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As with any degree program, our graduate programs are governed by an official set of rules and regulations. Most can be found in the UC Irvine catalogue. However, there are other policies with which you should familiarize yourself. For instance, it is possible to transfer courses taken elsewhere to our Ph.D. programs and have those courses count towards the degree requirements; waive all coursework for the Ph.D. program altogether if you already have a M.S. degree from elsewhere; or take a leave of absence if the circumstances so require.

The Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences’ Student Affairs Office maintains a list of useful forms and policies:

In addition, the department maintains an informal website with a description of the various milestones involved.  (Note that this is informational purposes that is NOT a document of record and that any substantive questions should be directed to the Student Affairs office or the Vice Chair of Graduate Affairs):

A particularly important policy is that all Informatics and Software Engineering Ph.D. students must main satisfactory academic progress in order to be eligible for funding and continue their studies. To maintain satisfactory academic progress, students shall:

  • affiliate with a primary research advisor by the end of the first year and remain affiliated with an advisor throughout their tenure as students;
  • meet the requirements to qualify as a teaching assistant, including demonstrating English proficiency, by the beginning of the second year;
  • retain a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher;
  • pass all required and elective courses with a grade of B or better;
  • pass all milestones in a timely manner;
  • meet departmental requirements regarding normative time to degree;
  • meet deadlines and requirements asked of them by the faculty through a periodic review process; and
  • make satisfactory progress in research and/or creative work as determined by the full department faculty during those periodic reviews.

Please review the campus policy on unsatisfactory progress, academic conditional status, and disqualification in the campus handbook on graduate policies and procedures.

While maintaining satisfactory progress and the procedures in the handbook may seem intimidating, it is our experience that the vast majority of our students are not affected by these policies. We mentor each graduate student individually and will work with you if you find yourself in getting off track or facing extenuating circumstances.  We encourage you to speak with the your advisor, the department chair and/or the vice chair for graduate affairs if you find yourself struggling; we will work with you to help get everything back on track.

If you have any questions about these policies, please contact the Student Affairs Office at (949) 824-5156 or our Vice Chair for Graduate Affairs.