Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
UNO's computer science program is accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET, 111 Market Place, Suite 1050, Baltimore, MD 21202-4012; telephone: (410)347-7700. To earn a Bachelor of Science Degree in Computer Science, a student must acquire 120 credit hours as described below, and must satisfy all of the requirements of the University and the College of Sciences. In addition, the following stipulations must be satisfied:
- Before enrolling in a computer science course, a student must have earned a grade of C or better in all computer science courses which are a prerequisite for it. A grade of C or better must be earned in all science courses, including mathematics and computer science, used to satisfy degree requirements.
- Computer science electives must be chosen from computer science courses numbered 3000 or above. One of these must be chosen from a list of teamoriented project courses: Computer Science 4125 or 4210 or 4568 or 4621.
- Mathematics electives must have a prerequisite of at least Mathematics 2109 or 2112.
- The science sequence must be one of: Biology 1073, 1071, 1083, and 1081; or Biology 1073, 1071, and 2014; or Biology 1083, 1081, and 2114; or Chemistry 1017, 1018, 1007 and 1008; or Earth and Environmental Sciences 1000, 1001, 1004, and 1005; or Physics 1061, 1063, 1062, 1065. (In some cases, comparable courses intended for respective majors may also be acceptable.) Science electives must be in biology, chemistry, earth and environmental sciences, or physics, and must include at least three hours in a science other than that of the science sequence. The University requires each student to complete three hours of biology; this requirement may be met through the science sequence, science electives, or free electives.
- Foreign language electives must include a six-hour sequence.
- At lease three hours in social science electives must be above the freshman level.
- Computer Science 4000 (Senior Comprehensive Examinations) must be passed by the student by the final semester of studies.
Mathematics 2107, 2108, and 2109 may be substituted for Mathematics 2111 and 2112. Entering freshmen not qualifying for Mathematics 1126 must take Mathematics 1125; this course may be counted toward degree credit.
Student Learning Outcomes
- Acquire and exhibit understanding of the fundamental concepts and processes in software design and development, essential grasp of computing systems, and facility in an applied or theoretical area of computer science.
- Acquire adequate preparation for a technical computer-related career in business or industry, or for graduate study in computer science or related area.
- Acquire adequate preparation for employment in the information technology and software industry.
- Acquire appreciation for, and understanding of, ethical, legal, security, and social issues involving computing.
Concentration in Information Assurance
The Department offers a declared concentration in Information Assurance. Students who opt for this concentration are required to fulfill the following requirements:
- Completion of the following two courses: Computer Science 4621 and 4623;
- Completion of one project-oriented elective course. The following courses may be chosen for this requirement. Computer Science 4208, 4402, 4460, or 4620. Other courses may be substituted upon approval by the Department;
- Completion of one non-technical elective course. The following courses may be chosen for this requirement: Mathematics 4360 (Mathematical Information Theory), Management 4407 (Management of Technology and Innovation), or Political Science 4410 (American Constitutional Law). Other courses may be substituted upon approval by the Department.
Concentration in Bioinformatics
The Department offers a declared concentration in Bioinformatics. Students who opt for this concentration are required to fulfill the following requirements:
- Completion of the following science sequence in Biology: 1083, 1081, and 2114;
- Completion of the following two courses: Computer Science 4567 and 4568;
- Completion of Computer Science 4595, or, with permission, Biology 3104, 3453, or 4153. Other molecular biology/biochemistry courses may be substituted upon approval by the Department. Depending on the selected course, this may be counted as a science elective or as a free elective:. It should be noted that these upper-level courses may have prerequisite structures involved which may increase a students total coursework;
- Completion of the following two project oriented courses: Computer Science 4587 and 4588. Other interdisciplinary course projects may be substituted upon approval by the Department.
Minor in Computer Science
An undergraduate majoring in a department other than Computer Science may earn a minor in Computer Science by completing the following computer science courses each with a grade of C or better: Computer Science 1581, 1583, 2120, 2121, 2125, 2450, 3301, and one three-credit 4000-level course selected from an approved list. (It should be noted that Mathematics 2721 is a prerequisite for Computer Science 2125.) A transfer student must complete a minimum of nine credit hours in required computer science courses at UNO, and these must include Computer Science 2125 and a three credit 4000-level course from the approved list.
Honors in Computer Science
An honors program is available to Computer Science majors. Successful completion of the program will result in graduation with Honors in Computer Science. To be eligible for admission to the program, a student must complete Computer Science 2125 and must have a faculty member willing to serve as thesis advisor. The student must also have an overall average of 3.25 or better and an average of 3.5 or better in Computer Science courses. In order to remain in the program, a student must maintain these averages. In order to complete the program a student must do the following: fulfill all graduation requirements for the Bachelor of Science in Computer Science;
- Have an overall average of 3.25 or better and an average of 3.5 or better in computer science courses;
- Earn six credits in Computer Science 3099;
- Produce a written honors thesis and conduct an oral defense before a committee consisting of the faculty thesis advisor, at least one other faculty member selected by the department chairman, and a representative of the Honors Program.
