The Master of Science in Computer Science

Course Requirements for the Master's Degree: 30 units

Continuous enrollment is required. A maximum of 9 semester units of transfer and/or CSU Chico Open University course work may be applied toward the degree.

Graduate Time Limit:

All requirements for the degree are to be completed within five years of the end of the semester of enrollment in the oldest course applied toward the degree. See "Graduate Education" in the University Catalog for complete details on general degree requirements.

Due to the rapid changes in the field of computer science, the Department of Computer Science requires all candidates to complete the program within five years, including projects and theses. No course validation will be allowed and no program extensions will be granted.

Prerequisites for Admission to Conditionally Classified Status:

1. Satisfactory grade point average as specified in "Admission to Master's Degree Programs" in the University Catalog.

2. Approval by the department and the Office of Graduate Studies.

3. An acceptable baccalaureate from an accredited institution, or an equivalent approved by the Office of Graduate Studies.

4. Completion of background preparation equivalent to

(a) CSCI 311 (Algorithms and Data Structures)

(b) EECE 320 (System Architecture and Performance) Note: The highlighted is different from what appears in the printed catalog. What is displayed is current and correct.

(c) CSCI 340 (Operating Systems)

(d) MATH 217 (Discrete Mathematical Structures)

(e) MATH 120, MATH 121, MATH 314, or equivalents

5. Completion of the Graduate Record Examination with a combined score of 1100 on the verbal and quantitative portions. Graduates of an ABET accredited program in computer science are exempt from this requirement.

6. Submission of a statement of purpose.

Prerequisites for Admission to Classified Status:

In addition to any requirements listed above:

1. Completion of program prerequisites equivalent to the following senior courses:

(a) CSCI 430 (Software Engineering) with a grade of B- or better.

(b) CSCI 511 (Object-Oriented Programming) with a grade of B- or better.

2. Students are expected to complete these courses immediately as a matter of reasonable progress toward the master's degree.

Advancement to Candidacy:

In addition to any requirements listed above:

1. Completion of the Graduate Requirement in Writing Proficiency.

2. Classified graduate standing and completion of, or enrollment in, the graduate core courses.

3. Development of an approved program in consultation with the Graduate Coordinator.

4. Formation of the graduate advisory committee, in the case of the thesis or project plan as described below, in consultation with the Graduate Coordinator.

Requirements for the MS Degree in Computer Science:

Completion of all requirements as established by the department graduate committee, the graduate advisory committee, and the Graduate School, to include:

1. Completion of an approved program consisting of 30 units of course work as follows:

(a) Completion of the 5 graduate core courses (15 units).

CSCI 611 Distributed Computing 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: CSCI 511 and classified graduate standing.
CSCI 620 Computer Architecture 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: EECE 320 Note: The highlighted is different from what appears in the printed catalog. What is displayed is current and correct. and classified graduate standing.
CSCI 630 Software Engineering 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: CSCI 430 and classified graduate standing.
CSCI 640 Operating Systems 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: CSCI 340 and classified graduate standing.
CSCI 650 Design and Analysis of Algorithms 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: CSCI 311, MATH 217, and classified graduate standing.

(b) Completion of 3 area courses (9 units), each course from a different area (Artificial Intelligence, Database, Networks/Security, or Visual Computing) listed below.

Artificial Intelligence

CSCI 580 Artificial Intelligence 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: CSCI 311 with a grade of C- or higher.
CSCI 583 Expert Systems and Applications 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: CSCI 211 with a grade of C- or higher.
CSCI 585 Robotics and Machine Intelligence 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: CSCI 211 with a grade of C- or higher; CSCI 221 with a grade of C- or higher. Note: The highlighted is different from what appears in the printed catalog. What is displayed is current and correct.
CSCI 682 Topics in Artificial Intelligence 3.0 Inq
Prerequisites: Classified graduate standing.

Database

CINS 570 Advanced Database Management Systems 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: CINS 370 with a grade of C- or higher or MINS 235.
CINS 574 Advanced Database Architecture and Administration I 3.0 S2
Prerequisites: CINS 370 with a grade of C- or higher.
CINS 674 Database Administration II: Advanced Tuning and Recovery 3.0 F2
Prerequisites: CINS 574 or faculty permission.
CSCI 679 Topics in Database Systems 3.0 Inq
Prerequisites: Classified graduate standing.

Networks/Security

CINS 548 Advanced Computer Security 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: CINS 448 with a grade of C- or higher.
CSCI 546 Advanced Network Management 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: CSCI 346 with a grade of C- or higher.
CSCI 547 Advanced Computer Networks 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: CSCI 346 with grade of C- or higher.
CSCI 649 Topics in Networking 3.0 Inq
Prerequisites: Classified graduate standing.

