Academic Honesty

The faculty of the department of Computer Science expects all students to perform their academic work with the high ethical standards of the engineering profession.  Any student in violation of the Academic Honesty policy will NOT be funded by the department, especially as a Teaching Assistant.

Any instance or variation of the following violations will result in appropriate disciplinary action. Other violations may be added if deemed appropriate:

  1. Cheating  – Either intentionally using or attempting to use unauthorized materials, information, people, or study aids in any academic exercise, or extending to or receiving any kind of unauthorized assistance on any examination or assignment to or from another person.
  2. Fabrication – Knowing or unauthorized falsification, reproduction, lack of attribution, or invention of citation in any academic exercise.
  3. Facilitating academic dishonesty/plagiarism – Intentionally or knowingly representing the words or ideas of another as one’s own in any academic exercise.
  4. Bribes, favors, threats  – Bribing or attempting to bribe, promising favors to or making threats against, any person, with the intention of affecting a record of a grade or evaluation or academic performance. Any conspiracy with another person who then takes or attempts to take action on behalf or at the direction of the student, this includes benefiting financially by manipulating registration or enrollment .
  5. Examination by proxy – Taking or attempting to take an exam for someone else other than the student is a violation by both the student enrolled in the course and the proxy or substitute.
  6. Grade tampering – Any unauthorized attempt to change, actual change of, or alteration of grades or any tampering with grades.
  7. Non-original work – Submission or attempt to submit any written work authored, in whole or part, by someone other than the student.

Master of Science Degree Requirements

Minimum Semester Hours Required: 36

Course Work:

Requirements depend on the specific option chosen:

  • Thesis: At least 28 hours, 12 hours of which must be CS courses at the 500 level (excluding CS 590, CS 595-599)
  • Project: At least 32 hours, 12 hours of which must be CS courses at the 500 level (excluding CS 590, CS 595-599)
  • Coursework Only: 36 hours, 16 hours of which must be CS courses at the 500 level (excluding CS 590, CS 595-599)

 

*The following constraints apply to all options:

  • Only one special topics course (CS 594) may be counted toward the 500-level requirement.
  • A maximum of 8 hours of non-CS graduate courses may be counted toward the overall course work requirement. However, prior formal approval via petition is required. Consult CS Student Affairs office for details on submitting a petition.

 

Comprehensive Examination: None

 

Research Credits:

Requirements depend on the specific option chosen:

  • Thesis: At least 8 hours of CS 598.  Although students may register for more than 8 hours with advisor permission, only 8 hours of CS 598 may be used toward the MS CS degree.
  • Project: At least 4 hours of CS 597.  Although students may register for  more than 4 hours with advisor permission, only 4 hours of CS 597 may be used toward the degree.
  • Coursework Only: No research hours required.  Students must earn all 36 hours from coursework as described in “Coursework Only” above.

 

Additional Requirements

 

Advisor.  Project and thesis option students should select an advisor as they progress in their program and identify a research area.  Students should contact the faculty in their area of interest directly to request permission to do a MS project or thesis with them.  Coursework only students do not require a permanent advisor but can consult with any CS faculty member, DGS or student affairs office staff as needed.

 

Limited Standing.  Students admitted with limited standing status must complete the conditions as specified in the admission letter. Failure to satisfy the conditions will result in dismissal from the program. Consult with Student Affairs staff for questions related to limited standing.

 

Academic performance.  All graduate students are required by the graduate college to remain in good standing per the conditions outlined by the graduate college policies https://grad.uic.edu/continuing-student-status  Failure to meet the conditions will result in students being placed on acadmic probation and possibly dismissal http://grad.uic.edu/probation-and-academic-dismissal

 

Students on probation or limited standing are ineligible for department awarded financial aid, recommendation letters for CPT or OPT for students on F1 visa, or graduation. In addition to meeting the graduate college academic performance requirements, all coursework required and used for the Computer Science graduate degree must be completed with an overall GPA 3.0 or above with no grade less than a ‘C’.

