The department requires a candidate to complete an approved program of study consisting of at least 30 semester hours. At least 24 of these 30 hours must be in Computer Science courses at the 5000 level or above. (Any course that is cross-listed by Computer Science is considered to be a Computer Science course, regardless of the department in which the student actually registers.)

As part of your Plan of Study you must decide whether or not to do a Master’s Thesis (known as Option I.) Option I requires you to take 24—26 credit hours in course work plus 4-6 credit hours of thesis to accumulate a total of 30 credit hours. You must also successfully defend your thesis and upload your thesis electronically.

Otherwise, you will need to take 30 credit hours of coursework to meet your degree requirements (known as Option II.) In these 30 hours, 6 hours must be independent study credits doing some sort of research.

Breadth Requirement: In both plans you will still need to fulfill the breadth requirement of passing four out of nine major CS area courses with a grade of B or better (not B-).Computer Science Courses are listed in nine areas of research: artificial intelligence, computational biology, human-centered computing, numerical & scientific computing, programming languages, Software Engineering, Database systems, systems & networking and theory of computing.  All students must earn a B or better (not a B-) in at least one 5000-level course (not 6000 or higher) in four of these nine areas.

Up to 6 hours may be taken in courses at the 4000 level or above in other departments (CSCI 4000 level courses cannot be counted towards a master’s degree), provided that those courses have "significant Computer Science content" and are taught by a member of the graduate faculty. The student must file a petition to allow these credit hours to be counted toward the degree. This petition must explicitly verify the above requirements and must be approved by the student's advisor and the Graduate Director of the Computer Science department.

There is no limit on the number of coursework that can be taken via distance section, which offers distance learning for graduate-level courses in an accessible, online format. Coursework will be verified on the Candidacy Application for Advanced Degree during the semester the student intends to graduate.