COGS 499W

Advanced Undergraduate Project

Fall-Winter Term: 2016-2017

(Project must be proposed and approved in Fall to start working in Winter)

 

Prerequisites:     Level 4 and registered in a COGS Specialization Plan and an overall GPA of 1.90 and a GPA of 2.6 from 30.0 units in CISC and a GPA of 2.60 in COGS.

Exclusion:   CISC 499 and no more than 6.0 units in CISC 498.

Instructor:

Farhana H. Zulkernine, PhD, PEng

Assistant Professor

Coordinator, Cognitive Science Program
756 Goodwin Hall, School of Computing, Queen's University
Kingston, Ontario, Canada K7L 3N6

E-mail: Farhana at cs dot queensu dot ca (farhana@cs.queensu.ca)

Website: http://research.cs.queensu.ca/home/farhana
Tel: (613)533-6426


 

Details and Expectations

In COGS499, students will do research projects on topics posted by professors who would also supervise their research work. The work generally addresses a cutting edge research problem.  

Students are graded based on

1.      a written report that include research study and/or a description of the work done, 

2.      a poster presentation, and

3.      a developed software/model (optional depends on supervisor).

You can do a project in other cognitive science related disciplines such as philosophy, psychology, neuroscience, linguistics or computer science (CISC499) provided:

a)      there is a cognitive science component in the project,

b)      you find a supervisor in the corresponding discipline who can supervise and grade the project, and

c)      the project proposal is approved by the COGS499 instructor.

Depending on the type of the written report and the deliverables, students have two options for projects, Thesis option and Research Report option, as described below in further detail. The marking schemes for the projects vary based on the project option.

If you anticipate carrying out the Thesis option, you are advised to seek out supervision as soon as possible. If you are taking the Research Report option, please begin to consider your topic, and which type of report you want to undertake, and prepare your preliminary (one-page) description. You should all have either arranged supervision (for Thesis Option), or have your preliminary description approved (Report Option) by Fall (dates are specified below). The final results are due at the end of the Winter Term. The early start is necessary to ensure that every student is on track within the Fall term, and has the opportunity to make progress this term if he or she should wish to schedule it that way.

Proposal due:          Oct 7, 2016

Approval due:         Oct 31, 2016

Contract signed:      Nov 15, 2016

Poster due:             Mar 25, 2017

Code/Report draft:  Mar 31, 2017

Final submissions:   Apr 07, 2017

Meeting Times: This is a seminar course. Students will present/discuss about their progress with the designated supervisor. Students doing the research project option are expected to discuss and summarize research papers read every week during the class time

Class time and location
Days & Times Room Dates
Mon 9:30am - 11:30am TBA Jan 09 - Apr 07

 

Marking

The marking is different for the two different project options (details are given below).

(1)   THESIS OPTION: Includes a written report, a software/model, and a poster presentation.

  1. Project Proposal 5%

  2. Progress reporting 5%

  3. 60% for the quality of the project or software/model :  a) research, b) implementation, c) results

  4. 20% for the final document,

  5. 10% for a final presentation and poster.


(2)   RESEARCH REPORT OPTION: The Research Report requires a one-page (max) description of the intended topic and category (as described below) which should be submitted in the Fall term. Once the report topic is approved by the COGS499 instructor, the student can begin working on the COGS499 report. The final result should be about 40-50 pages long (double spaced). COGS499 instructors and advisors will be available to help clarify the format and requirements. The final mark will be assigned by the COGS499 instructor, and will be

  1. Project proposal 5%

  2. Class discussions 15% (Read papers and discuss summary)

  3. Report abstract 5%

  4. Report skeleton 5%

  5. Final project presentation 20% (slides or poster 10% and presentation 10%), and

  6. Written Report 50% (based on depth of study and quality of report, approx. 40 including references).

 

Project Options

 (1)   THESIS: Includes a written report, a software/model, and a poster presentation.

(2)   RESEARCH REPORT: The Research Report requires a one-page (max) description of the intended topic and category (as described below) which should be submitted in the Fall term. Once the report topic is approved by the COGS499 instructor, the student can begin working on the COGS499 report. The final result should be about 40-50 pages long (double spaced). COGS499 instructors and advisors will be available to help clarify the format and requirements. The final mark will be assigned by the COGS499 instructor.

Depending on the scope of the research topic, the report can be one of the three different types as described below.

  • Breadth Paper A breath paper covers a broad area such as Cognitive Science methods in Education, Neural Network models for behaviour prediction, or Cognitive Models in Music Appreciation. It should provide a categorization and taxonomy of all the major approaches to research within the area. The paper should include a table to compare and contrast the various research approaches, type of applications an approach is suitable for, and its strengths and weaknesses. The discussions should explain and evaluate the various approaches giving some details of prominent examples or applications. The papers should conclude with a list of open problems in the area, expected results if applicable, and future research directions. At the end of the project, a student should have a critical overview of the research area and should be able to choose a specific approach for a given problem.

  • Depth Paper A depth paper focuses on a more narrow area of research such as Cognitive Science methods in web-based Education or Neural Network models for behaviour prediction for a specific disease case. Thus it should address a more specific approach or problem topic, and explore variations of the approach in much more detail at the implementation level to discover specific open problems. A critical comparison of the different approaches to the research problem must be included in the report at the level of implementation methods and evaluation of results in both table format and discussions. The paper should conclude with the prominent open questions in the area, and argue for the use of particular approaches in addressing them. The student will gain expert insight on a specific problem and a critical perspective of the existing approaches applied to that problem area.

  • Research Proposal A research proposal is basically a proposal to implement a possible solution (for example, an extension to an existing approach) to an already identified critical research issue in a narrow problem area. The report should provide an abbreviated version of Depth Paper analysis to argue about the importance of the specific research problem (but quickly focus on a single issue, and along with it, a single method of approaching it) and the chosen approach. Then it should provide a detail discussion of the selected approach, its importance, the motivation behind the proposed research, and research hypothesis to address the problem (all the steps that would be necessary to implement the solution). The report should conclude with an explanation of the expected results and their impacts, and a list of criteria and strategy to evaluate the results. The Research Proposal format is similar to requirements that exist in graduate studies and will give the student valuable insights for graduate research.

Project Proposal

See Moodle website for details about format of the proposal, the deadlines and the format of the agreement form to be signed by the student and the supervisor.

Proposals must be submitted by Fall and approved by the proposed supervisor and COGS 499 coordinator (me). The work will begin in Winter. In Fall term within the specified deadlines students must

  1. Select a project from the advertised projects OR select a topic for research report option,

  2. Find a supervisor and then discuss with the supervisor about the work. If you are proposing a research topic, get approval about the validity of the topic of research report.

  3. Get an agreement signed to work on the project in Winter under the supervision of the proposed supervisor. Agreement should be signed by the student and the proposed supervisor and submitted to the COGS 499 coordinator.