 

Time Limitation. All degree requirements must be completed within five years of initial registration in the degree program. Different time allowances apply to students on time-limited visas. Students who fail to graduate within five years will be dismissed from the Graduate College for failure to progress.  http://grad.uic.edu/masters-degrees

 

Registration. MS students choosing the project/thesis option are not required to register to graduate once they have completed all course credit requirements and registered for the necessary research hours. Students on a time-limited visa must consult Office of International Service (OIS) on registration requirements. Registration is required if a student plans to use any university facilities. If needed, students can petition to register for zero hours – consult the UIC graduate catalog https://grad.uic.edu/zero-hour-registration for details.

 

Graduation Guidelines. Refer to the General Graduation Guidelines of the Computer Science department for details on the process.

 

Transfer Credit. After admission to the MS program, students may petition to transfer coursework not used for previous degree.  A maximum of 9 semester hours earned outside the department are eligible for transfer; credits from non US institutions are generally not allowed. A transcript showing the courses with grades and course syllabi must be submitted with the Transfer Credit petition. Upon request, the student must also provide an official letter from the university stating the course(s) were not used to satisfy any prior degree requirements. Students changing from “non-degree” to “degree” status at UIC may petition up to 12 semester hours of credit earned. Only graduate level courses in which a grade of A or B was earned will be eligible for transfer. Transfer credit from outside UIC is not allowed once a student starts their graduate studies in the Computer Science program at UIC.

Master of Science: Thesis Option

The MS Thesis option is designed for graduate students with an interest in Computer Science research. Student selecting this option conduct original research under the supervision of a faculty member, culminating in the writing of a Master of Science thesis. At the completion of the thesis, the student presents a thesis defense to a Thesis Committee consisting of at least three faculty members, who are responsible for reviewing and evaluating the research work. The MS Thesis option is strongly advised for students who may be interested in pursuing a PhD in the future.

 

Thesis students are strongly encouraged to publish their original research in professional journals and to present their work at professional conferences.

 

MS Thesis Guidelines

  • Selecting a Thesis advisor must be a mutual agreement between student and faculty.  Once advisor is confirmed, discuss research areas and expectations. All CS assistant, associate, full professors and adjunct faculty are eligible to serve as a primary thesis advisor. Majority of thesis committee should hold at least a 50% appointment in the CS department, and at least one member of the committee must be a tenured faculty member.
  • Receive approval from advisor, register for CS 598 and conduct the agreed upon thesis research. Students who are required to maintain a specific number of registration hours may register for more than the 8 hours required hours of CS 598 with advisor permission, but no more than 8 hours will be used towards the requirements for the degree.
  • After the research has concluded and is ready for presentation, student and advisor select a thesis committee and obtain their agreement to serve on the committee. Provide committee members with a copy of the thesis and arrange a mutually acceptable date for the thesis defense. Submit the Committee Recommendation Form to the Student Affairs Office at least three weeks prior to the scheduled examination date. The form is available through the Graduate College website at http://grad.uic.edu/graduate-student-forms-publications
  • It is highly recommended that the defense be scheduled at least 10 business days prior to the official thesis submission deadline as outlined by graduate college. Time must be allowed for any potential changes required by the committee and the university.
  • An examination report will be generated by the Graduate College and sent to the CS Student Affairs office. Upon receipt, the student will be contacted to pick up of the forms. After the defense, go to SEO 905 and verify all graduation requirements have been met.
  • See General Graduation Guidelines section for details on the process of graduation http://grad.uic.edu/graduation-deadlines

 

Format Guidelines

Thesis and dissertation format guidelines are described in detail in a Thesis Manual published and available on the Graduate College website http://grad.uic.edu/thesis  A pdf copy of the thesis must be submitted to the CS Student Affairs office via email for a format check one week prior to the deadline set by the Graduate College.

 

Master of Science: Project Option

The MS Project Option is designed for graduate students who are interested in demonstrating their training in the form of a substantive, capstone project. The student undertakes the project under faculty supervision, culminating in the development of both the project and a written description of the project in the form of a MS Project report. Both the project work itself and the project report must demonstrate a high level of professional skill. MS projects and project reports are reviewed by a committee of two faculty members (the student’s advisor serves as the primary committee member), but do not require a formal presentation or defense of their work.

