Commencing students

Welcome to the ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science. On this page you will information about your transitition into life as a new student at Australia's National University.

To help us provide you with the most accurate course and enrolment advice, we first need to finalise any Academic Credit/Advanced Standing that you may be eligible to receive before you attempt to enrol in your courses.

If you have undertaken any University-level study that you would like to have considered for Credit/Advanced Standing, we’d like you to do the following before you arrive on campus:

- Email CECS Student Services with the following details:

  • * Your Full Name;
  • * Your ANU Student ID Number;
  • * The name of the University you studied at;
  • * The name of the degree you studied in/completed;
  • * The amount of credit you’re eligible for (as specified in your ANU Offer letter – if applicable). *Note: This step is particularly important for students coming to CECS from one of our International Partner Universities*


  • Attach the completed Application for Credit form to your email.
  • CECS Student Services will respond to you as quickly as possible with the details of your credit as well as a study plan that explains which courses you should enrol in and when (based on a full time study load).

If you’re not able to do this before you arrive at ANU, don’t worry – you can come and see CECS staff at one of the Academic Advice Sessions during O-Week and we can help you arrange you credit and enrolment there. 

Selecting courses to study each semester is exciting but it can also be stressful - especially when there are so many courses to choose from and so many opportunities to consider!

In your CECS program, there are clear rules about which courses are compulsory for your degree but there are also lots of decisions to makes when it comes to selecting your courses - including electives, choosing a Major, Minor or Specialisation and when courses are being offered.

To understand the courses you are required to take as part of your program, have a look at the ANU Programs and Courses webpage. Here, you can find information on your chosen degree(s) as well as suggested enrolment patterns – a must read for first year students!

As a quick guide to help you navigate the language of ANU, we’ve put together a list of definitions for you:

Program: The degree that you’re studying (e.g. the Bachelor of Engineering (Honours))

Courses: The subjects that you enrol in each semester (e.g. COMP1100)

Units: This is an indicator of the value of the course within the total program. Most courses at ANU are valued at 6 units. Units are used to track progress towards completing a plan. Full-time students normally undertake 24 units of courses each semester.

Core/Compulsory Course: Courses required to be completed to satisfy some or all of the requirements of your program and cannot normally be replaced by alternative courses.

Major: A set of related courses which are constructed for students to achieve specified learning outcomes and require the completed of 48 units. Majors can be in a single discipline (e.g. Artificial Intelligence), or multi-disciplinary (e.g. corporate sustainability). Majors exist independently of programs but may be referred to by the requirements of a specific plan. Majors are available only to undergraduate students.

Minor: A set of related courses which are structures for students to achieve specific learning outcomes. A minor requires the completed of 24 units. Minors can be in a single discipline (eg mathematics) or multi-disciplinary (eg corporate sustainability). Minors exist independently of programs but may be referred to by the requirements of a specific plan. Minors are available only to undergraduate students.

Specialisation: At the Undergraduate level, a Specialisation is a University-approved sequence of advanced courses that requires the completion of 24 units and which must be completed in conjunction with a specific Major or as a specified requirement within a degree. At the Postgraduate level, a Specialisation is a University-approved sequence of advanced courses that requires the completion of 24 units and which must be completed in conjunction with Core/Compulsory courses specified as part of the program.

Electives: Where students may choose a course which contributes to their degree requirements, such as in the following circumstances:

  • Electives in Majors/Minors (i.e. courses that are neither compulsory nor core – in these instances, you may have the option to pick from one of several courses to complete).
  • Electives of in-college courses (for example, if you’re in one Computing programs, you will have the option to pick from any of the available “COMP” courses – provided you meet the course requirements).
  • Electives that fall within ‘free’/university electives in single programs that can be taken from any College (note: students in Flexible Double Degrees (FDD’s) at ANU, will notice that they don’t have any free/university electives within their degrees. This is because they have been removed to ensure that students can complete the compulsory requirements of both degrees in the shortest time possible.

Permission Code: An ANU Academic College will sometimes place restrictions on a course, as only a select group of students meet the criteria to enrol. If you try to enrol in a course and receive an error message in ISIS that prevents you from progressing, you will need to contact the Academic College who owns the course (CECS own all COMP and ENGN courses) in order to be given a permission code which overrides this restriction.

For more university terms, check out the University Glossary.

Once you have selected your courses, you can enrol via the Interactive Student Information System (ISIS) by going to the enrolment tab, clicking the button for Semester 1, 2017, and searching for your courses.

Please note that if you have been awarded credit, you may not be able to enrol through ISIS until you have been issued with a permission code for each course. If the system won’t allow you to enrol and indicates that you need a permission number, please email CECS Student Services with the courses you’re attempting to enrol in and we can help you.

Once you have enrolled in your courses, the next step is to figure out your weekly timetable.

By clicking on the 2017 Class Timetable for Semester 1, 2017, you are taken to the ANU Timetable Viewer.

By selecting the courses tab on the left hand side, you can search for the timetable for each of the courses you intend to take by looking at courses offered by either the Research School of Engineering or the Research School of Computer Science (for CECS courses).

This timetable will show you all of the classes that are run for your particular course. In general, there are three possible types of classes: lectures, labs, and tutorials.


