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M.S. in Computer Science

The Master of Science in Computer Science program expands upon fundamental computer science concepts and their applications and demonstrates the compatibility of this discipline with other specialties such as Information Technology, Signal Processing, Biomedical Computing, Digital Systems, Scientific Computing and Robotics. This program builds upon the computer science foundation to increase the knowledge base of our students in order for them to pursue diverse 21st century careers.


Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution and have a cumulative grade point average of 2.5 or higher (on a 4.0 scale). In addition to meeting the general admission requirements of the Graduate School, applicants to the Computer Science Program must fulfill departmental criteria. The Computer Science Graduate Admissions Committee considers applicants on an individual basis. An applicant who meets the following requirements may be granted unconditional admission to the program: 

  1. A baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution
  2. Completion of the following courses in mathematics and computer science:
    1. Calculus of One Variable, (e.g., Calculus I or II)
    2. One additional mathematics course beyond calculus, (e. g., Linear Algebra, Differential Equations, Abstract Algebra, Advanced Calculus, Discrete Structures, or Probability and Statistics)
    3. COSC 503 - Software Design and Development (or equivalent).

Applicants who do not have the required mathematics and/or computer science background may be granted provisional admission, subject to completion of these requirements within the first four semesters. Completion of these requirements will not be a part of the applicant's graduate program. An applicant who does not have the required computer science course (COSC 503) but has gained the knowledge of its content through work experience or self-study may request a waiver, provided the student takes and passes a department examination for that course.  For more details, the student should consult with his/her adviser upon admission to the program.


The requirements for the master's degree in computer science are as follows:

1. A minimum of 36 credit hours as described below, with an overall grade point average of 3.00 or better. The course work must include:

Core Courses (15 credits). See under "Course Descriptions" tab for the descriptions.

COSC 502, COSC 504, COSC 514, COSC 522, and COSC 528

and one of the following two options:

Option I: COSC 698 (3 credits) Applied Research in Computer Science and six elective courses (18 credits).

Option II: COSC 696 and 697 (6 credits) Graduate (Master's) Thesis (Click here for Thesis Guidelines) and five elective courses (15 credits).

2. A cumulative GPA of at least 3.25 is required within the first 12 - 18 credits of the program. A cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 is required to graduate.

3. A minimum of 30 credits, excluding prerequisite courses, must be completed at Bowie State University. Therefore, no more than six (6) graduate Computer Science credits may be transferred from other institutions or Bowie State University programs external to the Department of Computer Science.

4. A student must complete all degree requirements within a period of seven (7) consecutive years.

Students with a strong undergraduate computer science background are encouraged to substitute required courses with more advanced electives. Written permission of a graduate advisor is required. Also, each student is required to develop a program of study plan in consultation with his/her advisor.

Please note: COSC 503 is a prerequisite to the Master of Science program in Computer Science and will not count toward  graduation credits.

Students who are accepted into a graduate program in Computer Science can pursue a Master's degree or a Doctoral degree in computer science.  Furthermore, students pursuing a Doctoral degree may make a request to be awarded a Master's degree as they work toward the Doctorate provided they have fulfilled all of the requirements of the Master's program.