 

MS Project Guidelines

  • Selecting a Project advisor must be a mutual agreement between student and faculty.  Once advisor is confirmed, discuss project proposals and expectations. All CS lecturers, assistant, associate, full professors and adjunct faculty are eligible to serve as a primary advisor and secondary committee member. Secondary committee member can also be a full-time faculty member at UIC (non-CS faculty or adjunct faculty); however they have to be pre approved by the primary advisor and DGS. One of the committee members should hold at least a 50% appointment in the CS department.
  • In the semester the student intends to conduct their project research, the student must register for 4 hours of CS 597 under the advisor’s CRN.  Students who are required to maintain a specific number of registration hours may register for more than the 4 hours required hours of CS 597 with advisor permission, but no more than 4 hours will be used towards the requirements for the degree.
  • Once the project is complete and the report has been written, submit the final project report and the “Certificate of Approval” form to your advisor at least one week prior to the published deadline. Form available at http://grad.uic.edu/graduate-student-forms Provide your secondary committee member with a duplicate copy of the report.
  • Your advisor and committee member must sign the Certificate of Approval form. The signed form and the final project report should then be submitted to the Student Affairs Office (905 SEO).
  • Your project report should be a technically-focused and carefully written document. Consult your advisor as they may have guidelines for formatting or other requirements for the project report. While there are no official format guidelines for project reports, at the minimum it should contain the following:
    • Cover page (including title, name, advisor & secondary committee member information and semester of graduation & UIN)
    • Abstract
    • Table of Contents
    • Introduction, chapters, conclusion and appendix/cited literature
    • Begin each chapter and section on a new page
  • Ensure that all changes for incomplete or deferred grades are submitted. The instructor who originally assigned the IN, DFR or NR must grade changes.
  • See General Graduation Guidelines section for details on the process of graduation http://grad.uic.edu/graduation-deadlines

Doctor of Philosophy Degree Requirements

Minimum Semester Hours Required: 108 hours beyond the baccalaureate degree

Coursework requirements*

Student admitted with prior master’s degree in CS or a related field: At least 28 hours, 16 hours of which must be CS courses at the 500 level (excluding CS 590, CS 595-599).  Graduate college may grant 32 hours of credit from previously earned MS degree; students must submit request to Student Affairs upon enrollment at UIC.

Student admitted directly after bachelor’s degree in CS or a related field: At least 32 hours, 16 hours of which must be CS courses at the 500 level (excluding CS 590, CS 595-599).

*Additional constraints to the coursework requirements:

  1. Courses that are nearly equivalent to CS graduate courses should not be repeated. Generally repeat courses will not earn PhD credit.
  2. A maximum of 8 hours of non-CS graduate courses may be counted toward the overall course work requirement. However, prior formal approval via petition is required. Consult CS Student Affairs office for details on submitting a petition.
  3. A maximums of two special topics courses (CS 594) may be counted toward the 500-level and coursework requirement.  Additional special topics (CS 594) courses must be petitioned to be used towards coursework requirements.

 

Research Methods: Required. Candidates must earn 4 hours in CS 590 within the first two years of enrollment.

Colloquium: 10 required.  Students are required to attend ten colloquia within the first two years of enrollment. Dissertation defenses are acceptable colloquia.

Research Credits:

Student admitted with prior master’s degree in CS or a related field must earn at least 48 hours.

Student admitted directly after bachelor’s degree in CS or a related field must earn at least 72 hours.

Only 48 or 72 hours can be used towards the PhD CS degree. Students may register for additional hours with advisor permission if needed.

 

Qualifier Examination

Pass the “PhD Qualifier Examination” before the end of their 4th semester of enrollment (actual completion date is approximately half way through the 4th semester). The Qualifier Examination consists of 3 parts: (i) A PhD Course requirement which is designed to evaluate the student’s basic proficiency in core areas of computer science (completed by the end of 3rd semester); (ii) A Written Critique and Presentation (WCP) testing the student’s analytical and presentational abilities in a particular area of computer science (completed in their 3rd or 4th semester); and (iii) A Final Evaluation by CS faculty based on the student’s performance in the first two parts is done in the middle of the 4th semester. *Review the PhD Qualifying Exam Information section of the manual for detailed information.

 

Preliminary Examination

Pass an oral preliminary examination on the proposed dissertation topic. This examination is administered by a Graduate College approved faculty committee and chaired by the student’s advisor. Students must pass the preliminary examination one-year prior to their final defense. If a final defense is held within a year of the preliminary exam, a petition has to be submitted.

