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This page relates to the module CY901 as delivered to HEC students during the summer term of 2009. The first half of this course will be shared with the one-week HECToR training course CY901N, April 20th - 24th. This is week 1 of the university term.

Material required for CY901 not covered in the HECToR course includes:

  • Architectures and Algorithms (2 Lectures).
  • Python programming for scripting, GUI development and visualization (6 Lectures).
  • E-Science and grid computing (4 Lectures).

This material will be delivered through lectures and workshops during weeks 2-10. Note that there will be 2 lectures in the week following the HECToR training course, 3 lectures in the next week and then 1 lecture per week for the remainder of term.


Times and Rooms:

David Quigley
Week 2
11:00-12:00 MA_B3.02
Week 2
11:00-12:00 MA_B3.02
Week 3
11:00-12:00 MA_B3.02
Week 3
Thursday 11:00-12:00 MA_B3.02
Week 4
Monday 11:00-12:00 MA_B3.01
Week 5
Monday 11:00-12:00 MA_B3.01
Week 6
Tuesday 11:00-12:00 PS011
Weeks 7,8,9
11:00-12:00 MA_B3.01
Week 10
11:00-12:00 MS_B3.03

Workshops will be taken on Monday afternoons 2-4pm unless there is a bank holiday in which these will take place on Tuesday. Workshops take the form of web pages which you can work through at your own pace.  Either myself or an experienced postgraduate demonstrator will be on hand to help with any problems. Some of the workshop material may overlap with the HECToR training course. Feel free to tackle it again if you would like the practice, or skip over it as appropriate.

All the above rooms can be found by typing the room number into the search box on the University's interactive campus map

Workshops and Assignments

Please ensure that you have both an ITS username/password and a CSC username and password.

You set up your CSC account by filling in this form. When prompted for your "Research Group Membership" select the "Other / Not listed" option. You should do this well in advance of the first workshop.

Important! You must adhere to CSC's usage policy and pay special attention to the pages dealing with the CSC desktop, the Cluster of Workstations (CoW) and remote access via the server godzilla. Sanctions will be applied against students who abuse the CSC system.


Suggested reading:

  • R Chandra et al, Parallel Programming in OpenMP (Morgan Kaufmann, 2000)
  • P Pacheco, Parallel Programming with MPI (Morgan Kaufmann, 1996)
  • M Quinn, Parallel Programming in C with MPI and OpenMP (McGraw-Hill, 2003)
  • M Lutz and D Ascher, Learning Python (O'Reilly, 2004, or 3rd ed 2007)


Please note that this course does not teach a computer programming language: you are expected already to be proficient in Fortran or C. A good working knowledge of a scientific programming language (either Fortran- 95/2003 or C) is a pre-requisite. Students will also be assumed to be familiar with basic Linux commands, program editors, and other material covered in CY900.


The course will be assessed using the following methods

  • Five online tests taking approx 30 mins each. These contribute 40% to the total mark. These must be taken within a specified time window which will be circulated well in advance.  You will be given the chance to take a "mock" test to get used to the system.
  • Five programming assignments, spaced over the course of the term, each taking approximately 12 hrs, which you are expected to complete in your own time. These contribute 40% to the total mark.
  • One extended programming assignment, taking approximately 30 hrs, to be completed after the end of Term 3. This contributes 20% to the total mark.

Note that these assessments will cover all material in CY901, including that delivered during the HECToR training course in week 1.  Please seek clarification on any material from the HECToR course you are unhappy with before the first assignment is set.  The assignments form part of a university examination and hence I cannot provide help directly related to its content.

Students taking CY901 on an un-assessed basis

Any students wishing to take the course on the basis of attending lectures, and possibly workshops, without formal assessment of their work, should send me an email.