Undergraduate Students - Frequently Asked Questions

We've listed some of the most common questions below. If your question isn't listed, or if you would like more information, please contact us!


EECS Programs and Study Options:

When can I officially declare a major? How do I declare?

What are the requirements for my program?

Tell me about transferring academic credit.

Can I participate in an honors program?

I am interested in double majoring. What do I need to do?

I am a CS-LSA student and I have questions about my LSA requirements.

I am a Computer Science (LSA) student but I am taking classes in Engineering (or vice-versa),whose deadlines and rules do I follow?

What is CUGS? 3.4 Program? How do I apply?

Can I study abroad?

What do I need to do to be considered for scholarships?


Registration (Adding, Dropping, Modifying Courses):

How do I drop or add a course?

How do I withdraw from a term?

How do I modify a class pass/fail?

Can I get into a class or section that is closed? What is the waitlist procedure?

How do I audit/visit a class?

How do I arrange an independent study?

Can I take an EECS course if I don't have the prerequisites?


Academic Support:

What is the EECS Grade Policy?

How do I make an advising appointment?

When should I make an advising appointment?

Are there tutoring services available?


Graduation and Employment:

Where can I go for career placement help?

What is a Co-op?

How do I initiate my graduation?

Where can I learn about the alumni organizations available to EECS graduates?

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How do I declare a major? When can I declare?

If you are an Engineering student, it is recommended that you declare after your freshman year, but before you reach 55 CTP. Engineering students wishing to choose a major in the areas of EE, CS-Eng., or CE should make an appointment to review the declaration requirements and discuss academic plans and interests. The advisor will sign your declaration form and you will be officially declared. You MUST have your meeting with an advisor to officially declare.

CS-LSA students must complete the pre-concentration requirements before officially declaring, but are encouraged to discuss their plans in advance by making an appointment with a CS-LSA advisor here in the EECS Undergraduate Advising Office. TheCS-LSA program requirements are available in the Undergraduate Advising Office (2808 BBB).

Once you declare, you will be automatically added to the departmental e-mail list. This list is used to disseminate information to students regarding registration deadlines, policy changes, job opportunities, scholarship competitions, and general departmental announcements.

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How and when can I drop/add a course?

EE, CE, and CS-Eng. Students:

Before the 3rd week deadline:

After you have registered through Wolverine Access Web registration, any changes in your schedule including courses and/or section changes can be made using Web registration for the first three weeks of the term.

Note: During the first three weeks of classes (two in half terms) students may drop a class without a "W." Even if a course states that you must attend the first few class sessions to maintain your enrollment and you do not attend the class at all, you must still use the Web registration system to indicate the drop.

Between the 3rd and 9th weeks:

Fill out a drop/add form (forms are at the EECS Undergraduate Advising Office) and have it signed by the instructor and an advisor.

Note: Between the 3rd and the 9th week of classes (2nd through 4.5 weeks in half terms) students may drop a class and receive a "W" on their transcript.

After the 9th week deadline: You will need to petition your College. For information regarding the Engineering petition process, reference the Scholastic Standing Committee's online guide.

Note: Class drops after the deadline will only be allowed under exceptional circumstances. Poor academic performance is not considered an extenuating circumstance. Approved drops will be posted with a "W."

Note to All Students : Lack of attendance does not automatically drop you from a course or a term. If you do not go through the proper procedure to withdraw from a term, you will receive an "ED" for the courses you are registered for and do not attend. This unofficial drop is computed as an "E" in your grade point average. Neither credit toward program (CTP) nor honor points (MHP) are earned.

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How do I withdraw from a term?

CS-LSA Students:
LSA students must follow the College of LSA's term withdrawal procedures. Contact the LSA Academic Advising Center in 1255 Angell Hall for details.

EE, CE, and CS-ENGR Students:
You may withdraw from the term until the last day of classes. If you must drop all courses in the current term and it is prior to the first day of classes, you may withdraw using Wolverine Access. Otherwise, you must complete a withdrawal form (available in 145 Chrysler Center). If you withdraw after the ninth week of the current term, you cannot attend the next full term (not including Spring/Summer). Please contact the Scholastic Standing Committee for more information.

