2023-2024 / INFO0902-1

Data structures and algorithms


26h Th, 20h Pr, 40h Proj.

Number of credits

 Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Engineering5 crédits 
 Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Computer Science5 crédits 
 Master of Science (MSc) in Data Science5 crédits 
 Master of Science (MSc) in Computer Science and Engineering5 crédits 
 Master of Science (MSc) in Data Science and Engineering5 crédits 
 Master of Science (MSc) in Computer Science5 crédits 
 Master in business engineering (120 ECTS)5 crédits 
 Master in bio-informatics and modelling (120 ECTS)5 crédits 
 Master in geography: geomatics (120 ECTS)6 crédits 
 Master in mathematics (120 ECTS)6 crédits 
 Master in mathematics (60 ECTS)6 crédits 


Pierre Geurts

Language(s) of instruction

French language

Organisation and examination

Teaching in the second semester


Schedule online

Units courses prerequisite and corequisite

Prerequisite or corequisite units are presented within each program

Learning unit contents

Solving complex problems involves their decomposition into standard subproblems for which efficient and well-studied algorithms and data structures exist. This course is an introduction to the most important data structures and associated algorithms.
The course topics will include:

  • Tools to analyze algorithms (correction of algorithms, asymptotic notations)
  • Sorting algorithms (merge sort, quicksort, heapsort...)
  • Elementary data structures (stacks, priority queues, vector, sets, heap, graphs...)
  • Dictionary structure (binary search trees, hash tables, tries...)
  • Generic problem solving methods (brute force, divide and conquer, greedy algorithm, dynamic programming...)
  • Graph algorithms (search, shortest path, minimum spanning trees...)
Our approach will be theoretical: for each problem, we will systematically determine upper and lower bounds on the running times, and show the asymptotic behavior of our algorithms.

Learning outcomes of the learning unit

At the end of the course, the students will master the basis of algorithmics and will have a good knowledge of the main data structures. Given a new problem, they will be able to make a principled choice of the most appropriate choice of structure and manipulation algorithms given the practical problem constraints. They will also be able to use the main theoretical tools available to analyze the performance of algorithms.

This course contributes to the learning outcomes I.1, I.2, II.1, III.1, III.2, IV.1, IV.2, VI.1, VI.2, VII.2 of the BSc in engineering.

Prerequisite knowledge and skills

The following course is a prerequisite:

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

The weekly theoretical lectures and practical sessions will be complemented by practical assignments, which will consist in analyzing a problem, finding the best algorithm and data structures to solve it, and to implement the solution in C.
Participation to the theoretical lectures and practical sessions is voluntary but highly recommended. The assignments are mandatory.

Mode of delivery (face to face, distance learning, hybrid learning)

Face-to-face, in the second quadrimester, in French.

Recommended or required readings

Several reference books will be suggested to the students, but reading them is not mandatory. Slides, problems and solutions and other materials will be available on the eCampus space of the course.

Assessment methods:

  • First session (June): 3 assignments (30%) and written exam (70%).
  • Second session: 1 assignment for students who have not completed the assignments during the year (10%), written exam (90%).
  • Assignments are mandatory to have access to the written exam. Students who have completed the assignments during the semester can keep their mark for the second session.

Work placement(s)

Organisational remarks and main changes to the course

The contents of the theoretical and practical sessions, as well as the assignments and useful links, will be made available on the eCampus space of the course.


  • Teacher: Pierre Geurts, +32 4 366 48 15, p.geurts@uliege.be
  • Teaching Assistants: TBD
  • Preferred contact modes: e-mail (info0902@uliege.be) or personal contact after the lectures or by appointment.

Association of one or more MOOCs

Items online

Course material on Campus
Lecture notes, exercises and project statements are available on Ecampus