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Frequently Asked Questions

General questions about advising

  • How to can I get advising?
    • There are several ways to get information regarding your academics. Several online sources exist:
    • Every CSE major is assigned a CSE faculty member who serves as that student’s academic advisor. That faculty member is happy to help answer your questions. If you have more than one major, then you will be assigned an academic advisor for that other major.
  • Who is my CSE advisor?
    • The name of your CSE advisor can be found under the "Student" tab of MyMiami.
  • How do I meet with my advisor?
    • Email your advisor to set up a mutually agreeable time to meet. Prior to your meeting, you should have clearly defined questions with your best guess as to solve the problem. For example, if you are interested in getting help for selecting your courses for the next semester, you should have a prospective set of courses that you think you would like to take.
  • When should I see my advisor?
    • You can see your advisor any time you have a question. Students often seek their advisor’s help prior to registration. Please be aware that you should seek an appointment at least one week prior to scheduling your courses.
  • What can my CSE advisor help with?
    • You CSE advisor can help you select courses to take for an upcoming semester, help you plan for studying abroad, discuss difficulties you might be having with a course, and provide internship and career advice.
  • What is my catalog year?
    • Every year, a new Miami bulletin is published that details the degree requirements for the students entering that year. You can think of the bulletin as containing the specific requirements that students must fulfill in order to graduate.
    • By default, students are assigned the catalog year corresponding to the year that they entered Miami University. This means you are bound to the requirements that were in place when you first entered Miami. Students have the option to change to a later catalog year if the student wishes; this decision should be done with the help of an advisor.
  • What is a DAR?
    • DAR stands for Degree Audit Report. The DAR is a convenient way to view your progress toward graduation. The DAR shows which requirements have been fulfilled, those that are in progress, and those that are still unfulfilled. The DAR is a good document to view prior to registering for the upcoming semester.
  • Who are some of the CSE faculty I should be aware of?
    • Department Chair - Prof. Kiper
    • Lead Departmental Advisor - Prof. Krumpe
    • Chair of CSE Graduate Program - Prof. Bachmann
    • Chair of CSE Undergraduate Committee - Prof. Zmuda

Student Life

  • What extracurricular opportunities exist for CSE students?
    • Miami has many student organizations, intramural sports, and club sports. To learn more about student organizations visit Miami's Hub or for more infomation on intramural and club sports visit Miami's Recreation website.
    • CSE activities
      • Collegiate Programming Team – Prof. Zmuda
      • CSE programming contest – Prof. Zmuda
      • Student Chapter of the ACM – Prof. Krumpe
      • Kode2Learn – Prof. Krumpe
      • Teaching assistants – Prof. Bachmann
      • Preparation for technical interviews – Prof. Femiani
  • What research opportunities exist for CSE students?
    • CSE students can participate in faculty research. Typically, this is done by establishing a relationship with a faculty member. This happens when you take their courses, visit them during their office hours, and having a mutual interest in a particular topic.
  • Internships and job placement
  • Scholarships
    • CSE has several scholarships that are awarded to annually to students. Some are for first-year students and some are for upperclassmen. A formal application is not required since all students are considered for these awards.


  • What is the Miami Bulletin?
    • Miami's Bulletin is a document that describes all aspect of Miami’s academic policies and requirements. This includes liberal arts requirements, major requirements, available thematic sequences, and course descriptions. There are many other aspects that are described in the bulletin. A new bulletin is published each year.
  • What is a catalog year?
    • Each year a new Miami Bulletin is published to define the requirements for students entering Miami in that year. Students entering Miami in, say, August 2019 for the 2019-20 academic year will be subject to the “2020 bulletin.” These students’ requirements are said to be based on the 2020 catalog year.

