The Computer Science Department has an option for undergraduates who plan to immediately obtain a Master's degree after completing their Bachelor's degree. Under this plan, students can complete a combined Bachelor's/Master's degrees in five years, less than normally required by students who work in two uncoordinated programs. In addition, students can be admitted into the graduate study program during their Junior year, thus avoiding uncertainty about whether they will indeed qualify for a Master's program at the end of their undergraduate studies.
There are several advantages to a Master’s degree:
- Broader and deeper understanding of computer science
- Augmented research experience and ability
- Possible entry into doctoral studies
- Higher salaries
- Qualifications for certain kinds of jobs, especially teaching at the junior or four-year college level
Good students qualifying for advanced standing, who have at least a 3.0 GPA, and are within 30 credits of completion can apply for the program. They need to formally apply, including submitting an application to the School of Graduate Studies, obtain three letters of recommendation, and take the Graduate Record General Examination (GRE). If their qualifications are satisfactory, students can be admitted to the MS program, pending completion of the bachelor’s degree. During the senior year they should:
- While an undergraduate, file split forms for up to nine credits of the 5000-level-or-above computer science courses taken to be recorded on the graduate transcript.
- Even though these credits split from the undergraduate transcript appear on the graduate transcript, the BS will not be awarded until these courses have been completed as if for a regular BS.
- If necessary, take enough electives to make up for the credit hours lost in step 1 from the undergraduate transcript so that the total number of credits on the undergraduate transcript is 120.
- If necessary, take enough upper-division credits (3000 or above) to make up for the credits hours lost in step 1 from the undergraduate transcript so that the total number of upper-division credits on the undergraduate transcript is 40.
Students complete the remaining requirements for the master’s program while matriculating as a graduate student.