Fall Semester

The list below specifies point allocations. The maximum possible total points is 100. The number of points awarded in each category will measure promptness, clarity of presentation, thoroughness, and consistency with documents already submitted. To obtain a satisfactory (S) grade in CS 451, the student must complete all indicated submissions and receive at least 70 total points of credit.

  • Project abstract(s) - 10 points
  • Five-minute oral presentation on project abstract - 10 points
  • Thesis Outline and annotated bibliography - 30 points
  • Completed chapters - 35 points
  • Attendance - 15 points

Grade for first semester:

  • S: 80 to 100 points
  • NC: 0 to 79 points

Spring Semester

The spring semester grade (H, G, S, NC) will largely represent an evaluation of the final thesis, the oral presentation, and the organization of the project effort, and participation in the I.S. Symposium. 

Part of this evaluation includes attending weekly meetings, providing timely and grammatically clean drafts, and demonstrating weekly progress. The following criteria determine the final grade. You should also look at the attached evaluation rubrics for the thesis and oral presentation.


The content of the independent study document must meet the requirements agreed upon by the IS advisor and advisee. These requirements will differ for each project.


The final independent study document is evaluated for mechanical and grammatical errors. The text must be well organized, grammatically correct, and complete - including a table of contents, an introductory and conclusion chapter, a bibliography, and a user manual if necessary.


The essential factor here is the degree to which the student has approached the project in an organized and efficient manner and has applied effort consistently throughout the entire year. The quality and promptness of intermediate submissions is highly important. A major item is the promptness and quality of the rough draft submission since it measures the ability of the student to effectively coordinate the research effort in an efficient manner. Attendance and presentation issues from the first semester will have heavy weight for this criterion.  Participation in the I.S. Symposium is also factored into the grade for the Methodology caterogy.

Oral Presentation

Grading of the oral presentation evaluates the organization, spontaneity, flow, continuity, and comprehensibility of the presentation. It also evaluates the student's ability to respond to reasonable questions and explain points of confusion. The student should use visual aids as a means of guiding the presentation, but should avoid reading material to the audience. The presentation should last approximately thirty-five minutes to permit approximately fifteen minutes for questions and extended discussion. A major challenge of the presentation is to identify the key points to cover in giving a good description of the project in a relatively short time period.