CS465/CS565: Introduction to Artificial Intelligence
Spring 2019

Department of Computer Science
SUNY Binghamton

Time: Tuesday, Thursday 2:50 PM - 4:15 PM
Dates: 01/22/2019 - 05/10/2019
Classroom: Classroom Wing (CW) 112

Instructor Contact Information

Instructor: Shiqi Zhang
Office hours: Tuesdays, 10am-noon (please email me in advance if you plan to meet), or by appointment
Office location: Engineering Building (EB) Q07
Phone: 607-777-4355
Email: szhang@cs.binghamton.edu

TA Contact Information


Course Description

This course will cover the basic ideas and techniques underlying the design of artificial intelligence (AI) agents. Topics include search, knowledge representation, planning, reasoning under uncertainty, machine learning (including reinforcement learning), and applications (such as vision and robotics).

There is no generally accepted definition of "artificial intelligence." Some that have been proposed include:

  • The science of getting computers to do the things they can't do yet.
  • Finding fast algorithms for NP-hard problems.
  • Getting computers to do the things they do in the movies.


Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach
By Russell and Norvig
Publisher: Pearson
Note: You need the 3rd Edition (Blue cover).

Selected readings from this text will be assigned, possibly to be supplemented by relevant research papers.

Grading Policy

  • Written responses to readings: 5%
    • These will primarily be readings from the textbook, but may occasionally come from other provided sources. All reading assignments should be completed before the class period for which they are assigned.

  • Class participation: 10%
    • Students are expected to be present in class having completed the readings and participate actively in the discussions.

  • Programming assignments: 25%
    • There will be a series of Python programming projects in which you will implement various AI algorithms. An autograder script will be provided for each project so that you can check your progress along the way and fix errors in your code.

  • Homework exercises: 20%
    • Throughout the semester, problem sets will be assigned and automatically graded through the edX system. You will receive instant feedback from the autograder and can retry each problem as many times as necessary. The goal of these problems is to get you comfortable with the material and prepared for the midterm and final.

  • Midterm: 15%
    • A midterm exam will be given in class.

  • Final: 25%
    • A final exam will be given during the final exam week (date and time to be announced).

Discussion Forum

While the instructor and the TA would be glad to answer any questions you have, students would frequently find their peers to be an equally important resource in this class. When one posts a question or an observation on the class forum, he/she is not only helping himself/herself, but also indirectly helping all other students. Activities in the discussion forum are considered to be a kind of class participation.

Please sign up to read/post on our class piazza page (to be available).


Binghamton University has a legal and ethical responsibility to ensure the provision of appropriate auxiliary aids, services and accommodations that afford enrolled students with disabilities equal access to, and participation in, all institutional programs and activities. The goal of academic accommodation is to facilitate equitable access to course-related activities and ensure that evaluations measure student achievement rather than unnecessarily reflecting the impact of a disability.

Students are expected to take an active role in informing faculty of authorized accommodations, and collaborating with them to insure effective arrangements. Students who believe they require disability-related support services or accommodations to participate on an equal basis with their class colleagues should follow the procedures outlined in "Disability Documentation Guidelines and Procedures for Requesting Academic Accommodations" on SSD's webpage under "Current Students".

More information is available here.

Academic Dishonesty Policy

Like all universities, Binghamton University depends on the honesty and integrity of its faculty, staff and students to carry out its academic mission. To fulfill this mission, every member of the Binghamton University community is charged with upholding the Code of Academic Honesty. Actions that breach the Code erode the trust of those who look to universities for honest evaluations of academic work arrived at through honest processes. Violations also may cause individual harm, including under- and over-evaluations of performance as well as inaccurate reports of performance to post-graduate schools, professional societies and employers. With so much at stake, collectively and individually, Binghamton University views conduct in keeping with the traditions of academic honesty and integrity as the obligation of all members of the faculty, staff and student body.

More information is available here.

Past offerings of this course

  • Peter Stone (Fall 2017).
    The course structure and some course materials are adapted from Peter Stone's offering at UT Austin.
  • Scott Niekum (Fall 2018).
  • Many of the course materials are (revised or not) from the UC Berkeley AI Course developed by Dan Klein and Pieter Abbeel. We thank them for their permission to use it as a part of this course.

Any questions? Do not hesitate to send an email to the instructor.