Demonstrate a capacity for independent research on an original dissertation topic within the major field of study. Research is performed under the supervision of an advisor and orally defended before a faculty committee consisting of at least five members. See the Doctor of Philosophy: Preliminary Examination section for detailed information on this requirement.

 

Final Dissertation

Upon completion of all degree requirements and dissertation, the candidate must orally defend the work before the committee.  See the Doctor of Philosophy: Final Dissertation Defense section for further details.

 

Additional Regulations

Advisor

All PhD students are assigned a temporary advisor upon admission; students are encouraged to choose a permanent advisor by their second semester. By the completion of the students third semester a formal Permanent Advisor selection form must be submitted to the CS Student Affairs office. Permanent advisors must be chosen by mutual agreement.

PhD Assessment

All PhD students are required to complete the College of Engineering’s annual online self-assessment. Students are notified when the online self-assessment is open at https://phd-evaluation.engr.uic.edu/.

The self-assessment survey requires students to submit some basic information, self-evaluation, publications, presentations and plans for the upcoming year (research, publication and deadlines for milestones in the completion of the degree).  Once the student completes and submits the survey, the advisor receives notification that allows them to verify and provide feedback on student’s progress.

 

Registration

General registration policies are outlined by the Graduate College (http://grad.uic.edu/registration-policies).

Doctoral students upon passing the preliminary exam are required to register for at least zero credit hours each semester (excluding summer) until the final defense is completed and the dissertation is submitted in compliance with department and Graduate College rules.  If the PhD candidate decides to defend during the Summer, registration is required for Summer term.  PhD candidates are not required to register after they successfully defend their dissertation unless registration is required to maintain a specific status (i.e., assistantship, visa, or continued use of university facilities).

If a PhD candidate successfully defends the dissertation and submits the final dissertation to the Graduate College after the semester deadline but prior to the fifth day of instruction of the following semester, the degree is conferred in the subsequent semester. Registration for that semester is not required.

See http://grad.uic.edu/zero-hour-registration for further details.

 

Time Restrictions

Students admitted to the Graduate College with a master’s degree or who continue in the Graduate College after completing the master’s degree at UIC must complete the degree requirements within seven consecutive calendar years after initial registration as a doctoral student. Students admitted to the Graduate College without a master’s degree who proceed directly to the doctorate must complete degree requirements within nine consecutive calendar years of initial registration as a doctoral student. Students who do not graduate by these deadlines will be dismissed from the Graduate College for failure to progress. Time spent on a leave of absence approved by the program and the Graduate College is not counted toward the degree time limit.

 

Transfer Credit

After admission to the PhD program, students may petition to transfer coursework not used for previous degree.  A maximum of 9 semester hours earned outside the department are eligible for transfer; credits from non US institutions are generally not allowed. A transcript showing the courses with grades and course syllabi must be submitted with the Transfer Credit petition. Upon request, the student must also provide an official letter from the university stating the course(s) were not used to satisfy any prior degree requirements. Students changing from “non-degree” to “degree” status at UIC may petition up to 12 semester hours of credit earned. Only graduate level courses in which a grade of A or B was earned will be eligible for transfer. Transfer credit from outside UIC is not allowed once a student starts their graduate studies in the Computer Science program at UIC.

 

Changing to the MS Program: Not allowed

The UIC College of Engineering Strategic Plan, adopted in January 2005 and revised from time to time, states that students in a PhD program who have received any financial support from UIC (such as TA, RA, or Tuition and Fee Waiver) cannot transfer into any MS program in the College of Engineering (which includes computer science) “unless the student explicitly petitions to transfer to the MS program and that petition is approved”.

PhD candidates admitted directly from the BS degree, do NOT earn a MS degree prior to their PhD.  They graduate only with a PhD degree.

Prior Publication of Research Findings

Students engaged in research may choose to publish certain findings that are later incorporated into the final dissertation.  In such cases, appropriate acknowledgment of the earlier publication should be included in the final dissertation.  The Graduate College encourages such publication, but the dissertation may not be published in its entirety before all degree requirements, including the defense of the dissertation, have been completed.

Doctor of Philosophy: Qualifying Exam

The current Qualifying Exam has been in effect since Fall 2012.

PhD Qualifying Exam Information provides details on the requirements of it’s successful completion of each of the three parts.

