CS327A: Advanced Robotic Manipulation

This course focuses on advanced control methodologies and novel design techniques for complex human-like robotic systems. It provides an extensive coverage of the task- oriented operational space formulation, and discusses its application to the challenges of interactive whole-body control of humanoid robots. The presentation of the material starts with the basic models and control structure of a simple robot arm and culminates with the most recent developments on the control of humanoid robots. The framework addresses various challenging problems, which include: (i) the motion coordination of the large number of degrees of humanoid robots; (ii) the effective control of their contacts and interactions with the environment; (iii) the maintenance of their internal and external constraints; (iv) and the strategies for dealing with their underactuation and balance. The above issues are all treated in a unified fashion within a general control structure that addresses the whole body dynamics for specifications involving multiple distributed tasks and postures in consistency with the requirements of multiple distributed contacts and constraints. Other fundamental issues in human centered robotics will be also examined in this course. These include: (i) the synthesis of human movements to produce human- like robot behaviors; (ii) the critical issue of robot safety and the design requirements for human-friendly robots that conceived to operate in human environments (iii) the elastic planning methodology for real-time modifications of existing motion plans; (iv) and various other efficient algorithms that address the computational challenges associated with human-like robotic structures. In addition to the lectures, this course includes reviews of papers on wide range of topics relevant to advanced robotics. These reviews, which are done by groups of students, will be presented at a mini- symposium held at the end of the quarter.


Mon, Wed 2:30-4:00pm.
Lectures conducted remotely on Zoom, see Canvas.

Course Reader

Available for pickup or delivery at the Stanford Bookstore here

Office Hours

See below at Staff section.


Please sign up on Piazza .


Homework: 60%
Symposium Topic Presentation: 20%
Take Home Assessment: 20%


6 assignments.
All must be submitted in order to receive a grade. Late submissions require approval.
Due @ midnight on Gradescope. The Course Entry code is ER68W3


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Oussama Khatib


Office hours : After class, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Lecture Zoom Room
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Wesley Guo

Course Assistant

Office hours : Tue 5:00 PM -7:00 PM and Friday 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM (starting Apr 6)
On Zoom, see Canvas Annoucement for Link


Date Lecture Homework
Mon, Mar 29 Introduction & Course Review
Wed, Mar 31 Kinematics and Task Representations
Mon, Apr 05 Instantaneous Inverse Kinematics
Wed, Apr 07 Simulation/Control in SAI
(Mini-Symposium Introdution)
Thu, Apr 08 HW 1 Out
Friday, Apr 09 Special SAI2 Installation Help Session (1:00 PM - 4:00 PM)
Mon, Apr 12 Operational Space Framework
Wed, Apr 14 Operational Space Dynamics
(Begin Mini-Symposium Group Formation)
Fri, Apr 16 HW 1 Due, HW 2 Out
Mon, Apr 19 Unified Motion and Force Control
Wed, Apr 21 Redundancy
(Finalize Mini-Symposium Groups and Proposals)
Thu, Apr 22 HW 3 Out
Fri, Apr 23 HW 2 Due
Mon, Apr 26 Inertial Properties
Wed, Apr 28 Cooperative Robots Dynamics
Thu, Apr 29 HW 3 Due, HW 4 Out
Mon, May 03 The Virtual Linkage Model
(Invididual Group Meetings with Oussama and Wesley)
Mon, May 05 Mobile Manipulation
(Invididual Group Meetings with Oussama and Wesley)
Thu, May 06 HW 4 Due, HW 5 Out
Mon, May 10 Whole Body Control (Humanoids)
Wed, May 12 Artificial Potential Fields and Elastic Planning
Thu, May 13 HW 5 Due, HW 6 Out
Mon, May 17 Haptics
Wed, May 19 Human-Friendly Robot Design
Thu, May 20 HW 6 Due
Mon, May 24 Learning Skills from Humans
(Mini-Symposium Session Progress Report)
Wed, May 26 Advanced Topics
Mon, May 31 Holiday (Memorial Day)
Wed, Jun 02 Mini-Symposium (Time TBD)
Wed, Jun 02 - Fri, Jun 04 Take-Home Assignment