Academic Excellence

Graduate study in engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder offers a challenging, collaborative environment with exceptional possibilities. Graduate education at the College of Engineering & Applied Science involves the creation and dissemination of knowledge in many forms. 

Academic Standards

Academic Policies

College of Engineering and Applied Science graduate students must abide by policies within their programs of study, college and the Graduate School policies. Students should refer to these websites often; policies, procedures and forms may be updated throughout the academic year.

Academic Integrity

Graduate students in the College of Engineering and Applied Science may be required to pass an academic integrity quiz.

See also the campuswide Academic Integrity and Student Conduct sections and the Honor Code website.

Academic Standing

Refer to the Graduate School for details.

Credit and Enrollment

Attendance and Full-Time Enrollment

While the majority of our students attend classes on the Boulder campus, many of the college's graduate degrees and certificates are available online through Boulder Connect. Attendance and enrollment requirements are governed by Graduate School policies. However, the college's individual graduate programs may have requirements that are more stringent than the Graduate School.

Credit Policies

Final Grade Appeal

Visit the college's Grade Appeal Policy webpage.

Transfer Credit

Transfer credit requirements are governed by the Graduate School policies. However, the college's individual graduate programs must approve the transfer credits and may have transfer credit requirements that are more stringent than the Graduate School. Refer to the individual graduate programs for specific transfer credit requirements.  

Petition Policy

A student desiring a waiver of departmental and/or Graduate School policies must request and secure approval for this waiver through a petition procedure. Petitions are first presented to the student's individual graduate program for review, followed by review at the Graduate School.



To enroll for an advanced degree in any department or program in the College of Engineering and Applied Science, candidates either must have previously earned a bachelor's degree in a curriculum that includes the necessary prerequisites for that branch of engineering or must qualify for the concurrent BS and MS program. If the candidate's preliminary education was taken at another institution, the degree of qualification for advanced work is determined by the department concerned and by the dean of the Graduate School.

Graduates of engineering technology programs should note that the equivalent of a BS degree in an appropriate engineering field is required for entry into the Graduate School. Because the goals and orientation of engineering programs differ from those of technology programs, technology graduates should expect to make up deficiencies before being admitted to graduate study in engineering. Students may not be admitted to the Graduate School while making up deficiencies, but can enroll as nondegree students.


Graduate work in each department of the College of Engineering and Applied Science falls into two classes:

  1. courses that are offered for candidates who have chosen to major in the particular department, and
  2. courses that are offered for candidates who have chosen their major in some other department, but who are pursuing a certificate or other complementary coursework.

Availability of Courses

All courses are not necessarily offered every year. They may only be available if there is sufficient demand.

Qualifying or Preliminary Examinations

Graduate students who plan to become candidates for the MS or PhD degree may be required to take a qualifying or preliminary examination. Individual departments should be consulted concerning the timing or requirement of this examination.

Teaching and Research Assistantships

The College of Engineering and Applied Science requires that all graduate teaching assistants and research assistants be proficient and intelligible in spoken English. In order to ensure that this is the case, all prospective teaching assistants and research assistants whose native language is not English, or others for whom the department graduate program coordinator believes that spoken language intelligibility is a concern, regardless of native language, will be tested for spoken language intelligibility prior to or at the beginning of the semester in which the teaching or research assistantship is awarded. In the event that a prospective teaching or research assistant does not demonstrate a satisfactory level of proficiency, as determined by campus assessment, that student will be required to participate in training designed to improve intelligibility.