Jun 20, 2024  
Graduate Catalog | 2022-2023 
Graduate Catalog | 2022-2023 Previous Edition

Computer Science, M.S.

The Master of Science in Computer Science program provides students advanced skills and knowledge in planning, design, implementation, testing, and management of computer systems, applications, and infrastructures.  These skills form a foundation for employment in high tech industry, or doctoral study in computer science. 

The active research areas in the Department of Computer Science include 3D HCI, Algorithms, Artificial Intelligence, Biomedical Imaging, Biometrics, Cloud Computing, Cognitive Science, Communication Networks, Computer Science Education, Computer Vision, Data Mining, Game Design, Graphics, Haptics, Health Informatics, High Performance Computing, Image/Video Processing, Information Visualization, Intelligent Systems, IoT, Knowledge Based Systems, Knowledge Discovery, Machine Learning, Natural Language Processing, Neural Systems, Parallel Computing, Recommender Systems, Robotics, Software Engineering, Virtual Reality, Visual Analytics, and Wireless Networks.

Admission Requirements

In addition to the general requirements for admission to the Graduate School, students applying for this program are expected to have knowledge of programming languages, data structures and algorithms, operating systems, or computer architecture.  The knowledge of calculus, discrete mathematics, and linear algebra typically attained in undergraduate education is expected, too.  Students without undergraduate prerequisite courses in computer science and mathematics may be instructed to demonstrate prior knowledge, as determined by the Graduate Program Director.

A bachelor’s degree in computer science is desired.  Individuals who have worked as professionals in the computer industry may be able to substitute work experience for some of the specific subject area admission requirements, subject to review by the Graduate Program Director.

Students must have an undergraduate grade point average of (or equivalent to) at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 point scale) and a Junior/Senior GPA of at least 3.0.  A satisfactory GRE score is required for applicants who completed undergraduate degree outside of the United States.

Early Entry Program

Exceptional undergraduate students at UNC Charlotte may apply for the Early Entry Program and begin work toward the graduate degree before completion of the baccalaureate degree.  See the Undergraduate Catalog for details and requirements.  Also see the Degree Requirements and Academic Policies  section of the Graduate Catalog for more information about Early Entry Programs.

Degree Requirements

The Master of Science in Computer Science program requires 30 graduate credit hours with a minimum 3.0 GPA, which may optionally include 6 credit hours of thesis.  At least 18 credit hours of the courses applied to the degree must be from the Department of Computer Science, and at least 24 hours must be from the College of Computing and Informatics.  At least 15 credit hours must be at the 6000-level or above courses.  No more than 6 credit hours may be in Individual Study. A maximum of 6 credit hours of graduate credit may be transferred from other graduate degree programs.

Core Courses (12 credit hours)

Select four courses, one from each core group, to satisfy the core requirements.

Optional Concentration (9 credit hours)

Students who choose to declare a concentration must take at least 9 credit hours of courses listed in that concentration (see below).  Courses used to fulfill the core requirement cannot be counted for credit in an area of concentration.

Information Security and Privacy Concentration (ISPC)

Dual Concentration

Students may request to complete two concentrations. However, no course can count towards two concentrations.

Elective Courses (0-15 credit hours)

Students who select no concentration must complete 15 credit hours of elective courses.  Students who select a concentration must complete 6 credit hours or of elective courses.   Students who chose to declare dual concentration will not need elective courses.  Students may choose from the following elective courses:

  • ITCS 5000 - ITCS 6999
  • ITIS 5000 - ITIS 6999
  • DSBA 5000 - DSBA 6999

Capstone (3 credit hours)

Select one of the following courses.  Credit hours from a capstone course may be counted towards a concentration requirement, too, if the same course is listed in that concentration.  For students pursuing the M.S. Thesis, they will have to enroll in ITCS 6991  in two consecutive semesters (6 credit hours total), with the 3 credit hours satisfying the capstone requirement. 

Degree Total = 30 Credit Hours

Grade Requirements

Core Courses must each be passed with A or B grades.  A minimum overall 3.0 GPA is required.


Financial assistance for qualified students is available on a competitive basis in the form of graduate teaching and research assistantships.  All M.S. students who entered “Yes” in the application form on the question “Assistantship Interest” are automatically considered.  No separate assistantship application is required.