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Registration FAQ: answers to questions about registration

Q. How can I contact an advisor?

Our academic advisor information page lists the contact information for all of our advisors. Mail sent to us reaches all undergraduate advisors and is suggested as a good way to contact us since it allows the first available advisor to address your questions when possible. We get especially busy in the second half of the semester, so we appreciate your patience. For current students, it will help us if you can include your name, UIN and major in your email.

Q. Do I need to make an appointment to see an advisor?

We request that you schedule an appointment for undergraduate advisors online or by calling our office at 979-845-4087 during normal business hours. An appointment with the graduate advisor can be made by calling our office at 979-845-4087. Staff members, located in EABA 100C during normal business hours, also can help you with forms without requiring an appointment. Prospective students also may schedule a visit with one of our advisors by calling the phone number. We are busiest at the beginning of the semester through the add/drop week and at the end of the semester after midterm grades are received. Although we increase our available times significantly during these periods, there may be delays in scheduling appointments, especially during registration.

Q. What is the difference between the Bachelor of Science in Computer Science degree and the Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering degree?

Computer science and computer engineering are separate degree programs offered by the Department of Computer Science and Engineering with different curricular requirements. Generally, the computer science degree (CPSC) has a greater emphasis on software, while the Computer Engineering degree (CECN) places greater emphasis on hardware and systems. The CPSC degree is generally more flexible, in that it allows greater choices of the electives, math and science courses, and the choice of supporting area. The CECN degree generally tracks more closely to the other engineering programs, and provides greater depth in the hardware side of computing. Both degrees are considered to be engineering degrees at Texas A&M.

Q. What is the difference between the two tracks of computer engineering -- the CSCE track and the ECEN track?

Our department advises the computer engineering/CSCE track (CECN) while electrical and computer engineering advises the computer engineering/ECEN track (CEEN). The overall policies for the two degrees are set by a common committee that has representatives from both departments. Students graduate together with an undifferentiated computer engineering degree. In large part, the two tracks are for administrative reasons in order to allow the two departments to offer the degree. There are some small curricular differences in the later parts of the degrees, affecting a few of the 400-level requirements. The choice of track does not necessarily relate to a greater interest in either software or hardware, although students with primarily a software interest may find it convenient to be in the computer engineering/CSCE track. Contact us if you would like further details.

Q. How do I know what classes to take each semester?

Follow your degree plan for your respective catalog. Specific information for the computer science degree and for computer engineering/CSCE track can be found on their respective webpages.  General information applicable to both degrees can be found on the undergraduate program page. These resources are updated frequently.

Q. How can I get "forced" into a class?

See the department's force request webpage. You will need to contact the department teaching the course for force requests if the request is not for a CSCE class. We update the linked information as we learn of other departments' force request procedures.

Q. How do I apply for graduation?

Go to the Howdy Portal. Under the My Record tab, select the Application for Graduation link in the degree evaluation channel. Before you apply for graduation, check your degree evaluation to make sure that all minors (and/or double majors or degrees) are exactly as you wish them to be. Contact the advising office if changes need to be made before you apply for graduation. If you later discover you need to add or remove a minor, the registrar's office will require you to withdraw your graduation application before those changes can be made.

Q. Where do I send my transcript or how do I order a transcript from Texas A&M?

Information about transcripts can be found on the Office of the Registrar's website

Q. How do I declare or get rid of a minor?

You may contact the CSCE undergraduate advising office in EABA 100C to add a minor in math or business, or to delete any minor. You must speak with the respective department and receive written approval to add any other minors. That approval is then brought to the CSCE advising office to be added to your record. Texas A&M students can declare up to two minors.

Q. How do I accept AP credits?

We generally advise that you wait until you need the credits before accepting AP credits. Once accepted or denied, you cannot go back and change your mind. You also will not be allowed to accept credit if you have already registered for the class or have received a grade for the class (including failing grades). You must accept any AP credits before applying for graduation. You can accept AP credits in the Howdy Portal. Students can select the Credit by Examination link in the Howdy Portal in the grades and transcripts channel on the My Record tab. You will be taken to a screen that informs you of the exams awaiting a course credit decision. You will be advised you must consult your advisor prior to accepting credit. Once an eligible exam is selected, you will see for which Texas A&M courses you can be awarded credit. When you select a course for credit, you will be instructed that the decision cannot be reversed, per Texas A&M Student Rule 8.4. Any questions regarding testing and acceptance of credit should be directed to the Testing Services office.

Q. Who processes my Q-drop requests?

The CSCE undergraduate advising office processes Q-drops for CPSC and CECN majors. Forms submitted to the advising office after the deadline will not be processed. Refer to the withdrawl/q-drop webpage for procedures.

Q. Who processes my withdrawal requests?

Withdrawal requests are processed by the dean's office. Refer to withdrawl/q-drop page for procedures.

Q. How do I know if a course at another institution is an equivalent to a Texas A&M course?

We recommend that you begin by consulting the Texas A&M Transfer Course Equivalency website. In Howdy under your My Record tab there is a box titled Degree Evaluation. 

Q. My degree evaluation says I am limited to 12 hours of correspondence credit. Does this mean I cannot take classes at another institution?

No, correspondence credit is not the same as transfer credit. This restriction does not affect your ability to obtain transfer credit.

Q. What is the Residency Requirement?

University regulations require that every student must complete 36 hours of 300-400 level coursework in residence at Texas A&M to complete a baccalaureate degree; 12 of those hours must be in the major.

Q. What are student rules regarding grading?

View the rules regarding grading on the university's Student Rules page

Q. What if I want to dispute a grade?

View the university's rules on grade disputes on the Student Rules page.

Q. Where can I find information on the excess credit hour rule?

You can find information on the excess credit hour rule on the Office of the Registrar's page. 

Q. How and when do I order books?

Textbooks may be purchased or reserved while you are on campus during your New Student Conference. Please visit the Memorial Student Center Bookstore's table during your conference to obtain a textbook reservation form or reserve online.

Q. What's with all these acronyms: CSCE, CPSC, CECN...?

CSCE is the shorthand version of our department's name and is the prefix used to identify our courses. CPSC represents the computer science degree. CECN represents the computer engineering/CSCE track degree.