Course Information


Probability is a mathematical discipline for reasoning about randomness: it helps us make decisions in the face of uncertainty and build better systems. In this course, we will teach you the fundamental ideas of probability and random processes. The various assignments are carefully designed to strengthen your mathematical understanding of probability and to demonstrate how these concepts can be applied to the real world, be it in communication networks, control systems, or machine learning.


Knowledge of probability at the level of CS 70 or STAT 134. Linear algebra at the level of EECS 16A or Math 54.

Course Outline

  1. Fundamentals of Probability / 4 weeks
    • Review: Discrete and Continuous Probability
    • Bounds, Convergence of Random Variables, Law of Large Numbers
    • Discrete Time Markov Chains
  2. Random Processes and Estimation / 6 weeks
    • Transforms, Central Limit Theorem
    • Queueing, Poisson Processes, Continuous Time Markov Chains
    • Communication, Information Theory
    • MLE/MAP, Detection, Hypothesis Testing
  3. Applications of Probability / 4 weeks
    • Kalman Filtering, Tracking
    • Markov Decision Problems, Linear Quadratic Gaussian Control
    • Hidden Markov Chains, Optimization


The course will follow the new Walrand textbook (see Piazza for access).

Other References

Some students may find it helpful to reference parts of the B&T textbook, but we will not be using it this semester, and it is not necessary.


We will be using Piazza for class discussion. Rather than emailing questions to the GSIs, we encourage you to post your questions on Piazza.


We will use Gradescope for all submissions/grade-related items. If you are not added automatically, please use the code RWKVJ7 to join. Note that our policy for accepting assignments (not exams) is that if Gradescope accepts the assignment, it is accepted, even if it says late or assigns a late timestamp.


The grading breakdown is as follows:


We will be using a clobber policy where your final can replace your grade for either MT1 or MT2, but not both. We will not be proctoring exams.

In situations that will foreseeably result in a need for accommodation, requests must be made no later than Friday Feb. 12th using this form:

See the exams page for more details.



Self-Grading Policy

We will periodically be checking self-grades internally to ensure that they are accurate. If we find that your self-grades do not align with our scores (either positively or negatively), we will reach out to you and adjust your self-grades. If you do not hear from us, your self-grades will be used for your homework grade. Please remember the Academic Dishonesty policy and the Berkeley honor code and try to report your self-grades accurately.

Each problem is worth 20 points:

For problems with subparts, we will specify the breakdown; apply to rubric similarly to each subpart.


You are encouraged to discuss homework and lab assignments with your classmates. However, you must always write up the solutions on your own, and you must never copy the solutions of other students. Similarly, you may use books or online resources to help solve homework problems, but you must credit all such sources in your writeup and you must never copy material verbatim. You are reminded of the Department’s Policy on Academic Dishonesty. In particular, you should be aware that copying solutions, in whole or in part, from other students in the class or any other source without acknowledgment constitutes a violation of this policy and risks serious consequences.

Policy on Course Content

The University’s Policy on Classroom Note-Taking and Recording applies to this course. You are free and encouraged to use course materials for personal use (in collaborations with other students, in your research, etc.). You are also granted permission to post any notes you create on your own personal website. You are expressly prohibited from publicly uploading course materials created by teaching staff (exams, HW, solutions, labs). In particular, any upload of course content to websites such as or, which distribute and monetize content without permission from the instructor or University will be considered a violation of University Policy, and referred to the Center for Student Conduct.