Prospective student information from Dr. Albert:
Minimal requirements for interested students:
- One-year programming experience (Python or Java preferred) - this is an absolute minimum, no exceptions.
- Statistics or machine learning experience
- GPA > 3.3
- Writing ability: all projects efforts are documented. Your writing ability will be assessed
- Test-driven development and version control are encouraged
Prospective students outside of Chicago:
We receive an average of one email per week from students requesting to work in the lab, and many of these requests are looking for funded positions. Unfortunately, unless there is a specific call for external students posted on this page or elsewhere, we primarily take students that are local to Chicago for logistical reasons. We work closely with students in Loyola, the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago, and Northwestern and welcome other local students, but if you are contacting us from a university outside of Chicago your best options to work with us is to apply to graduate school in Loyola computer science and mention our lab in your application. If you are offered admission, you can contact us if your work with us is a deciding factor for your acceptance to come to Loyola.
Late program Loyola students (late Junior, Senior undergrad, 2nd year MS):
We have a computer science summer research program that you are encouraged to participate in. Your experience there is greatly appreciated, and the program is set up so that your participation can comfortably be done in a limited time frame. However, outside of that summer program, if you are within one year of graduation, the options for participating in the lab are limited as it takes approximately a half a year of intense effort to be prepared for contribution to lab goals.
Early program Loyola students (Freshman, Sophomore, 1st year MS, also external Ph.D. students):
You are strongly encouraged to contact our lab if you are interested. Please include a current CV or resume if you are serious about working with us (you should have one anyway). Depending on your experience, you may or may not be able to immediately join a project, however, an early interest or long-term commitment is very valuable as training is necessary to be productive in the lab.
Sample technical questions from PAC-lab fellowship interviews in 2016 (note, you are not expected to know the exact answers, though the approach students had to these questions said a lot about how they did in the group):
- Write pseudocode for printing the Fibonacci sequence (explained if students didn't know what it was):
- You want to design a system to classify images of city scenes from rural scenes: explain how you would do that. What data would you collect? What features? How would you test it?
- Estimate the probability that in a room of 23 people, two people will share the same birthday.
- Give the most formal definition of “statistically significant” that you can. Include P values if possible.
- Someone designs a visual terrorist recognition system for use in airports. They claim to be able to identify known terrorist with 99% accuracy. How might this number be misleading, and how would you provide a score that is more appropriate?