Note to All Students: Lack of attendance does not automatically drop you from a course or a term. If you do not go through the proper procedure to withdraw from a term, you will receive an "ED" for the courses you are registered for and do not attend. This unofficial drop is computed as an "E" in your grade point average. Neither credit toward program (CTP) nor honor points (MHP) are earned. A "W" will appear on the transcript when it occurs after the first three weeks of the term (two weeks for a half term). In any case, the Scholastic Standing Committee or the Assistant Dean for Students may specify conditions for readmission. Disenrollment fees vary. A fee schedule, including deadlines, is printed in the University Time Schedule.

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How do I modify a class pass/fail?

EE, CE, and CS-ENGR Students:

Before the deadline to modify a class, a class can be changed to pass/fail using the Wolverine Access Web registration system. After the deadline, you must submit a petition (forms and information about the process can be accessed here). Class modification after the deadline will only be allowed under exceptional circumstances.

Note: The courses that can be elected pass/fail are limited to courses in the Humanities and Social Sciences, Free Electives, or courses that do not count toward the degree. Permission to elect a course pass/fail is not required from the instructor. Instructors are not notified of students' pass/fail elections; they will report grades as usual. A grade of "A" through "C-" in a course is considered satisfactory and will be recorded as "P" (Pass). A grade of "D" or lower is considered unsatisfactory and will be recorded as "F" (Fail). Students may elect a course on a pass/fail basis and switch from pass/fail to graded or from graded to pass/fail anytime during the first nine weeks of a full term. The pass/fail total is not to exceed four courses or 14 credit hours and is limited to two courses per term or one in a half term. (Any course offered only on a pass/fail basis will not be counted in this total.)

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The class I want to take is full-- should I waitlist? How do I do that? What if I can't join the waitlist?

If you meet the prerequisites for the course but the section you wish to join is full, please add yourself to the electronic waitlist via Wolverine Access. The department makes every attempt to accommodate these waitlists and place students in sections that work for them, but you should always have a back-up plan. You should attend the first day of classes to determine whether or not there will be space for you in the class. Some waitlists are not cleared until after the first day of classes, please be patient! You can always ask the EECS Undergraduate Advising Office about the status of a full section or waitlist.

When a waitlist is cleared, you will receive an e-mail letting you know that you can register. Then use Wolverine Access to add the course to your schedule (note: you will need to drop from the waitlist first).

Note: Once you receive a waitlist override or permission, you must use Wolverine Access to add the course to your schedule. Electronic overrides and permissions have expiration dates. You must add the course by midnight of the day it expires.

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Can I take an EECS course if I don't have the prerequisites?

Prerequisites and grade requirements are in place to be sure that participating students have the skills they will need to succeed in the class. If you have a special circumstance that you think warrants an exception, you may petition to register (in EECS we call this a Permission Request). The Chief Program Advisor (CPA) for your program will review your academic record and the information you provide and make a recommendation. The instructor for the course will make the final decision based on the CPA's recommendation and the Advising Office will notify you of the decision via email. You do not need to make an appointment with the CPA to initiate this process, but you are welcome to do so if you would like to discuss your situation in person.

Please be aware that this process can sometimes take several days to weeks. Please start the process early!

Note: Permissions will not be granted based on instructor consent alone. You will still be asked to complete the form and it will still be reviewed by the CPA and sent to the instructor so that he/she can make an informed decision based on your advisor's recommendation. Your instructor may still allow you to enroll in the course, but skipping this step will delay the process for you.

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How do I audit/visit a class?

Engineering Students:

Get the permission of the instructor for the course you would like to audit. The instructor will tell you what they expect of you as an auditor. (Usually, this requires reasonably regular attendance in lectures, but no obligation to do the homework or exams.) Register for the class via Wolverine Access. Be sure to choose the "audit" option.

After the 3rd week of the term you must pick up a Drop/Add form from the EECS Undergraduate Advising Office (3415 EECS or 2808 CSE). Complete the top of the form and the MODIFY section. In the column labeled "Modifier," write "VI." Obtain a signature from a program advisor; you must also obtain your instructor's signature. Take the signed form to the College of Engineer Registrar, 145A Chrysler, for processing.

Note: The course will be entered on your transcript with a "VI" instead of a grade. You may not apply any class that you audit toward your degree. Classes taken as "VI" do not count toward full-time enrollment for financial and/or other purposes. The same fee will be charged whether the student enrolls for credit or as an auditor. (Remember, there is no difference in fees if you are enrolled for 12-18 credits.) A change in election from "credit" to "audit" must be made within the first nine weeks of the term (three weeks for a half term).