Visual Computing

CSCI 566 Computer Graphics Programming 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: CSCI 311 with a grade of C- or higher.
CSCI 567 Graphical User Interfaces 3.0 F2
Prerequisites: CSCI 311 with a grade of C- or higher.
CSCI 568 Digital Image Processing 3.0 F1
Prerequisites: CSCI 311 with a grade of C- or higher.
CSCI 569 Advanced Computer Graphics 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: CSCI 566 with a grade of C- or higher.
CSCI 669 Topics in Computer Graphics 3.0 Inq
Prerequisites: Classified graduate standing.

(c) Completion of 1 elective course (3 units), selected from any of the four areas in (b) above or the following additional elective options:

CSCI 533 Object-Oriented Analysis & Design 3.0 S1
Prerequisites: Object-oriented programming experience.
CSCI 540 Systems Programming 3.0 S2
Prerequisites: CSCI 340 with a grade of C- or higher.
CSCI 598 Advanced Topics in Computer Science 3.0 Inq
CSCI 619 Topics in Programming Language Theory 3.0 Inq
Prerequisites: Classified graduate standing.
CSCI 629 Topics in Computer Architecture 3.0 Inq
Prerequisites: Classified graduate standing.
CSCI 639 Topics in Software Engineering 3.0 Inq
Prerequisites: Classified graduate standing.
CSCI 659 Topics in Computer Theory 3.0 Inq
Prerequisites: Classified graduate standing.
CSCI 697 Independent Study 1.0 -6.0 FS
Prerequisites: Classified graduate standing, faculty permission.

(d) Completion of the appropriate culminating activity course (3 units) in one of the three plans described in section 2 below.

(e) At least 18 of the units required for the degree in 600-level courses.

(f) Not more than 9 semester units of transfer and/or CSU, Chico Open University course work (correspondence courses and UC extension course work are not acceptable). Transfer courses must be approved by the Graduate Coordinator.

2. Completion and final approval of one of the following three plans as approved by the Graduate Coordinator. The standard culminating experience for master's students in Computer Science is to demonstrate competency in graduate study by completion of the capstone course using plan (a). With rare exception, students may meet the requirement of a culminating experience by completing a thesis or project as described in the following:

(a) Capstone Course Plan

This plan includes 30 units of in-class course work, including a passing score in the capstone course CSCI 693. CSCI 693 is to be taken as part of the last 9 units, or during the last semester of the graduate program. Registration in CSCI 693 must be approved by the Graduate Coordinator. The course may be attempted a maximum of three times. Failure on the third attempt will result in dismissal from the graduate program in Computer Science.

(b) Project Plan

The project plan includes 27 units of in-class course work and 3 units of project preparation (CSCI 699P). For students to be qualified to take the project path, they must have demonstrated exceptional abilities by:

(i) maintaining a GPA of 3.5 or above in their post-baccalaureate coursework,

(ii) having been nominated by a faculty member to conduct research in that faculty member's area of expertise,

(iii) having had a project proposal approved by a 2/3 majority vote of the faculty. A formal written description of the project must be submitted to the Graduate School for approval and accession to the library.

(c) Thesis Plan

This plan includes 24-27 units of in-class course work and up to 6 units of thesis preparation (CSCI 699T). Students opting to complete 6 units of CSCI 699T may count 3 units of the units as their elective course in 1(c) above. For students to be qualified to take the thesis path, they must have demonstrated exceptional abilities by:

(i) maintaining a GPA of 3.5 or above in their post-baccalaureate coursework,

(ii) having been nominated by a faculty member to conduct research in that faculty member's area of expertise,

(iii) having had a thesis proposal approved by a 2/3 majority vote of the faculty. This plan requires a formal research thesis, which must be submitted to the Graduate School for approval and accession to the library.

3. Approval by the Graduate Coordinator and the Graduate Council on behalf of the faculty of the University.

Graduate Requirement in Writing Proficiency:

Writing proficiency is a graduation requirement.

Computer Science students will demonstrate their writing competence in the English language by successfully passing a Graduate Writing Exam (GWE) administered by the department at the beginning of each semester, or successful completion (B- higher) of an approved technical writing course. Students must either pass the GWE or immediately enroll in the writing course in their first semester of graduate study. Consult the Graduate Coordinator for specific information.

Graduate Grading Requirements:

All courses in the major (with the exceptions of Independent Study - 697, Master's Project - 699P, and Master's Thesis - 699T) must be taken for a letter grade, except those courses specified by the department as ABC/No Credit (400/500-level courses), AB/No Credit (600-level courses), or Credit/No Credit grading only. A maximum of 10 units combined of ABC/No Credit, AB/No Credit, and Credit/No Credit grades may be used on the approved program (including 697, 699P, 699T and courses outside the major). While grading standards are determined by individual programs and instructors, it is also the policy of the University that unsatisfactory grades may be given when work fails to reflect achievement of the high standards, including high writing standards, expected of students pursuing graduate study.

Students must maintain a minimum 3.0 grade point average in each of the following three categories: all course work taken at any accredited institution subsequent to admission to the master's program; all course work taken at CSU, Chico subsequent to admission to the program; and all courses on the approved master's degree program.

In addition, students may not count more than two courses in which they receive a grade of C toward the approved program.