Doctor of Philosophy: Preliminary Examination

 

The purpose of the Preliminary Examination is to determine the candidate’s readiness to undertake dissertation research, and passing it constitutes formal Admission to Candidacy. The examination serves as the next major step toward the PhD degree except for the completion and defense of the dissertation. The examination provides the student with timely feedback of the faculty’s views of his/her potential for completing the PhD Program.

The preliminary examination is generally administered once the student has completed most, though not necessarily all, of the coursework, but has not made a major investment of time and effort towards the dissertation research project. A minimum of one year has to elapse before the defense of the dissertation after passing the preliminary examination. Only students in good academic standing are permitted to take the examination.

 

Preliminary Examination Committee

The committee for the preliminary examination is appointed by the Dean of the Graduate College upon the recommendation of the department or program.  The advisor is the chair of the Committee and must be a full member of the UIC Graduate Faculty.  All CS assistant, associate, full professors and adjunct faculty are eligible to serve as an advisor.  The composition of the five-member committee should be as follows:

  • Consists of at least five (5) members
  • At least three (3) are UIC Graduate Faculty with full membership
  • Two (2) must be tenured faculty, not just tenure-track
  • Majority of the committee should hold at least a 50% appointment in the CS department.

Graduate programs strive for diversity in the composition of the preliminary examination committee.  The appointment of one or two members from outside the degree-granting program or university is encouraged.  If the outside member is not a UIC graduate faculty member, his/her curriculum vitae must accompany the Committee Recommendation Form to demonstrate equivalent academic standards.

 

Preliminary Examination Pass Requirements

A Committee Recommendation form (http://grad.uic.edu/graduate-student-forms), listing the committee members and their affiliations, must be submitted at least three weeks prior to the exam date to the CS Student Affairs for department approval.  Upon department approval, the form will be forwarded to the Graduate College for final approval.  If human subjects are involved, Institutional Review Board approval is required.  If animals are involved, Animal Care Panel approval is required.  Graduate College will forward an examination report to the department, which has to be signed by each member of the committee after assigning a grade of “pass” or “fail”.  The timing, content, and nature (written, oral, or both) of the preliminary examination is left at the discretion of the preliminary examination committee.   A candidate cannot be passed with more than one “fail” vote.

The committee may require that specified conditions be met before the passing recommendation becomes effective.  On the recommendation of the committee, the Dean may permit a second examination.  A third examination is not permitted.  Failure to complete the degree requirements within five years (departments may specify shorter periods) of passing the preliminary examination requires a new examination.

The Graduate College requires the preliminary examination be completed after at least one calendar year of residence and one year prior to the final dissertation defense.

 

Doctor of Philosophy: Final Dissertation Defense

 

Upon completion of all degree requirements and dissertation, the candidate must orally defend the work before the committee.  Only students in good academic standing are permitted to defend their dissertation.  A new Committee Recommendation form must be filed, listing the dissertation title and committee members.  The chairperson (advisor) is considered the primary reader of the dissertation.  A second and/or third member of the committee may also be designated as “readers.”

The dissertation committee is appointed by the Dean of the Graduate College on the recommendation of the student’s department.  The Committee Recommendation form is available online through the Graduate College website (http://grad.uic.edu/graduate-student-forms), which must be filled and submitted to the CS Student Affairs office at least three weeks prior to the exam date.  The committee composition requirements of the final defense committee are the same as the preliminary committee, except the appointment of one member from outside the degree-granting program is mandatory.  The committee composition of the committee is as follows:

  • Consists of at least five (5) members
  • At least three (3) are UIC Graduate Faculty with full membership
  • Two (2) must be tenured faculty, not just tenure-track
  • Majority of the committee should hold at least a 50% appointment in the CS department.
  • One member must come from outside the degree-granting program or university.  If the outside member is not a UIC graduate faculty member, his/her curriculum vitae must accompany the Committee Recommendation Form.

Federal regulations require that any research which involves the use of either human subjects or animals be approved by the Institutional Review Board (IRB) or the Animal Care Committee (ACC). The regulations are all-inclusive in that surveys, interviews, pre-existing data and human tissues obtained for non-research purposes require review by the IRB before the research can be done. If the work is completed without IRB or ACC approval, it cannot be published, even as a thesis. Copies of the IRB or ACC approval must be included in the appendix of the final draft of the thesis submitted for review by the Graduate College. It is University policy that theses which are not in compliance with the Office for the Protection of Research Subjects (OPRS) will not be accepted for fulfillment of graduation requirements. For further information, see http://grad.uic.edu/office-protection-research-subjects / or contact OPRS.

