Syllabus for CS 7934 — Computer Systems Seminar, Fall 2022

Course Information

Course Number and Title
CS 7934–1 — Computer Systems Seminar
Also known as “the CSL seminar”
Fridays, 2:00–3:30 PM
In person
3485 MEB
Eric Eide
Instructor Contact
Office: 3476 MEB
Office Hours: by appointment; send email to schedule an appointment
Web Pages
The primary course web site will contain pointers to the syllabus, schedule, and other information.
Enrolled students will submit paper summaries via the course's Canvas web site.
Mailing List
All seminar participants should subscribe to the mailing list. The instructor will use this list to distribute important announcements and other information.

Course Summary

Description: The Computer Systems Seminar is a weekly meeting in which participants discuss recent and important results in the area of computer systems research. For a typical meeting, attendees will read and discuss one paper chosen from a recent systems, networking, or security conference. Papers are selected for discussion according to the semester's focus topic, the papers' relevance to participants' own research, and/or the papers' relevance to upcoming Utah visitors. Some meetings may be centered on presentations of a participant's own research: e.g., a practice talk for an upcoming conference. Each meeting has one or more designated “facilitators” who are responsible for leading the discussion.

Objectives: To increase participants' familiarity with recent and important research results in computer systems; to improve participants' skills in presenting computer systems research.

Prerequisites: An undergraduate computer science background is required for this course. General knowledge of computer systems design, both software and hardware, is necessary.

Grading Policy

Credit: A student may enroll in the seminar for one (1) credit hour.

Grading: Grading is based on participation. “Participation” is not merely presence; it means engaging with the course in ways that demonstrate sincere effort to master the course material. The primary course activities are:

On every week that the seminar is held, every student taking the course for credit must read all of the papers for that week, submit a short summary of each paper prior to class, and participate in the discussion. In addition, every enrolled student must facilitate at least one seminar meeting during the semester.

Paper summaries should be submitted to the instructor, prior to class, via the seminar's Canvas web site. Late paper summaries are not generally accepted. Late paper summaries may be accepted in exceptional circumstances only, at the sole discretion of the instructor.

Cheating Policy

Cheating: In this course, “cheating” refers to plagiarism in the written summaries that students submit to the instructor. Cheating in this course is not tolerated. The penalty for cheating in this course is a failing grade for the course.

A summary must consist of a student's sole, original work. Unattributed copying of material from the papers being discussed or other sources is plagiarism as will be treated as such. Unacceptable paraphrasing of papers or other sources is also plagiarism and will be treated as such.

Students are encouraged to discuss the seminar's readings with each other—discussing the papers is a primary activity of this course! However, any written summary that a student submits to the instructor must be the original work of that student alone. Jointly authored summaries are not allowed.

All questions about the definitions of cheating and plagiarism in this course should be directed to the instructor. (The web has many resources that can help you to understand and avoid plagiarism, but if you have questions, please contact the instructor.)

Statement and Acknowledgment: In accordance with the School of Computing's Policy Statement on Academic Misconduct dated January 10, 2012, the instructor will discuss the School's academic misconduct policy in the first two weeks of the course. Students will be required to understand the policy and to submit an acknowledgment form. Links to the policy statement and acknowledgment form are found below.

COVID-19 Considerations

The University of Utah has implemented reasonable health and safety protocols, taking into account recommendations by local, state, and national public health authorities, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

University leadership has urged all faculty, students, and staff to model the vaccination, masking, testing, and self-reporting behaviors we want to see in our campus community. These include:

For the most up-to-date information on COVID-19 protocol, please refer to

Additional resources include:

College of Engineering Policies and Guidelines

For information about adding courses, withdrawing from courses, appealing grades, and more, please refer to the web site maintained by the College of Engineering's Office of Academic Affairs.

University of Utah Policies

The Americans with Disabilities Act. The University of Utah seeks to provide equal access to its programs, services, and activities for people with disabilities. If you will need accommodations in this class, reasonable prior notice needs to be given to the Center for Disability Services, 162 Olpin Union Building, 801–581–5020. CDS will work with you and the instructor to make arrangements for accommodations. All written information in this course can be made available in an alternative format with prior notification to the Center for Disability Services.

University Safety Statement. The University of Utah values the safety of all campus community members. To report suspicious activity or to request a courtesy escort, call campus police at 801–585–COPS (801–585–2677). You will receive important emergency alerts and safety messages regarding campus safety via text message. For more information regarding safety and to view available training resources, including helpful videos, visit

Addressing Sexual Misconduct. Title IX makes it clear that violence and harassment based on sex and gender (which includes sexual orientation and gender identity/expression) is a civil rights offense subject to the same kinds of accountability and the same kinds of support applied to offenses against other protected categories such as race, national origin, color, religion, age, status as a person with a disability, veteran's status or genetic information. If you or someone you know has been harassed or assaulted, you are encouraged to report it to the Title IX Coordinator in the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action, 135 Park Building, 801–581–8365, or the Office of the Dean of Students, 270 Union Building, 801–581–7066. For support and confidential consultation, contact the Center for Student Wellness, 426 SSB, 801–581–7776. To report to the police, contact the Department of Public Safety, 801–585–2677 (COPS).

Undocumented Student Support Statement. Immigration is a complex phenomenon with broad impact—those who are directly affected by it, as well as those who are indirectly affected by their relationships with family members, friends, and loved ones. If your immigration status presents obstacles to engaging in specific activities or fulfilling specific course criteria, confidential arrangements may be requested from the Dream Center. Arrangements with the Dream Center will not jeopardize your student status, your financial aid, or any other part of your residence. The Dream Center offers a wide range of resources to support undocumented students (with and without DACA) as well as students from mixed-status families. To learn more, please contact the Dream Center at 801–213–3697 or visit

Student Mental Health Resources. Rates of burnout, anxiety, depression, isolation, and loneliness have noticeably increased during the pandemic. If you need help, reach out for campus mental health resources, including counseling, trainings and other support. Consider participating in a Mental Health First Aid or other wellness-themed training provided by our Center for Student Wellness and sharing these opportunities with your peers, teaching assistants and department colleagues.

Valid HTML 4.01 Transitional