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Graduate Oral Exam Topics

Topic List for CMPS 5113, Programming Languages

Topics:

  1. Language Design Issues
    • Various forms of efficiency
    • Generality, orthogonality, uniformity
  2. Formal Syntax Definitions
    • Syntax diagrams
    • Backus-Naur form
    • Ambiguity, associativity, precedence
    • Parsing
  3. Semantics
    • Scope rules
    • Types of allocation and binding
  4. Control Structures
    • Parameter passing modes
    • Activation record
    • Run-time stack
    • Access links
  5. Object-oriented Programming Languages
    • Inheritance
    • Overloading and Polymorphism
    • Dynamic binding
  6. Functional Programming Languages
    • Recursion
    • List handling in LISP
  7. Logic Programming
    • Horn clauses
    • Resolution and Unification

REFERENCE: Programming Languages, Principles and Practice, Louden


Topic List for CMPS 5133, Computer Architecture

TOPICS:

  1. General Concepts
    • Binary and hexadecimal numbers
    • Binary representation of floating point numbers
    • Instruction set architecture
      • Addressing modes
      • Types of operations
      • RISC vs CISC
    • Main hardware components
      • CPU
      • Registers
      • Memory
      • Disks
    • Execution cycle/interrupts
    • Bus Systems
  2. Memory Systems:
    • Memory allocation and management
    • Cache memory
      • Mapping functions
      • Replacement algorithms
      • Data cache
      • Instruction cache
    • Virtual memory
    • Shared memory – cache coherence
  3. Pipelined Processors
    • Description – pipeline stages
    • Instruction prefetching
    • Hazards
    • Branch handling
    • Collision prevention
  4. Parallel Systems
    • Instruction – level parallelism
    • Superscalar
    • VLIW
    • Dataflow
    • Predication
    • Multiprocessors
    • Nonuniform memory access
    • Vector processing

REFERENCES: Advanced Computer Architecture: A Design Space Approach, by Sima, Fountain and Kacsuk Computer Organization and Architecture, by William Stallings (6th edition)


Topic List for CMPS 5143, Operating Systems

Emphasis will be placed on the terms and concepts listed below. TOPICS:

  1. Operating System Structures
    • Virtual Machines
    • System Calls
    • Layered Systems
  2. Process Management
    • Process creation and control structures: PCB, state diagrams, ready list, etc.
    • Threads
    • Scheduling (Long-term scheduling, short-term scheduling and thread scheduling)
    • Interprocess Communication: semaphores, monitors, message passing, etc.
  3. Input/Output
    • Deadlock
    • Interrupts
    • Device controllers
    • Direct Memory Access
  4. Storage Management
    • Static: MFT, MVT
    • Dynamic memory management: paging, segmentation
    • Virtual memory: paging, segmentation, virtual-to-real address mapping and translation, etc.
    • Page Replacement Algorithms
    • Sharing
    • Protection
  5. File Systems
    • Organization
    • Implementation
    • Sharing
    • Protection

REFERENCES: Applied Operating Systems Concepts, by Silberschatz, Galvin and Gagne


Topic List for CMPS 5153, Software Engineering

Topics:

  1. Software Process Models
    • Waterfall and variants
    • Distribution of time, effort and cost in phases
    • Evolutionary models
    • Rapid Application Model
  2. Project Management
    • Team and People Management
    • Project Scheduling and Tracking
  3. Analysis and Design Tools and Techniques
    • Requirements Gathering
    • Structured Programming
      • Data Flow and Data Structure Design Techniques
    • Object Oriented Programming
      • UML Diagrams
    • Module Design
  4. Software Quality
    • 11 Quality Factors
    • Assurance Activities
    • Metrics (product and process)
    • Standards (CMM and ISO9000)
  5. Testing
    • Types and philosophies of testing
    • Choice of test data
    • Object oriented testing
    • Debagging

REFERENCES: Software Engineering, 6th ed, by Ian Sommerville


Topic List for CMPS 5243, Algorithm Analysis

Topics:

  1. Mathematical Foundations
    • Terminology
    • Complexity notations
  2. Data Structures
    • Matrices
    • Stacks, queues, graphs
    • Trees: binary search trees, red-black trees, splay trees, B-trees
    • Tables / functions
  3. Sorting / Searching
    • Insertion sort, Selection sort
    • Merge sort
    • Heap sort
    • Quick sort
    • Order n sorts (Radix, Bucket)
  4. Methods
    • Dynamic programming
    • Greedy algorithms
  5. Graph Algorithms
    • Search
    • Minimum spanning trees
    • Shortest path
  6. NP-Completeness
    • Concepts of P and NP

REFERENCE: Introduction to Algorithms, by Cormen, Leiserson, and Rivest