The M.S. in Computer Science provides foundations of Computer Science, while acknowledging that Computer Science is key to algorithms in the sciences. Other programs in the Computer Science Department with different foci are M.S. in Information Technology and the M.S. in Software Engineering.
This program is for students entering the program in Spring 2014 or later. If you were enrolled in the program prior to Spring 2014 you may use the older degree requirements located here.
Note that Computer Science has more prerequisites than the other programs.
Overall, to achieve depth and breadth, Computer Science students must complete the following:
The following three courses are required by the program:
The Graduate Program Director may approve the replacement of COMP 413: Intermediate Object-Oriented Development by an additional course on the Restricted Electives list in cases where the student’s primary program focus is not on software development.
MS-CS students must also take three courses from the following list:
Note that several of these courses require COMP 413: Intermediate Object-Oriented Development as prerequisite.
The elective course options are common for all programs, differing only in the total number of credits required.
Electives can be any COMP 400 level class or any CSIS class (courses actually taught in the Business School).
There are numerous options for independent study, including a programming project, research, or a service-oriented project.
MS students in the Computer Science degree program (only) may elect the MS thesis option.
Course work is strongly recommended over the thesis option, especially for those not planning on a research-oriented career. Many students pursuing the thesis option, therefore, would be considering a PhD program at another institution.
Students wishing to do a thesis should discuss this option as early as possible with the GPD.
Theses may involve research in purely theoretical computer science (for example, development or analysis of algorithms), or may involve development of a software package, or may involve instrumentation, measurement and analysis of existing systems (for example, studying network performance). Because of this wide range, there is no one formal course in research methods. Courses in the restricted-electives list above contain a significant component of area-specific integrated research-methods material. Students interested in writing a thesis are strongly urged to seek advising from the GPD or other faculty as early as possible as to which electives in this group will be the most appropriate for the student’s proposed area of research.
Here is an outline of the steps toward your thesis. The ones in boldface are formal steps with documentation required by the Graduate School:
If you wish to write a thesis, first identify a faculty advisor and select a tentative topic or area of research. The existing program allows you to take up to 6.0 hours of COMP 490: Independent Project. You will typically begin their research program in such a course, though you may also identify an advisor and select a tentative topic as part of a conventional classroom course.
Thesis/Dissertation Committee Recommendation
At least 50% of the committee must be comprised of Loyola graduate faculty; the director of the committee must have full graduate faculty status – see http://www.luc.edu/gradschool/about_facultystaff.shtml for the current list of full members.
You may finish while still taking COMP 490: Independent Project or other for-credit courses. Alternately you may still be continuing with your research in subsequent semesters, after finishing all your required for-credit courses. Then, assuming your committee is approved, you maintain full-time status by getting the GPD to register you for the zero-credit-hour Comp 595: Thesis Supervision, if available, or Comp 605: Masters Study, if Comp 595 is not listed. Students may register for any number of semesters of Comp 595/605, subject to time-to-degree-completion constraints.
Once you have your thesis committee approved, the thesis becomes a degree requirement. (This is important for international students.) You may, however, petition to revert back to non-thesis status; this requires permission of the Graduate Program Director. At that point, you would be able to graduate without writing a thesis, if the coursework requirements were met. No reimbursement or credit will be received for any Comp 595, Comp 605, or other thesis-specific courses taken.
Ballot for the Approval of a Thesis/Dissertation Proposal
Ballot for Text and Oral Defense Form
Formatting the Thesis/Dissertation