Requirements for the
Master's Degree in Computer Science
Requirements for admission: Baccalaureate
degree (not necessarily with a concentration
in Computer Science)
and Graduate Record Examination (subject test highly desirable).
Prerequisites common to all graduate requirements are
These prerequisites may be satisfied by undergraduate
or more advanced courses, and in some cases by professional experience.
- Computer structures and organization.
- Discrete structures and computing theory.
- Data structures.
Master's Requirements Work Sheet
A work sheet in either
is available to help Master's students plan their courses. The
same work sheet may be supplied to the Department by the student
to facilitate validation of the degree application.
Most of the Computer Science Department's courses at the 400 level
and above are classified into four areas:
General courses not associated with a specific area are numbered with
a middle digit 9.
Courses that involve a major programming project are designated as
"Programming-in-the-large," and carry a course number with
letter designation P.
- Foundations (middle
digit 0 or 1, e.g., B501, B502, B503, B510);
- Programming Languages (middle digit 2, e.g., B521, B522, P523, B524 );
- Systems (middle digit 3 or 4, e.g., P536, B538, B541, P542, B543);
Applications (middle digit 5, 6, 7 or 8, e.g., B551,
B552, B553, B561, P565-566, P573, B581, B582).
The material between the next two horizontal bars
is the text for the 2009-2010 edition of the Bulletin
of the University Graduate School.
At least 30 credits in Computer Science or related areas.
These include the
as defined below.
- A total of at least 30 credit hours is required,
excluding all A500-level Computer Science courses, except as noted.
No credit requirement below is to be read as additional to
these 30 credits.
- Six courses in Computer Science,
subject to the following requirements.
- Each course must carry at least 3 credits.
- Normally all six courses should be Computer Science
listings at the 500 level or higher.
- With prior written permission of the Director of Graduate
Studies, one course of the six may be selected
from the Computer Science
courses A595 (equivalent to B401), B403, P423, P436, B443,
and the Mathematics courses
M471 and M472.
- One course must be a Computer Science P course.
- One course must be a Computer Science course in
- Two of the three Computer Science areas besides
Foundations (Programming Languages,
Systems, and Applications) must be represented among the six
- Additional approved courses carrying graduate credit (courses listed in
the university's Graduate School Bulletin). Courses outside of the School of
Informatics and Computing must be approved in advance by the Director for
- Y890 (Thesis Readings and Research) may not be used to satisfy the MS
- No more than a total of 6 out of the 30 credits required can be earned
from Y790 (Graduate Independent Study: Research and Reading,
Software System Development, Master's Research Project, Master's
Software Project, or University Master's Thesis), without
authorization from the Director of Graduate Studies.
- Cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 in Computer Science courses.
- Cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 in all courses.
One of the following options must be completed:
C: Adding to the CS Course Requirements three courses (9 credits or
more) from the Computer Science listings: one P course carrying
graduate credit, and in addition two CS courses at the 500 level or
above, of which at most one can be a Y790 course.
Completing the department's written PhD qualifying exams with a full,
unconditional, pass, along with six additional credits in the natural
and mathematical sciences (CS and Mathematics permitted), approved in
advance by the Director of Graduate Studies.
R: Master's Research Project (Y790, 6 credits),
consisting of a
survey or original research paper at a level appropriate
for publication as a departmental technical report or as a conference
Software Project (Y790, 6 credits), consisting of substantial
individual input into a major software research and development
project, documented in the public domain.
TH: University Master's Thesis (Y790, 6 credits),
consisting of a formal master's thesis as prescribed by the
A: Adding to the CS course requirements three or more courses (9
credits or more) in an interdisciplinary program that applies computer
science to another discipline. These courses must be in a program
that has been approved in advance by the graduate faculty of the
department; such a program may put additional constraints on the
courses used to fulfill the CS course requirements.
End of material
corresponding to the Bulletin
of the University Graduate School.
All courses must be completed within 5 consecutive years, and there
must be at least one semester of full-time enrollment (8 hours or more).
Independent Research Permission Form must be signed by
the research supervisor and turned in to the Graduate Secretary
to obtain permission to register for any independent research
course, including Y790 (Independent Study) courses to be applied
to the R, S, or TH options of the Master's
- There is no foreign language requirement.
- Graduate coursework previously applied to a degree in one
department cannot be applied to a Master's degree in another
department, unless you are concurrently enrolled in both departments.
See, for example, "Dual Master's Program" in the Graduate School
Questions may be addressed to appropriate faculty members,
or to the Director of Graduate Studies.
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