AGRI 85 COMPUTER APPLICATIONS in Agriculture & Life Science SYLLABUS  Fall 2003 (3 credits)

Lecture A: Thursday 12:30 - 1:45 CODE: 90588  Hills Building Rm. 234

AGRI 85 LAB SCHEDULE:  All students are REQUIRED to attend one 2-hour lab per week during the semester.  The two labs are listed below.

Lab Schedule:
Lab Section Day Time Place Instructor
A01 90844
Tuesday 2:00-4:00 005 Morrill Jonathan Leonard
A02 90854
Friday 9:05 - 11:00 005 Morrill Jonathan Leonard



Dr. Jonathan Leonard
208H Morrill Hall
Home: 434-3787 (Call before 9pm)
Office: 8:15-10:15 Tuesdays

GENERAL COURSE GOAL: To prepare students with a solid foundation of information technology skills and knowledge to enable them to use current and future software and hardware.

SPECIFIC COURSE OBJECTIVES: Upon satisfactory completion of AGRI 85, students will:
1.  Become familiar with information technology hardware including types of computers and telecommunication hardware.
2.  Understand the role of Operating Systems and demonstrate knowledge of command-line UNIX, and Windows98 and WindowsXP.
3.  Understand, detect, and eliminate Computer Viruses.
4.  Demonstrate proficiency with electronic communication: e-mail, signature files, and listservs.
5.  Be able to download and install software from the web.
6.  Demonstrate proficiency in presentation graphics applications by giving a presentation in front of a class.
7.  Demonstrate proficiency in word processing applications.
8.  Demonstrate proficiency in spreadsheet and graphics applications.
9.  Understand and demonstrate how to present and interpret data in graphic form.
10.  Explore and find useful data on the Internet and interpret those data.
11.  Create World Wide Web Pages.
12.  Understand the history and legacy of computing.
13.  Appreciate the utility, benefit and limitations of computers.
14.  Improve writing skills.

Required Text:

Graphing Statistics & Data: Creating Better Charts  by Anders Wallgren, Britt Wallgren, Rolf Persson, Ulf Jorner, & Jan-Aage Haaland.  1996.  SAGE Publications.  ISBN 0-7619-0599-5

 One copy of the text is available for 2-hour loan from the Reserve Desk at the Bailey-Howe Library.

GRADE POLICIES: The following categories contribute to your course grade as weighted below:

Grade Policies:
Three Exams  (2 in class, 1 Final) 35%
Computer Lab Assignments 60%
Attendance, Participation & Attitude 5%
TOTAL= 100%

AUDITS:  Persons wishing credit for auditing the class are required to attend at least 9 of the 14 lectures and labs.

Exams will cover material from the reading assignments as well as discussion in lecture, and material from lab.  The format of the exams will be multiple choice.  You must be on time for exams.  If you are late for exams, you will lose points.  See Lecture Syllabus below for schedule.

Exam Reschedule or Make Up Policy: Any requests to take the exam at other than the scheduled time must be discussed with Jonathan Leonard at least one week prior to the exam. Only in the case of medical emergency, death in the family, or other extreme circumstance are missed exams excused and re-taken.  In such extreme circumstances you are to notify Jonathan Leonard within 48 hours of the event.  Keep your old graded exams for one year after the course.

Computer Lab Assignments vary in point value; the Final Lab Project is worth 150 points, the other assignments vary from 10 to 30 points each.  Exceptionally creative work may earn a grade above the point value of the assignment.  Lab assignments should be stapled together and handed in at the beginning of scheduled lab time.  YOUR NAME AND LAB SECTION MUST APPEAR ON ALL ASSIGNMENTS.  You may re-submit assignments for re-grading WITHIN TWO WEEKS OF THE DUE DATE (not accepted later); please include your old, already graded assignment, along with the re-done work.  The sooner you re-submit, the more generous your lab instructor will be in re-grading.  Save your graded homework assignments until August 2004.

LATE PENALTY:  10% off the value of the assignment per week, up to two weeks from the due date.  If the assignment is any later, NO CREDIT.

Attendance, Participation and Attitude:  Five percent of your grade is determined by attendance, class participation (how you contributed to the class), and your attitude.  In order to earn full credit you must attend all the lectures and labs and contribute to the class in a positive way by helping other students and participating in class discussions.  Unexcused absences will result in a deduction of 1 % of your course grade per unexcused absence.  Absences are excused only in cases of sickness (Physician's note), death in the family, or other extreme circumstances.  In such circumstances, notify your lecture and lab instructor within 24 hours of missing class.