Reasons for auditing a class include:

  • You are interested in the course topic and do not need the course to fulfill any degree requirement.
  • You think an employer would like to see the course on your transcript.
  • You would like to take a graduate class but are worried about the workload.

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Can I obtain transfer credit for a course I take at a community college or university other than UM-Ann Arbor?

EE, CE, and CS-ENGR Students:
Yes, students can take courses at community colleges and other universities and receive transfer credit. Additional information about this process can be found here. You can also direct your questions to the EECS Advising Office or the College of Engineering Office of Recruitment and Admissions, 153 Chrysler Center. Remember, at least 50 total credits must be taken in residence at UM-Ann Arbor in order to be eligible to graduate. See the EECS Advising Office if you are concerned about this requirement.

If you would like to have a course evaluated for potential EECS course credit (for example you took CS 367 at the University of Wisconsin and you want to know if it will count as an EECS course here at UM-Ann Arbor) you should make an appointment in the EECS Undergraduate Advising Office to discuss your plans. You can see which courses have already been evaluated for credit here. HOWEVER, even if a course has already been evaluated, you must contact the Office of Recruitment and Admissions to find out what materials you need to submit in order to get credit.

CS-LSA Students:

  • Only LSA, through the Office of Undergraduate Admissions in the Student Activities Building, can grant you transfer credit. A CS advisor cannot grant you LSA credits. If you are a currently enrolled student, you must see an LSA general advisor to discuss the possibility of receiving transfer credit, and also go to the Office of Undergraduate Admissions for information about transfer equivalencies and credit application forms. If you are an entering student, your transfer credits are evaluated automatically as part of the admissions process.
  • There is an LSA online database of courses that have already been approved for credit. (Also reference the CoE database.) The CS program does not have any pre-approved courses at other schools. For more information on transfer credits, please refer to the LSA Student Academic Advising Office's section on transfer issues.
  • It is very unlikely that you will be granted credit for a specific CS course here. It is much easier to transfer credits in courses such as Calculus I, II, and III, and your distribution courses. We do not recommend taking CS classes elsewhere, as they are only rarely equivalent courses, even if the title and syllabus appear to be similar.
  • If LSA grants credits for a CS class taken elsewhere, the credit will most likely appear as departmental credit on your transcript. For example, the notation "EECS 200X" for 3 credits would mean that LSA is giving you 3 transfer credits which are considered to be at the 200-level, but are not equivalent to any specific course here.
  • Note this can only be done after you take the course, and you do need to make an appointment so that we can discuss this with due consideration, in person. You can make this appointment either as an enrolled student or as an incoming transfer student (make this appointment after your transfer orientation has been completed, so that you and your CS advisor know what LSA has granted you credit for during the admission process).

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How do I arrange an independent study?

Typically a faculty member in the EECS Department supervises an independent study, also known as "Directed Research." If you are interested in a particular professor's research area, you may ask that professor if it is possible to do an independent study with him or her. It helps if you have taken a course that the professor taught, have done very well in that course, and have gotten to know the professor a bit. If you have an idea what you would like to work on, be prepared to present your idea to the professor and discuss what work you would like to do. EECS 499 is open only to students with senior standing.

  • Pick up a Directed Study form in the EECS Undergraduate Advising Office (3415 EECS or 2808 BBB).
  • Fill out the form completely, including a brief description of the independent study project. Have the form signed by the professor you will be working with and turn it into the Undergraduate Advising Office.
  • Register for the appropriate section of EECS 499 (ask your instructor for his independent study section number or reference the list posted in the Undergraduate Advising Office).
  • The Chief Program Advisor may review the form and decide how the course will be applied toward your degree requirements. Generally, EECS 499 will count toward your Flexible Technical Elective Credit Requirements.

Note: Up to 4 credit hours of independent study (EECS 499 or other department's independent study courses) may be used as flexible technical elective credit.

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Can I participate in an honors program?

EE, CE, and CS-ENGR Students:

Click here to read about the Honors Program in the College of Engineering

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I am interested in double majoring. What do I need to do?

