Note: Due to COVID-19, the CS tutors will not be hosting drop-in tutoring in person. Please use their email or Penji to get assistance.

What the Tutors Do

This document is an outline of what students and instructors should expect from the Computer Science Tutors of Portland State University. Please contact the CS tutor coordinator, Ruchir Elukurthy, at with questions or concerns.

What We Support

The tutors offer supplemental help for students in the following courses offered at PSU:

  • CS161
  • CS162
  • CS163
  • CS201
  • CS202
  • CS250
  • CS251
  • CS299

The tutors can help with:

  • Class assignments for the courses listed above
  • Accessing the Unix/Linux computer systems in the engineering school
  • Using the programming tools on these sytems

The tutors can help by:

  • Reviewing and clarifying concepts addressed in class or in the textbook
  • Clarifying the meaning of an assignment and making suggestions on how to start an assignment
  • Reviewing a student’s code to help diagnose compiler errors or run-time bugs (acting as a “second pair of eyes”)
  • Helping students access MCECS computing resources remotely from their personal computers
  • Helping students navigate the Unix/Linux command line
  • Helping students with the process of editing, compiling, debugging, and executing programs from the command line

The tutors are currently helping students via Penji. The tutors monitor the tutors’ email ( and the Slack chat system at (Sign up for chat here  and join the #cshelp channel).

The tutors do not guarantee immediate online help.

What We Do Not Support

The tutors are not responsible for helping students with classes outside of the list of supported classes above. Examples of unsupported classes are:

  • CS classes higher than CS299
  • Classes outside of the CS program, whether at PSU or elsewhere

Tutors may try to help with unsupported classes like these, but we make no guarantee that we will be able to help, or that we will have time to help. Tutors must prioritize students who need help in supported classes.

The tutors are not responsible for:

  • Fixing a student’s personal computer
  • Installing software or operating systems on a student’s personal computer beyond the what is required for CS courses

If a tutor would like to help a student with such an endeavor, the student must understand that neither the tutors nor the CS department are responsible for any mishaps that may befall the student’s computer.