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Academic Policies

Q-drops

Pass/Fail

Withdrawing

Registration Times

Course Waitlists

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

Time Conflict Policy

Non-ECE majors taking undergraduate ECE courses

Graduate Students taking undergraduate ECE courses

Undergraduate ECE students taking Graduate courses

Undergraduate Exchange Students

Declaring your Advanced Technical Component and your Assigned Faculty Mentor

Substituting Tech Core Electives

ABET Advising Worksheet

The Advanced Technical Elective

Specific Course Policies

Honors Level Coursework


Q-drops

Students in the state of Texas are allowed to drop up to a total of 6 classes before the mid-semester deadline during their entire undergraduate academic career. To initiate a drop, students must obtain the approval of the Dean via the Engineering Student Services Office.


Students will receive a Q on their transcript in the place of a letter grade. If the drop is determined to be for academic reasons, it will count toward the six-drop limit. Students who are experiencing non-academic circumstances should talk to an ESS advisor for a non-academic exception.

The last day to Q-drop a course is the mid-semester deadline each semester. Check the long session calendar to find the mid-semester deadline for your current semester.

To start the process, students should meet with an Engineering Student Services (ESS) advisor by scheduling an appointment via EAB Navigate. 
Or visit the ESS Advising website to view their drop-in hours.

The full text of the Cockrell School policy on Adds/Drops, and withdrawals, can be found on ENGR Direct Students.

One Time Exception (OTE)

Undergraduate students are allowed to drop a single class or withdraw from the University after the deadline for academic reasons, under the provisions of the One-Time-Exception (OTE). The OTE may be invoked only once during the student's entire undergraduate career regardless of the institution the student was enrolled in at the time the exception was allowed. A student must request the OTE from the Engineering Student Services (ESS) office by the last class day or before taking the final, whichever comes first. Forms must also be returned to the Engineering Student Services Office on the last class day or before taking the final, whichever comes first. 

To start the process, students should meet with an Engineering Student Services (ESS) advisor by scheduling an appointment via EAB Navigate. 
Or visit the ESS Advising website to view their drop-in hours.

Provisions for Drops

  1. A student may not drop a class in which a final grade has been assigned. This will be verified by Engineering Student Services (ESS). 
  2. A student may not drop a class if there are any pending investigations of scholastic dishonesty for the class in question. Any drop assigned will not be considered final until any investigations of scholastic dishonesty for the class in question are resolved.
  3. A drop allowed under the provisions of the One-Time-Exception will be considered an academic drop and will count toward the six-drop limit. Students who have reached the six-drop limit are not eligible to use the OTE to drop a course.

 


Pass/Fail

ECE students are not permitted to Pass/Fail coursework that counts towards their degree.
If the course is required towards the degree, the application will be denied.


Coursework that is always approved for Pass/Fail include UGS 016 and ECE 125S. PED courses can also be taken as Pass/Fail because they do not count towards the ECE degree. 

Please remember if a student does not pass a course that is taken Pass/Fail, the student will earn an letter grade of F. 


ECE exchange students should ensure with their home university that they do not need to take their abroad courses for a letter grade before requesting to change a course to pass/fail. Once the deadline has passed, it is not possible to change the course back to a letter grade. We recommend getting permission from your home university in writing that they will accept a pass/fail course.
 

Pass/Fail Application

(From January 6, 2021 through May 28, 2021, The University of Texas had a pass/fail exemption policy due to the COVID-19 pandemic. These courses are the exception and will count towards ECE degrees).


Withdrawing

If a student wishes to drop all of their courses for the semester, they may request a withdrawal. A “W” will be listed on their transcript for all classes in the semester that they withdraw.

The ECE department does not penalize students for taking a break from their studies. Students will be expected to make up any coursework (including prerequisites) that they do not complete from a dropped semester.

To start the process, students should meet with an Engineering Student Services (ESS) advisor by scheduling an appointment via EAB Navigate. 
Or visit the ESS Advising website to view their drop-in hours.

Provisions for Withdrawals

  1. Students who are requesting to use the One-Time Exception (OTE) drop for a complete semester withdrawal will be allowed to withdraw regardless of current grades in classes.
  2. No instructors' signatures will be required on the form.
  3. Pending scholastic dishonesty will be verified by Engineering Student Services and the Dean of Students Office. A withdrawal will not be approved if there is a pending scholastic dishonesty case.

The full text of the Cockrell School policy on Adds/Drops, and withdrawals, can be found on ENGR Direct Students.