General CSE questions

  • How many credit hours should I take each semester?
    • Full-time students must take at least 12 credit hours in a semester in order to maintain full-time status.
    • Typically, full-time students take roughly 15 to 18 credit hours per semester. When first enrolling for fall and spring classes, CSE majors are limited to 18 credit hours. Closer to the start of the semester, this limit will be increased to 20 credit hours. 20 credit hours cannot be exceeded without obtaining special permission.
  • What is a thematic sequence?
    • All degree-seeking Miami students must complete one of Miami's thematic sequences. A thematic sequence is a collection of classes focused in a cohesive area of study. There are several dozen thematic sequences currently available.
  • Do I have to complete a thematic sequence?
    • CSE majors who have a second major from another department, or have a declared minor, do not have to complete a thematic sequence. The second major or minor will satisfy the thematic sequence requirements.
  • Which thematic sequence should I choose?
    • For students beginning prior to fall 2017, CSE majors’ typical course requirements included the requirements of MTH 2 Basic Mathematical Tools for Science. This sequence consisted of MTH 151, MTH 231, and STA 301. Thus, typical CSE majors automatically obtained a thematic sequence from their CSE degree requirements.
    • For students beginning fall 2017 or later, CSE majors do not have a thematic sequence built into the major. However, depending on the mathematics and statistics electives you choose, you may be able to satisfy the requirements of either:
  • How do I declare a thematic sequence?
    • Fill out a form in the department that provides the thematic sequence (e.g., math department).
  • When should I declare a thematic sequence?
    • You may declare your thematic sequence before completing any of the courses in that sequence, or you may declare it while those courses are in progress, or you may declare it after completing all the courses. Note that you must declare your thematic sequence before you will be able to graduate (unless you are satisfying the thematic sequence using a minor or second major).
  • What is the specialization area in the Software Engineering major?
    • The specialization area is a cohesive collection of courses that focuses on an application area of software engineering or a technical area that would benefit a software engineer.
  • How do I determine a specialization area?
  • For the Computer Science major, what is an affiliate elective?
    • CS majors require a specific number of CSE elective courses (based on catalog year). The predefined set of electives is divided into three sets: 1) regular electives 2) research electives and 3) affiliate electives. Only a total of 2 courses from groups 2 and 3 can be counted toward your electives. Groups 2 and 3 contain courses that are certainly related to Computer science but are not as central as those in group 1; therefore, limits are placed on groups 2 and 3.
  • Do I have to take affiliate electives?
    • No. You are not required to take any affiliate electives. The rule is that you can take at most 2 affiliate electives.
  • Can I double major in CS and SE?
    • Yes, you can double major in both. You should visit with your advisor and discuss your academic and career goals to help determine if this is an appropriate course of action. Also, there are limits on how many courses can be double counted.
  • I am becoming a CSE major late in my academic career. What is the fastest I can fulfill the CSE requirements?
    • Due to course prerequisites, CSE majors have a six-course sequence that must be completed in the following order, one per term: CSE 174, 271, 274, 201, 448, 449. Note that all of these courses are offered every semester. Also, CSE 174, 271, and 274 are typically offered in the summer and winter terms as well.
    • Students who are trying to fulfill degree requirements quickly may attempt to take too many very demanding courses in the same semester. It is possible that such an action may actually delay graduation. Students are encouraged to talk to their advisor to determine appropriate schedules.
  • What is the combined Bachelors/Masters program?
    • Miami's combined Bachelors/Masters program is an option for highly qualified students to simultaneously pursue a Bachelors and Masters degrees. The program allows certain courses to count toward both degrees. The main advantage of this program is that both degrees can be obtained faster than completing them separately.
  • I am trying to register for a course and the course is closed. What do I do now?
    • For CSE courses, you can put your name on the CSE force add page. For non-CSE courses, you should contact the department that offers the course.
  • I am interested in taking a course at another university. How do I get that to count as transfer credit?
    • If the course you plan to take is meant to replace a CSE course, you should first submit a course syllabus to the CSE department to find out if the course will be equivalent to an existing CSE course and/or might count as CSE elective credit.
    • If the course you plan to take is meant to replace a non-CSE course, you should first investigate to see if the course has a Miami equivalent.
      • If indicates that Miami will accept the other course, then all you will need to do after completing the course is to have a transcript sent from the other university to Miami's registrar.
      • If does not list a Miami equivalent, you still might be able to transfer the course to Miami, but you will need to consult with an academic advisor from the Miami department that offers the potentially equivalent course.
  • Can I get CSE credit for internships and work experience?
  • CSE policy is to not award CSE credit for work experience.

Rules about courses

  • What are the GPA requirements?
    • Your overall GPA must be at least 2.0.
    • Your GPA for your CSE classes (CSE 102, and CSE 174 and above) must be at least 2.0.
  • Do I have to get at least a C in each of my CSE courses?
    • No. In order to graduate, you are required to have at least a 2.0 GPA for your CSE classes. So, it is possible to have a grade below a C in one or more of your CSE classes, as long as your CSE GPA is at least 2.0 when it is time to graduate. The minimum passing grade in your CSE courses is D-. However, there are some exceptions you should know about…
    • A grade of C- or higher is required in CSE 174 in order to take CSE 271.
    • A grade of C- or higher is required in CSE 271 in order to take CSE 274.
  • What happens if I take a course more than once?
    • Each time you take a course for a letter grade, that course will count toward your GPA. So, if you take a course once and get a D, and then take it again and get a B+, then both the D and the B+ will contribute to your GPA. However, Miami has a "Course Repeat Policy" that will allow a student, in some situations, to remove the grade of a course from the udent's GPA calculations.
  • How do I use Miami's Course Repeat Policy?
    • First, you should discuss your situation with your CSE advisor. Depending on the circumstances, it might not be worthwhile to repeat a course.
    • You should also be sure you understand the details of the Course Repeat Policy. You can learn about the requirements on the "Student" tab of the MyMiami website.
    • After you have repeated a course and have gotten the grade from the repeated course, you can submit a "Request to Apply the Undergraduate Course Repeat Policy" using the link on the "Student" tab of the MyMiami website.


