CIS 673: Computer-Aided Verification, Spring 2020

Instructor: Rajeev Alur ( alur@cis)

Class: Mon Wed 3--4.30 , Towne 315

Piazza site


How can a programmer verify that the software they have designed works correctly as intended? Computer-aided verification is a sub-discipline of computer science aimed at developing tools and techniques to assist programmers meet this goal. These tools have now reached a level of maturity where they are being integrated in system design in companies such as Amazon, Facebook, Google, and Microsoft. This course focuses on logical foundations necessary to formalize the question of software verification and algorithmic tools necessary to automate the challenging task of software verification to the extent possible.


The course assumes basic knowledge of algorithms, data structures, programming languages, computational complexity, and propositional logic. The course requires mathematical maturity, and is appropriate for PhD students who wish to pursue research in formal methods, programming languages, or cyber-physical systems, and undergraduate/Masters students who want to understand the techqniues used in formal verification tools. If you need more information to decide, contact the instructor.


Every week, students are expected to read course handouts and participate actively during class. There will be no homeworks or exams, but each student is required to do a class project. The project can be (1) a case study of applying formal verification to design/debug/understand a system component, (2) an implementation, and its evalution, to enhance features/scalability of a verification tool, or (3) a project of your choice relevant to the themes of the course. At the end of the semester, you are required to submit a written report and give a presentation about the project.


The exact set of topics will be determined dynamically based on the students' interests. Below is a tentative organization of the course:

Lecture slides




Maintained by Rajeev Alur