Most of the rules and regulations that govern students at UCI can be found in the UCI General Catalogue.
However, there are other policies, listed below, which you should be familiar with.
Downloads of important forms for graduate students are also provided.
- Academic Leave of Absence (DOC)
- Advancement to M.S. Candidacy (DOC)
- M.S. Thesis/Signature Page (DOC)
- Advance to Ph.D. Candidacy (DOC)
- Dissertation-Thesis Approval (DOC)
- General Petition (DOC)
- Part-time Study Request Form (MS only) (PDF)
- PhD Form II/Signature Page (DOC)
- Filing Fee Petition (DOC)
- Topic Defense Form (PDF)
- Research Paper Form (PDF)
- Filing Fee Petition (SUMMER ONLY) (DOC)
- Conference Presentation Grant Application (PDF)
- More forms at Graduate Division »
FORMS FOR INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS »
Transfer of Coursework Policy
Previously taken graduate-level courses may count toward Bren School degree requirements if they meet the following criteria:
1) Must have been passed with a grade of B or better
2) Must not have been applied toward a bachelor’s degree or M.S. degree from another university
3) Cannot have been taken while the student was on a leave of absence from the program
4) Must be approved by the Bren School Associate Dean for Student Affairs and the Dean of Graduate Division
In addition, no more than one-fifth of the total units required for your M.S. or Ph.D. can have been transferred from another institution, from UC Extension, or from Summer Session at any other UC campus.
Note: Students can only transfer two courses toward their degree requirements
To transfer a course from another University, submit a general petition form.
Transcripts from the other University must also be provided when you submit your petition to the Bren School Graduate Office. Once approved/denied, you will receive notification via email.
Waiver of Coursework Policy
If you have taken a graduate course at another University, and believe that it is identical to a Bren School course, please contact the Bren School professor who usually teaches the course. He/she can determine whether or not the course is equivalent.
If it is, he/she can sign your petition form before you submit it to the Bren School Graduate Office.
A syllabus of the course, as well as your transcripts from the other University, must accompany the petition.
Once approved/denied, you will receive notification via email.
Substitution of Coursework Policy
A UCI course can be substituted for another UCI course, with approval. To do so, speak to the professor who teaches the course and to your faculty advisor.
If they agree with the substitution, have them sign the petition form and return it to the Bren School Graduate Office.
Once approved/denied, you will receive notification via email.
Leave of Absence Policy
All graduate students can petition for a leave of absence from the program for a period of up to, but no more than, three quarters total.
The LOA form is available at the Bren School Graduate Office. Submit the form well in advance of the requested leave to make sure it gets approved.
The leave must be approved by both the Bren School Graduate Office and the Dean of Graduate Division (the International Center, as well, for all international students).
The Bren School Graduate Office will notify you via email once it has been approved/denied.
A, B, C, etc… Students are expected to maintain a B (3.0) average (this is an absolute requirement if on a fellowship—GSR, TA, GAANN, etc.). Some fellowships require students to maintain a GPA higher than 3.0.
In order to receive graduation credit, students must earn a grade of B or better in all required courses.
A grade of B- or below does not have to be improved and can remain on your transcript if that grade is not going to be counted toward your graduation requirements.
P/NP is for undergraduate courses only. Graduate students should not enroll in a course for P/NP
Graduate students must receive a letter grade in all graduate courses.
S/U is for graduate courses only and is considered to be a letter grade.
Faculty can assign an S/U instead of an A, B, C, etc. Students are responsible for asking the professor if they can receive the S/U option instead of an A, B, C, etc.
Please keep in mind that the S grade is equal to a B or better and the U grade is equal to a B- or below.
If you receive a U grade, you will have to repeat the course if it is going to count towards your degree requirements.
The "I" grade is reserved for occasions when a student’s work is satisfactory but is incomplete because of circumstances beyond the student’s control, and when the student has been excused in advance from completing the quarter’s work.
