Information Science in Engineering, EDCE, 2018


Lecturers : Prof. I. Smith, Dr. G. Senatore , EPFL

Course goals

To introduce engineering-relevant concepts in information science that are independent of hardware and software technologies. These concepts will be illustrated with engineering examples.

Course structure

The course is divided into two parts.  Part I consists of 14 lectures on fundamental topics in information science. Part II involves a test as well as preparation and presentation of a literature study of a specific topic using knowledge from Part 1.

Outcomes :

  • Understanding of the role of computing in engineering
  • Knowledge of the limits of computing
  • Ability to choose good computing methods for the job
  • Make informed purchases and specifications of software
  • Increased quality of collaboration with computer specialists
  • Improved ability to understand the true value of new developments
  • Effectively select good computing approaches for research

Time :

  • Part 1 : Monday 16 April 2018 – Friday 20 April 2018
  • Part 2 : Tuesday 22 May 2018 – Friday 25  May 2018

Language : English

Part I – Lecture Schedule
Date Class time Topic Number of Lectures (45 min) Lecturer
April 16
09:15 – 12:00 Course overview & Definition of engineering tasks

Data representation

I. Smith
April 17
09:15 – 12:00 Network theory
I. Smith
April 18
09:15 – 12:00 Complexity 3 I. Smith
April 19
14:15 – 17:00 Interactive advanced simulation 3 G. Senatore
April 20
09:15 – 11:00 Knowledge discovery and machine learning 2 I. Smith
Part II – Seminar presentations
Lecture schedule for the second part
Date Class time Topic Speaker
May 22
09:15 – 10:00
10:15 – 11:00
11:15 – 12:00
Seminar 1
Seminar 2
Victoria Eugenia Soto Magan
Slah Drira
12:15 – 13:00 Seminar 3
Sergey Arzoyan
May 23
09:15 – 10:00
10:15 – 11:00
11:15 – 12:00
Seminar 4
Seminar 5
Seminar 6
Julien Gamerro
Jan Brütting
Ioannis Mirtsopoulos
12:15 – 13:00 Seminar 7
Hossein Heydarinouri
May 24
16:15 – 17:00
17:15 – 18:00
Seminar 8
Seminar 9
Frederic Monney
Forrest Simon Webler
May 25
09:15 – 10:00
10:15 – 11:00
11:15 – 12:00
Seminar 10
Seminar 11
Seminar 12
Aryan Rad Rezaei
Arka Prabhata Reksowardojo
Ardalan Hosseini
12:15 – 13:00 Test Review

Note: Titles and speakers of seminars will be updated after the completion of Part I.

General information for seminar presentations

Presentation time: 30 minutes
Questions & answers: 15 minutes
Number of slides: 25 (maximum) – exceptions would be when there are many photographs and other easily explained material.  Slides containing the reference list are in addition to this number.
Number of rehearsals recommended: 2 (at least) – this is important for clarity and for timing.
Slide format: Font : Sans-serif font (e.g. Arial).
Minimum font size is 24 (even for axis labels), except that references can be 18.
Suggest white background.
Text in color should be bold.
Do NOT show detail that is not discussed.
Avoid excessive slide automation (distracting).
Reference format: Harvard – e.g. one or two authors: (Jone and Brown, 2003); three or more authors: (Jones et al, 2003)

Guidelines for the content of your presentation
The content of your presentation includes the following parts:

You are expected to answer the following questions :
What is your topic?
Where does it fit into modern information science ?
What drives the development of the topic (or what are industry’s needs)?
What distinguishes the topic from associated topics?
Review and discussion of reference papers
For each paper, you are expected to answer the following questions
Which objectives are stated to drive the research presented in the paper?
What had researchers previously done towards these objectives?
Describe the research presented in this paper
Discuss advantages and limitations of this work
What are the other steps that have to be taken to fully meet the original objectives?
Summarize major conclusions of the papers and your analyses.
Do NOT provide summaries of these papers.
Not to be presented but include in *.ppt file and in handout of 6 slides/page – check readability.
List of references in alphabetical order according to last name of the first author.
Format: Name (s), year, “Title of article in quotes”, title of journal/book/magazine/proceedings, volume if relevant,
number if relevant, page number range (pp 25-37) or total number of pages for books (310p).


Review stage : Email *.ppt file to [email protected] by May 14, 2018 at the latest.
Once revised, print copies of handouts – 6 slides/page (this is a good test. If you cannot read the information on your slide at this level, it will be unreadable to audiences)

Final submission: Email final version of *.ppt file to [email protected] by 0900 on May 22, 2018.

The final grade will be calculated as follows:

Part Percentage of the final grade
Seminar 50 %
Written test 30 %
Participation in class 20 %

The seminar grade is based on the student’s ability to satisfy the goals of the seminar.
These are to

  • study information science topic in more depth and identify potential benefits
  • make a critical evaluation of 1-3 research papers
  • identify strengths and weaknesses of advances in a particular area of information science
  • give a clear oral presentation
  • integrate relevant topics and ideas presented in Part I of the course

The test grade is based on a 45 min test of knowledge of material covered during Part I of the course.
The participation grade is based on student’s attendance during Parts I and II as well as questions and discussion following seminar presentations.

A grade of PASS is given for final grade over 60%.