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Undergraduate Bulletin 2004-2005

Department of Computer Science


Distinguished Professor Emeritae/i

Richard E. Stearns, Ph.D.
Princeton University


Harry B. Hunt III, Ph.D.
Cornell University

Neil V. Murray, Ph.D.
Syracuse University

Paliath Narendran, Ph.D.
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Sekharipuram S. Ravi, Ph.D.
University of Pittsburgh

Daniel J. Rosenkrantz, Ph.D.
Columbia University

Dan E. Willard, Ph.D.
Harvard University

Professor Emeritae/i

Dean N. Arden, Ph.D.
Purdue University

Associate Professors

George Berg, Ph.D.
Northwestern University

Peter A. Bloniarz, Ph.D. (Collins Fellow)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Seth D. Chaiken, Ph.D.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Mei-Hwa Chen, Ph.D.
Purdue University

Andrew R. Haas, Ph.D.
University of Rochester

Lenore M. Restifo Mullin, Ph.D.
Syracuse University

Tomasz Strzalkowski, Ph.D.
Simon Fraser University

Associate Professor Emeritae/i

Edwin D. Reilly, Ph.D.
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Assistant Professors

Ian N. Davidson, Ph.D.
Monash University, Australia

William A. Maniatty, Ph.D.
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Adjuncts (estimated):3

Teaching Assistants (estimated): 21

Courses offered by the Department of Computer Science provide an introduction to the theory and practice of computing. Familiarity with computer languages and data structures is developed in appropriate courses by the completion of programming assignments related to course material.

Students may elect a short sequence of courses in a particular aspect of computer science, complete a minor for broader competence, or obtain a foundation in both theory and practice by completing either a major in computer science or in computer science and applied mathematics.

Among the majors that combine well with either elective course work or a minor in computer science are mathematics, any science major, economics, geography, linguistics, rhetoric and communication, psychology, and sociology. A major in business administration (such as the management science concentrations) would also be appropriate, but students should be aware that they will also have to satisfy the School of Business admission requirements.

A familiarity with computers and their applications may also be obtained through noncredit “Short Courses” offered by Information Technology Services and through computation courses offered by College of Arts and Sciences, departments, and other Schools at the University.

Students with a strong interest in the languages and programming techniques commonly used in business may wish to elect the sequence A Csi 101, 203, 205, and 410.

The computer science majors combine advanced topics in computing practice with introductory material on the mathematical foundations of computer science including abstract models of computers and languages and the fundamental limits of computing.

Students with a primary interest in the applications of computing may combine the major in computer science with a major or minor in other disciplines. Such combinations may be attractive to prospective employers because of today’s wide range of computing applications.

The B.A. in computer science requires that the student elect at least one minor from the list of approved minors described in a previous section of this bulletin. Students considering a minor in either mathematics or physics are advised instead to consider one of the B.S. programs described below.

The two B.S. programs both combine a major with a minor and are recommended for those students who intend to pursue graduate programs in computer science or who wish to qualify for positions involving research or advanced development in computer systems design. The interdisciplinary B.S. major in Computer Science and Applied Mathematics combines a strong sequence in computer science with those courses in mathematics particularly relevant to advanced work in computer science.

The B.S. in computer science encompasses a two-course sequence in physics and a second two-course sequence in either more advanced physics or in a second science elected by the student.

Degree Requirements for the Majors in Computer Science

General Program B.A.:

A minimum of 41 credits including A Csi 201, 310, 210, 333, 311, 402, 404; two additional A Csi courses numbered in the range 400–450 or 500–550; A Mat 111 or 112 or 118, 113 or 119, and 367; plus completion of an approved minor whose courses may not overlap with any of the courses used to complete the major.

General Program B.S. (combined major and minor sequence):

A minimum of 74 credits as follows: A Csi 201 310, 210, 333, 311, 300Z, 401, 402, 403, 404, 409, plus two courses from A Phy 353, A Phy 454, or any A Csi course numbered 300–450 or 500–550 for a total of 42 credits; A Mat 111 or 112 or 118, 113 or 119, 220, 367, plus three credits from any A Mat course at the 300 level or above; A Phy 140 or 141, 145, 150 or 151, 155; and one of the following pairs of courses: A Phy 240 (or 241) and 250, or A Phy 240 (or 241) and 315, or a two-course sequence in a second science as approved by the department.

Program in Computer Science and Applied Mathematics

The interdisciplinary combined major and minor program in computer science and applied mathematics is an integrated program providing a strong background in the theory and practice of computer science combined with those courses in mathematics which are most likely to be needed for advanced work in computer science, either in graduate study or industrial research and development.

The program provides excellent preparation for the advanced Graduate Record Examination in computer science and will provide an attractive background for admission to high quality graduate programs in computer science. The mathematics portion of the program, with the appropriate selection of one or two electives, can provide a good mathematical background for work in operations research which is an important area of computer application in business, or for numerical computation in a variety of areas related to the scientific and engineering use of computers.

Degree Requirements for the Major in Computer Science and Applied Mathematics

General Program B.S. (combined major and minor sequence): A minimum of 66 credits as follows: A Mat 111 or 112 or 118, 113 or 119, 214, 220, 367; A Csi 201, 210, 310, 311, 333, 401, 402, 403, 404, 409; 15 additional credits, as advised, from the following list of courses, including at least 9 credits in mathematics: any course with an A Mat prefix numbered 300 or above, any course with an A Csi prefix numbered 300–450 or 500–550, A Csi 499, A Phy 353, A Phy 454, A Phi 432.

Honors Program

The honors program is recommended for students planning graduate study. To be eligible for admission, the student must declare one of the three Computer Science majors and must have completed the following courses: A Csi 201, 210, 310, 333; A Mat 112 and 113. The student must have a GPA of at least 3.5 in the above courses and an overall GPA of at least 3.25. To complete the honors program, the student must complete 12 credits of course work (to be determined by the department in consultation with each student) designed to ensure a rigorous mastery of the discipline, together with an Honors seminar (A Csi 487/487Z), and an Honors project of at least 6 credits, (A Csi 488Z). Consult the department for further information.

Combined B.S./M.A. and B.S./M.S. Programs

Two combined bachelor’s/master’s degree programs are available with the undergraduate major in computer science and applied mathematics. The combined B.S./M.A. program combines the undergraduate program in computer science and applied mathematics with the graduate program in mathematics. The combined B.S./M.S. program combines the undergraduate program in computer science and applied mathematics with the graduate program in computer science.

Both programs provide an opportunity for students of recognized academic ability and educational maturity to fulfill integrated requirements of undergraduate and master’s degree programs from the beginning of the junior year. A carefully designed program can permit a student to earn the B.S. and M.S. or the B.S. and M.A. degrees within nine or ten semesters.

The combined programs require a minimum of 140 credits, of which at least 32 must be graduate credits. In qualifying for the B.S., students must meet all University and college requirements, including the requirements of the undergraduate major described previously, the minimum 60-credit liberal arts and sciences requirement, general education requirements, and residency requirements.

In qualifying for the M.S. or M.A., students must meet all University and college requirements as outlined in the Graduate Bulletin, including completion of a minimum of 32 graduate credits, and any other conditions such as a research seminar, thesis, comprehensive examination, or other professional experience and residency requirements. Up to 12 graduate credits may be applied simultaneously to both the B.S. and M.S. or the B.S. and M.A. programs.

Students may apply for admission to either combined degree program at the beginning of their junior year or after the successful completion of 56 credits. A cumulative grade point average of 3.20 or higher and three supportive letters of recommendation from faculty are required for consideration, but admission of a student who meets the minimum requirements is not automatic.




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