Master's degree programs in computer science are available at several Houston-area colleges and universities. In a typical program, some of the subjects a degree candidate might study include algorithms, animation, artificial intelligence, computer systems, data analytics, computer engineering, machine learning, and statistical research.
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Schools in Houston With a Master's Degree in Computer Science
University of Houston
The University of Houston, a public university, offers a Master of Science in Computer Science with three specialty tracks. Students can choose from data analytics, parallel and distributed systems, and interactive media. There is a thesis and a non-thesis option. Individuals choosing the thesis option complete 30 credit hours including the thesis, and those electing the non-thesis option complete 36 credit hours of coursework. Students completing a thesis must pass a comprehensive examination which is mostly a defense of the thesis. The thesis option prepares students who wish to pursue a PhD. Students have five years to complete the master's degree.
University of Houston undergraduates in computer science who wish to pursue a master's in computer science can apply for the dual BS/MS degree in their junior year. Applicants must have completed 24 credit hours in computer science, have at least a 3.0 GPA overall and a 3.0 GPA in undergraduate computer science courses. A minimum of 12 computer science credit hours must have been completed at the University of Houston. Students who are accepted into this program can complete six credit hours that can count toward both the bachelor's and master's degrees. The application for the dual BS/MS program must be approved by the Director of Computer Science Undergraduate Studies. Admission is competitive.
Rice University is a private university in Houston with an emphasis on research. Rice's Master of Computer Science professional degree is a terminal degree that prepares graduates for work at leading technology companies. The program requires 30 credit hours and at least a 2.67 GPA for completion; a design project is also required. Students have the choice to engage in full-time or part-time study. Those studying full-time can complete the program in three semesters. Students may transfer up to six hours of computer science credit from another institution, but the courses must be comparable in content and rigor as the same courses at Rice, and they must also be approved by a graduate committee in the Rice computer science program.
Sam Houston State University
Sam Houston State University is a public institution that offers a Master of Science in Computing and Informational Science. The program has a thesis and a non-thesis option. Both options require 36 credit hours for completion. Students choosing the non-thesis option must complete a programming practicum. If students receive grades of B or lower in core courses, they must take comprehensive written examinations in those core courses prior to graduation and may also be required to complete oral examinations. The program is described as one that prepares students to work in settings where change is typical.
Texas Southern University
A public university in Houston, Texas Southern offers a Master of Science in Computer Science. The two-year program requires 30 credit hours for completion. Students may choose Plan A (thesis option) or Plan B (non-thesis option). The non-thesis option requires six hours of electives in place of a thesis. Students wanting to pursue the thesis option must complete four courses (12 hours) that make up the core curriculum and pass a qualifying examination before being admitted to candidacy for the thesis program. To remain in good standing, a student cannot take the qualifying examination more than twice. Advisors are appointed to students who choose the thesis option.
North American University
This private university also has a Master of Science in Computer Science, and the program's faculty all have extensive professional and leadership experience. The department aims to prepare graduate students to solve the complex issues of the technology age by challenging them to work collaboratively in different environments. The degree totals 30 credit hours, including 24 credits in core courses and six elective-type courses. Students can complete the degree in less than two years through online courses or on-campus classes. Software engineering and computer networks are among the four areas of study that students can pursue. The degree covers applications of computer science as well as fundamentals.
Admissions Requirements For a Master's Degree in Computer Science
Computer science is a complex and technical field. For admissions to computer science master's programs at many Houston colleges and universities, applicants should hold a bachelor's degree in computer science or in a closely related field such as engineering or mathematics. Admission requirements typically include a 3.0 or better GPA, completed application, official transcripts, GRE scores and an essay or statement of purpose. For international students, the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) could be another requirement.
To earn a master's in computer science, most programs require students to complete at least 30 credit hours. Some programs in Houston offer undergraduate students the opportunity to earn a bachelor's and a master's at the same time.