FAQ for CS Double Majors and Minors

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the application process to apply for a minor or double major in CS?
  2. May any undergraduate student apply for a minor or double major in CS?
  3. What are the admission requirements for minor and double major programs in CS?
  4. Are transfer credits acceptable for admission requirements?
  5. Can I apply after my 5th semester?
  6. Why can I not enroll in CS courses in the semester of my choice?
  7. If I am interested in a double major or minor in CS, what CS courses can I enroll in and which semester must I take them?
  8. Who should I speak to about questions regarding the application process for a minor or double major in Computer Science?
  9. What is the main difference between a Computer Science (CS) Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Bachelor of Science (BS)?
  10. If I am a BS student, can I double major in a BA in Computer Science?
  11. My Computer Science minor or double major was approved but I do not see it on DegreeMap. Why would that be?
  12. What courses apply towards a minor in Computer Science?
  13. Which courses can I take as CS electives for the minor?
  14. What are the requirements for a double major in Computer Science?
  15. How many semesters will it take to complete a minor in Computer Science?
  16. How many semesters will it take to complete a double major in Computer Science?
  17. I am officially a minor or double major in Computer Science, trying to enroll in a course, but I need Departmental Approval. What should I do?
  18. Can I register for CSCI 1112?
  19. What is the process to get credit for a course taken outside of GWU?
  20. Can I declare a CS minor, if I am an undeclared major?
  21. Do I need to take the course at GW for the credit to count, or can I take the course at any university and transfer the credit? Are there any restrictions on what courses would be accepted as transfer credits?
  22. Can I minor in SEAS and major in another school?
  23. Can undeclared students take CS courses over the summer?
  24. Can I upgrade my CS minor to a second major?

  1. What is the application process to apply for a minor or double major in CS?
    1. Verify admission requirements, check the program requirements: minor,  double major (Bachelor of Arts)or double major (Bachelor of Science), and plan your schedule before completing the forms: minor, double major (Bachelor of Arts); double major (Bachelor of Science). Note that all forms require you to propose a schedule.
    2. Once you complete the application form, send it to [email protected]. If your school has their own minor or double major declaration form, please include it in the email.
    3. You will receive a decision on your application. If the Computer Science minor or double major is approved, send the signed forms to your school’s advising office. Your school’s advisers will add it to the system. Your minor or double major is not considered declared until it is viewable on your DegreeMap record and it is your responsibility to ensure it is in the system once the signed form(s) are returned to you.

  1. May any undergraduate student apply for a minor or double major in CS?

Any GW undergraduate may apply for  a CS minor or double major if they meet the admission requirements and should have a declared primary major.

  1. What are the admission requirements for minor and double major programs in CS?

See here for the admission requirements.

  1. Are transfer credits acceptable for admission requirements?

Transfer credits are acceptable for the admission requirements, but the course should have been approved for transfer of credit, credit must be transferred to GW and the number of credit hours transferred must be at least those of the corresponding GW course. In addition to any transcripts forwarded to the Registrar for course transfer, you are required to provide an informal transcript displaying the minimum grade requirement with your application.

AP credits transferred to GW are acceptable for the above requirements.

  1. Can I apply after my 5th semester?

Unfortunately, no. Core courses in the CS program need to be taken sequentially and are prerequisites for the required electives. Many core courses are offered only once a year. The minor can take four semesters to complete. A double major can take as long as six semesters for the BA and eight for the BS.

  1. Why can I not enroll in CS courses in the semester of my choice?

There is a lot of demand for CS courses and we are attempting to ensure that both our majors and minors are able to complete their curricula on time. For this reason, we restrict registration to most of our courses to majors and minors in Fall and Spring. Additionally, minors and double majors (BA) may only take our required courses in specified semesters when they are not recommended for our primary majors. Double majors (BS) are given the same priority as our primary majors, who may take a course in any semester it is offered because the BS program has a far larger set of requirements than the BA or the minor, and would be impossible to complete otherwise.

  1. If I am interested in a double major or minor in CS, what CS courses can I enroll in and which semester must I take them?
  • Most undergraduate Computer Science courses offered at GW in Summer are open to all undergraduate students who have completed the prerequisites.
  • Most courses offered during Fall and Spring are restricted to majors and minors.
  • Additionally, course offerings are further restricted based on the program.

We list below other constraints for specific courses.

  • CSCI 1012 is recommended towards the Programming requirement for the application to the double major and minor programs. Any GW undergraduate may take CSCI 1012 in any semester.
  • CSCI 1111 is the first course in the programming sequence required for all undergraduate CS programs. It may also be used towards the Programming requirement in the double major/minor application. 
    • Any GW undergraduate may take CSCI 1111 in Spring.
    • In Fall, CSCI 1111 is open only to SEAS first year students, primary CS majors and declared secondary BS in CS majors, all of whom may also take it in Spring.
  • CSCI 1112 is the second course in the programming sequence and is required for all undergraduate CS programs. 
    • Declared majors and minors may take CSCI 1112 in Fall.
    • In Spring, CSCI 1112 is open only to SEAS first year students, primary CS majors and declared secondary BS in CS majors, all of whom may also take it in Fall.
  • CSCI 1311 is required for all undergraduate CS programs and recommended to be taken at the same time as CSCI 1112. 
    • Declared majors and minors may take CSCI 1311 in Fall.
    • In Spring, CSCI 1311 is open only to primary CS majors and declared secondary BS in CS majors, all of whom may also take it in Fall.
  • CSCI 2113 is required for all undergraduate CS programs and is the third course in the programming sequence.
    • Declared majors and minors and SEAS students whose programs require the course (Computer Engineering, for example) may take CSCI 2113 in Spring.
    • In Fall, CSCI 2113 is open only to primary Computer Science majors and declared secondary BS in Computer Science majors, all of whom may also take it in Spring.
  • In order to take most other undergraduate courses in Fall or Spring you must be in a CS major or minor program. Additionally, not all Computer Science courses are open to minors/second majors in Fall or Spring.