You may ask the professor to assign an "I", but it may or may not be granted. If granted, you have three quarters to make up the Incomplete. If the work is not completed and a grade has not been assigned after three quarters, the "I" will turn to an F.
The UCI Graduate Division will not continue to approve your student employment (TA, GSR, etc.) if more than two Incompletes appear on your transcript.
NR means no grade was reported. This can be for a variety of reasons:
• The faculty member did not submit grades on time
• The faculty member does not recognize your name on the class roster
• The faculty member turned in the wrong grade for you
• The course’s grade roster was unreadable
An NR will turn into an F after one quarter. If you receive an NR, talk to your professor immediately.
Graduate Student Review Policy
Each spring quarter the Bren School faculty conducts a formal review of all graduate students enrolled in the graduate program. The Bren School Graduate Office, the Bren School Associate Dean for Student Affairs, and the student’s advisor review each student’s progress.
If unsatisfactory progress is being made, a letter of probation is sent to the student and placed in their file. The probation period varies, depending on the individual’s situation. If the problem is not cleared during the probation period, the Bren School Graduate Office may recommend to the UCI Graduate Division that the student be dismissed from the program.
It is the student’s responsibility to make sure the Bren School Graduate Office is aware that a problem has been cleared during the probation period.
Possible reasons for probation:
GPA below 3.0
Too many “I” grades (Incompletes) or not finishing “I’s”
Not affiliated with an advisor
Not meeting degree milestones
Advancing to Candidacy for the M.S. Degree Policy
Both M.S. and Ph.D. students must advance to candidacy for the M.S. degree (not applicable to Ph.D. students who already hold an M.S. degree in Computer Science). This implies that you are almost finished with the M.S. portion of your degree. Students must file the advancement to M.S. candidacy form one quarter prior to M.S degree conferral.
M.S. Thesis Option Policy
A thesis option is available to M.S. students who do not plan to take the comprehensive exam and who are in good academic standing with the School. Students pursuing this option must enroll in at least two quarters of Thesis Supervision (CS 298 or INF 298) which will substitute for two required courses as specified under the concentration area or specialization of choice (not available to students in the Statistics program).
A committee of three faculty members will guide the student and give final approval of the thesis. The committee consists of an advisor (from the student's department/program), who is willing to supervise the thesis project, and two other faculty members (one of whom must be from the student's department/program), who are willing to serve on the committee as readers. An oral presentation of the thesis to the committee is required.
Teaching Requirement Policy
All Ph.D. students are required to participate in teaching activities for two quarters. Summer teaching or teaching at another university may be accepted in fulfillment of this requirement.
Students who fulfill this requirement with a teaching assistantship at UCI are required to take an orientation course, ICS 398A, enroll in four units of ICS 399 each quarter they serve as a TA, and attend the school's TA training seminar during Welcome Week of fall quarter.
Students with a Previously Earned Master’s Degree
Bren School Ph.D. students with an M.S. degree in computer science or a related field from another university may qualify to receive credit for some or all required courses. Course equivalency will be determined by the Bren School Associate Dean for Student Affairs following a written recommendation from the student's advisor. Final approval will come from the UCI Graduate Division.
Ph.D. students waived from the M.S. portion of their degree may not, in future, request that they be granted an M.S. degree in Computer Science or a closely related field from UC Irvine.
Be aware that advisors can require that students take additional courses when appropriate.
Written Comprehensive Exam/Phase II Exam
Each student must pass a written comprehensive examination offered by the student’s department.
See specific degree requirements for more information as this exam may vary by degree/concentration.
Students should speak to their advisor, research area representative or the ICS graduate counselors regarding test dates, preparation, and reading lists. Faculty from the particular research area develop the exam, so the content and structure may vary from year to year.
The exam is graded on three levels: M.S. Pass, Ph.D. Pass, and Fail.