1. To obtain two bachelor's degrees in the College of Engineering, a student must complete the requirements of both degree programs. In addition, the student must complete at least a minimum of 14 credit hours in pertinent technical subjects over the number required. The credit hours that are used to satisfy each of the two programs also must satisfy the cumulative grade point average requirement of 2.00 or more. Approval by involved departments is required.

2. To obtain an additional bachelor's degree in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LSA) or the School of Music, please make an appointment with an LSA advisor to discuss the process and reasons for doing this.

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How do I initiate the graduation process?

Degree Audits / Concentration Releases:

Early in the semester you intend to graduate you will receive an email from the EECS Undergraduate Advising Office. Follow the links to complete the Exit Poll and Graduation Audit / Concentration Release Request. If you wish, you can make an appointment (if you suspect there may be a problem or have special circumstances to discuss), but an appointment is usually not necessary. You will receive email confirmation from the Advising Office that your currently elected courses will fulfill graduation requirements in 1-2 weeks.

You must also apply via Wolverine Access. There are graduation application deadlines-- please be aware of these and ask at the Advising Office if you are not sure!

Ceremonies:

All EECS students are encouraged to attend both the University of Michigan (in the stadium in the Spring) and the College of Engineering (in Chrisler Arena) ceremonies. Visit the University and College of Engineering graduation web sites to learn more about graduation activities.

Note to All Students: You will need to indicate the address to which you would like your diploma mailed. Make sure this address will be valid for at least 2 months following your graduation date. Please file for the final audit early in the semester you plan to graduate. If you change your graduation plans after filing out the final audit form, please notify the Undergraduate Advising Office.

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I am a CS-LSA student and I have a question about my LSA requirements (distribution, foreign language, race & ethnicity, ECB). Who should I talk to?

You should see an LSA "general advisor" to discuss these requirements. You can make an appointment with a general advisor by calling 764-0332 or by going to the reception desk at at the LSA Academic Advising Center in 1255 Angell Hall.

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I am a Computer Science-LSA student but I am taking classes in Engineering (or vice-versa), whose deadlines and rules do I follow?

You follow the deadlines and rules of the school you are enrolled in (your "home school"), regardless of the college from whom you are taking classes.

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Where can I find descriptions of the requirements for Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering or Computer Science?

Electrical Engineering Program

Computer Engineering Program   

Computer Science (LSA and ENGR) Program   

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What is the EECS Grade Policy?

Among all College Core, Program Core, Technical Electives, and Technical Communications courses, a grade of C or above is required. A grade of C- or below is not acceptable in these courses for students majoring in one of the EECS programs (Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Computer Science-Engineering or Computer Science-LSA).

Grade grievance information is available through the College of Engineering here. LSA students can find grade grievance information here.

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What is SGUS (formerly CUGS)? What is the 3.4 Program? How do I apply?

Contact the graduate program of interest for information.

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Where can I get advice about career planning, writing resumes, and also set up job interviews with potential employers?

Click here for the Engineering Career Resource Center

Click here for the University of Michigan Career Center

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What do I need to do to be considered for scholarships?

College of Engineering scholarship information (EE, CE, CS-ENGR students)

Office of Financial Aid

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Can I participate in a Study Abroad Program?

Yes! Most engineering students who participate in Study Abroad do so during their sophomore or junior year. Click here for more information about Study Abroad.

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How do I make an advising appointment with a Program Advisor? When are appointments available?

Click here for information on scheduling advising appointments. Advising Office staff are available to answer your questions on a walk-in basis. Faculty advisors generally adhere to specific schedules and it is necessary to call and schedule an appointment if you need to meet with them. If you are unable to make it to a scheduled advising appointment, please call to cancel. Failure to cancel an appointment means that time slot is unavailable to other students. Please be considerate of other students and the program advisors!

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When should I make an advising appointment?

It's a good idea to stop in and see an advisor each term even if you know what you want to take. Careful planning and frequent review of requirements will help ensure that you will have no problems at graduation time.

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Where can I learn about the alumni organizations available to EECS graduates?

Click here for the EECS Alumni Home Page

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Are there tutoring services available?

Click here for a list of tutoring resources.

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What is a Co-op?

The Cooperative education program provides students with the opportunity to gain hands-on experience and practical skills in a work environment before they graduate. The Engineering Career Resource Center can help you decide if Co-op is right for you.

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(Updated: 11.26.13 cml)