|Disclaimer: Although we have tried to have the most up to date information in this FAQ, sometimes the URL's and its contents may change.|
|Q. How far is Texas A&M from Houston/Dallas/Austin?|
|It depends where
in those cities you are driving from/to, weather conditions, and traffic
hours. These are some driving times:
* Houston :
between 1.5 to 2 hours (approx 95 miles)
|Q. Is there a TAMU pickup from Houston/Dallas/Austin?|
|We do not take
any responsibility for picking up students from any of the cities. Some
individual organizations may arrange pickups from the College Station
airport, or the College Station greyhound bus stand. You may have to get in
touch with these organizations to arrange for pick ups. The best possible
way to find an organization is doing a search at the TAMU website at
http://www.tamu.edu Please visit the
International Student Services pick up page for more detailed information
You can also check http://groundshuttle.com/index.html they provide shuttle services between Houston and College Station.
|Q. How else could I reach TAMU from Houston/Dallas/Austin?|
Houston or Dallas you could
1. Fly (slightly expensive, but with loads of
luggage this might be a good option)
From Austin you could
|Q. Where do I find information about general campus life at TAMU?|
|Please visit http://www.tamu.edu/00/life/index.html and/or http://studentactivities.tamu.edu/ for information on this. Another valuable resource is the Adult, Graduate and Off-campus Student Services (AGOSS) http://studentlife.tamu.edu/agoss/|
|Q. How is the weather?|
|For weather information at College Station please visit http://www.weather.com/ and enter 77845 for zip code. Another good resource is http://www.weatherunderground.com/|
|Q. How much would an approximate rent for an apartment be?|
from $400 to as much as you want them to be. These are generally 2 bedroom
apartments, but 1 & 3 bedroom apartments are available too. Some people like
their own rooms, while others share. So the cost of living would vary. For
further information visit
http://www.springstreet.com/ apartments/ and enter 77840 for the zip code for College Station. This website should help you in your process of finding a suitable apartment.
|Q. How far are these apartments from TAMU?|
|Please remember that TAMU is a HUGE school. Hence the distance from TAMU is one thing, and distance from the Computer Science department would be something totally different! There are apartments available close to campus which can range from a walking distance of 5 to 25 minutes from the Computer Science building. The above website should give you the approximate distance of the apartment complex to the university during your search.|
|Q. What is the public transportation like at TAMU?|
|Texas A&M does have excellent bus service available for students. Please visit http://transport.tamu.edu/transit.aspx for more information on the transport services at TAMU. Most students do own bicycles which is another common means of transport if you do not own a car. For public transportation in the cities of Bryan and College Station, visit The District web-page http://www.btd.org/|
|Q. Which are the nearest cities around College Station?|
|The closest big city to College Station is Houston, about 95 miles (approx 2 hrs drive). Austin is about 110 miles (approx 2.5 hours drive).|
|Q. How can I find an advisor?|
advisor is important for master's students and crucial for doctoral
students. It is best to figure out what area of research you are interested
in. Check out
http://www.cs.tamu.edu/research/groups for research going on in the
department. Then visit with professors in the groups you are interested in
and ask to attend group meetings to get a better idea of the kinds of work
they are doing. It is also recommended that you take a course with the
professor prior to finalizing your choice of advisor.
Spend a little time finding an advisor that you can work with. It is more important that you can work with your advisor than it is to have the person with the best research match. You can always put the expert on your committee to take advantage of her/his expertise without making that person your primary advisor. Since there are time lines for selecting an advisor, sometimes you might find another professor later that is a better match as your advisor. It is OK to change advisors.
|Q. How can I register for courses?|
|You may register on line at https://register.sherwood.tamu.edu/ But check with the graduate advising office at (979) 845-4087 or room 425 H. R. Bright Building (Computer Science Department) for more information about registration.|
|Q. Where do I find a course listing for the Computer Science department?|
|For courses offered in the fall of 2004 visit http://courses.tamu.edu/Viewcourses.aspx?department=CPSC&year=2004&term=C&campus=CS For additional resources visit http://www.cs.tamu.edu/academics/courses/. For more information on text books and courses visit http://www.cs.tamu.edu/academics/ and/or individual faculty and student web sites visit http://www.cs.tamu.edu/people/faculty/ and http://www.cs.tamu.edu/people/ respectively.|
|Q. Can I check my student record on line?|
|Yes, you can, go to https://myrecord.tamu.edu/current.aspx This site contains several links about your student record. You can also find information about paying fees on-line, and more.|
|Q. I was not aware that I have to take CPSC 681 (Seminar). Since it is mandatory, do I have to take it this semester?|
|The first rule is that the student must keep up with the rules. The rules that affect you the most are the Graduate Catalog for the College and University rules. Some of those rules are extended by departmental rules in the Graduate Brochure and Rules documents. As stated in the Graduate Brochure http://www.cs.tamu.edu Academics - Graduate Program - Graduate Brochure "CPSC 681 is required at least once for each degree.''|
|Q. I am planning to take 3 main courses this semester. Will registration for 681 imply four? When is the best time?|
It will be a fourth course but the work load for the one credit seminar is not comparable to the main courses. Two courses plus seminar is NOT a full load. The first semester is an excellent time to take the seminar because it gives you a broad exposure to the department and its programs.
|Q. What else should I consider about taking seminar?|
seminar course can be taken whenever the student like, the benefit in taking
it in the first semester is that the students are exposed to the broad
computer science discipline. Seminars could be used by students to get
themselves acquainted with the research conducted by faculty in the
department (there are other ways of learning about faculty research -- meet
individually with them, attend their lab meetings, or take a course with
If, however, you are starting a graduate program immediately after finishing bachelor's you may not appreciate the seminar as much as, say someone who has been in a graduate program for a while or someone who has had work experience. Many seminars tend to deal with topics that are fairly advanced, intricate and address specific research questions.