  1. Who should I speak to about questions regarding the application process for a minor or double major in Computer Science?

Email csundergrad@gwu.edu to speak to the CS Academic Coordinator.

  1. What is the main difference between a Computer Science (CS) Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Bachelor of Science (BS)?
  • The BS provides depth and focus in Computer Science. The BA is for students who want breadth in their degree, to include an emphasis on other areas that they want to study while studying Computer Science.
  • From a curricular perspective, the BS requires more rigorous courses in science, math and statistics. A BA requires a second major or two minors.
  • Secondary majors in CS (BS) are required to take all the courses that a primary SEAS major in CS (BS) would take. Because the BS has greater depth and upper-level courses have long prerequisite chains, the BS takes longer to complete than the BA.

  1. If I am a BS student, can I double major in a BA in Computer Science?

No, university regulations require that a secondary major should match the primary major when possible. Because Computer Science offers both BS and BA programs, a BS student in any other primary major should double major in the BS in Computer Science.

  1. My Computer Science minor or double major was approved but I do not see it on DegreeMap. Why would that be?

You have to send the signed form(s) to your home school advisor who would add the minor or double major to your record, after which it should be visible on DegreeMap. If you are a SEAS student, please send the signed forms to [email protected]. Note that you are not considered a declared CS minor or double major till the program is added to your record and visible on DegreeMap. Most CS courses are open only to declared minors or majors, so you should make sure to forward your forms to your home school advisers and check with them if the minor or second major is not on your record.

  1. What courses apply towards a minor in Computer Science?

            Please visit the website for a list of core courses that apply for a CS minor.

Note: Keep in mind that MATH 1220 + MATH 1221 or MATH 1231 are prerequisites needed to apply for the programs. 

  1. Which courses can I take as CS electives for the minor?

Please see the list here.

  1. What are the requirements for a double major in Computer Science?

You can find the requirements for the double major in computer science with your primary degree being a Bachelor of Arts or double major in computer science with your primary degree being a Bachelor of Science on the Computer Science website.

  1. How many semesters will it take to complete a minor in Computer Science?

You should plan on taking four semesters. As a reminder minors and second majors may NOT take all courses in any semester. Certain courses are open to second majors and minors ONLY in a specific semester. Also review the admission requirements, as a CS course is required for admission.

  1. How many semesters will it take to complete a double major in Computer Science?

Those planning a secondary major in Computer Science should plan on six semesters if their primary degree is a Bachelor of Arts and about eight semesters if it is a Bachelor of Science. This is because the secondary major in Computer Science is dictated by the primary degree, and certain courses are ONLY offered in certain semesters. Computer Science has a highly structured prerequisite chain of required courses.

  1. I am officially a minor or double major in Computer Science, trying to enroll in a course, but I need Departmental Approval. What should I do?

Go to the CS Registration Information website here: https://www.cs.seas.gwu.edu/c…stration-information.

  1. Can I register for CSCI 1112?

Registration is open only to declared SEAS students, CS minors and double majors. Additionally, double majors (BA) and minors may only take it in Fall or Summer.

  1. What is the process to get credit for a course taken outside of GWU?

See information here.

  1. Can I declare a CS minor, if I am an undeclared major?

We generally require that you have a declared major.

  1. Do I need to take the course at GW for the credit to count, or can I take the course at any university and transfer the credit? Are there any restrictions on what courses would be accepted as transfer credits?

Only courses which have been approved through the completion of a Transfer Credit Approval form, and which transfer for at least the same number of credits as the GW course, will be accepted. Additionally, GW’s restrictions on the number of transfer credits that may be used post matriculation, and the CS department’s rules regarding the minimum number of credits that need to be taken at GW will apply. Here you can find general information about transferring credits.

Note: The number of credits you may transfer towards a program depends on whether it is a minor, a BA or BS is different.

For students pursuing a minor, at least 15 credits in computer science courses must be completed at GW. For BA computer science second majors, 18 upper-level credits must be completed at GW. BS computer science second majors must take a minimum of 30 upper-level credits in computer science at GW.

  1. Can I minor in SEAS and major in another school?

Yes, as long as you meet the admission requirements

  1. Can undeclared students take CS courses over the summer?

Yes, most undergraduate summer courses are open to all GW undergraduates, though, of course, you need to have taken the prerequisites.

  1. Can I upgrade my CS minor to a second major?

You should complete the double major form and it will be approved if it is determined that you will be able to complete the requirements to graduate on time.