  • What is a petition?
    • A petition is a request made by a student to change their degree requirements. Changes to the liberal arts portion of your requirements are made through Miami's Office of Liberal Education, which uses an online petition form. Changes to CSE requirements are made to the CSE Undergraduate Committee.
  • What type of things can be petitioned?
    • Petitions that have been submitted in the past include: request to replace CSE 448/449 with IMS 440; request to consider a non-CSE course as a CS elective; request a customized specialization area for their software engineering major.
  • How long does it take to process a petition?
    • During the regular academic year, the committee meets every two weeks. Therefore, petitions that are related to your course schedule should be submitted at least two weeks prior to your registration date.
  • How do I submit a petition?
    • Write a succinct statement of what you are requesting. Provide rationale on why your request is reasonable. Include supporting documents, if applicable. Reasons why you think your request is reasonable. These reasons could include one or more of the following:
      • A course syllabus and a description of why the course is relevant to computer science majors.
      • Personal circumstances that put your request into a more positive light.
      • Anything else that you think is relevant.

CSE Additional Resources

Registration Override Requests

Force-add requests for CSE courses must be submitted using the Registration Override Request (ROR) application. To submit a request:

  1. Use the courses of instruction section of the Miami Bulletin to make sure you have met the pre/co-requisite requirements for the course. If not, see Note 1 below.
  2. Make sure your request(s) will not have the potential to create a time conflict in your schedule (see Note 2 below).
  3. Log in to the Miami course list
  4. Once you find the CSE course, click "submit registration override request".
  5. Follow the instructions and submit the request.

Note 1: If you want to take an CSE course but have not met all of the pre/co-requisite requirements, you must request permission by submitting a petition to the CSE Department. If you have questions about the petition process, see your academic advisor. Without an approved petition, you might still end up being added to the course by the ROR application, but then you may be removed from the course at a later time (possibly after the course has started) when it may be difficult or impossible to find a replacement course.

Note 2:  It is your responsibility to submit requests that do not create time conflicts in your schedule.  The ROR application does not guarantee that.  If fulfilling one or more of your ROR requests results in a time conflict, it is your responsibility to take action to resolve it.  Otherwise, you may be removed from one or more courses later (possibly after the course has started), and by then it may be difficult or impossible to find a replacement course.

Petition Process

Students wishing to seek an exception to the requirements for their major course of study are required to prepare and submit a petition for review and possible approval. Exceptions include taking courses at other universities for the purpose of substitution for required CSE courses. Students are encouraged to obtain approval for substitution of transfer courses prior to enrolling in the course to be transferred. Visit to verify if courses will transfer.

Students are responsible for initiating petitions. Petitions should be prepared in consultation with the academic advisor. Petition forms are available in the department office. They must be properly completed, have all supporting materials attached, and be signed by the student’s advisor. Petitions are submitted to the department administrative assistant. The administrative assistant logs the petition and then passes it on to the Petition Committee chair. The Petition Committee meets in a timely fashion and rules on each petition received. The student and faculty are notified of decisions in writing by email. Questions should be directed to the student’s advisor, the petition committee chair, or the department chair.

Academic Integrity/Academic Dishonesty

Students should be knowledgeable concerning the rules, definitions, and procedures governing academic integrity/academic dishonesty. See Miami University Student Handbook section 1.5 for information regarding Miami’s Academic Integrity policy and procedure.

Student Academic Grievance Procedures

The student grievance procedure is in accordance with MUPIM Section 5.5 and Section 1.7 of the Undergraduate and Graduate Student Handbooks:
The departmental grievance procedure is as follows:

  • The student submits a written, dated, and signed complaint to the department chair
  • The chair convenes the department academic grievance committee. This committee consists of three faculty members, one of whom is designated as the chair.
  • The grievance committee will verify that full discussions among the student, instructor and department chair have been exhausted as a means of resolving the grievance, determine hearing procedures, and hold hearings to determine the facts.
  • Committee recommendations will be in accordance with those discussed in Section 1.7 of the respective student handbook.
  • The department chair receives recommendations from the committee and communicates them to the student and instructor.
  • The department chair maintains communication with the divisional grievance committee, and retains documents of the entire incident.

Department of Computer Science and Software Engineering

McVey Data Science Building, 262
105 Tallawanda Road
Oxford, OH 45056