Ph.D. students who receive an M.S. Pass can qualify for the M.S. degree, but must re-take the exam and pass at the Ph.D. level to continue in the Ph.D. program.
Students may re-take the exam once.
If a student would like to take the exam for a third time, s/he must petition the Bren School Associate Dean for Student Affairs and the Dean of Graduate Division for permission.
If the petition is denied, the student may be dismissed from the program.
Once the exam is passed at the desired level, please make sure the appropriate paperwork is filed with the Bren School graduate counselor.
Advancing to Candidacy for the Ph.D. degree
Prior to advance to candidacy for the Ph.D. degree, students must complete the following steps:
1) Complete coursework
2) Pass the Phase II exam at the Ph.D. level (if applicable to the student's program)
3) Complete a research or survey paper of publishable quality (if applicable to the student's program)
The advancement exam is an oral presentation to a five-member committee of senate faculty. Each committee member must agree on the research you would like to complete for your doctoral dissertation.
Committee membership policies may vary by department/program. Consult the ICS graduate counselors for more information.
Preparing for the Advancement Talk:
• Arrange a date when all involved parties can meet
• Reserve a conference room with your department
• Print out or pick up a Ph.D. Form I from the Bren School Graduate Office
After the advancement exam is complete:
• Get appropriate signatures on the Ph.D. Form I (including your own!)
- The ICS Graduate Office can provide the Department Chair and Associate Dean signatures.
• Pay $90 advancement fee at the Cashier's office
• Turn form into Graduate Division (120 Aldrich Hall)
Candidacy Committee Duties and Responsibilities
The candidacy committee is charged with determining the fitness of the student to proceed with the doctoral dissertation through a formal candidacy examination.
The examination should evaluate both general preparedness in the discipline, and specific competence to pursue the proposed dissertation topic.
In its deliberation, the committee ordinarily will review the student's academic record, preliminary examinations, evaluations by other faculty, and may conduct any other examination it thinks appropriate.
The candidacy committee will also review an outline of the proposed dissertation project, and will determine by oral examination the student's competence in that area.
When, by unanimous vote, the committee decides the student is qualified for the dissertation phase, it should recommend advancement to candidacy to the Graduate council via the Graduate Dean.
Following its formal appointment, the committee is free to adopt whatever procedures it thinks appropriate to conduct the qualifying examination for candidacy, subject to the rules of the program and those specified below.
Administration of the qualifying examination must conform to the policies established by the Graduate Council.
The student must be given adequate notice of the content, form and time of the examination. The committee must meet to decide upon the procedures to be followed, and the student must be given an opportunity to comment upon the selected procedures.
Before voting upon its recommendation for or against candidacy, the committee as a whole shall meet with the student, and any member of the committee will have the right to pose appropriate questions to the student.
If it decides to do so, the committee may conduct part of the examination on an individual basis, e.g. the student may meet with each in turn. However, the committee must conclude its examination when convened with the student present.
Although the formal candidacy examination ordinarily is conducted in a single day, the committee may meet intermittently over a longer period, and may decide to reexamine the student on one or more topics after a specified interval.
When the committee meets to conduct the oral candidacy examination, it must report to the Graduate Council via the Graduate Dean within 30 days.
If the committee decides to reexamine the student at a later date or does not pass the student for any reason, this must be reported. The final vote and recommendation of the committee must be unanimous and unequivocal.
Upon completion of the candidacy examination, the results should be submitted to the UCI Graduate Division on the Report of the Ph.D. Candidacy Committee, Ph.D. Form I.
Ph.D. Form I must be signed by all committee members at the time the candidacy examination is concluded, and submitted even if the examination was failed.
If the unanimous recommendation of the committee is favorable, the $90 advancement to candidacy fee must be paid by the student to the campus Cashier's Office. This will validate the Ph.D. Form I, after which it should be submitted to the UCI Graduate Division. The signed and validated Ph.D. Form I serves as the application for advancement to candidacy.