It is expected that you will help your fellow students with techniques of computer use, but always hand in original work.  For example, if the assignment for the week was to write a 3-page paper, you are expected to help students who are not as familiar as you with the use of the word processor, i.e. how to re-format the page, re-arrange paragraphs, delete words, check the spelling, etc..  This does not mean that you can copy work or take it off the Internet without crediting it to the original source.  ALL STUDENTS ARE EXPECTED TO HAND IN THEIR OWN ORIGINAL WORK.  Students have been severely penalized in the past for not following these instructions.

Students may use the labs whenever there are no scheduled classes or workshops.  Schedules are posted on lab doors.  Morrill Hall Lab schedule is distributed in lecture every month.

LAB ROOM HOURS (Unless posted otherwise):

LAB HELP POLICY:  There will be some lab assistant help available in the lab during most hours.  Lab assistants may not be able to help you with all your problems with the course.  When not in a formal lab, you will be expected to rely on classmates, software manuals, class notes, online help, and lab assistants when available.  If you need extra help, make an appointment with your lab instructor.  Formal tutoring may be available.

WORK LOAD TO EXPECT:  In order to complete the work in this class you can expect to spend (on average) 6-10 hours per week OUTSIDE OF CLASS AND FORMAL LAB TIME studying and working in lab on AGRI 85 assignments.

You don't have to be a "rocket scientist" or "computer wiz" to do well in this class.  This is a course where you will do well if you go to class, follow instructions, do all your lab assignments on time and spend time reading and studying.

There will almost always be a rush on the computers the last few days before a major assignment is due.  This would be true unless we had a computer for every person in the course.  Plan ahead.  Use the lab in the off times, arrive early to be assured of a machine when the lab opens.  Don't wait to the last minute for completing an assignment.  If you have a job or other commitments outside of regular school work or a heavy course load be sure your work hours allow enough time to complete your assignments.

The instructions on how to complete lab assignments will be given in the formal labs.  It is your responsibility to take notes during formal lab time and make sure you understand how to complete the assignments.  Part of the learning experience in this class is using the software manuals and fellow students as references.  Although some of the Lab Assistants will be able to help, they will not be able to help you at all times; they will not do the assignments for you.

This course is designed not only to give you experience on the PC, but also to teach you computing concepts so you will be able to work through any software on any personal computer and many servers and host computers.
1. Intro to the course, Timeline 1
    OS Video 1
Google article from Newsweek , How Search Engines work from Sci Am.  Use your zoo login and password to read online with Adobe Acrobat.
2.   Timeline 2
      Anatomy of a Personal
      Types of Computers
      OS Video 2
How Internet e-mail works .  Text Sections 1-2 (pages 0-16)
3. Anatomy of the PC
    Units of Memory & Storage
     Everything is going digital,
Digital cameras from How Things Work ,   How digital cameras work from Sci Am .  Text Section 3 (pages 17-23)
4. EXAM  #1, 25 September
EXAM  #1, 25 September  
5. Memory & Storage, Graphing
    Binary Numbers
Laser Printers , Scanners , Optical character readers , Finger Print Readers .  Text Sections 4-5 (pages 24-35)
6.  Programming Languages
     Privacy Video
CD Players ,   Sound coded as bits .  Text Section 6 (pages 36-45)
 7.  What is a byte?  ASCII, Security.
      Software Licenses
Digital thermometers and scales Analog to digital converters , Digital to analog converters
Text Section 7-8 (pages 46-53)
9. Exam #2, October 23
Exam #2, October 23
The Web, Protocols, Error
Physical Media: Cables and
Optical fibers , Competing technologies for broad band home access .  Text Sections 9-10 (pages 54-63)
10.   Satellite Imaging,
      Error checking,
      Image Compression
Voyager II article, Sci. Am. Nov. 1986 , Antenna intro , Smart Antennas .  Text Section 11 (pages 64-73)
11.  Buying a computer: pointing devices, monitors Keyboards , How roller mice work ,   How roller and optical mice work , How touch pads work , How active-matrix screens work .  Text Sections 11-13 (pages 74-87)
12.  Buying a computer: System Unit
       Network computers
How Hackers Break In  Sci. Am. October 1998 .  Text Sections 14-15 (pages 88-91)
13. Security and Risks
      Giant Brains video
      Putting computing in
      perspective: History
Study your notes and previous readings for the Final!
FINAL EXAM: Friday 19 Dec., 12-Noon  234 Hills

