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B.S. in Computer Science Degree Requirements

The B.S. in Computer Science is based on a flexible set of degree requirements that allows students to use a greater breadth of CS courses to complete the degree.

These web pages provide details about the BS requirements. If you have questions, you may visit the CS Undergraduate Advising Center (ACE) during posted hours, or contact upd@cs.umass.edu.

Major Changes into CS are by application only.  If you are interested in joining our major, submit your application.  If you have questions after reviewing the process, please contact the appropriate list on our Contact Us With Your Questions page.

If you are already a CS Major and want to switch between BS and BA, talk with your advisor and fill out a "program change" form.

Finally, students completing the Computer Science BS (or BA) and a Math major or minor will find some helpful advice on this page.

BS Requirements

Revised BS in Computer Science (effective September 2016)

The Faculty Senate approved the Revised BS in Computer Science curriculum which became effective in September 2016.

Tracking forms are informal descriptions of the programs that are for guidance only, and they do not define official policy.  See Academic Requirements Report (ARR) on SPIRE.

WHEN DOES A COURSE COUNT FOR THE CS MAJOR?

A computer science major may not use any course taken on a pass/fail basis to fulfill the computer science program requirements (including mathematics, lab science, and computer science introductory, core, and upper-level elective courses). Students must maintain an average grade of at least C (2.0) in all courses used to satisfy the major degree requirement (see major GPA on the ARR).  While courses with grades of C-, D+, or D may be counted toward the degree, students normally repeat these courses so that the new grade will replace the old in their GPA calculation (Check Academic Regulations for rules about repeating courses).  A grade below C will normally not suffice as a prerequisite for a later course. For example, enrolling in COMPSCI 220 requires a grade of "C or better" in COMPSCI 187.

WHAT IS AN APPROVED CS ELECTIVE?

Any regularly numbered COMPSCI course at the 300-level or above may be used as an elective, excluding  COMPSCI 305, or if it is specifically barred as an elective in its course description.

The following require ARR Fixes which may be updated closer to graduation:

  • Experimental courses (x90), seminar courses (x91-x95) and special topics (x97) may only be used as CS electives at the 300- or 400-level depending on the level if specifically stated in the course description.  *Only 3 credits of a CS Capstone courses (499T/P) can be used as a CS elective 400+ (see NOTE).  ONLY email upd@cs.umass.edu if you want to EXCLUDE one of these courses.
  • Independent studies (x96) at the 300-level (or above) are reviewed for CS elective credit via the independent study approval process during registration.  If UPD approved for major requirements, *only 3 credits of independent study can be used as a CS elective (see NOTE).  ONLY email upd@cs.umass.edu if you want to EXCLUDE.

NOTE:  *Only 3 credits of either COMPSCI 499P/T or COMPSCI 396/496/596 may be used toward CS Major requirements.