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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Discrete Optimization by The University of Melbourne

4.8
stars
582 ratings
136 reviews

About the Course

Tired of solving Sudokus by hand? This class teaches you how to solve complex search problems with discrete optimization concepts and algorithms, including constraint programming, local search, and mixed-integer programming. Optimization technology is ubiquitous in our society. It schedules planes and their crews, coordinates the production of steel, and organizes the transportation of iron ore from the mines to the ports. Optimization clears the day-ahead and real-time markets to deliver electricity to millions of people. It organizes kidney exchanges and cancer treatments and helps scientists understand the fundamental fabric of life, control complex chemical reactions, and design drugs that may benefit billions of individuals. This class is an introduction to discrete optimization and exposes students to some of the most fundamental concepts and algorithms in the field. It covers constraint programming, local search, and mixed-integer programming from their foundations to their applications for complex practical problems in areas such as scheduling, vehicle routing, supply-chain optimization, and resource allocation....

Top reviews

SK
May 29, 2019

Exceptional coverage of optimization fundamentals. Learning of practical applied methods. Real university level course, no water down "data science". Absolutely love it! Thank you professor Pascal.

JB
Jul 21, 2017

Great course, the teacher is very clear and often goes into sufficient depth for the student to understand concepts.\n\nAssignments are challenging and help understanding course content.

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26 - 50 of 131 Reviews for Discrete Optimization

By Li H

Jan 6, 2018

The programming assignments of this course are very challenge and the pursuit of the 'Good Optimization' is torturous, especially after Knapsack Problem, such as the TSP, Facility Problem and VRP. However, the sense of achievement gained when you passed the online judge is also unspeakable. Last but not least, Professor Pascal Van Hentenryck is really a nice man, he is humorous and charming. Wish you a memorable and nice experiences on the on the journey of OPTIMIZATION.

By Tom B

Jun 3, 2020

One of the most challenging courses I have taken, but extremely rewarding. The course does not hand hold you through assignments but rather uses the lectures to introduce and explain concepts (exceptionally well).

The assignments support a wide variety of approaches and typically require extensive further research and understanding.

They are not kidding about the time commitment, but if you can make the time for it this is an incredible course - highly recommend

By Pedro J

Jun 4, 2020

I already knew some concepts but with this course i am able to finally understand them. It is very well explained and it goes through a lot of topics in discrete optimization, giving a good theoretical and experimental basis.

The assignments are hard but very rewarding when you complete them. They push you to think about the problem and how to solve it, even with the right tools you still have to put everything together, just like in a real world situation.

By Øystein S

Jun 27, 2018

Good course. The instructor is really a fast talker and it may be hard to grasp everything at the first time you watch the videos. About the assignments: The assignments are really hard. Yes! Really really hard. I've never taken any MOOC course where the assignments are so hard. Al in all, I can say that this course really thought me something about discrete optimization, and I would love to learn even more about this interesting field.

By Anders A

Sep 19, 2018

This is my fifth or sixt online course on coursera, and it is without a doubt the best one I have done. Apart from the little goofy start with Indiana Jones, I simple loved the course. There was a lot of useful material covering what would have been several courses at my university. The assignments were challenging, sometimes frustrating, but really fun as well. I had a lot of fun doing this course.

By DS

Aug 26, 2020

Amazing course! The Lecturer is not only a leader in the field, but also an excellent educator. The concepts are explained clearly. Historical remarks and anecdotes bring the material to life. I also really enjoyed the assignments. They were challenging and quite time-consuming, but very helpful toward the learning experience.

By Zoltan B

Feb 23, 2021

Amazing course, one of the best in this topic. Its so motivating how Pascal Van Hentenryck is presenting the lectures with that much enthusiasm and then all the programming assignments are also very well crafted. It is obvious how much work has been done to create this course. Thank you very much for this amazing course!

By Vasiliy C

May 5, 2020

Just finished the last assignment and want to say huge thanks to prof. Van Hentenryck and all the crew for putting their efforts into this brilliant course. One of the best courses I've done on Coursera.