 

Format Guidelines

Thesis and dissertation format guidelines are described in detail in a Thesis Manual published and available on the Graduate College website http://grad.uic.edu/thesis  A pdf copy of the thesis must be submitted to the CS Student Affairs office via email for a format check one week prior to the deadline set by the Graduate College.

CS Graduate Student Processes

Course Selection

All graduate students should select classes independently in their area of interest.  PhD students should consult their faculty advisor for course recommendations. A maximum of 8 hours of non-CS graduate courses may be counted toward the overall course work requirement. However, prior formal approval via petition is required. Consult CS Student Affairs office for details on submitting a petition.  New students should note that courses taken and grades obtained in their first semester of enrollment largely determine financial aid awards for the following academic year.

Unless specifically advised otherwise, new graduate students should not enroll in the following courses for their first semester: CS 597 Project Research; CS 598 MS Thesis Research; or CS 599 PhD Thesis Research.  Students should take regularly scheduled courses during their first semester.

 

Registration Restrictions* – CS graduate students may not register for more than 12 credit hours of CS didactic classes (i.e., 400-491 and CS 500-594 classes). Anyone in violation of the registration policy can be removed from courses by the department until their credit hours of didactic classes no longer exceeds the limit for that semester. In addition, students violating this policy may also be restricted from future registration until until they have met with the DGS.

 

How is it implemented?

  • The Department will do random checks on graduate student registration.
  • Graduate students registered for over 3 graduate CS didactic classes (at anytime in the registration cycle) will be emailed with a warning that they are exceeding the limit and given ample time to correct their registration; or receive permission to stay in class by discussing this matter with the DGS or Director of CS Student Affairs.
  • Once the deadline is passed, if a student has not corrected their registration or received permission to stay – a hold will be placed on their account which prevents further registration of any kind (both add / drop).
  • The Department will then decide which classes to drop and ask UIC registrar’s office to drop the class(es) from the student’s schedule.

Any exemption have to be cleared by the DGS or the CS Student Affairs Office (SEO 905).  We expect this policy to benefit all students of 400 and 500 level courses by helping us to plan better and provide course offerings and seats that better meet all student needs.

*The department may implement new temporary restrictions as needed.

 

Other course processes

Some 400 level courses in the MCS department overlap with CS lower level courses. Graduate credit in CS is not allowed for such courses. For example, graduate credit is not allowed for MCS 441 Theory of Computation, which is the same as CS 301 (Languages and Automata). Courses in IDS are generally not allowed to count towards graduation.  If you are uncertain, please check with the CS Student Affairs Office, the DGS and/or your faculty advisor prior to registering for the course.

Students who receive any form of financial aid from the University (TA, RA, Fellowship or Tuition & Fee Waiver) are subject to minimum registration requirements, which must be maintained throughout the semester.  See graduate college website for requirements with assistantships: http://grad.uic.edu/assistantships.  Students who have been awarded a Fellowship or TFW must be registered for a minimum of 12 hours in Fall and Spring semester; and 6 hours in Summer.  Note: If you fall below the required hours at any point in the semester, you become ineligible for the tuition waiver and will be assessed all fees.

The department requires all students supported by a TA position to register for a minimum of 8 credit hours of coursework each semester (except Summer), until they have completed the required coursework.  Upon completion of the coursework you can follow the graduate college registration requirements for the appropriate percentage appointment. These minimum hours are the requirement for a student to be considered as full-time. Students supported on fellowships or tuition and fee waivers are already required to have a minimum of 12 credit hours of registration in regular semesters and a minimum of 6 credit hours in summer. Students who need to complete prerequisites should register for additional courses to achieve a 12-hour registration. Students working on MS project, MS thesis or PhD dissertations should register for CS 597, CS 598 or CS 599 hours, respectively.

