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Computer Science Major

Major

The Department of Computer Science offers a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Computer Science that allows students to pursue one of the following options:

  • General Option
  • Bio-Cheminformatics Option
  • Cybersecurity Option
  • Data Science Option

General Option

Computer Science is the study of the design and use of computer systems. The goal of the computer science curriculum is to provide students with the tools to identify those problems that are best solved by means of a computer and to design and implement effective, economical and creative solutions.

The curriculum’s required courses give students a strong foundation in both the software and hardware aspects of computing, as well as the mathematics and science that underlie the discipline. The electives in the later years allow students to study a particular area of computer science in greater depth.

Bio-Cheminformatics Option

The Bio-Cheminformatics option provides an opportunity for Computer Science majors to broaden their knowledge base to the disciplines of biology and chemistry, and to learn, design, and implement computer science tools relevant to the disciplines. The option requires Genetics course and an additional course from Biological Sciences or Chemistry department. It also requires two computer science courses related to bio-cheminformatics, such as Data Mining, Machine Learning, and Visualization.

Cybersecurity Option

The Cybersecurity degree option for Computer Science is launched in the spring of 2021.

The scale and quantity of cybercrimes have been increasing through the years. The ever-evolving cyber attacks are demanding a more highly skilled cybersecurity workforce than ever. The Computer Science - Cybersecurity Option trains advanced cybersecurity professionals and prepares them for lucrative jobs in the cybersecurity industry.

The Cybersecurity Option includes a full degree in Computer Science with four required and two elective courses in the cybersecurity field. These courses teach networking, databases, cryptography and its applications, software security, network security, and digital forensics.

The Cybersecurity Option at UMass Lowell is ideal for students who have an interest in ethical hacking and cyber defense.

Data Science Option

The continuing explosion in “Big Data” is revolutionizing industry and research. Companies are responding by looking for data scientists—information technology experts capable of analyzing and extracting useful patterns from lots of data. The Data Science option allows Computer Science majors to gain the additional knowledge necessary to become a data scientist. The option consists of 4 required and 2 elective courses. The courses cover a range of topics, including Linear Algebra, Data Mining and Machine Learning, Databases, Natural Language Processing, Visualization and Big Data systems. The Data Science option is ideal for students who have an interest in statistics and data mining. Data Science option students will also satisfy all requirements needed to receive a minor in Mathematical Sciences.

The Data Science option satisfies Mathematics minor requirements for Computer Science students. Note that the reverse is not true, i.e. a Mathematics minor is not an automatic Data Science option.

View all the complete Degree Pathways.

For more information, contact the Department of Computer Science.

Bachelor's-to-Master's

The Computer Science Department offers a five-year combined BS/MS program, in which students earn both Bachelor and Master of Science degrees.

Computer Science majors who want to take advantage of this program should consider taking one or two qualifying graduate courses during their senior years. COMP.5020 Foundations of Computer Science and COMP.5030 Algorithms are good choices. Either of these can count as an undergraduate computer science elective and as a master's degree course. Only credits beyond the 120 required for the BS can be double-counted.

The rules governing double-counting of courses are as follows:

  • Any graduate course allowed for graduate computer science credit may be taken as an undergraduate course and double-counted. 
  • With the permission of the undergraduate coordinator, certain project-oriented pairs of graduate courses may be taken for the undergraduate project sequence, and may be double-counted.
  • The double-counting of 4000-level courses requires case-by-case Graduate Committee approval.

Students must satisfy prerequisites before they enroll in courses. Please note that some graduate courses offered by the Computer Science Department do not carry credit even for Computer Science students. For example, you cannot receive credit for COMP.5000

To be accepted into this program, you must have good grades and apply in your junior year. For more information, see graduate catalog.

For additional information about BS/MS program, contact the Department of Computer Science.