Most courses will have multiple lectures each week, and are usually labelled as lectures A-D. Each of these lectures will cover new content, so it is strong advised that you attend, though it is generally not compulsory. Most lectures will be recorded and are made available on the course Wattle page through Echo360 a few hours after the lecture.


Many technical courses have practical classes, called labs, and are typically compulsory to attend. There will be multiple lab sessions every week for these courses to accommodate all of the students. In the first few weeks of classes, your lecturers will open enrolments for labs on Wattle and you will need to register for one of the lab classes on offer. You will then have to attend this particular lab during the semester (not all of the labs listed in the timetable).


Tutorials are additional small group classes used to cover some of the lecture topics in more detail or provide opportunities for students to practice new concepts. Depending on the course, these tutorials may be either compulsory or optional. Check with your Course Convenor in the first week if you’re unsure.  As with labs, students will need to register for one of the tutorial classes on offer through Wattle when opened by lecture in the first few weeks of classes.

*Note: Lab and Tutorial registrations have limited capacity per class and are therefore often “first in, first served” so you need to make sure that you have a speedy internet connection and few different class options written down to make sure you don’t end up with any class clashes.

Before you contact your course convener or Student Services with your query, please read carefully to see if your question has been answered in the FAQs tab on this page.

Professor Tom Gedeon

Professor Tom Gedeon

IT Convenor

CSIT Building (108), N332 / N331 (one room)
+61 2 6125 1052

Professor John Slaney

IT (Hons) Convenor

+61 2 6125 8607

Avoiding Academic Misconduct

We’re sure you’ve heard and understand that ANU takes all cases of Poor Academic Practice and Academic Misconduct very seriously.

Academic Misconduct includes, among other acts, acting dishonestly or unfairly including deliberate plagiarism, copying or cheating in relation to an assessment for admission or the presentation or preparation of assignments for assessment.

In relation to an examination, academic misconduct includes cheating, plagiarism, taking a prohibited document into an examination.

The tricky part – and the thing that unfortunately catches most students out – is being unfamiliar with what the University defines as Academic Misconduct and the penalties that students can face when they’re found to have breached the Academic Misconduct Rules.

As an ANU Student, it’s your responsibility to familiarise yourself with these rules so don’t get caught out for what may be a simple, honest mistake. The possible outcomes of an allegation being considered by an Academic Misconduct Inquiry may include failing the specific course related to the allegation, suspension from study for 12 months or even exclusion from the University.

The University has put together some tips and resources for students to draw upon to help you complete your studies without accidently breaching the university’s Academic Integrity Principles and Academic Misconduct Rules.


The College regards plagiarism as any appropriation of the ideas or expressions of another without relevant and appropriate acknowledgment.  This includes un-attributed appropriation of text or content and may extend to improper referencing. Plagiarism will not be tolerated in any course and all discovered instances would be pursued to the full extent allowable under the rules.

Where students have doubts as to how to deal with or acknowledge source materials in course assignments they should consult the lecturer or tutor.

The penalties and administrative procedures regarding plagiarism are incorporated in the Code of Practice for Student Academic Integrity (PDF, 272KB).

On-line material discussing plagiarism and referencing styles is available from the Academic Skills and Learning Centre.

CECS Student Services

Student Services is your one-stop-shop for advice and assistance on managing a plethora of student-related issues including:

  • enrolment advice
  • course prerequisites
  • faling courses
  • end date/graduation
  • complaints/feedback
  • work experience/internships
  • job opportunities
  • summer programs
  • scholarships
  • miscounduct
  • academic performance.

T 02 6125 4450

Research School Administration Offices

If you need to arrange building or room access within CECS, or you need to report something this is broken, damaged or potentially hazardous, you will need to contact the Research School Administration Offices directly.

Research School of Engineering

The Research School of Engineering is responsible for the following buildings:

  • Ian Ross Building (#31)
  • Engineering Building (#32)
  • Craig Building (#35A)
  • Brian Anderson Building (#115)

T 02 6125 0290

Research School of Computer Science

The Research School of Computer Science is responsible for the following building:

  • Computer Science and Information Technology (CSIT) Building (#108)

T 02 6125 4043

Student Representatives

Class Reps

The primary responsibility of a Course Representative is to collect feedback about the course – the good, the bad and the ugly - from your classmates and to present this information to Course Convenor (or – where necessary, to escalate the issue to the Program Convenors and Associate Director). 

Course Reps are the people you can provide feedback to throughout the course about how you feel things are going, what’s working and what isn’t.

Anyone can be a Course Rep – at the beginning of each semester, your Course Convenor will call for volunteers to be the Course Reps. You will also be responsible for disseminating information relating to your course back to your classmates throughout the semester.

Year Reps/ SRC

Dynamic Year Reps/SRCs represent the views of a cross-section of students from different cultures, backgrounds and talents. A broad spectrum of views and values held by the student body enhances representatives’ understanding of issues that are important to the student body.  

Most importantly, the role of an SRC/Year Representative gives students the opportunity to represent the views of their peers, and to succeed in making those views heard throughout the College so real change is affected.

Year Reps/SRC are appointed and managed slightly differently across each School (i.e. Engineering and Computer Science). If you’re interested in being a Year Rep/SRC member, contact CECS Student Services for more details.


Updated:  10 August 2021/Responsible Officer:  Head of School/Page Contact:  CECS Webmaster