The candidate and graduate counselor will be notified of formal advancement and the appointment of a doctoral committee.
Topic Defense Policy
Once you determine your dissertation topic, you must present it in a defense to your doctoral committee. Each area differs as to when students present this defense, so please confirm with your advisor as to when you should be completing this requirement.
At the time of your defense, you must bring a “Topic Defense ” form for your committee to sign after they have approved your defense. These forms are available from the Bren School Graduate Office. The signed form is then returned to the Bren School Graduate Office.
Final Defense Policy
For the final defense of your dissertation, e-mail the Bren School Graduate Office with the date, time and location of the defense, the names of your committee members, and the title and abstract of your dissertation. This information will be made available to all Bren School faculty and graduate students. In addition to your committee members, anyone else who wishes to attend your defense may do so.
Also, be sure to obtain a Ph.D. Form II: Report on Final Examination for the Ph.D. Degree, from the Bren School Graduate Office and, at the end of the defense, have each of your committee members sign it.
When you have finished your dissertation, submit it and the Ph.D. Form II to the UCI Library Archives (Langson Library, Room 525). Alternatively, the dissertation may be submitted electronically.
The Library will notify the UCI Graduate Division that your dissertation has been turned in and your degree is ready for conferral. Graduate Division will notify you once your degree has been conferred.
Residency Requirement Policy
A minimum of six quarters (for PhD students) or three quarters (for MS students) in academic residence is required prior to the award of the degree. Typically, a longer period of study (two to six years) is required for completion of all degree requirements.
After a Ph.D. student has been registered for over 21 quarters (seven years), and a MS student has been registered for over six quarters (two years), they are considered to be beyond normative time for completing the degree.
A letter regarding this status is sent to the student and to the department requesting a deadline be implemented for the student to complete all requirements and submit their dissertation. If this deadline is missed the student is subject to academic disqualification.
University of California Policy on Sexual Harassment
Effective December 14, 2004, the Office of the President issued a revised University of California Policy on Sexual Harassment and associated Procedures for Responding to Reports of Sexual Harassment.
These policies cover all members of the University community, including faculty and other academic personnel, staff employees, students, and non-student or non-employee participants in University programs.
Revisions to the policy include an updated definition of sexual harassment, clarification of the University's obligation to respond promptly and effectively to reports of sexual harassment, provisions for training employees and educating the University community regarding sexual harassment, and a statement that the policy shall be implemented in a manner that recognizes principles of free speech and academic freedom.
The Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity has developed local policy and guidelines that implement the system wide procedures and address consensual relationships.
These supersede the previous UCI Policy on Sexual Harassment:
The University of California Policy on Sexual Harassment can be found here.
All documents can be accessed through the Sexual Harassment Officer website at www.sho.uci.edu
Bren School Copyright Infringement Policy
It is illegal to distribute copyrighted materials -- such as software, movies, music, pictures -- without proper authorization.
If a complaint of copyright infringement is reported involving a computer assigned to a Bren School student, the student's account will be locked out until Bren School support personnel have a chance to investigate the allegations. If copyrighted materials are found, they will be removed immediately.
For the initial complaint (first violation), the Bren School Student Affairs Office (SAO) staff and the appropriate Associate Dean (as well as the academic advisor, for grad students) will be notified.
The student will be required to meet in person with appropriate SAO staff to review applicable campus policies, and to sign a statement verifying receipt and notice of such policies. This signed statement will be placed in the student's file.
For any subsequent complaints, the appropriate Associate Dean, academic advisor (for grad students) and SAO staff will be notified.
The student will then be referred to the campus Director of Student Judicial Affairs for academic suspension (upon second violation) or expulsion from the university(upon third violation).
The above statement is based upon:
IRVINE CAMPUS POLICIES , APPENDIX K: COMPUTER USE POLICY
Computer Use Policy (Reference to Section 102.05), which includes "Violating the terms of applicable software licensing agreements or copyright laws."