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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Number Theory and Cryptography by University of California San Diego

4.5
stars
538 ratings

About the Course

A prominent expert in the number theory Godfrey Hardy described it in the beginning of 20th century as one of the most obviously useless branches of Pure Mathematics”. Just 30 years after his death, an algorithm for encryption of secret messages was developed using achievements of number theory. It was called RSA after the names of its authors, and its implementation is probably the most frequently used computer program in the world nowadays. Without it, nobody would be able to make secure payments over the internet, or even log in securely to e-mail and other personal services. In this course we will start with the basics of the number theory and get to cryptographic protocols based on it. By the end, you will be able to apply the basics of the number theory to encrypt and decrypt messages, and to break the code if one applies RSA carelessly. You will even pass a cryptographic quest! As prerequisites we assume only basic math (e.g., we expect you to know what is a square or how to add fractions), basic programming in python (functions, loops, recursion), common sense and curiosity. Our intended audience are all people that work or plan to work in IT, starting from motivated high school students....

Top reviews

SS

Jul 31, 2020

I loved this course! It is unlike any I have taken before. All courses in this specialization have always included fun activities to make the taught content fun and understandable.

PW

Nov 21, 2018

I was really impressed especially with the RSA portion of the course. It was really well explained, and the programming exercise was cleverly designed and implemented. Well done.

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101 - 115 of 115 Reviews for Number Theory and Cryptography

By Baruch L

Dec 4, 2020

The lectures are not always clear enough. Somtimes the explanations in the speech of the formulas are not accurate enough and it will be better to add more formal explanations with letters.

i don't understand why during the course the staff did not answered to some of my questions from the theoretical material although I paid twice for the course.

I left 6 unanswered questions in the fourth week in the forum. I hope that the staff will answered them.

My email is b77aruch@gmail.com

By Lionel L R Q

Jul 10, 2020

The concepts taught are honestly pretty interesting and i enjoyed learning the content. However, there were some parts of the lesson that you wish an example would be given for clarity, e.g. explanation on RSA. Also, don't expect much help from the discussion forums by teaching staff as reply rate is slow. Lastly, debugging for the RSA codes are pretty limited, so do expect more time spent! Overall, still an insightful course for an introduction on Cryptography.

By M. A

Aug 11, 2020

The course was fun, the final assignment was really interesting. Python programming is mandatory for anyone who wants to succeed in this class. Nevertheless, I was hoping there is more mathematical discussion regarding cryptography. Some key elements, such as Diffie-Hellman key exchange and discrete logarithm problem are missing from this course. Anyway, it is still interesting though.

By Pratyush A

Jul 15, 2020

The course is good, the topics covered are nice. The problem is that they don't teach examples very well. The last few quizzes will be tough and it will be hard to complete the course if you don't have good coding skills. The topics are interesting, that's what made me stick to the course. Also the professor's accent is a little difficult to understand.

By Matthew W

Dec 2, 2017

The quiz from the RSA segment is a drag. The reason is that I don't see the implementation of the "given" functions and debugging via the text box provided is annoying. The first 3 segments are well prepared and have enough information for someone like me to pursuit this topic further.

By Ingrid Z

Jul 28, 2020

Last chapter was way too challenging compared to the previous ones. I had a really tough time with the assignments. Otherwise, a very nice course !

By Long C

Dec 25, 2021

OJ system is not good and support should be better.

By Shubham U

Apr 29, 2020

The instructor sometimes rushed through the content.

By Howoo J

Jul 7, 2020

Tough course for non-math

By Ishrar C

May 17, 2020

needs more examples for the theorems. they emphasize on the proofs more than making us understand the theorems. otherwise, okay.

By 김한아

Jan 10, 2021

This module was the worst module in the whole specialization course. Lack of example, non-clear explanation, variables that are difficult to understand, weird way of abstracting the explanation. it feels like instructor abstract in a way that only to take student already have pre-knowledge to understand the course.

During the Euclid, It took me 4h on keep watching the videos and I found a single page that explained to me in 2 min.

Even I don't get the certificate for specialization I am not going to finish this module. From my experience, this Is a very good module that makes a person to hate to learn about number theory and cryptography

During the course, I thought only I was the one who doesn't understand what the instructors says but looking at the review I noted that it is not the case

By Charlene T

Oct 16, 2020

This was a pretty rough course, Michael Levin knows his stuff but his style of charging straight through everything with variables didn't work for me so I would catch the title of the lesson and head straight over to YouTube. Examples of the concepts in action where the instructor interacts with the screen instead of just talking over powerpoint slides would be great because the content is legit but the instruction could stand a boost or two

By Shubham C

Jul 30, 2020

After few lecture this course is just slides reading and no proper explanation.

By Samuel R S

Jun 18, 2018

very confusing explanations. had to look up everything elsewhere.

By ID

Jun 3, 2022

Many errors, dificult to understand