PS : to all who is just starting this course - embrace yourself, the ride is gonna be though but it's woth it!

By Shihan, Z

Jul 5, 2019

I appreciate the enthusiasm from the professor's teaching. Also the quality of the homework is very high, which help me deeply understand the concept about optimization methods. I highly recommend this course to all the people who desire the basic knowledge about NP-hard problem, and optimization thought.

By Edmund L

Sep 28, 2019

Difficult course, but rewarding once you have completed the assignments. This course presents a variety of discrete optimization problems to be solved. Great course overall, although I wish the course is structured such that we don't need to read research papers to complete the assignments.

By Aliaksei K

Jul 16, 2017

One of the most challenging and interesting sources among all that I've passed so far. The lector has it's own hilarious style of teaching. All the material is carefully created and well structured. Every time that you pass the programming assignment, you feel that it's a real achievement.

By Andrew K

Oct 30, 2019

Best course I have done so far on Coursera. The assignments are the best part of the course and are very challenging but ensure that you learn and understand the material. You will want to have some programming experience as you will need to code optimization algorithms from scratch.

By Francisco J R S

Apr 12, 2020

Awesome! It was my very first course on this platform and I coudn't be more satisfied. The main instructor was hilarious sometimes and finally I terminated to love him hahaha. It's dense but this course it is perfect to any student of computer science, maths or economics.

By Guillaume F

Feb 9, 2021

Very challenging as the assignments can be very hard, especially if you want to write your own algorithms and not use a pre-existing tool. The teacher is fantastic, very clear and enthusiastic at the same time, you can feel the passion from his presentations.

By Leo

Jan 21, 2020

I was surprised how clear are the Lectures. It's such fun taking this course. We use the techniques (Dynamic Progrmaming, Local Search, etc) to solve those NP-complete problems. Highly recommond it to anyone who wants to refresh their optimization skills.

By Chitrang S

Mar 31, 2019

Excellent Course, I would highly recommend for all algorithmist and programmers. It step by steps teaches how to approach NP-hard problems. The way the professor teaches make this highly difficult subject easy. Of-course assignments are very challenging.

By hope

Aug 26, 2019

The best course on Coursera. Unlike the do-it-by-rote Deep Learning classes, there is much creativity and freedom in tackling all assignments. The assignments are stimulating, challenging, and approximate real life problem solving very well.

By Erick

May 4, 2020

This is a really challenging and demanding course! Give me a great fundamentals of discrete optimization and make me think how to solve many classical hard problem as Traveling salesman Problem and Vehicle routing problem. It worth it!

By Carlos V

Apr 1, 2017

If you want to understand better optimization techniques, this is an excellent Course, the explanations and examples are one of the best, the Course is also very challenging but worth the time and effort, you will learn a lot.

By Mr. J

Jul 2, 2019

Brilliant examination of the basic central aspect of discrete Optimization

I found the projects to be enjoyable and challenging

I elected to not use libraries to make my solutions.

Working the projects improved my Python.

By Bharat K

Mar 23, 2020

I learned very valuable optimization skills by doing. Learning by doing is the best kind of learning. Professor Van Hentenryck's teaching style is so lively. You will keep wanting to rerun the videos and keep going!

By Masood J K

Jun 21, 2019

Great lectures and helpful homework. The assignments were really hard but it was worth it. I learned a lot from them. The only thing I can put a comment on is that the Brach and Bound method was not taught clearly.

By Florian K

Jun 28, 2020

Very interesting and very good presentation. Nice selection of topics. I loved the programming exercises. One can start right away, and doesn't need to bother with reading data and bringing it to the right form.

By Boris O

Feb 21, 2020

Wow, that was quite an experience! Beware, the assignments are so addictive, you may have a hard time forcing yourself to take breaks from coding. Thank you so much, looking forward for more from the creators!

By Shing Y L

Feb 16, 2021

The course is adequately challenging. It gives me an idea of the challenges in solving large-scale optimization problems. Assignments can be hard, but you get a sense of accomplishment once you complete them.