Jun 19, 2021  
2021-2022 Graduate Catalog 
2021-2022 Graduate Catalog

Master of Science in Computer Science

For admission to the master’s program in computer science, students must have a bachelor’s degree in computer science or a closely related field. Students without such a background may also be admitted, but may be required to take deficiency courses and earn a grade of B or higher in each. Deficiencies should be resolved in the first year and do not normally carry graduate credit toward the degree.

Students pursuing the M.S. in computer science must complete at least 31 semester hours. Students have the option of completing the M.S. degree in computer science by taking only courses or by combining course work with a master’s thesis. For students who write a master’s thesis, 6 semester hours of CSCI 699 will count as two of the ten courses required.

Students who are planning to continue their studies through the department’s doctoral program must choose the thesis option. Students who write a master’s thesis, may receive credit for up to 6 semester hours of CSCI 699.

A program of study designed by the student and the adviser must be approved by the Department of Computer Science.

Students must obtain prior departmental approval to apply courses not offered by the Department of Computer Science to their programs of study. No more than 8 credit hours may be taken outside the Department of Computer Science.

Check departmental information for any additional requirements.

The student learning outcomes for this degree are located at http://www.niu.edu/assessment/clearinghouse/outcomes/index.shtml.

Requirements (31)

Students must complete the required number of hours in each of the following areas:

I. Survey (1)
II. Programming (3)
III. Systems (3)
IV. Theory (3)
V. Specializations (6)
VI. Electives (15)

Total (31)

Graduate-level courses for which there exists an undergraduate equivalent (typically courses that are offered as 400/500 courses) shall not constitute more than 50% of the hours applied toward a master’s degree.

Details for each category are listed below.

I. Survey

Students must complete the following course:

II. Programming

Students must complete one course from the following or substitute another course with departmental approval.

III. Systems

Students must complete one course from the following:

IV. Theory

Students must complete one course from the following:

V. Specializations

Students must complete two courses from the following:

VI. Electives

Students must complete sufficient semester hours of electives to fill out their program. Elective course work includes CSCI courses in the range 500-798 that have not been used to satisfy another requirement. Students may take up to 8 semester hours from other departments in courses relevant to the student’s program, subject to department approval.

Students who are planning to continue through the department’s doctoral program must take CSCI 701 - Research Methods in Computer Science, as one of their electives of the M.S. in Computer Science, preferably as early as possible.