Fall 2003 AGRI 85 Lab Schedule
8 September
Using the Operating System learn elementary WindowsXP commands including how to FORMAT diskettes, Create Folders and COPY files from the Hard disk to the diskette, and BACKUP your diskette on zoo server using SSH-FTP .  Learn to use the text editor notepad/wordpad. Due next Week: 1. Printout of your diskette directory, 2. Printout of the text file you created explaining your previous computer experience and what you want to get out of AGRI 85, 3. Printout of your SSH-FTP window showing your PCBackup directory with your backed up files.  (20 points)
15 September
Learn how to connect to ZOO via telnet software and send electronic mail (E-mail) with pine and Webmail. Learn to copy a text file from your instructor’s zoo account; edit it, and insert it in an e-mail message.  Use SSH-FTP to upload files from your PC to your zoo account.  Due next week: Send an e-mail message including 1. The file copied from your lab instructor’s account where you have filled in the blank spaces, 2. Your signature file, and 3. Attached .jpg image from ftp showing PCBackup directory on zoo. (30 Points)
22 September
 Learn Antivirus software.  Learn MS-Word for windows.  Create  your resume in the format given in the Lab Notebook.  Upload your resume and e-mail it to your lab instructor as an attachment in Word format.  Due next Week:  Hard copy of your resume e-mailed as an attachment (30 points).
29 September
 [DUE: RESUME hard copy (20 points) & e-mail Resume (10 points ]
Learn to create an Excel spreadsheet with approximately 300 cells (30 rows X 10 Columns, or 10 rows X 30 Columns).  Due next Week:  Spreadsheet  and an appropriate graph of some of the data from the spreadsheet.
6 October
 [DUE: SPREADSHEETS & Graph (30 points) ] Note: Monday Lab students go to another lab just for this week because of Presidents Day.
Learn to import the spreadsheet table and chart into Word.  Learn how to create a title page using MS-PowerPoint.  Due next Week: PowerPoint title page, a Printout from the word processor that contains: spreadsheet Table, Graph, and a discussion about the graph. Also you need to include had in a photocopy of the original data.
13 October
[DUE: PowerPoint Title Page.   Spreadsheet, graph & discussion integrated and printed from a Word Processor (30 points)
On the Web, find the documents that explain how to create your own HTML documents (Web Pages).  Learn to set up your own home page.  Due next Week:A print out of the web page and the HTML Source code.  Be sure to include the URL so your lab instructor can visit your page.
20 October
[DUE: Print out of your home page (Include the zoo URL (http:// address) and HTML source code). (30 points)]
Note: Tuesday Lab students either go to the lab Friday Morning, or to the Tuesday afternoon lab earlier this week.
Create a new web page.  Learn to set up hyperlinks to other URLs and include pictures in your new web page.  Due next week: E-mail your new Web page URL (http:// address) to your instructor.
27 October
[DUE: Print out of your secondl your home page (Include the zoo URL (http:// address) and HTML source code). (30 points)]
Learn to prepare a 3-5 minute PowerPoint Slide Presentation of topic you would like to do your Final Lab Project on.
3 November
[DUE: Present you power point presentation in front of the class (30 points) ]
Introduction to the FINAL LAB PROJECT :  View the web page of instructions given to you by your lab instructor.  Read the instructions carefully.  You may wish to print them.  FINAL LAB PROJECT DUE,  (4 pm)
10 November
[DUE: Present you power point presentation in front of the class (30 points) ]
Graph details, pitfalls of project.  Work on Project.
17 November
Work on Project
25 November 4pm
Early hand in deadline for +10% extra credit on Final Lab Project.
24 November
No lectures or labs this week.  THANKSGIVING BREAK
1 December
Work on Project

5 December, Friday, 4pm DEADLINE FINAL LAB PROJECT DUE.  5 % OFF EACH DAY including Weekend days, LATE PENALTY.
12 December, Friday, 4pm ABSOLUTE DEADLINE! All late projects due (with -35% late penalty ). No Projects will be accepted after 4pm.
Week Starting -------------> 15 Sept.
 22 Sept.  29 Sept.  6 Oct.  13 Oct. 20 Oct.
27 Oct
3 Nov.
10 Nov.
 1 Dec.
Lab 1/dir Due -10% -20%/redo

Lab 2/email
Due -10% -20%/redo

Lab 3/Resume

Due -10% -20%/redo

Lab 4/Spreadsheet

Due -10% -20%/redo

Lab 5/PPoint/Word/Excel

Due -10% -20%/redo

Lab 6/Web 1

Due -10% -20%/redo

Lab 7/Web 2

Due -10% -20%/redo
Lab 8/Power Point Presentation

Due -10% -20%


 Tuesday 25 November (4 pm): EARLY HAND IN FOR FINAL LAB PROJECT, 10% EXTRA BONUS  POINTS.  If later than 4pm, no bonus.

 Friday 5 December (4pm): :  FINAL LAB PROJECT DUE,  If late: 5% OFF PER DAY Including Saturday and Sunday!

 Friday 12 December (4pm): ABSOLUTE DEADLINE for all late projects (35% off) Projects will not be accepted after 4pm.

Other courses you may wish to take after AGRI 85:

World Food Population and Sustainable Development, CDAE 002
Computer Aided Drafting and Design (CADD), CDAE 101
Research Methods for Applied Economists, CDAE 250
Advanced Computer Aided Drawing and Design, CDAE 195