Thesis Option

The following is a sample schedule for this degree – your actual schedule may vary.

Meet with your advisor and review the class schedule before confirming your schedule.

Computer Science

Lloyd Smith, Program Director
Cheek Hall, Room 316, Phone 417-836-4834

Program description

The Computer Science degree is focused on modern, applied needs of computation for business and social and personal applications. The curriculum will provide students with a practical, workforce-ready skill set for modern needs. Areas of coursework include algorithms, data mining, software engineering and quality assurance, evolutionary computing, multimedia communications, ubiquitous computing, and Internet of Things. During the first semester, in consultation with an advisor, the student will select courses, projects, and/or research to complete the program.

Entrance requirements

  1. Preference will be given to applicants with an undergraduate degree from an accredited university in Computer Science or closely related field (e.g., Computer Engineering, Math, Electrical Engineering, Software Engineering), including courses equivalent to MSU CSC 232 and MTH 314. Applicants without one of the described undergraduate degrees or courses may be admitted with the stipulation that those undergraduate courses must be completed prior to registration in graduate courses, and that the undergraduate courses will not be credited toward the MS degree.

  2. GPA of at least 3.0 (on a 4.00 scale) for the last 60 semester hours of undergraduate work and a 3.0 overall undergraduate GPA.

  3. Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores: a combined score of 290 on the verbal and quantitative sections of the Graduate Record Examination.

  4. English language communication: International applicants whose native language is not English and who do not have a U.S. degree are required to take the TOEFL or IELTS. Required score on the TOEFL: A minimum score of 550 on the paper version, 213 on the computer-based, or 79 on the internet-based TOEFL. Required score on the IELTS: A minimum score of 6.0.  The English language communication requirement is waived for applicants who meet one of the following: (i) are native English speakers or (ii) have completed a minimum of 60 semester credit hours from an accredited college or university in the U.S.

Admission requirements for the Accelerated Master's option
  1. Completion of 60 or more undergraduate credit hours in a degree program of Computer Science or closely related field such as Math or Physics.
  2. Completion of CSC 232 and MTH 314 with an overall GPA of 3.00 or better in all courses required for the undergraduate major.
  3. GPA of 3.00 or higher in all courses required for the undergraduate major.
  4. Eligible students may apply for admission during the second semester of their junior year.
  5. Acceptance of the applicant by the graduate faculty in Computer Science under the accelerated masters option.
Accelerated Master's Degree option

Eligible Missouri State University majors in Computer Science may apply for preliminary acceptance into the Master of Science program in Computer Science. If accepted, graduate courses chosen from approved 600 or 700-level courses may be counted toward both the graduate and undergraduate degrees, with a maximum of 9 credit hours counted. This option offers an opportunity for students to complete the course requirements for the Master of Science degree in Computer Science in substantially less time after completion of the Bachelor’s degree. Contact the Department of Computer Science for further information and guidelines.

Before enrolling in a course to be counted as both undergraduate and graduate credit and to count the courses toward the Master’s degree, an undergraduate student must be accepted into the accelerated program and complete a mixed credit form. Acceptance into the program and all approvals must be completed prior to the end of the Change of Schedule Period for the course(s). See the “Graduate College” section for further information.

Degree requirements

Program of Study

The program for each candidate will be structured by the candidate's committee or advisor in consultation with the student, and must include at least 30 semester hours of graduate credit from courses numbered 600-799 inclusive.

Required courses
  1. CSC 701(1), CSC 702(2) (3 credit hours)
  2. All students must have either previously completed undergraduate courses equivalent to MSU CSC 325, CSC 335, and CSC 360, or as part of graduate coursework the respective graduate courses CSC 611, CSC 612, and CSC 660. A maximum of 6 credit hours among CSC 611, CSC 612, and CSC 660 may be applied to the MS degree. (If it is necessary to take all three courses, one of the courses will not be applied to the MS degree.) If any of the courses CSC 325, CSC 335, or CSC 360 have previously been taken as undergraduate courses, then their respective graduate equivalents may not be repeated for graduate credit.
Degree option

Complete 27 credit hours of additional courses, such that at least 12 credit hours are at the 700-level; no more than a total of 9 credit hours may be in CSC 796, CSC 798 and CSC 799. Complete at least one of the following degree options. (Note: Up to 6 credit hours of coursework from other departments may be allowed in the degree program if approved by the Computer Science Dept.)

Thesis Option, 30 hours total: Includes 6 credit hours of CSC 799 Thesis.

Project Option, 30 hours total: Includes 3 to 6 credit hours of CSC 798 Research in Computer Science.

Course-only Option, 30 hours total: Incudes no more than 2 credit hours of CSC 798 Graduate Project in Computer Science.

Comprehensive examination

A written comprehensive exam is required for students who do not complete a thesis. There are no credit hours associated with the exam.

The examination is taken after most of the course work has been completed, and is written and evaluated by the graduate faculty in Computer Science. The examination may include comprehensive questions in Computer Science and questions specific to the area of study chosen by the student.

Retention requirements

To remain in the program, a student must maintain a GPA of 3.00 and make satisfactory progress.

Note: The sample degree plan below assumes a background equivalent to a computer science degree from an accredited university. Students who lack background in core areas of computer science may be required to take undergraduate courses before starting graduate study and may be required to take selected graduate courses as part of their degree plans.

The following degree plan is based on the graduate catalog.

First semester (fall)

Courses Hours
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Total hours 10

Second semester (spring)

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Total hours 11

Third semester (fall)

Courses Hours
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Total hours 9