Skip to Content

Scientific Computing

Home > FAQ by Faculty

Frequently Asked Questions by Faculty

How do I become affiliated with the Scientific Computing program?

Email one of the co-Directors, Bobby Bodenheimer (Computer Science), Thomas Palmeri (Psychology), or David Weintraub (Physics), and request to be listed as an affiliated faculty member.

What does a course need include to be considered as an elective in the Scientific Computing minor?

The course should include a significant emphasis on scientific computing tools and techniques, whether that's simulation, high performance computing, or large-scale data handling.Typically, courses in the Scientific Computing minor will require hands-on experience through homework assignments or class projects.

How do I get a course approved to become eligible as an elective in the Scientific Computing minor?

Email a course description and course syllabus to one of the co-Directors (Bodenheimer, Palmeri, or Weintraub).

What are the minimal requirements in order for an undergraduate student research project to count as a directed or independent study in the Scientific Computing minor?

There should some substantial contribution of scientific computing tools and techniques to a substantive scientific or engineering problem. For example, this could include model simulation, model testing, developing scientific visualization tools, developing machine learning tools for data mining, adapting tools for high performance computing platforms, developing new tools for large-scale data handling and analysis. Applying common data analysis techniques or performing minor adaptations of existing experimental techniques, even if they require some modest amount of programming, would typically not be sufficient to count towards the minor. If there is any uncertainty, please email one of the co-Directors (Bodenheimer, Palmeri, or Weintraub).

What is the difference between a directed study (SC293) and independent study (SC295)?

Directed study (SC293) is for participation in an ongoing research project in a faculty member's laboratory or for research on a new topic that falls well within a faculty member's expertise. A directed study project typically contributes in some way to the larger research efforts of a laboratory. Most students working on a research project should enroll in directed study (SC293). Independent study (SC295) is for those less common occasions where a student is embarking on a research project that falls far outside a faculty member's area of expertise, but the faculty member still agrees to help guide the student in their exploration. To help make the distinction concrete, most projects undertaken by graduate students or postdoctoral fellows funded by a laboratory's grants would be considered "directed study".