2017-2018 Graduate Catalog 
    Mar 24, 2018  
2017-2018 Graduate Catalog

Computer Science Major, MS


Applicants for admission to the MS program for computer science are expected to have completed a bachelor's degree with an average of at least 3.0 out of 4.0, both overall and in the senior year. Two semesters of calculus plus two additional semesters of college mathematics (e.g. linear algebra, differential equations, probability) and a course in formal languages, as well as in systems programming, are required for admission. Applicants are required to submit scores from the general Graduate Record Examination (GRE) within the past three years and to have these scores sent to the Office of Graduate Admissions. A TOEFL score of 550 on the written exam or 80 on the Internet-based Test is required for non-native speakers of English, including those who have earned degrees at U.S. institutions. The score must be no more than two years old from the requested date of entry. Applicants who have received a degree from an accredited U.S. institution within the past two years are exempt from the TOEFL requirement. Applicants who hold the bachelor's degree in fields other than computer science will be required to take selected undergraduate courses as determined by the applicant's prior education and experience. The student will be admitted under non-degree status until the required undergraduate courses are successfully completed with a 3.0 average. An international student may not enroll as a non-degree student.


Students may choose between a thesis option, a non-thesis course-only option, and a non-thesis project option. All students must file a Master's Program Plan with the departmental graduate committee specifying which option they have selected, a semester-by-semester schedule of the courses they intend to take, and the members of the student's master's committee. Students may change between options one time by filing an amended Master's Program Plan and with approval of the departmental graduate committee.

For all options, a total of 30 graduate credit hours are required. The course credits must satisfy

a. At least two-thirds of the total credit hours must be at the 500-level or above.
b. A maximum of 6 credit hours of courses outside the department may be applied toward the degree.
c. Students are required to complete COSC 530 , COSC 560 , and either COSC 580  or COSC 581 .

Thesis Option (30 credit hours)

  1. 24 credit hours of graduate course work.
  2. A master's thesis totaling a minimum of 6 credit hours (COSC 500 ) is required, as well as a final oral exam covering the thesis and related course work.

Non-Thesis Project Option (30 credit hours)

  1. 27 credit hours of graduate course work.
  2. COSC 501 (Project in Lieu of Thesis) with a minimum grade of B. This course will be administered by the student's master's committee. A written project proposal describing what the student will do in the course must be submitted in advance for the student's master's committee approval. A written final report and oral presentation is required and one copy of the final draft must be submitted to the graduate committee.

Non-Thesis Courses Only Option (30 credit hours)

  1. 30 credit hours of graduate course work.
  2. The student must take course work in an area to prepare for the non-thesis master's examination. The student's advisor must verify that an acceptable set of courses has been taken before the student may schedule the examination.


Five-Year BS-MS Program

Computer Science (BS)
Computer Science (MS)

The department offers a 5 year BS-MS program for qualified students. The primary component of the program is that qualified students may take up to 6 credit hours of approved graduate courses for their senior undergraduate electives and have them count toward both their bachelor's and master's degrees at UT. This program is designed for students attending UT for their Master of Science degree because other universities may not accept these courses for graduate credit since they were used to satisfy requirements for the Bachelor of Science degree.

Significant components of the program are:

  • Students must have an overall GPA of at least 3.4 to be admitted to the program. Conditional admission may be granted after completing 64 credit hours of required course work while full admission is granted after completing 96 credit hours of required course work with a minimum overall GPA of 3.4 in required course work.
  • Students must at least have conditional admission before taking graduate courses for both their bachelor's and master's degrees. All courses taken for graduate credit must be approved by the departmental chair of the program. Students admitted to the program must request permission from the Graduate School to take approved courses for graduate credit.
  • Students admitted to the program must also follow the normal procedure for admission to the Graduate School.
  • Admission of students into this program must be approved by the department and the Graduate School.
  • Students will not be eligible for graduate assistantships until they are enrolled as graduate-level students in the Graduate School.