Quick links

Becoming a CS Major

This  website contains much of the information to consider when deciding whether to become a CS major.  Browse through the pages listed on the right for answers to your questions about various requirements in the CS department at Princeton.   

To actually begin the process of becoming a CS major, whether newly declaring your major or transferring to CS from a different discipline, you need to make an appointment to see your class advisor.  He or she will want to get to know you and will need to sign off on your degree program.  (CS class advisors are authorized to sign for the department representative on the official form to let you into the major.)  BSE first year students who will select a major in the spring, will follow the instructions sent out by SEAS Engineering.  AB sophomores and any student tranferring into CS should meet with Brian Kernighan or the appropriate CS Class Advisor.  Take two copies of the Course Enrollment Worksheet to this meeting as well as a copy of your course history printout. (Go to SCORE>Student Center>My Academics>View My Course History).  See class advisor listing.

People Who Can Help

There are a number of members of the department who are available to you as you consider your options.  Whether you are already concentrating in computer science or just thinking about it, the CS advisor for your class is the best person to discuss requirements and plans of study.  He or she knows the rules applying to your class and, if you are a concentrator, is familiar with your record.

The two official representatives of the department to the Office of the Dean of the College are the department representatives (dep reps): Brian Kernighan (room 311, bwk@cs.princeton.edu) and David Walker (room 211 dpw@cs.princeton.edu). 

Brian Kernighan is the departmental representative for pre-majors, non-majors and study abroad.  If you are a freshman or someone else who isn't yet officially a CS major, but you need information about the CS program you should either see Brian Kernighan or the appropriate CS class advisor. 

David Walker is the guardian of the department rules and the department representative for majors, which includes oversight of honors and awards, and students leaving the major.  If you are already a CS major, and have an issue that you do not think your class advisor can or should handle, you should see him -- the only exception is study abroad (see Brian Kernighan).  If your class advisor is unavailable for an extended period, you may also see him with questions or to sign add/drop forms.

Current CS majors are an excellent source of information on life in the department and the “inside story” on courses. The getting involved page lists several groups of people you can talk to, like PWICS (Princeton Women In Computer Science), the CS Undergrad Council and the ACM Student Group. These groups also set up fun get-togethers from time to time.

Last but not least, Colleen Kenny (room 210, ckenny@princeton.edu) is the Undergraduate Coordinator. She is a great person to answer many questions you might have on the logistics of how the department works.  She also has copies of forms and information relevant to undergrads.

Follow us: Facebook Twitter Linkedin