BA Degree Program

Overview of the Major

(New Degree available as of Fall 2013) 

Computer science is an exciting and challenging field that has impact on many parts
of our lives. Computer scientists craft the technologies that enable the digital devices
we use every day. They develop the largescale software that powers business and
industry, and advance the computational techniques and write the software that supports
scientists in their study of the world around us. They create the software that social
scientists use to identify and analyze patterns in the behavior of social groups and
human behavior in social networks and the applications that humanists and linguists
use to research language development.  Many new applications of computing technology
remain to be discovered.  Indeed, computing will be at the heart of future revolutions in
business, science, and society. Students who study computer science now will be at the
forefront of those important advances.

Computer science is concerned with how computers are constructed, how they store and
process data, how they are used in problem solving, and how the quality of those
solutions is assessed. It is about the science of creating software for a variety of users.
It is about understanding how that software interacts with the hardware on which it is run.
Computer science goes well beyond the machine to the study of how people interact with
the technologies around them. Applications of computer science reach far and wide.

Career Possibilities

Computer science graduates from the University of Colorado Boulder are engaged in a
wide variety of jobs with many different companies in locations all over the world. They
produce the software and systems that touch lives every day in fields ranging from
communications to finance to publishing. They are, of course, software developers,
but also have become teachers, writers, doctors, lawyers, scientists, military leaders,
and entrepreneurs. They work at some of the largest, most influential companies in the
world, at research institutions, non-profits, and at the smallest start-ups of every type
imaginable. And many lead highly successful companies that they themselves have

Career Services offers a number of programs and services designed to help
you plan your career, including workshops, internships, and placement services after
graduation. For an appointment with a career counselor or for more information, call
303-492-6541, or stop by the Center for Community. Find more information at Career Services.

Facilities, Programs, and Opportunities

The Department of Computer Science supports its own domain,,
and a modern computing infrastructure that supports its research and educational
missions. The department has a variety of computing facilities for use by faculty,
staff, and students. These include general purpose computing labs provided by
the university, additional instructional labs and administrative computing resources
provided by the department, and specialized labs dedicated to the work of individual
research groups. A wide variety of computing resources are available so that students
have the opportunity to learn about and use cutting-edge equipment and software.

The Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) offers students a chance
to work alongside a faculty sponsor on original research. Learn to write proposals, conduct
research, pursue creative work, analyze data, and present the results. For more
information, call UROP at 303-492-2596 or visit  
The Department provides networking opportunities throughout the year for students to
meet with companies looking to hire students for paid internships.  CU’s location near
Boulder’s tech startup community, national research labs, and traditional tech companies
such as Google, IBM, Oracle, Microsoft, and the like provide students with CS skills a wide 
range of employment opportunities while working on earning their degrees. 

Minimum Academic Preparation Standards (MAPS)

If you graduated from high school in 1988 or later, you are required to meet certain 
minimum academic preparation standards (MAPS).  If you are admitted to CU- Boulder 
with MAPS deficiencies, you are required to complete at least one MAPS course each term.  
The College of Arts and Sciences has adopted the entrance standards listed below. One
unit equals one year of high school study or one semester of college coursework.

English—4 Including 2 in composition
Mathematics—4 Including 2 in algebra, 1 in geometry, and 1 in college prep.
Natural science—3 Including 2 in laboratory science, one of which must be in chemistry or physics
Social science—3 Including one of U.S. or world history and one of geography. If you have U.S. history, you may use 1/2 year of world history and 1/2 year of geography in place of one year of geography.
Foreign language—3 All units must be in the same language and the last year must be Level III.

Degree Requirements

BA Degree Requirements

Difference Between B.A. and B.S. Degree

What is the difference between the BA and the BS in Computer Science? 


If you would like to speak to an advisor about the BA in CS degree program, contact Martin Black <> or Eva Lacy <>. Current A&S students may also use the A&S advising website to schedule an appointment with Martin or Eva.