School and Ranking Information
Though no Orlando-based college or university offers computer science studies, students seeking an education in this field of study can find a few schools between 30-50 miles from the city. The following institutions are considered the top three schools based on rankings and number of degrees awarded:
- Winner: Stetson University places in the top spot because it is the closest school to Orlando that offers computer science studies, and due to its high regional ranking.
- Runner Up #1: Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University's Daytona Beach campus is named as the first runner up because it is the largest school in the area awarding a degree in computer science.
- Runner Up #2 Placing third is Florida Southern College, due to its regional ranking and for awarding the highest number of computer science degrees among those schools offering these programs in the Orlando area.
School Comparison Chart
|Category||Stetson University||Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Daytona Beach||Florida Southern College|
|Rankings||#6 (tie) among Best Regional Universities in the South (2015)*||#10 among Best Regional Universities in the South (2015)*||#5 among Best Regional Universities in the South (2015)*|
|Location||DeLand, FL||Daytona Beach, FL||Lakeland, FL|
|School Type||4-year, private not-for-profit||4-year, private not-for-profit||4-year, private not-for-profit|
|Tuition & Fees (2013-2014)||Undegrad: $38,330**||$31,334**||$28,580**|
|Computer Science Degrees Offered||Bachelor's||Bachelor's||Bachelor's|
|Computer Science Bachelor's Degrees Awarded in 2013-2014||6**||1**||5**|
|Undergraduate Graduation Rate (in 150% of normal program time) for 2007 Entering Class||64%**||57%**||58%**|
|Noteworthy||Computer science students have obtained Undergraduate Research Experience grants||Computer science program accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission (CAC) of ABET||Computer science curriculum developed with input from IEEE, Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) and ABET|
Source: *U.S. News & World Report, **NCES College Navigator
Winner: Stetson University
- Students have 24-hour, seven days a week access to two computer labs on campus
- CS faculty has received multiple school awards
- Internships available at local companies, such as Disney and AT&T
The Bachelor of Science in Computer Science program places heavy emphasis on software development and software engineering. Research is also a vital part of the program, as all students must complete a senior project consisting of a year's worth of research. Students have the opportunity to take internship courses for college credit and participate in industry software development projects. Some emphases within the CS major at Stetson include computer graphics and animation, networking and artificial intelligence.
Runner-Up #1: Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Daytona Beach
- Offers four areas of concentration within the computer science bachelor's degree program
- The CS program focuses primarily on application instead of theory, with students participating in hands-on practices in advanced labs
- CS students have one-on-one interaction with faculty
Embry-Riddle's Bachelor of Science in Computer Science program requires successful completion of 120-122 total credit hours, depending on students' area of concentration. The four offered areas of concentration include applied mathematics, business administration, homeland security and human factors. While students are not required to choose any specific concentration, choosing an area of expertise is encouraged as a complement to the standard CS track. Standard CS coursework includes classes in database systems, software construction, applied differential equations and software quality assurance.
Runner-Up #2: Florida Southern College
- All CS classes conducted in computer labs in order for students to be able to apply new concepts immediately
- Many CS students become members of Kappa Mu Epsilon, the mathematics honor society
- Internship opportunities available at many local companies, such as Lockheed Martin and NASA
The computer science major at FSC requires completion of 54 hours of coursework in major requirements, including core and elective CS classes, as well as several mathematics courses. The curriculum includes both individual and collaborative coursework in software engineering, computer hardware, programming language concepts and several elective choices. Mathematics courses are also a large part of the CS degree program. Students have the option to earn either a Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts degree, as well as just completing the 20 course hours for a CS minor. For CS majors, senior year offers the chance to work on a self-directed research project or applied project under the guidance of a faculty member.