Frequently Asked Questions
The Undergraduate Advising Head (UAH) for the 2020 - 21 academic year is Professor Harry Mairson. To schedule an appointment with him, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you wish to discuss declaring a major or minor, please refer to the next question and follow the directions, before making an appointment with him.
Please send an email to the UAH, Professor Harry Mairson, at email@example.com.
Placement in the introductory Computer Science courses is determined through the COSI Placement Exam and advising.
No. COSI 12b is a strict pre-requisite to COSI 21a.
Students who believe that they have taken an equivalent course to to a course required for the COSI major or minor should contact the UAH and present a syllabus for the course they took and a copy of their transcript that shows the grade they received for the course. Exemptions are granted at the discretion of the UAH.
Course substitutions can be proposed by completing the online petition on the registrar's website.
A student who has taken both MATH 23b and either MATH 8a or MATH 36a or ECON 83a or BIOL 51a or PSYC 51a can substitute these courses for COSI 29a.
No. The prerequisites to any given course are carefully chosen so as to ensure that all students taking the course have a mastery of topics that will be assumed as understood when introducing new course material. A student who wishes to take a course without having taken its prerequisite(s) must have been approved for an exemption from (each of) the prerequisite course(s).
All students have the option of following the current requirements for the major or minor as specified in the current version of the bulletin or following the requirements that were in effect when the major or minor was declared. You can tell which requirements with which you are currently associated by performing a degree audit on sage. If you wish to change the requirements to an earlier or later version of the bulletin, you may request this by emailing the registrar at firstname.lastname@example.org
COSI 2a is a course designed for non-majors and thus does not count towards the major. When the bulletin description of requirements for the major were revised a few years ago, the declaration that COSI 2a does not count towards the major was accidentally omitted. This was corrected in fall 2016 and the bulletin now states that COSI 2a does not count towards the major. However, students who declared their major when the bulletin wording allowed for COSI 2a to count towards the major can use the process described above to use this previous version of the major requirements.
The university (and the COSI department) discourage the substitution of a course taken at another institution for a core course that is required for the minor or major. If this is the substitution sought, it is recommended that you contact the UAH prior to taking the course and also send them a copy of the syllabus for the course you wish to take and an explanation for why you cannot satisfy the core course requirement at Brandeis.
Transfer credit of courses taken elsewhere for elective credit is more straightforward. In general, the rule of thumb is that a course offered at another institution can count as an elective towards the COSI major if that course counts towards the major for Computer Science (or its equivalent) at the institution where it is offered. This requires providing the UAH with documentation of the requirements of the Computer Science major specified by the institution where they will be studying that show that the course or courses in question are accepted for the major.
See the answer to the previous question of this FAQ. Students should make the case for the set of courses they wish to take while abroad to the UAH before they leave.
All questions about sage course audits should be addressed with the registrar at email@example.com
The COSI department follows the policies of the Math department in deciding on exemptions and substitutions for Math courses that are required for the COSI major. The policies for receiving credit for AP Math courses for can be found at:
and the scores required for credit are on the AP chart that can be found at:
If your math courses taken at another university were accepted and approved for the math equivalency through the registrar, we will accept this as well. Simply email evidence of registrar approval to the UAH prior to filing a petition for the substitution.
See the answer to the previous question of this FAQ.
Peer Assistantships, otherwise understood to be TA's for course credit rather than compensation, yield many benefits to undergraduate teachers and learners. The university has established uniform standards for the utilization of undergraduate peer assistants and for the awarding of academic credit for such activities. Opportunities to serve as peer assistants are by invitation and generally limited to juniors and seniors who have demonstrated exceptional academic achievement.
Undergraduates serving in this capacity may be compensated for their services or receive one, and only one, semester course credit for their assistance during their Brandeis career. Credit-bearing peer assistantships are enrolled under the course number PEER 94a and are subject to the normal enrollment procedures and deadlines. Peer assistant courses are offered exclusively on a credit/no-credit grading basis and are not factored into the student's GPA. Concurrent enrollment in the course the student is a peer assistant for is not allowed.
This course does not count toward COSI requirements nor does it count as an elective. The advantage is that it does coursest toward a student's 128 credits needed to graduate from Brandeis and it reduces their course load for the semester by one class.
Form to enroll in Peer94a: https://www.brandeis.
The Undergraduate Advising Head (UAH) for the 2020 - 21 academic year is Professor Harry Mairson.