The seminars offered are also influenced (at least to some extent) by the area of work of the faculty member coordinating it for that semester. Thus, if you know that another professor whose research you are interested in may host it in the near future, you might want to wait until then. Usually, students who have just started a program rarely have this information or know how to get it.
Financially, registering for 10 credits means paying additional fees during the semester. Usually, students who are close to finishing their masters degrees or well into their PhD degrees eventually require to take fewer than 9 "course" credits. They need to take research or independent study credits (691 or 685) to reach 9 credits in order to remain full time students or to retain their assistantships. Registering for a 681 (seminar) during such semesters is financially beneficial to the students. For example, say you need to take 2 courses (6 credits) and will make up for the 3rd with research credits (691 - 3 credits). Instead take only 2 credits of 691 (you will do the research needed to graduate regardless of the number of credits you register for) and take 681 (1 credit) to get 2 9. Voila! you're still paying for 9 credits and you've taken the seminar too.
|Q. Is there a listserv for Computer Science graduate students? If so, how can I be added to or removed from the listserv?|
|Yes, there is a moderated listserv. At the beginning of each semester new students are automatically added to the listserv. If you want to be added to or removed from, or change the email address you originally provided to the listserv, please contact the CSGSA (Computer Science Graduate Students Association) person in charge (from the fall 2005 to the end of summer 2006 please contact Kaustav Ghoshal email@example.com).|
|Q. How do I get in touch with certain Faculty or Staff in the Computer Science Department?|
|* A list of staff members with contact information may be found at: http://www.cs.tamu.edu/people/staff * A list of faculty members may be found at: http://www.cs.tamu.edu/people/faculty * A pdf format phonelist for the department is available at: http://www.cs.tamu.edu/people/phonelist as well.|
|Q. Where can I get most of my Computer Science related questions answered?|
|The computer science department website at http://www.cs.tamu.edu/ should help you find answers to most of the questions you have regarding the program, and faculty, staff and other fellow students in the department.|
|Q. How is the Campus recruitment? Do most people get jobs before graduating?|
|This is a difficult question to answer given the current IT scenario. However, in the past most of our students have been placed very well, in different parts of the country. Most students register themselves at the Career Center http://careercenter.tamu.edu and get placed via them. We also have Career fairs in Fall and Spring which facilitate recruitment. An important issue that most people do not address: If you are interested in an internship for summer then you should prepare a resume and register with the Career Center as soon as possible within your first semester here. This is important as some companies start campus recruitment as early as September for the following summer.|
|Q. What types of financial assistance are available?|
Scholarships and Financial Aid:
Some scholarships of varying amounts are available through the Department of Computer Science. Apply as soon as possible since additional funds are often received in the middle of the year. (http://www.cs.tamu.edu/academics/scholarships) Other scholarships are available through the University such as the Academic Excellence Award which range from $500 to $1500 for an academic year. (http://financialaid.tamu.edu/search.asp?fxn=main&thekey=64&q=scholarships)
Graduate Assistantships (GA):
All assistantships are graduate student jobs that require approximately 20 hours per week. You can often find GA positions in other departments. For international students, working as a GA outside of the department requires that the job be related to your major. Fortunately most work involves using and working with computers, and the Office of Graduate Studies is extremely flexible in the approval process. All GAs are eligible for health insurance (see question below).
Graduate Assistant Research (GAR):
|Graduate Assistant Teaching (GAT):|
|Graduate Assistant Non-teaching (GANT):|
|Q. Can I get a tuition waiver or tuition remission?|
If you have a fellowship or work as a GAR, GAT, or a GANT you can get a waiver for out-of-state tuition. Certain scholarships may also allow you to get an out-of state tuition waiver. Regardless, you still have to pay for in-state tuition. If a professor writes tuition remission into her/his grant proposal, then grant funds can be used to pay part of or all of the GAR's in-state tuition.
|Q. Do graduate assistants have health insurance?|
Assistants (GAT, GAR, and GANT) are eligible for University health insurance
coverage and a portion of their monthly premium is paid by the employer. The
out-of-pocket expense (i.e., paid by the student) for insurance coverage
will vary depending on the student's status (single, married, children), the
carrier and plan selected, and when the student was first on payroll.
For example, the out-of-pocket expense for coverage for a single student that was on the payroll before June 1, 2004 will range from $0 per month to $33.75 per month for the 2004-2005 academic year. The cost for the same student would range from $15 per month to $179.35 per month if the student was hired after June 1, 2004.
Additional information on premiums and coverage is available at http://hr.tamu.edu/benefits/premiums.html and at http://ogs.tamu.edu.