (for
the next checkpoint)?
Project Checkpoint 4: Hypothesis Testing
Oral presentation: Nov 20th
Written document: Nov 25th
For this checkpoint, you have completed a detailed set of experiments
and have used hypothesis testing to analyze the results.
- Describe the addition to your experiments.
- What are the detailed results?
- Describe and justify the hypothesis tests that you have chosen.
- What are the results of the hypothesis tests?
- What are the next experimental questions to be pursued?
Project Checkpoint 5: Final
Written document: Dec 11th
Oral presentation: Dec 12th (CS Poster Session)
- A 30" x 40" poster board will be provided. Authors may choose
the orientation of the poster board.
- You are welcome to also bring a laptop for demonstrations.
- Audience: general CS
Back to Empirical Methods Home
fagg cs ou edu
Last modified: Thu Nov 13 15:36:27 2008