Registration Times

A student’s individual registration time is determined by the 20th class day of the semester. Registration times cannot be altered once they are posted.  Find your registration times at your Registration Information Sheet (RIS).


Course Waitlists

If a student cannot register for a required course, they must attempt to add themselves to the course waitlist. Unfortunately, sometimes waitlists fill up. If this occurs, students should add themselves to another waitlist or rearrange their schedule for another section.

Students may add themselves to the waitlist for two sections of a particular course and four waitlists total.

Academic advisors cannot add, remove, or adjust a student’s status on a waitlist.

If a student needs to enroll in a course to progress their degree or in order to graduate, students should reach out to their academic advisor for guidance.

Students who find difficulty in registering for required technical electives should email their tech core faculty mentor to discuss a course substitution (You can find your faculty mentor in tech core SAN: “Assigned tech core and faculty mentor”). Access your SAN’s via my.utexas.edu (right hand column).

Please note that if there is an open section of the course in question, the above policy still stands. Students will be directed to rearrange their schedule to fit with the open section.

Academic Advisors do not add students to full or waitlisted courses during course registration. (If a spot in the course opens after the 4th class day, students may fill out the Closed Course request form Resources page)


Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

Pre-requisite and co-requisite course requirements are strictly upheld in the ECE department. Pre-reqs and co-reqs are listed on the ECE curriculum documents, however, students should consult the course schedule for the most up-to-date prerequisites and corequisites for each class. Exceptions are given on a case-by-case basis and are only granted in rare, dire circumstances. Students may email their ECE advisor for guidance on requesting a pre-requisite waiver.

Failure to pass a pre-requisite course

If a student fails to pass a pre-requisite course (grade of C- or better), the student must attempt to pass the course the following semester. This may delay the student’s progress towards degree completion. The ECE department does not allow students to enroll in the requisite course while repeating the pre-requisite.

ECE 379K pre-requisites

As ECE 379K courses are topics courses offered on an as-needed basis. Pre-requisite requirements for ECE 379K sections can change before the semester begins. To find the pre-requisites for an ECE 379K course, students may check the syllabus repository (to see if the professor listed has offered the course before), the Tech Core Packet, or check the announcements on the ECE Canvas page for new course information (all ECE undergraduates are in a Canvas page per their year in the program). The ECE Advising staff will post an announcement with syllabus information/ pre-requisite information before the registration period opens.


Time Conflict Policy

Students can request to take two non-ECE courses that are offered at conflicting times by contacting their academic advisor.  This process involves getting permission from the instructors of both courses, as well as ECE advising  approval. 

ECE does not allow time conflicts for any ECE Courses.

The only ECE course that students are allowed to request via the Time Conflict form is ECE 464. Students should email their academic advisor with questions about this exception.


Non-ECE Majors Taking Undergraduate ECE Courses

Starting on the third class day of each semester, the ECE department allows students outside of the major to request to take courses within the ECE department.

Undergraduate Students

For ECE 302 and ECE 306:

ECE 302 and ECE 306 are available to non-ECE students during the Spring semester ONLY, depending on seat availability and whether students meet the corequisite course of M 408C. 

Students who meet the prerequisites will be able to directly register for open sections beginning on the 3rd class day at 8:00am and do NOT need to visit the ECE Advising office to be added.
 

For ECE 333T:

ECE 333T is available to other UT Engineering majors during BOTH the Fall & Spring semesters, depending on seat availability and whether students meet prerequisites. Engineering students who meet the prerequisite will be able to directly register for open sections beginning on the 3rd class day at 8:00am and do NOT need to visit the ECE Advising office to be added.

Successful internal transfer students who have already completed a 333T other than EE or ECE 333T must complete this appeal form to request permission from the department. Please note that once you are transferred into ECE, you are expected to complete the ECE version of 333T if you have not already taken the course- study abroad courses are the only exception to this rule. 

For all other ECE courses:

Undergraduate students must complete the Non-ECE Major Course Request Form located on the Advising Resources Page to request a seat in OPEN classes. Students should consult the course schedule to find open courses. This form will open up on the third class day and be reviewed on a first-come, first-serve, seat-available basis. Requests for closed or full ECE classes will automatically be denied. 


Students must completely fill out the form and must have completed the required prerequisites (or be enrolled in required co-requisites) to be considered to be added to the requested ECE course. Requests will be granted on a first-come, first-serve, seat-available basis. Once a student’s request form has been processed and if it has been approved by the department, the student will be able to add themselves to the class until the end of the fourth class day.
 

