The Master’s Program in Computer Science

Meeting the Demand for Professionals with Deep Technical Expertise

Computers are ubiquitous, part of the fabric of almost all aspects of daily life. While “working with computers” is now a component of nearly every white-collar occupation, there is high demand in a variety of fields for experts with a deeper and principled understanding of computer and information systems: developing rich applications integrated with a database back-end, designing software capable of interoperating with complex network infrastructure, and consulting opportunities involving optimization of client software and hardware, to name a few.

The field of computer science is continually fueling innovation and driving societal changes. With a master’s degree in computer science from BU, you will arm yourself with knowledge of the underlying principles of computer and information systems and theory. Our internationally renowned faculty are as active in their research fields as they are in the classroom. In our intimate graduate classes, you can expect plenty of individual attention. Students quickly gain expertise with basic techniques and methods to research the technical literature in search of a solution—or to devise new methods—when confronted with a challenging design, implementation, or theory problem. Our wide-ranging curriculum offers many opportunities for hands-on experience as well, allowing you to participate in the development of new systems or in the cutting-edge research projects led by our faculty. You can also focus on the exciting and rapidly growing field of cyber security, our newest specialization.

Beyond the computer science offerings, students are encouraged to tap into the rich array of elective coursework spread throughout the University’s 16 schools and colleges, including the College of Engineering and School of Management. With years of experience, our faculty advisors are especially helpful in steering CS students toward valuable, supplemental classes.

The CS program at Boston University is geared toward students with a CS undergraduate degree, but we also welcome those with equivalent computer training and experience, as well as students with gaps in their CS background but strong academic records overall. Whatever your background, in the Department of Computer Science, you’ll find a dynamic, diverse, and supportive community comprising a first-rate faculty and inspired student body—all located in the culturally and educationally rich city of Boston, Massachusetts, the center of a region with a storied history of technology innovation.

Questions? Please feel free to contact gradapp@cs.bu.edu.

Learning Outcomes


Possess a broad mastery of in-depth knowledge of Computer Science, across theory, software, systems, and applications.

Requirements


A total of eight graduate courses (totaling 32 credits) must be completed, including five breadth courses in computer science (with at least one course from each of the four breadth areas).

Students may fulfill their course requirements through a combination of elective graduate courses in computer science, for-credit directed study with a faculty member to pursue research, or graduate courses in other related disciplines in consultation with your academic advisor.

To complete the master’s with a project or thesis option, a master’s project or thesis must be completed in consultation with an academic advisor. Research toward the master’s project or thesis can be taken for credit, by pursuing a directed study with a faculty advisor.

Sample Program

A sample program might consist of the following eight courses:

How to Apply


To apply to the master’s program, please fill out our online application. As of September 2012, the Computer Science Department offers a Master of Science and no longer offers a Master of Arts. Please note that some online documents may not be updated to reflect this change.

The department reviews master’s applications on a rolling basis to expedite admissions decisions and we aim to make admissions recommendations within four weeks of receiving a completed application.

Deadlines

Fall 2013 Enrollment: May 1, 2013 (rolling admission)
Spring 2014 Enrollment: Nov. 1, 2013 (rolling admission)

For admissions questions, please contact gradapp@cs.bu.edu.

Faculty

Our computer science professors are internationally recognized experts and active researchers, hailing from around the globe.

Alumni Voices

Graduates of our program have gone on to a variety of rewarding computer science careers. Read some of their stories here.

Research

From cell phone privacy to data mining to image and video computing, our professors and researchers are continually exploring and breaking new ground. See where they’re headed next.

Careers: Next Steps

Our CS Connections program is designed to link students with prospective employers in the computer science and cyber security fields, particularly in the Boston area. We also offer plenty of professional resources, networking events, and the latest job and internship listings.

Resources

People

Documents

Useful links