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MS in Computer Science

Curriculum for the M.S. program in Computer Science

Saint Louis University's master's program in computer science is designed to prepare students for rewarding and in-demand careers that leverage the power of computers, algorithms, and data analyses to impact the world in a positive manner.


Prerequisites for Admission

For direct entry into the M.S. in Computer Science program, a typical applicant will have a bachelor's degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, a major in Computer Science or a closely related field, and the following prerequisite courses:

Course SLU Equivalent
Intro. to Programming CSCI 1300
Data Structures CSCI 2100
Object-Oriented Design CSCI 2300
Computer Architecture CSCI 2400
Algorithms CSCI 3100
Operating Systems CSCI 3500
Calculus I & II MATH 1510/1520
Discrete Mathematics MATH 1660
Intro. to Statistics MATH 3810 or 3850
Applicants must provide transcripts for all previous education, GRE general test scores, a resume, professional goal statement, and three letters of recommendation.
International students must also provide a declaration of financial support packet and demonstrate English language proficiency, either by submitting their TOEFL or IELTS results or by completion of English Level 6 with no grades below B.  Minimum scores for direct admission are TOEFL IBT 80, or IELTS 65.
Students with the appropriate academic background but lacking sufficient English language proficiency might consider one-semester or two-semester graduate pathways administered by a SLU INTO partnership.

Financial Aid

The program offers a variety of opportunities for financial support through a combination of university-funded and research-funded Graduate Assistantships that include both tuition and a stipend, and through some full or partial tuition scholarships.  All candidates who apply to the graduate program by the stated deadline will automatically be considered for financial support in addition to admission to the program.

Degree Requirements

The Master's program in Computer Science requires 33 credit hours of coursework structured as follows:

Hours Requirement
3 CSCI 5030: Principles of Software Development
3 CSCI 5050: Computing and Society
1 CSCI 5090: Computer Science Colloquium
3 One selection from CSCI 5100 through CSCI 5199
(theory of computer science courses)
3 One selection from CSCI 5300 through CSCI 5399
(software engineering courses)
3 One selection from CSCI 5500 through CSCI 5599
(computing systems courses)
6 Course selections from two of the following groups:
  • CSCI 5200 through 5299 (Languages/Compilers)
  • CSCI 5600 through 5699 (Large Scale Systems)
  • CSCI 5700 through 5799 (Knowledge Systems)
  • CSCI 5800 through 5899 or BCB 5200/5250 (Advanced Applications)
11 Additional CSCI electives at level CSCI 5090 or higher


Please see the complete listing of graduate courses for precise options in each category.


Additional notes:

  • While only 1 credit hour of Colloquium (CSCI 5090) is required, students may repeat that course for credit, applying up to 2 additional credit hours within the elective hours (thereby getting back to a multiple of 3 credit hours on the way to 33 hours).
  • A master's thesis is optional. Students completing a thesis should take 6 credit hours of Thesis Research (CSCI 5990) as part of the elective requirements
  • Students may apply at most 3 credit hours of Internship with Industry (CSCI 5910) toward the degree requirements
  • With approval, students may include up to 6 credit hours of elective graduate coursework in closely related disciplines (e.g., Mathematics & Statistics, Bioinformatics & Computational Biology, Electrical & Computer Engineering)
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