Please note: The ECE department does not evaluate internal transfer applications, and such, enrollment in an ECE course as a non-major does not impact your internal transfer status, nor does it provide you a guarantee of changing your major to ECE.

Graduate Students taking undergraduate ECE courses

Graduate students must complete the Graduate request for Undergraduate Course Form located on the Advising Resources Page. This form will open up on the first class day, and the ECE advising office will begin reviewing forms on the third class day. Graduate students must fully complete the form in order to be reviewed for the ECE course. Requests will be granted on a first-come, first-serve, seat-available basis. Once a student’s request form has been processed and if it has been approved by the department, the student will be able to add themselves to the class until the end of the fourth class day if space is available.


Undergraduate ECE students taking Graduate courses

Undergraduates are permitted to enroll in graduate courses if they meet the requirements of the Dean of Engineering.  Review specific policies and requirements to qualify to enroll in graduate courses on the Undergraduates taking Graduate Courses webpage

Undergraduate ECE students need to first determine if they wish to take a graduate course for undergraduate credit or graduate credit.

Undergraduate credit means that the course will count towards a BSE degree.

Graduate credit means that the course will NOT count towards a BSE degree, and the student could use it towards a future MSE or PHD at UT Austin.  If you are interested in using the course towards the Integrated Masters program, you want to take the course for graduate credit.

Once a student has determined how they will use the course credit, they will need to contact the instructor of the undergraduate course to discuss if the instructor will allow the student to enroll. Once the student has discussed enrollment with the instructor, they will need to initiate a DocuSign Form. DO NOT send a DocuSign form to an instructor without FIRST meeting or discussing enrollment via email.

For Undergraduate Credit:

  • Students who would like undergraduate credit for a grad course must complete the DocuSign “Reserving Graduate Courses for Undergraduate Credit” 
  • The form will automatically route to your ECE undergraduate advisor, (Brittney Outlaw, b.outlaw@austin.utexas.edu), the ECE Graduate Advisor (Leonard F. Register, register@austin.utexas.edu ), and Engineering Student Services.
  • This form is due on or before the 12th class day of a semester and takes many days (sometimes weeks) to process. It is best to initiate the form well before the 1st class day of the semester. After the above signers review and approve the document, Engineering Student Services must finalize the request, which can take additional time as well. Please submit requests well in advance and understand that it may be some time until the form is completed. Students should NOT submit multiple requests unless there has been some technical error.

For Graduate Credit:

  • Students who would like graduate credit for a grad course must complete the DocuSign “Reservation of Course for Graduate Credit"
  • The form will automatically route to your ECE undergraduate advisor, (Brittney Outlaw, b.outlaw@austin.utexas.edu), the ECE Graduate Advisor (Leonard F. Register, register@austin.utexas.edu ), and Engineering Student Services.
  • If you have a 2nd undergraduate major, your 2nd major will also need to approve the request, either by email or via DocuSign. Please forward your 2nd major’s permission to b.outlaw@austin.utexas.edu.
  • This form is due on or before the 12th class day of a semester and takes many days (sometimes weeks) to process. It is best to initiate the form well before the 1st class day of the semester. After the above signers review and approve, Engineering Student Services must finalize the request, which can take additional time as well. Please submit requests well in advance and understand that it may be some time until the form is completed. Students should NOT submit multiple requests unless there has been a technical error.
  • PLEASE NOTE: The completed form must be filed with the Graduate School in order for your credit to be applied to your record as a graduate course. After the document has been finalized by Engineering Student Services, it is your responsibility to then download and forward the document to GradStudentSvcs@austin.utexas.edu.
  • For Integrated BSE/MSE students: Students in the Integrated BSE/MSE program are required to complete two DocuSign forms in order to register for graduate courses while in Stage I. Please review the Program Guide linked on the Integrated Master’s webpage for more details.

Undergraduate Exchange Students

Non- ECE Exchange students may request a seat in an open; reserved ECE course before the first class day as long as they provide adequate documentation of fulfilling required course pre-requisites. Interested exchange students may email the professor of the class with their pre-requisite information and cc Stacy Pederson (Stacy.pederson@austin.utexas.edu). If faculty approve pre-requisites and a seat remains in the course, you will be added to the course.  

ECE Exchange students should work with Stacy Pederson (stacy.pederson@austin.utexas.edu) regarding their schedule. 


