Discrete Structures

Computer Science 2800
Cornell University
Spring 2012



Note: This is the website for the Spring 2012 course. For the Spring 2013 course website, go to

Instructor: Rafael Pass

Time: MWF 1:25-2:15
Place: Olin Hall 155

Office hour: you can meet me after class, or on Monday’s at 2:20-3:00 in Upson 5139

Course Web page:

Head TA: Karn Seth

Other TAs and Office hours: Staff Page

Course Admin: Maria Witlox (mpr13 at




Pass and Tseng: Lecture Notes in Discrete Structures.

These notes may be updated during the semester.

(Please let me know if you find any typos or mistakes.)


The following textbook is also useful:

Discrete Mathematics and Its Applications, Rosen; McGraw-Hill (6th edition)


Course Administration


We are using the course management system, CMS.  Please login to and check whether you are registered. There will be a list of courses you are registered for, and Com S 2800 should be one of them.  If not, please send your full name and Cornell netid to Maria so he can register you.  You can check your grades in CMS. 


Homeworks and Grading


There will be 9 homeworks, 2 in-class prelims and a final exam.


The homeworks can be found in CMS. Graded homework assignments can be picked up in Upson 360 on weekdays during 12pm – 4pm.


Important dates


Homeworks need to be handed in before the beginning of class.

Late days are granted only under very special circumstances, but to compute the final HW grade, we drop the HW with the lowest score.

To request a regrade, download and print the regrade request form and follow the instructions on it.


Weights: homeworks 30%, mid-terms 2*15% and final 40%.


Homework Policy


You are free to collaborate with other students on the homework, but you must turn in your own individually written solution and you must specify the names of your collaborators. It is a violation of this policy to submit a problem solution that you are unable to explain orally to a member of the course staff. It is a violation of the Academic Integrity Code to copy any one else’s solution.


Syllabus and Reading (subject to change)


  1. Sets, Functions and Relations : (Pass-Tseng: Ch 1, Rosen: Ch 2.1-3, 2.4:158-160, 8.1,8.5,8.4:544-548)
  2. Proof techniques: (Pass-Tseng: Ch 2, Rosen: Ch 1.6-7, 4.1-2,4.3:294-299)
  3. Number theory (Pass-Tseng: Ch 3, Rosen: Ch 3.4-5, 3.6:227-229, 3.7)
  4. Counting/combinatorics (Pass-Tseng: Ch 4, Rosen: Ch 5.1-4, 7.5)
  5. Probability (Pass-Tseng: Ch 5, Rosen: Ch 6)
  6. Logic (Pass-Tseng: Ch 6, Rosen: Ch 1.1-4)
  7. Graph theory (Pass-Tseng: Ch 7, Rosen: Ch 9.1-5,9.8)
  8. Finite automata and regular languages (Pass-Tseng: Ch 8, Rosen: Ch 12.2-4)


Each module corresponds to 4-5 lectures (i.e., 1.5 week).