Advising FAQ

Does the BSIT program lead to professional certifications?
No.  While there is value in professional certifications, there are several reasons we do not offer academic credit for them in the BSIT program. First, our program prepares you to work in a variety of computing settings; it allows you the flexibility to find jobs in many different IT areas. Second, most professional certifications are vendor-specific and narrowly focused (i.e. Cisco). By choosing to use a particular company, we not only limit your ability to learn other products, but we impair our unbiased stance toward the education of many types of platforms, operating systems, and software products. Lastly, we emphasize both practical hands-on and theoretical education. Most certification programs focus only on the hands-on components and lack the solid theoretical foundation needed by IT professionals.

I have work experience in IT. Can this count for credit toward my degree?

No, KU does not award credit for prior learning or work experiences. KU does accept some Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, and CLEP credits with qualifying scores. For more information, please see the BSIT Undergraduate Advisor or go to:
Why do I need to take Physics and Chemistry or Biology courses with labs?
Completing science courses with labs, such as Physics, Chemistry, and Biology, allows you to hone your skills in thinking abstractly and solving problems logically using the scientific method. The type of thinking you will develop through these courses is needed every day in computing careers.
I still have a few lower-division prerequisite requirements to complete for the BSIT program. Can I begin the BSIT program at KU?
It depends. If you have completed the critical mathematics, science, and computer programming prerequisite courses listed on page 9, you may be able to start at KU while finishing your remaining lower-division courses. Please contact the BSIT Undergraduate Advisor for information about obtaining a prerequisite waiver.
Am I required to meet with an advisor every semester?
Yes.  You will receive an Engineering Advising Hold (EAH) each semester that will block your enrollment until you have met with the BSIT Undergraduate Advisor. These meetings are designed to ensure you are enrolling in the next appropriate sequence of courses in order to most efficiently complete your degree. You may also discuss professional development opportunities, such as internships or full-time employment.
Students who are completing prerequisite courses elsewhere (i.e. JCCC) are encouraged, but not required, to meet with the BSIT Undergraduate Advisor each semester, in addition to advising at their community college.

Is it OK for me to take the next course in a sequence, for example Discrete Structures II, at the same time I am repeating the prerequisite course, for example Discrete Structures I, to raise the grade to C or better?
Almost never. Prerequisite course requirements are designed to build solid foundations. This is not likely to happen if you haven't attained a C or better in the prerequisite course before taking the next course. If you have an extenuating circumstance that you believe warrants an exception, you should discuss this with the BSIT Undergraduate Advisor.
How do I know when courses are offered?
We recommend that you use to search for current and historical course offerings. You can change search parameters using the "More Options" link.  You may also contact the BSIT Undergraduate Advisor.
I have an exemption for COMS 130: Speaker-Audience Communication. Do I need to make up these hours?
Yes. All students must earn a minimum of 120 credit hours. If you complete a KU Core and/or degree requirement with an exemption or an experience, you will need to replace these hours with elective credit. It is typical for a transfer student to transfer electives that can apply toward the total 120 credit hours, so be sure to check with the BSIT Undergraduate Advisor before enrolling in an elective course. Note: If you started at KU prior to fall 2013 or have opted out of the KU Core and have the COMS 130 exemption, you will be required to make
up these hours in a Communication Studies course with COMS 130 as the prerequisite. See the BSIT Undergraduate Advisor for more details.
When and for what classes is the Credit/No Credit Option (pass/fail at some institutions) allowed?
Not recommended. Although the credit/no credit (CR/NC) option is allowed to fulfill English, humanities, social science, or oral communication courses, this option has the potential of lowering (not raising) your grade point average, since CR/NC courses are not included in GPA calculations.
How do I locate computing books, journals and conference proceedings in the KU libraries?
Edwards: Many research materials may be found online (see below).  However, if you need print materials, the staff at the KU Edwards Campus library can assist you in having print materials from the main libraries in Lawrence or outside the KU library system (interlibrary loan) sent to the KU Edwards Campus.
Lawrence: Print materials on computing are housed in two different buildings at KU: Anschutz Library, 2nd floor (one floor below entry level), Call number QA 75.5-76.9. Anschutz covers mainly computer programming and software. Topics include general theory and application of computers, data processing, parallel processing, computer programming, programming languages, specific makes and models of computers and microprocessors, computer security, database and file management, etc. Spahr Engineering Library, 2nd floor, Call number TK 5100-7895. Spahr covers mainly computer engineering and hardware. Topics include telecommunication, signal processing, wireless, data transmission, computer networks, electronic circuits and apparatus, semiconductors, microelectronics, integrated circuits, microwaves, and computer hardware, components, and auxiliary equipment, etc. Sometimes there are materials on a topic in both Anschutz and Spahr.
What online publications are available?
The Spahr Engineering Library's web site provides online access to many computing publications. These include the ACM Digital Library, the IEEE Xplore journals and proceedings since 1998, and many other electronic journals and databases. Online publications are accessible from anywhere on campus. Regardless of location, all computing books, journals, and conference proceedings are listed in the library's online catalog. The same is true of all library materials at KU in every field of engineering. The catalog gives the location of each and every item. Librarians at the KU Edwards Campus can assist you in locating online materials from the Spahr Engineering Library.

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