Course Syllabus



Course number
CSE 223b
Course Title
Distributed Computing and Systems
Computer Science and Engineering
Lecture meeting time
Tu/Th 9:30 to 10:50
Lecture meeting location
EBU3B 4140
Final exam time

Teaching staff

Required texts

There are no required textbooks for this course. The following books may help provide background for CSE 223B. They are listed in rough order of usefulness. The texts below are available for free online.

Distributed Systems: Principles and Paradigms, 3rd ed., Andrew S. Tanenbaum and Maaten Van Steen.

The Datacenter as a Computer: An Introduction to the Design of Warehouse-Scale Machines, 2nd ed., by Barroso, Clidaras, and Hölzle

Computer Networks: A Systems Approach 5th ed., by Larry Peterson and Bruce Davie.


Course policies

Q&A / Message board

Piazza’s business model is based on selling data about students and their posts to 3rd parties. Rather than participating in that system, we’re going to use an alternative message board instead, namely Google’s Q&A board. This is a very new offering from Google, so please let the instructor know your feedback about how well it works.

Student expectations

Academic honesty

In this course, you are expected to adhere to the UCSD Policy on Integrity of scholarship. Any evidence of academic dishonesty on any assignment or exam will resort in an F in the class and a report to the university.

Electronic device policy

Studies have shown that using a computer during class can distract you and those around you. In fact, a majority of students tend to support a prohibition on electronic devices in class!

I will let you decide for yourself whether you’d like to use a computer or tablet during class, however to help those students that want to avoid distractions, I’m prohibiting the use of laptops and other electronic devices in the first few rows of the classroom (roughly the front third of the room). If you’d like to avoid distractions, please sit in those rows. Regardless of where you sit, you may not cause a distraction to your neighbors. This means that you may not watch TV/movies/video or play games on your computer/device if you bring one.

Disability Access

Students requesting accommodations for this course due to a disability or current functional limitation must provide a current Authorization for Accommodation (AFA) letter issued by the Office for Students with Disabilities (OSD) which is located in University Center room 202. Students are required to present their AFA letters to Faculty (please make arrangements to contact me privately) and to the CSE OSD Liaison in the department in advance so that accommodations may be arranged.

Title IX Compliance

The University recognizes the inherent dignity of all individuals and promotes respect for all people. If you feel that any part of the class, members of the class, or teaching staff are not upholding this standard, please let the instructor know immediately, or if you wish to remain anonymous, you can reach out directly to the Office for the prevention of harassment and discrimination.

Diversity and Inclusion

We are committed to fostering a learning environment for this course that supports a diversity of thoughts, perspectives and experiences, and respects your identities (including race, ethnicity, heritage, gender, sex, class, sexuality, religion, ability, age, educational background, etc.). Our goal is to create a diverse and inclusive learning environment where all students feel comfortable and can thrive.

Our instructional staff will make a concerted effort to be welcoming and inclusive to the wide diversity of students in this course. If there is a way we can make you feel more included please let one of the course staff know, either in person, via email/discussion board, or even in a note under the door. Our learning about diverse perspectives and identities is an ongoing process, and we welcome your perspectives and input.

We also expect that you, as a student in this course, will honor and respect your classmates, abiding by the UCSD Principles of Community ( Please understand that others’ backgrounds, perspectives and experiences may be different than your own, and help us to build an environment where everyone is respected and feels comfortable. If you experience any sort of harassment or discrimination, please contact the instructor as soon as possible. If you prefer to speak with someone outside of the course, please contact the Office of Prevention of Harassment and Discrimination:

Attendance Policy

Attendance in class is required.