COSC 250 Spring 2015 – Syllabus

COSC 250.101: Game Scripting [PDF]

Instructor: Bridget M. Blodgett
Office Hours:  Tuesday 4:00pm – 5:00pm
Wednesday 2:00pm – 4:00pm
Appointments available upon request
Office Location: 200C Academic Center
Phone: x5301


Course Information

Location: AC 219
Times: H 5:30P – 8:00P




Zelle, John. Python Programming: An Introduction to Computer Science, 2nd Edition (PP). Franklin, Beedle, & Associates. ISBN-10: 1590282418         ISBN-13: 978-1590282410



Sweigart, Al. Making Games with Python & Pygame (MG). CreateSpace Independent Publishing, 2012. ISBN-10: 1469901730        ISBN-13: 978-1469901732


Course Description

This course advances a student’s knowledge of game software design by examining advanced functions, variable types, software design tools and programming concepts. It expands upon materials covered in COSC 150: Introduction to Game Design while also introducing students to more complex types of data and programming structures. Introduces students to the software design process and focuses on developing good software design habits as well as advanced knowledge of programming techniques. By the end of the course, students are able to:

  • Implement their game design ideas in a software prototype
  • Read and understand portions of code provided to them
  • Debug code to make it compile correctly
  • Plan and outline the structure of a piece of software
  • Integrate external software and code into their programs


Course Requirements

In-Class Activities: Approximately 10 activities will be distributed in class during the course of the semester. These make up 25 percent of the class grade and are therefore very important in determining your standing in the class. Each activity is worth between 11 and 12 points for a max of 125 points.

Class Project: Students will design and build a working game that makes use of the tools from throughout the semester. The type of game will be chosen by the student during the course of the semester, but it must include substantial opportunity for applying course knowledge.

Homework: Students will individually complete five mini-projects that build on the in-class exercises and address specific elements of programming. Each mini-project will result in student code for an element or interaction that can potentially be applied to the final project.


Grading Policy
Total Points available: 500
1. Final Project (200 points): 40%
2. Homework (125 points): 25%
3. In-Class Activities (125 points): 25%
4. Class Participation (50 points): 10%
Percentage Points Grade

Percentage Points Grade
93 – 100 465 – 500 A
90 – 92.9 450 – 464 A-
87 – 89.9 435 – 449 B+
83 – 86.9 415 – 434 B
80 – 82.9 400 – 414 B-
75 – 79.9 375 – 399 C+
70 – 74.9 350 – 374 C
60 – 69.9 300 – 349 D
0 – 59.9 0 – 299 F

**Note: You can calculate your grade at any time by dividing your current number of points by the number of points evaluate and multiplying it by 100. The result can then be compared to the grading scheme to determine your current grade.**


Late Work
Late work will be accepted within 48 hours of the deadline for no higher than a B. However, unless there is a documented notice of illness or other excused absence, all credit will be lost for participation in that day’s workshop activities. Remember–bringing your work to class on time is the only way to participate in peer feedback exercises.

The final project will NOT be accepted late, as this would delay the submission of final grades.

Late Arrivals and Absence

If you miss a scheduled class, you will receive no credit for the group exercises. These cannot be made up–your absence robs your peers of feedback and input. In the event of documented excused absence, alternate assignments will be arranged.

If you are late to class, enter without interrupting. You will receive a zero for any work assigned before you arrived.

You are responsible for finding out what you’ve missed from classmates.

Classroom Technology Policy
This class meets in a computer lab, but this is not an invitation to use the computers in ways that detract from your learning or the learning of others. Headphones will not be tolerated in class. Personal electronics, such as cell phones and iPods, must be turned off during class time. If you have an exceptional reason for needing a cell phone let me know before class begins.

Mid-term Progress Reporting
Mid-term grades are posted on March 11th. This grade is either an S (satisfactory) or NS (not satisfactory). It is based upon the grade of all the work handed in at that point in the semester. Generally, students who have submitted work on time and show moderate effort in the course will receive an S. An NS is distributed to students who either have not submitted any work or are not making an effort. Neither grade is a guarantee of your final grade in the course.

Academic Dishonesty/Plagiarism Policy
The Academic Integrity Policy for the Yale Gordon College of Arts and Sciences, College of Public Affairs and Merrick School of Business can be found at

This class focuses primarily on programming over traditional written assignments. If students are struggling with finding a solution to a particular problem they may incorporate code from elsewhere on the Internet into their solution. If a student chooses to do so that code must be cited within either their submission or in-code comments with a link to the page and in total borrowed code should amount to no more than 30% of the total material submitted. This means that at a minimum 70% of the code for any assignment should be written by the student.

Equal Access
If you have a documented disability that requires accommodations, please contact the Center for Educational Access at (410) 837-4775 or via email at (for UB students) or the Center for Academic Success at (301) 738-6315 or via email at These offices provide reasonable and appropriate accommodations for students with documented disabilities.

Resource Centers for Students
Academic and counseling resources for students include but are not limited to:

  • Achievement and Learning Center
  • Langsdale Library
  • Technology Services
  • The Counseling Center
  • Office of Community Life and Dean of Students
  • Sakai Support; 1-855-501-0856



Topics & Required Reading
Week Month Day Topic Reading Other
1 Jan 29 Introduction  Class Syllabus 
2  Feb 5 Programming PP Chapter 1 End of Add/Drop Feb 6th
3 12 Simple Programs PP Chapter 2 Homework 1 Due
4 19 Numbers PP Chapter 3
5 26 Strings PP Chapter 4 Homework 2 Due
6  Mar 5 Simple Decisions PP Chapter 7
7 12 Loops and Complex Patterns PP Chapter 8 Homework 3 Due
8   19 Spring Break    
9 26 Functions PP Chapter 6  
10  Apr 2 Objects and Graphics PP Chapter 5 Late Drop March 31st
11 9 Data Collections Chapter 11 & MG Chapter 1 Homework 4 Due
12 16 PyGame Basics MG Chapter 2  
13 23 Sample Game 1 MG Chapter 3 Homework 5 Due
14 30 Sample Game 2 MG Chapter 4  
15  May 7 In-Class Work Final Project Due 5/8
16 Final Exam Week

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