Comments on Teaching

Kevin Karplus

(Last Update: 16:52 PDT 6 August 2008 )

In recent years I have taught:

BME 205 Bioinformatics: Models and Algorithms
I created this course in Fall 2001 as BME 100, with some assistance from a Sloan Foundation Grant. The course was renumbered to BME205 to reflect its primarily graduate level in Fall 2005.
BME200 On being a bioinformatics grad student
The official name of the course is something like "Research and Teaching", but the core content is how to be a successful graduate student, including both TA training and research preparation. Along with the many things taught to all School of Engineering grad students, I have sessions on lab safety and on speaking loudly without a microphone.
BME 220 (was CMPS 243) Protein Bioinformatics
This course delves into the analysis and prediction of protein structure, touching only briefly on other aspects of protein bioinformatics. The first time I offered the class (Spring 2005), I relied heavily on journal-club presentations, in part because I was taking on the course somewhat unexpectedly.
BME 280B Bioinformatics Seminar
This graduate seminar is taught differently each quarter. When I teach (mainly spring quarters), it consists of student presentations, either of their own work or of papers from the literature. In other quarters it usually consists of invited lectures. I taught this for the first time in Spring 1999.
BME 194 Resource-efficient programming
This course was taught on an experimental basis in Winter 2004, and added to the catalog as BME 109, but limited faculty resources have not allowed us to offer it again.
I have taught the following classes, but probably will not be teaching them again: I created and have taught the following courses which are no longer offered:
CMPS 243 Bioinformatics
A graduate class for computer scientists, biologists, and chemists in bioinformatics---the science and art of getting useful information out of the huge databases of biosequence data. I designed this course with David Haussler, who taught it the first two times it was offered. I taught it for the first time in Fall 1998. This course was split a couple of times and is now BME 205, BME 220, and BME 230.
CMP80K Art of the Book in the Computer Age
Cowell 152 Bicycle Transportation Engineering
In Spring 1997, I taught a course on design of bicycle facilities through Cowell College
CMPE 223 VLSI Design project (a follow-on course to CMPE 222)
CMPE 105 Digital Synthesis of Music.
This course was an introduction to signal processing, with an emphasis on music-synthesis algorithms (rather than the usual filter applications). We covered phase oscillators, wavetables, FM synthesis, reverberation, the Digitar algorithm, and other musically interesting applications.
CMPE 290L Advanced Topics in VLSI CAD.
This course is different each time it is taught, based on the interests of the instructor. I taught it once on logic minimization techniques, which was my main research interest at the time.

I have written a few pages of thoughts about teaching:

Teaching statement for Excellence in Teaching Award, March 2004
In Spring 2004, I was awarded an Excellence in Teaching Award in 2004 (and an Honorable Mention in 2002) by the Center for Teaching Excellence at UCSC. This essay was written in response to my nomination for the 2004 award.
Teaching style for CMPE 16 (Applied Discrete Math)
Some thoughts about the somewhat unusual teaching style I have adopted for this large introductory class.
Capturing the Particulars of Classroom Practice
An incident in teaching Computer Science 80k (the Art of the Book in the Computer Age).
Some thoughts on the syllabus for Technical Writing
A discussion of the history and syllabus for this course.
Reflections on a single assignment: in-program documentation
Some thoughts about student work on the in-program documentation assignment for Technical Writing.
Notes for committee on general-education (1998)

Other interesting web sites

There are other interesting web sites related to teaching or more, specifically to teaching at UCSC. For example,
Report of the Universitywide Task Force on Faculty Rewards
This is the famous "Pister Report" from the University of California.
All-University Conference on Teaching, Learning, and the New Technologies
A conference on "the possibilities and challenges we face in incorporating new information and communications technologies into the heart of the teaching mission."
Official University of California Academic Personnel Manual
Faculty Resources at UCSC
Scheduling an Instructional Computing Lab
CE/CS Class Home Page Tutorial
Instructions for creating home pages for courses in Computer Engineering or Computer Science at UCSC.
Copyright Clearance Center Online

SoE home
sketch of Kevin Karplus by Abe
Kevin Karplus's home page
Biomolecular Engineering Department
UCSC Bioinformatics research

Questions about page content should be directed to Kevin Karplus
Biomolecular Engineering
University of California, Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz, CA 95064
318 Physical Sciences Building

Locations of visitors to pages with this footer (started 3 Nov 2008)