Declaring your Advanced Technical Component and your Assigned Faculty Mentor


All ECE students specialize in an area of study called a “Tech Core or Advanced Technical Component” and must declare their component by completing the Qualtrics survey found on our “Technical Cores /Components” page. (Students can also find info about each area of study on this page). While completing this survey, students have the option to request a faculty member to serve as their mentor in completing their degree (see below). 


Once their request is processed, students will receive an email with a link to a Secure Academic Note (SAN) that confirms their Tech Core selection as well as their assigned Faculty mentor.  

(Students can also view their SANs online by visiting my.utexas.edu). 

Faculty mentors provide additional advising assistance in regard to technical course choices, electives, selecting career opportunities, and necessary course substitutions if needed. 


There is no limitation on declaring the technical core- students are allowed to change their minds! But be warned that some areas have very different requirements, which may impact an individual’s progress to graduate. 


This process is not automated and sometimes can take up to 2 weeks to be completed. Once ECE Advising processes a request, the degree profile in the IDA system will be updated to accurately reflect the remaining courses in the chosen technical core. (This can be accessed by clicking on the “Running Man” icon in the IDA system)


We recommend students have declared their technical core by the first or second semester of their junior year. Students are welcome to declare their technical core earlier, if so desired. 
 


Substituting Technical Electives

While the list of electives for each technical core is listed on the tech core packet,  undergraduate students are permitted to request to substitute any ECE upper division course, or relevant upper division technical course from another discipline as a technical component elective. 


Students must email or meet with their faculty mentor to discuss the substitution and receive permission. Then, if a student’s faculty mentor approves the request, students should forward the email approval to the department faculty advisor (Jon Valvano) and Academic Advising Coordinator, who will review and process the substitution. 


Students requesting substitutions should complete the ABET Advising worksheet (see below) to help facilitate the discussion of course suitability with their faculty advisor.
 


ABET Advising Worksheet

The ABET advising worksheet acts as a guideline for students and faculty discussing substitutions. Per our accreditation rules, a student must complete 48 hours of engineering credits and 30 hours of math & basic science credits.


Students following the prescribed course sequence in the tech core packet (not seeking course substitutions) do not need to complete this worksheet. Only students requesting a course substitution for their technical componentsshould complete this worksheet. 

View the ABET Advising worksheet here.


The Advanced Technical Elective

All ECE students must complete an advanced technical elective course in addition to the 8 advanced technical component courses. This elective can be ECE 316 (if your tech core does not require it) or any other upper division ECE 3-4 credit hour course.  This course can be an additional elective in your tech area or a course outside of your tech area.


We recommend you view the Tech Core Packet, upcoming schedule of courses, and past course schedules to help plan and choose an advanced technical elective.


Specific Course Policies

ECE 125S: Internship in Electrical & Computer Engineering

ECE students may register themselves for ECE 125S; they do not need to seek advising permission to enroll in the course. This course is graded on a Pass/Fail basis. (This is the only ECE course that is accepted on a pass/fail basis.)


This course is for students who have completed or are currently undertaking an internship that consists of 400 hours of service in Electrical & Computer Engineering. The internship MUST have an ECE component or it will not count. Coursework consists of a technical report detailing the internship project(s) as well as detailing what was learned in the internship and how it relates to the technical area of study. Students should be aware that supervisor signatures are required for multiple coursework components.


Students may complete ECE 125S up to 3 times for credit, with 3 unique internships. However students can only enroll in ECE 125S once per 3-month, full-time (400 hour) internship. Students may complete ECE 125S in the Fall, Spring, or Summer semester. ECE 125S may count as a 1-hour Free Elective credit or 3 credits of ECE 125S (3 individual 400 hour internships) may fulfill your advanced technical elective requirement.  Students must enroll in ECE 125S within 3 terms (summer, fall, spring) of completing their internship. 


Please note: Part of this course requires students to obtain signatures from their internship supervisor/location for 3 documents: a confirmation form from the company, a time log confirmation, and an evaluation of the technical report from the internship supervisor. It is the student’s responsibility to request that information before the final class deadline. If a student registers for the course and ultimately decides to not complete it, it is their responsibility to drop the course before the 12th class day, or use one of their 6 Q-drop to drop this course.

