Paper Review Guidelines

Write a ~400 word critical response to each required paper. You only need to read one paper in depth, the other you can skim, but you still need to write a response to both. It is extremely valuable to be able to skim and know what is going on so lets practice!

  1. In the first paragraph:
    1. State the problem that the paper tries to solve.
    2. Summarize the main contributions.
  2. In one or more additional paragraphs:
    1. Evaluate the paper's strenghts and weaknesses.
    2. Discuss something you would have done differently if you had written the paper.
    3. Suggest one or more interetsting open problems on related topics.
Your most important task is to demonstrate that you've read the paper and thought carefully about the topic. Paper responses are due before the start of class via the online submission system. After you upload your work, the system will ask you to assess two responses written by your peers. We'll combine peer feedback and our own evaluation when determining your grade.

Reading list / Schedule

This is a rough schedule, depending on how things go and where the interest is in the class, we can cover these topics, or some additional ones as well. We'll start here and see where the semester takes us!

Page last updated: 05/30/23 @ 16:00:41

Week 1 - Welcome / Ethics / Privacy

Tuesday, January 10th


Thursday, January 12th

Notes: No reviews on these papers!

Week 2 - Web Privacy / Botnets and Denial of Service Attacks

Tuesday, January 17th

Notes: No reviews yet... don't worry they are coming!

Thursday, January 19th

Notes: HotCRP reviews start now for all required readings (starting with email tracking paper)

Week 3 - Botnets and Denial of Service Attacks / Network Security

Tuesday, January 24th

Notes: You only need to read one of these in-depth, skim the others. Remember to write reviews for all papers (indicate in your review if it was a skim or not)

Thursday, January 26th


Week 4 - Network Security / Elections

Tuesday, January 31st


Thursday, February 2nd


Week 5 - Election Security / Human Factors

Tuesday, February 7th


Thursday, February 9th


Week 6 - Human Factors / Machine Learning

Tuesday, February 14th


Thursday, February 16th

Notes: For these papers, just do a 1.5 read through and reviews

Week 7 - Machine Learning / Critical Systems Security

Tuesday, February 21st


Thursday, February 23rd


Week 8 - Critical Systems Security / Project Brainstorming

Tuesday, February 28th


Thursday, March 2nd



Tuesday, March 7th

Holiday - no class

Thursday, March 9th

Holiday - no class

Week 10 - Planning / Online Freedom

Tuesday, March 14th

Notes: The rest of the schedule is fully open to move around, and cover anything we are interested in!

Thursday, March 16th

Notes: Project Proposal Due at 11:59PM ET

Week 11 - Online Freedom / Web Security

Tuesday, March 21st


Thursday, March 23rd

Notes: No review for the Google presentation, just take a peak at it beforehand

Week 12 - Web Security / Nation State Security

Tuesday, March 28th


Thursday, March 30th

Week 13 - Nation State Security / Final Project

Tuesday, April 4th


Thursday, April 6th

Notes: Talk about our projects, progress, and meet with your group

Week 14 - Project Meetings / Presentation Day 1

Tuesday, April 11th

Notes: Talk about our projects, progress, and meet with your group

Thursday, April 13th

Final Presentations Day 1

Week 15 - Presentation Day 2

Tuesday, April 18th

Final Presentations Day 2

Thursday, April 20

No class - work on your course project

Week 15 - "Finals"

Tuesday, April 25th

No class - work on your course project

Thursday, April 27th