CSE Petitions

Updated: April 5, 2022

Students who would like to request CSE course equivalency for courses taken at four-year, out-of-state, private, or study abroad institutions, should carefully review the following instructions. 

Granting exceptions to prerequisites is rare and requires documentation of extenuating circumstances. 

Students who need courses for their CSE major graduation requirements have priority enrollment. Petition approval does not give priority enrollment in the class.

Petition Process

Be sure to complete all parts of the petition.  Incomplete forms will delay the process.

  1. Use the online petition tool: http://ugrad-petitions.ucsd.edu/ugrad/petitions/submit
  2. Select "CSE" Department.
  3. Select Petition Type: Course Substitution or Pre-Approval (see grid below).
  4. Enter the Petition Request.
    • Use the CSE Course Descriptions to compare courses.
    • Students may only receive credit for one CSE course per transferred course (e.g. a 6 unit transfer course may not count towards two CSE courses). 
    • Transfer course units must meet or exceed the number of units attached to the CSE course credit being requested (e.g. a transfer course worth 3 units will not be approved for a 4 unit CSE course)
  5. Fill in your Petition Reason.
    • Indicate when the course was taken, the grade received, and units.
  6. Upload supporting documents (course syllabi, course assignments, or course websites).  If you submit a copy of the course syllabus (for respective quarter/semester you took the course), please be to include textbook information, the catalog description, and weekly schedule of topics. Syllabi submitted without course content information may be delayed and an advisor may request additional documentation.
  7. Submit the petition. 
  8. Check the status of your petition through the online tool.  

Petitions will be reviewed, and students will be notified of a decision via @ucsd.edu email and Virtual Advising Center.   It can take anywhere from 4-6 weeks for your petition to go through the process.  There are no guarantees of approval on any petition. Petition approval does not give priority enrollment in the class. 

Types of Petitions Reviewed*

Course Substitution

  • Course Equivalencies: to receive transfer credit for courses already completed (from study abroad, 4-year, private, or out-of-state institutions).  Example: Use Course #  from ___ for CSE Course #
  • Major Exceptions


  • Course Equivalencies: to receive transfer credit for courses not yet completed or taken (from study abroad, 4-year, private, or out-of state institutions).  Students will be required to submit a copy of unofficial transcripts after course is completed.  

Frequently Asked Questions: 

How will I be notified about the petition decision?

Students are sent a message via the VAC (Virtual Advising Center) with the petition decision.

How long does the petition process take?

The petition process can take 1-6 weeks depending on the reviewing faculty, time of year, and the number of other petitions we are receiving at the time.

Is an email from an instructor sufficient to replace the petition process? 

An email from an instructor is not sufficient for the petition process. The CSE department has a multi-faculty review process for petitions. An officially approved petition is required. 

I’m submitting petitions for courses I am going to take when I study abroad. When should I submit these petitions?

Submit PRE-APPROVAL petitions prior to studying abroad, then you will know if the courses you are petitioning will count towards CSE course equivalencies or your CS major requirements.

Can I list multiple course options to petition for transfer credit and have the faculty pick one?

No, students must choose the ONE CSE course equivalency they are petitioning for potential credit. If the petition for that course is disapproved, another petition may be submitted for a different CSE course equivalency.

How can I check on the status of my petition?

Students can send CSE Advisors a VAC message to check on the status of their petition(s).

Can I petition to use courses from 2 institutions to count for one CSE course?

No, courses from multiple institutions can’t be used as credit for one CSE course.

I have an approved petition from the CSE Department. Can I "un-petition" the course credit?

No, once a petition for CSE course equivalency is approved, the petition can't be undone (CSE credit cannot be removed).

Can I use courses from UC San Diego Extension for my major requirements?

Only courses numbered 1-299 from UC San Diego may be petitioned for CSE BA or BS Major Requirements.

UC San Diego Extension - Academic Level Information