More info about ECE 125S

ECE 333T: Engineering Communications

As of the Fall 2021 semester, The ECE department no longer accepts other departments’ versions of Engineering Communications. All ECE students must anticipate and plan to take ECE 333T to fulfill their communications requirement, with a few exceptions:

  • New internal transfer students who have already completed 333T before transferring to ECE will be approved. Please complete the 333T appeal so advising staff can correctly code your degree.
  • ECE students are also allowed to take any section of 333T during a study-abroad excursion through International Engineering Education. Please complete the 333T appeal so advising staff can correctly code your degree.
  • ECE students are allowed to take E S 333T during the summer semester as long as ECE 333T is not offered in residence. 

Students who have already completed 333T or who anticipate needing to take another section of 333T must first complete this 333T appeal form to request permission from the department. Please note that there is no guarantee that any such request will be approved.

ECE 364D Intro to Engineering Design/ECE 464(K/S/H) Senior Design Project a.k.a. “Senior Design Sequence”

ECE 364D and ECE 464 is a required 2 semester design sequence that must be taken consecutively due to group project assignments.

Students may take ECE 364 spring semester and ECE 464 the following fall semester, OR ECE 364 fall semester and ECE 464 the following spring semester.

Students cannot take a gap between the two courses, nor can they be taken at the same time. Students who wish to study abroad should plan accordingly and study prior to taking ECE 364D or after taking ECE 464. Students must have completed all required pre-requisite courses with a C- or better in order to be eligible to enroll in the ECE 364/ ECE 464 design sequence.Students must have completed all required pre-requisite courses with a C- or better in order to be eligible to enroll in the ECE 364/ ECE 464 design sequence.

ECE 464(H/K/R/S) and Time Conflicts

The only ECE-specific course that students are allowed to request via the Time Conflict form is ECE 464(H/K/R/S). Students are not permitted to take two ECE courses that are offered at the same time.

Students can request to take ECE 464H/K/R/S and another, non-ECE course that is offered at conflicting times (or two non-ECE courses) by contacting their academic advisor. This process involves getting permission from the instructors of both courses, as well as advising approval

ECE 464H Honors, ECE 464R, Research Senior Design Project

Students who have completed honors projects in ECE 364D and who have a GPA of a 3.5 or higher will be moved to  ECE 464H Honors Senior Design Project during the first week of courses by the ECE Advising office.


Students who have completed honors projects in ECE 364D and who do not have a GPA of 3.5 or higher will be enrolled in ECE 464R Research Senior Design Project during the first week of courses by the ECE Advising office. 


Students cannot add themselves to ECE 464H or ECE 464R. All students should plan to add ECE 464K until their participation in honors projects is confirmed by their instructor.


There is no curricular difference between ECE 464R and 464H at this time. 
 

ECE 364E Interdisciplinary Entrepreneurship and ECE 464S Start-Up Senior Design Project

At this time, the ECE department is not offering ECE 364E/464S as an option for Senior Design. Please discuss your ideas for your senior design project with your instructor. 

ECE x60: Special Problems in Electrical Engineering

ECE x60, Special Problems in Electrical Engineering, offers ECE students the opportunity to pursue an original research investigation under the guidance of an ECE faculty member. The purpose of ECE x60 is to facilitate undergraduate participation in research.
Students interested must contact the faculty member they wish to research with and discuss that research project before they request to enroll in the x60 course. To request to register, students must fill out the ECE x60 Special Problems Course Request form, found on our resources page, implicating their project details. The DocuSign must then be signed by the participating faculty member, the faculty advisor, and an academic advisor before the student is allowed to register for the course. After all approvals have been received, students will be added to the course by an ECE advisor.


Students participating in research can register for 1-4 credit hours. One credit hour is equivalent to 3 hours per week the student will engage in research.
 

For more information, review our ECE x60 guide.

 


Honors Level Coursework

For more info about ECE Honors, including application information, please visit the Honors webpage.

Registration for Honors Courses

Seats in Honors Courses (except for ECE 302H and ECE 107H) will be prioritized for admitted ECE Honors students. Remaining seats in Honors will be open on a first-come, first-serve basis for students with a B or better in their pre-requisite courses.

ECE 302H

Starting Fall 2022, ECE 302H is restricted to admitted ECE Honors students only.

ECE 107H

Starting Fall 2022, ECE 107H is restricted to current ECE Honors students only.

ECE 319H / ECE 312H

ECE 319H and ECE 312H are co-requisites (ECE 319K is no longer a pre-requisite for ECE 312H). 

Electrical & Computer Engineering and Canfield Business Program Courses

Canfield Honors courses are closed to current ECB program students. There are no exceptions.