 

Course Prerequisites

If your undergraduate degree is not from UIC, please make sure that your course background is equivalent to the recommended course prerequisites. Talk to the instructor of the course if you have any concerns about prerequisites. You are responsible for the course prerequisites, not your instructor. You will not be allowed to withdraw from a course after the drop deadline because you have not met the prerequisites. The drop deadline is 10th day of classes for Fall & Spring and 5th day for Summer terms. This drop deadline is strictly enforced for all courses.

 

Adding/Dropping/Withdrawing Courses

Students should finalize their class schedule by the end of the add/drop period (10th day for Fall & Spring, 5th day for Summer terms).  Once the add/drop period has ended, students are not allowed to add/drop classes.

Any requests to add/withdraw from a class after the add/drop period must be petitioned, with support from instructor (not advisor) of the class.  Submit the petition to the CS Student Affairs Office (SEO 905) along with all supporting documentation for the DGS to review.

As a general policy, you will not be permitted to withdraw from courses (particularly the 300 and 400 level courses in CS).  If permission (from the Director of Graduate Studies) is granted for such a “late drop”, it will be reported as a withdrawal (W) on the transcript.  A “W” cannot be stricken from your permanent record and cannot be replaced by a new grade should you retake the course and obtain a letter grade.

The following are examples of unacceptable reasons for dropping a course after the deadline: “I have had this material before”, “This course will not be useful to me”, “I am taking too many courses”, “I do not have the prerequisites”, “I forgot to drop the course before the drop deadline”, “A bad grade will affect my GPA negatively” or “I have not attended classes for the past few weeks”.  It is your responsibility to make sure that you enroll in classes that are appropriate for your academic course load, schedule and that you have met all prerequisites.

Students holding fellowships, assistantships, tuition and fee waivers, and student visas must maintain the required number of credit hours or risk loss of their aid for the term. Students whose waivers are revoked due to insufficient credit hours will be billed the full cost of tuition, fees and any late charges that may apply.

Students are allowed to register for a maximum total of 20 hours per semester. Note: students must remain compliance with the CS departments registration policy for graduate students.  In order to register for more than 20 hours, the student must have approval from his/her advisor and submit that information to SEO 905 for override permission.

 

Good Academic Standing

In addition to the Graduate college defined good standing satus (http://grad.uic.edu/continuing-student-status), Computer Science graduate students should not be in violation of any conduct policies or academic dishonesty.

 

Grades

Coursework earn grades of A, B, C, D or F; research hours a ‘S’ or ‘U’.  GPA is calculated based on the grades and credits hours.  For details see: http://grad.uic.edu/grades.

 

Probation and Academic Dismissal

All graduate students are required to maintain a 3.0 (B) grade point average (GPA).  The GPA calculation does not include independent study and research courses (CS 590, CS 595-599).

Graduate course work must be satisfied by a C grade or higher.  If a student’s graduate GPA falls below 3.0 (B), the Graduate College will issue a letter of warning and impose academic probation for a specified period of time.  Failure to comply with the terms will likely result in dismissal from the CS program and Graduate College.  Details of this available at: http://grad.uic.edu/probation-and-academic-dismissal.

A student on probation is ineligible for department awarded financial aid, recommendation for any type of practical training, or graduation.

General Graduation Guidelines

Recommended step by step process

  • Send email request for “Graduation Check” to grad@cs.uic.edu, at least one month prior to the term you intend to graduate.   Include your name, UIN, program (if MS identify thesis, project or coursework only option) and expected graduation term.  Student Affairs staff will respond with requirements you completed and/or are missing. The early check allows you ample time to modify your registration, if necessary, for your final semester.
  • Be aware of graduation guidelines. CS Student Affairs Office will email a reminder at the beginning of the semester.   Deadlines are also available on the graduate academic calendar, and are non-negotiable.
  • Apply to Graduate‘ via my.uic.edu portal -in the “Academics” tab of the student part of the portal (you may also have staff and faculty sections if you work on campus and/or are a teaching assistant) go to the “Records” sub-tab and then choose “Declare your Intent to Graduate”.
  • Inform your advisor of your intent to graduate (does not apply to MS students w/ coursework only option).

