Who Should Petition?

Petitions are only necessary for 300-level CSE majors-only courses. Due to very limited space in 300-level classes, we generally discourage petitions from non-majors who want a 300-level course unless they have specifically been instructed to petition by an advisor.  

If you wish to take a 400-level course as a premajor or non-CSE major, you do not need to fill out a petition. Instead, you must attend the first day of the class you wish to take and sign up on the course overload list. The course instructor will give you details about the overload list on the first day of class. Please come with a copy of your transcript and be prepared to discuss your qualifications with the course instructor so they can determine if the class is a good fit for you.  The CSE advising staff will contact students on the overload lists about how to formally enroll.

Petition Criteria & Process

Students who are not majors in the computer science or computer engineering programs who wish to take a 300-level CSE-majors-only course may fill out a petition. However, such petitions are only granted if there is a compelling, extraordinary reason for the student to take the majors-only class. In particular, the appearance of available space is not a compelling reason. It is not our goal to fill majors-only courses to their maximum capacity. Rather, our primary concern is maintaining the quality of our program for our current majors. They benefit from smaller class sizes, where they can get closer attention from instructors and teaching assistants, engage in better in-class discussions, and the like. So the desired class size is often substantially below the maximum possible class size.

    1. Every student who is interested in petitioning should meet with a CSE adviser first to discuss the viability of a petition and what suitable alternate options might exist.
    2. Permission to take a majors-only course does not grant or imply admission to the Department now or at any future time.
    3. Students cannot use these courses towards a degree in Computer Science or Computer Engineering unless they are admitted to the Department.
    4. Students who have not taken a majors-only course will have priority over students who have.
    5. Students who are pre-majors and have prerequisites and other requirements left to take (e.g. physics, calculus, chemistry) will not have priority for a majors-only course.
    6. Non-matriculated students will only get their non-matriculated registration forms signed after we have approved their petition.  
    7. Petitioning students must attend the course they are petitioning for and sign their name on the instructor's overload sheet, if applicable. If you do not attend class, your petition can be denied.

The online petition to request a space in a 300-level CSE major's course generally opens up at end of the regular registration period for each quarter and is due during the week prior to the first day of class. The petition is open for roughly one month before the start of the quarter.

The petition for winter quarter is available here and will close at 8am on December 18th. Students will be notified about their petition result on December 29th.

After you have filled out the petition, if you are not a current UW student you must turn in a copy of your unofficial transcripts via an email attachment to ugrad-advisor[at]cs[dot]washington[dot]edu to complete the process. If you are also trying to register as a non-matriculated student, you must complete required forms from the UW Non-Degree Enrollment office.