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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Algorithmic Toolbox by University of California San Diego

12,380 ratings

About the Course

This online course covers basic algorithmic techniques and ideas for computational problems arising frequently in practical applications: sorting and searching, divide and conquer, greedy algorithms, dynamic programming. We will learn a lot of theory: how to sort data and how it helps for searching; how to break a large problem into pieces and solve them recursively; when it makes sense to proceed greedily; how dynamic programming is used in genomic studies. You will practice solving computational problems, designing new algorithms, and implementing solutions efficiently (so that they run in less than a second)....

Top reviews


Jan 19, 2021

The course was really amazing which provided deep knowledge from basic to advance that how algorithms works and how to design algorithms. Thanks to all the expert teachers who taught in this course.


Jan 19, 2017

I liked the fact that the algorithms are not just the introductory searching and sorting algorithms. The assignments are fairly difficult (I have decent scripting experience), but not impossibly so.

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176 - 200 of 2,551 Reviews for Algorithmic Toolbox

By Aman _

Jul 1, 2022

Apart from Greedy Algorithms, all topics were really well taught.

By Yusuf A

Mar 23, 2021

the last week 5 was very difficult to understand

By Wahyu G

Feb 21, 2018

If you're a self-taught coder, then you should take this course. It teaches you how to construct efficient and working algorithm. It's getting harder when it comes to Divide-and-Conquer because it is hard to imagine and also in the Dynamic Programming because the lecturer does not start with the definition of DP itself. The 'language' used by the lecturers in some sense is hard to be understood. Also, the mentors and people in the forum is not so active. I already asked several questions in the forum, but until now there's no responses.

The amazing thing about this course is it is the PROGRAMMING ASSIGNMENT. It'll force you to find external references. You have to spend more time than the estimated time from Coursera.

By Daniel D

Sep 5, 2022

Week 4-5 and 6 I think you can do better videos lectures. They were AWFUL compared to other courses. The concepts and topics you explained were very difficult and you usually jumped from A to Z without explaining a thing. The slides could have helped a lot but they were VERY bad too. I skipped a lot of your videos and went to youtube to learn.

The forum is pretty dead compared to other courses, it felt like you are by your own.

Nevertheless, the assignments were challenging and I learned a lot.

By Kyle C

Jul 5, 2022

Overall I was satisfied with the course and feel I have a solid grasp of the main concepts being taught.

Many of the problems in the quizzes and assignments are very poorly worded, so an excess of time is wasted trying to figure out what is expected of you.

Two of the professors (Rhodes and Kulikov) are very unengaging and their lectures in particular are muddled and difficult to follow.

By Raj D

Jun 28, 2020

First 3 weeks are very good and brilliantly explained but I lost my way from Week 4. I had to refer to many external videos on YouTube and other sources to complete the assignments.

Also the Ungraded tools don't work at all. I believe that they are an integral part of understanding the concepts and they should be fixed.

By Arshia A

Dec 5, 2020

the last 2 weeks weren't as good as expected

it could have been a lot better it was too long and exhausting

and the questions weren't even near the level of the teaching process and it was far harder

By Chetan

Dec 20, 2023

The questions are not provided with clarity, and failed test cases are not visible, which creates difficulties. While learning this course, I realized that it is more of a revision-type course.

By Jibran Z B

Nov 7, 2019

The way of communicating can be improved, rest is good.

By Anmol B

Dec 2, 2019

problems asked are not explained properly in videos

By Alireza B K

Nov 11, 2021

way too hard to understand

By Sriragh K

Jul 16, 2018

The course has multiple limitations and can improve a lot more. Two main issues I faced were these:Dynamic programming part one lectures were very poor and hard to understand as a result of which I had to view external sources to understand the topicSecondly, the idea of not showing test cases is a bit strange as understanding the failing test cases do not really come in the way of understanding algorithm, it simply makes the questions much harder and tedious to solve. This completely eliminates the purpose of the course and wastes the time of most students. I am a bit disappointed with this course and didn't see it as value for money.

By Raghav S

Oct 27, 2022

The course is not well explained. Youtube Tutorials are better. Also it's hard to understand the dialects of the teachers. There is no insight on each problem. I don't like this course at all. Not beginner friendly.

By Viraj D

May 1, 2019

Lack of coding practice.

By Tian

Jun 17, 2018

taking this one right now and almost give up. I got no support from the faculty or mentor, questions on the forum are rarely answered. If you get stuck in the problem you are pretty much wasting your time. I am not saying you should look at the answer right away, but if you have no clue what to do, answer should be provided to help. BUT THERE IS NOTHING THERE.

By Magnus P

Mar 4, 2017

I don't recommend this course. The lectures barely touch on the topics being taught, you are expected to go learn on your own. I learned more from the free Khan academy than from this course. It would have been worth more buying good literature on algorithms.

By Naga S

Aug 31, 2018

i'm unable to understand why my code is getting an error in your compiler. Because I had checked my code in various online compilers also, It is rediculous and I totally lost my patience since i was trying from past 10 days.

By Rohan G

Apr 22, 2018

The course is OK. But there is no mentor to answer the question in the discussion forum. So in case of any doubt no one is there to help.

By Yifei P

Nov 24, 2017

Too bad. I do not know how to run the program on my Mac. The professors' voice also made me annoyed.

By Sandeep M

Nov 9, 2019

lack of proper explanation and no beginner friendly content.

By Payam K

Jul 18, 2019

The instructors are terrible at teaching.

By Murali M K D

Jun 13, 2020

Well structured in terms of the flow. Covered all the design principles and paradigms. Best thing is that the assignments cover lot of standard algorithm questions and have perfect blend of already covered algorithms and uncovered ones. I can already see most of them relevant to my field of Data Science. I think the unique thing about this course and specialization is that most of the courses cover Data Structures first and wind up discussing more about LL, Stacks, Queues etc, and neglect the problem solving aspects. However, this specialization takes a reverse turn where they explain the standard Algorithms first and then later introduce DS as a means to solve advance problems. Going on to my next course in specialization. Thank you UCSD, NRU and Coursera :)

By Vaishnvee S S

Aug 30, 2020

The course was really helpful for me to understand Algorithms which is the basics of programming. However, I feel the 'Dynamic programming' part was explained is really too Good. This course was very interesting and helped me to understand algorithms more deeply. I strongly recommend everyone to take this course who is thinking to know a lots of about Data-structures and Algorithms. Great tutors and the doubt solvers who consistently helped me with lectures and discussion forums and also for helping me enhancing my skills specially on Dynamic Programming assignments. Thank you Coursera Amazing course! Motivated!!

- Vaishnvee Subhash Shinde

By Sanjana B

May 30, 2020

This was a very good course. I learned a lot of algorithmic problems. I liked it that they don't force you to complete all the assignments. You can complete the course by solving the problems within your reach and pass the criteria. Also, the number of problems is perfect. Neither too less, nor a lot. I had fun solving the problems. Since, I used Python 3, I didn't get most of the errors that many other people encountered (stack overflow, integer overflow, using vectors etc.). I wish I could see the test cases after passing the assignment, so that I could know what tests were cleared by my submitted code.

By Stephanie L

Jul 26, 2023

This course is fantastic. I am a math PhD who has taught math at the university level for years and this is EXACTLY how courses in the computational sciences should be taught. The lectures are phenomenal, balancing high-level discussion to develop intuition with detail and rigor essentially perfectly. The exercises are useful and interesting, and I appreciate that the grading system has high standards for both accuracy and efficiency. I feel that I have learned so much about algorithms, coding, and Python (my chosen language for the course).