Graduate FAQs

I just received an unexpected grade in a class and I realize its because I signed up for the wrong grade option. What should I do?

If the instructor requires a different grade option (for the entire class, not just you), or the department requires a different grade option to fulfill a course requirement then you may petition to change it. The student must complete and sign a general petition with the info below. The graduate coordinator will assist you with this.

The entire process can take a few months to complete. Check Studentlink to see your grade change.

I took a class that was not on the Issues or Methods lists, but I feel it should count. What should I do?

Obtain a petition form from the Cog Sci website (under grads, current grads, grad requirements). Complete the form, give to your advisor and then the grad advisor (Seana Coulson) for approval attaching any documents and return to grad coordinator. Remember that only 2 issues courses may be taken outside Cog Sci.

I need extra time to complete some work assigned in class—can I take an Incomplete?

The Incomplete petition is intended for use when circumstances beyond a student's control prohibit taking the final exam or completing course work.

The Incomplete is not intended as a mechanism for allowing a student to retake a course. A student who has fallen substantially behind and needs to repeat a course can drop the course prior to the end of the ninth week of classes. Otherwise, the instructor will assign the appropriate field grade (D, F, NP, or U). An incomplete may not be used simply to allow a bit of time for a student who has fallen behind for no good reason. It may be granted only to students who have a legitimate excuse. Failure to complete the work within the regulation time limit will result in the Incomplete lapsing to a permanent F or U grade.

I'm attending a conference, applying for a visa, or applying for a loan and need written proof of my student status. Where do I get that?

Email the graduate coordinator with the info needed. Does the letter need to verify enrollment? Employment? Your start or end date? Fees paid? Be specific when requesting your letter and allow 3 days to generate.

I want to sign up for research units, but what's the difference between 290, 291, 298, and 299?

If you want to complete a formal lab rotation, you should sign up for 290. Cogs 291 is for those students wishing to receive credit for being an active member of a lab (attending weekly meetings, participating in the design and execution of original research, etc.) Students may also receive credit for their own research supervised by their advisor under Cogs 298. Once the student advances to candidacy, the student can receive credit under 299 - Thesis Research.

I just finished my coursework and want to get my Master's degree. What should I do?

Notify the grad coordinator that you would like to receive your Master's. If you are eligible (you don't already have a Master's from another institution and you've completed all Cog Sci coursework and required units), the coordinator will generate forms for your signature. Note that forms must be submitted by the 2 nd week of the quarter to receive a degree in that quarter. Signatures and requests submitted after the deadline will automatically revert to a degree in the succeeding quarter.

I need to form my committee so I can advance to candidacy. What is the procedure?

I don't have any support over the summer. Are there any opportunities for employment?

Yes. TAships are generally available during Summer session. Cognitive Science typically has 1-2 openings, but you may also check with other departments, such as psychology, for more opportunities. In addition, if you have TA experience, you may wish to pursue a TA Consultant position with the Center for Teaching Development. You can apply for a TA consultant position any time of year.

Advanced students are also eligible to teach as instructors through Summer Session and through second year students or beyond may want to teach through Academic Connections, a summer residential program where new courses are created for 9-12 th grade students. The calls for teaching generally come out in October. Please notify the graduate coordinator if you are interested.

I'm a TA and need to use the xerox for my class. Will I be billed for this?

Any staff member will have a copy card available for you. Please use index COGCLAS and please remember to use the duplicator for 20 or more copies.

I am getting ready to graduate. What do I do?