About this Specialization

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This specialization is a mix of theory and practice: you will learn algorithmic techniques for solving various computational problems and will implement about 100 algorithmic coding problems in a programming language of your choice. No other online course in Algorithms even comes close to offering you a wealth of programming challenges that you may face at your next job interview. To prepare you, we invested over 3000 hours into designing our challenges as an alternative to multiple choice questions that you usually find in MOOCs. Sorry, we do not believe in multiple choice questions when it comes to learning algorithms...or anything else in computer science! For each algorithm you develop and implement, we designed multiple tests to check its correctness and running time — you will have to debug your programs without even knowing what these tests are! It may sound difficult, but we believe it is the only way to truly understand how the algorithms work and to master the art of programming. The specialization contains two real-world projects: Big Networks and Genome Assembly. You will analyze both road networks and social networks and will learn how to compute the shortest route between New York and San Francisco (1000 times faster than the standard shortest path algorithms!) Afterwards, you will learn how to assemble genomes from millions of short fragments of DNA and how assembly algorithms fuel recent developments in personalized medicine.
Learner Career Outcomes
37%
Started a new career after completing this specialization.
25%
Got a pay increase or promotion.
Shareable Certificate
Earn a Certificate upon completion
100% online courses
Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Flexible Schedule
Set and maintain flexible deadlines.
Intermediate Level
Approx. 8 months to complete
Suggested 6 hours/week
English
Subtitles: English, Spanish
Learner Career Outcomes
37%
Started a new career after completing this specialization.
25%
Got a pay increase or promotion.
Shareable Certificate
Earn a Certificate upon completion
100% online courses
Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Flexible Schedule
Set and maintain flexible deadlines.
Intermediate Level
Approx. 8 months to complete
Suggested 6 hours/week
English
Subtitles: English, Spanish

There are 6 Courses in this Specialization

Course1

Course 1

Algorithmic Toolbox

4.6
stars
7,914 ratings
1,661 reviews
Course2

Course 2

Data Structures

4.6
stars
3,067 ratings
498 reviews
Course3

Course 3

Algorithms on Graphs

4.7
stars
1,603 ratings
257 reviews
Course4

Course 4

Algorithms on Strings

4.5
stars
803 ratings
136 reviews

Offered by

University of California San Diego logo

University of California San Diego

National Research University Higher School of Economics logo

National Research University Higher School of Economics

The logo of one of the Industry PartnersThe logo of one of the Industry PartnersThe logo of one of the Industry Partners

Frequently Asked Questions

  • If you subscribed, you get a 7-day free trial during which you can cancel at no penalty. After that, we don’t give refunds, but you can cancel your subscription at any time. See our full refund policy.

  • Yes! To get started, click the course card that interests you and enroll. You can enroll and complete the course to earn a shareable certificate, or you can audit it to view the course materials for free. When you subscribe to a course that is part of a Specialization, you’re automatically subscribed to the full Specialization. Visit your learner dashboard to track your progress.

  • Yes, Coursera provides financial aid to learners who cannot afford the fee. Apply for it by clicking on the Financial Aid link beneath the "Enroll" button on the left. You'll be prompted to complete an application and will be notified if you are approved. You'll need to complete this step for each course in the Specialization, including the Capstone Project. Learn more.

  • When you enroll in the course, you get access to all of the courses in the Specialization, and you earn a certificate when you complete the work. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free. If you cannot afford the fee, you can apply for financial aid.

  • This course is completely online, so there’s no need to show up to a classroom in person. You can access your lectures, readings and assignments anytime and anywhere via the web or your mobile device.

  • You will be able to apply the right algorithms and data structures in your day-to-day work and write programs that work in some cases many orders of magnitude faster. You'll be able to solve algorithmic problems like those used in the technical interviews at Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Yandex, etc. If you do data science, you'll be able to significantly increase the speed of some of your experiments. You'll also have a completed Capstone either in Bioinformatics or in the Shortest Paths in Road Networks and Social Networks that you can demonstrate to potential employers.

  • 1. Basic knowledge of at least one programming language: C++, Java, Python, C, C#, Javascript, Haskell, Kotlin, Ruby, Rust, Scala.

    We expect you to be able to implement programs that: 1) read data from the standard input (in most cases, the input is a sequence of integers); 2) compute the result (in most cases, a few loops are enough for this); 3) print the result to the standard output. For each programming challenge in this course, we provide starter solutions in C++, Java, and Python. The best way to check whether your programming skills are enough to go through problems in this specialization is to solve two problems from the first week. If you are able to pass them (after reading our tutorials), then you will definitely be able to pass the course.

    2. Basic knowledge of discrete mathematics: proof by induction, proof by contradiction.

    Knowledge of discrete mathematics is necessary for analyzing algorithms (proving correctness, estimating running time) and for algorithmic thinking in general. If you want to refresh your discrete mathematics skills, we encourage you to go through our partner specialization — Introduction to Discrete Mathematics for Computer Science (https://www.coursera.org/specializations/discrete-mathematics). It teaches the basics of discrete mathematics in try-this-before-we-explain-everything approach: you will be solving many interactive puzzles that were carefully designed to allow you to invent many of the important ideas and concepts yoursel

  • We believe that learning the theory behind algorithms (like in most Algorithms 101 courses taught at 1000s universities) is important but not sufficient for a professional computer scientist today. This specialization combines the theory of algorithms with many programming challenges. In contrast with many Algorithms 101 courses, you will implement over 100 algorithmic problems in the programming language of your choice. And you will see yourself that the best way to understand an algorithm is to implement it!

  • Time to completion can vary based on your schedule, but most learners are able to complete the Specialization in 6-8 months.

  • Each course in the Specialization is offered on a regular schedule, with sessions starting about once per month. If you don't complete a course on the first try, you can easily transfer to the next session, and your completed work and grades will carry over.

  • Basic knowledge of at least one programming language (C/C++, Java, Python): loops, arrays, stacks, recursion. Basic knowledge of mathematics: proof by induction, proof by contradiction.

  • We recommend taking the courses in the order presented, as each subsequent course will build on material from previous courses.

  • Coursera courses and certificates don't carry university credit, though some universities may choose to accept Specialization Certificates for credit. Check with your institution to learn more.

  • The lectures in this specialization will be self-contained. Most lectures will be based on the bestselling textbook "Algorithms" co-authored by Sanjoy Dasgupta from University of California at San Diego as well as Christos Papadimitriou and Umesh Vazirani from University of California at Berkeley. In addition to UCSD and Berkeley, the textbook has been adopted in over 100 top universities and is available on Internet.

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