 

If you are graduating with a Thesis/Dissertation, you must:

  1. Submit a “Committee Recommendation Formthree weeks prior to your defense date.  The form must be filled out online, printed, signed by your advisor and submitted to the CS Student Affairs Office (SEO 905).  Hand written forms are not accepted. http://grad.uic.edu/graduate-student-forms
  2. If any committee member is not part of the UIC graduate college faculty (post doc or visiting faculty); or if they are non-UIC faculty – a CV must be submitted with the committee recommendation form.
  3. All PhD students must attach an abstract to the committee recommendation form for both their preliminary exam and final dissertation defense.
  4. All students must send an email announcement for advertisement at least a week prior their defense to grad@cs.uic.edu.  Defense details are advertised to all faculty and graduate students.
  5. Graduate College will return an ‘Exam Report’ after they approve the Committee Recommendation Form. The CS Student Affairs Office will notify you of the receipt.
  6. Consult the ‘Graduate Thesis Manual’ for information on all required forms and format of the thesis.
  7. Schedule your defense date at least two weeks (for PhD) and 10 days (for MS thesis) prior to the thesis submission deadline.
  8. Just prior to or immediately following your defense, email a PDF copy of your thesis to grad@cs.uic.edu for a format check.
  9. Pick up ‘Exam Report’ from the CS Student Affairs Office to take to the defense.  All committee members sign the form and it should be returned immediately to the CS Student Affairs Office.
  10. All thesis are submitted electronically.  Information on electronic submission is available on Graduate college website: http://grad.uic.edu/electronic-thesisdissertation.
  11. All required forms must be completed and signed before submitting them to Graduate College.  A detailed checklist of the required forms is available in the thesis manual.

 

If you are graduating with the MS Project option:

  1. Make sure your advisor and the second committee member have ample time (at least one week) to read and approve your project.
    • All CS lecturers, assistant, associate, full professors and adjunct faculty are eligible to serve as a primary advisor and secondary committee member.  Secondary committee member can also be a full-time faculty member at UIC (non-CS faculty or adjunct faculty); however they have to be pre-approved by the primary advisor and DGS.  One of the committee members should hold at least a 50% appointment in the CS department
  1. Your advisor and second committee member must sign ‘Certificate of Approval‘ form.
  2. Submit a hard copy of the project report and the ‘Certificate of Approval’ form to the CS Student Affairs Office by the department project deadline.
  3. Minimum format guidelines for the project report:
    • Cover page – should include title, name, UIN, committee names and semester of graduation
    • Table of Contents
    • Abstract
    • Introduction, chapters, conclusion and appendix/cited literature
    • Begin each chapter and section on a new page

Final Steps

  • Have your advisor submit grade changes for all your DFR, I or M grades of your research hours (597, 598 & 599).
  • Return all borrowed equipment and keys to SEO 1120.

Please note that if you do not graduate in the semester you submitted your ‘Intent to Graduate’, you have to submit the request again during the term you intend to graduate.  The previous request will NOT be carried over to the next semester automatically.

Petitions

The Graduate College is quite firm in its deadlines and will not accept petitions and other forms after the specified deadlines.  It is the student’s responsibility to ensure that petitions are complete; questions regarding them should be directed to (a) Staff in SEO 905, (b) the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS), or (c) the Graduate College.

Some petitions are available for on-line submission.  However, many still require paper forms which require the signatures of your graduate advisor and of the DGS.  It is your responsibility to secure these signatures in a timely manner to meet the Graduate College deadlines.  The following procedures should be followed:

  1. Obtain the petition (or other form) from the CS Student Affairs Office (SEO 905) or the Graduate College.
  2. Complete the petition and secure the necessary supporting documents.  You should begin this process early; in some cases, petitions require students to consult old timetables or require obtaining letters or transcripts from other institutions.
  3. Present the petition to your advisor for his/her signature and comments.
  4. After your advisor has signed the petition, submit it to the CS Student Affairs Office.  Do not rely on your advisor to do this for you.  It is your responsibility.
  5. The DGS will review the petition, indicate approval or disapproval, provide written comments, sign it and return it to the CS Student Affairs Office.  This process will take no more than five business days during regularly scheduled class and examination periods of the academic year.
  6. Staff in the CS Student Affairs Office will submit the petition to the Graduate College, in some cases you might be asked to submit the forms to the Graduate College.
  7. The Graduate College will notify you of the decision.  If you have questions concerning the petition at this point, please consult the staff in the CS Student Affairs Office.  The staff will try to answer your questions and/or consult the Graduate College in trying to resolve your issues.