Undergraduate Transfer Student
A transfer student must complete a minimum of nine credit hours in required computer science courses at UNO, and these must include CSCI 2125 and a three credit 4000-level course from the approved list.
Master of Science in Computer Science
The Department of Computer Science offers a program of study leading to the degree of Master of Science. The program is designed to be flexible enough to accommodate the needs of two kinds of students: those who have recently completed an undergraduate degree in computer science and want to further their education, and those practicing professionals who want to acquire specific academic experience relevant to their work.
The department also participates in the Ph.D. in Engineering and Applied Science program. Interested students should refer to the beginning of this Graduate Programs in Sciences section for a description of the program, admission criteria, and curricular requirements.
After acceptance by the Graduate School, admission to the graduate program in computer science will be determined by the department on the basis of undergraduate academic record, three letters of recommendation, statement of purpose, and Graduate Record Examination scores. Admission to the program generally requires a composite score of least 1000 on the verbal and quantitative sections of the Graduate Record Examination; a mathematical background equivalent to Mathematics 2111, Mathematics 2112 and Mathematics 3721; and a computer science background including the equivalent of Computer Science 1583, Computer Science 2120, Computer Science 2125, Computer Science 2450, Computer Science 3301, and two upper-division courses. Students not meeting these requirements may be admitted to the program on a conditional basis, and must fulfill conditions imposed by the department in addition to the regular requirements for the degree. Students with bachelor’s degrees in fields other than computer science may be admitted on a conditional basis.
Master of Science in Computer Science
The department offers both thesis and non-thesis options in the master’s program. All candidates for the master’s degree must satisfy the following background, breadth, and depth requirements. No course may be counted toward the satisfaction of more than one of these requirements.
- Background requirement: the equivalent of Computer Sciences 4401 and 4501. Students who have not completed this requirement prior to enrollment are required to do so, for credit, as part of their curricula.
- Breadth requirement: students must take one 6000-level course that counts toward the degree requirements (three semester hours) in each of three different concentration areas as listed below.
- Depth requirement: students must take three additional courses that count toward the degree requirements (nine semester hours), of which at least two must be at the 6000-level. All courses must belong to the same concentration area (see list below). This concentration area must be different from the ones chosen to fulfill the breadth requirement.
The concentration areas, with specific sub-disciplines falling under each area, are given in the following table. A detailed list of courses included in each area can be obtained from the department.
Areas of Concentration and their subdisciplines:
Theoretical Computer Science and Programming Languages
- Analysis of Algorithms and Complexity
- Formal Languages and Automata
- Combinatorics and Graph Theory
- Formal Semantics and Type Theory
- Programming Languages
- Compiler Construction
Systems and Network
- Operating Systems
- Hardware Architecture
- Parallel and Distributed Systems
- Algorithm Design
- Data Structures
- Programming Methodologies
- Distributed Software Engineering
- Software Architectures
- Software Components
- Defense of information and information systems by ensuring their availability, integrity, authentication, confidentiality, and non-repudiation.
- Computer Security
- Information Protection
- Secure Information Exchange
Database Systems and Distributed Applications
- Data Modeling
- Database Systems and Distributed Database Systems
- Data Query Languages
- Programming and Architectures for the Web
- Spatial Database Systems
- Data Mining
- Mobile Computing
Computer Graphics and Visual Computing
- Computer Graphics
- Image Processing
- Data Visualization
- Visual Programming Languages
- Computational Geometry
- Computer Vision
- Pattern Recognition
- Evolutionary Computing
- Expert Systems
- Machine Learning
- Data Mining
All graduate students completing the master's degree must maintain a minimum of B grade in all 4000-level courses, and a minimum 3.0 average in all courses taken to satisfy the degree requirements excluding thesis research.
Students completing the master's degree with a thesis are required to submit an acceptable thesis and give a satisfactory defense of the thesis. Thirty semester hours are required, no more than six of which may be thesis credit. No more than nine hours may be at the 4000 level. Up to six hours may be taken in graduate courses outside of Computer Science upon prior approval by the department. Students choosing Information Assurance as their concentration must select the thesis option.
Students completing the master's degree without a thesis are required to give a satisfactory performance in a comprehensive examination covering course work. Thirty-six semester hours are required, no more than 12 of which may be at the 4000 level. Up to nine hours may be taken in approved graduate courses outside of Computer Science upon prior approval by the department.
All graduate assistants are required to participate in the weekly departmental seminar.
Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering and Applied Science
The Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering and Applied Science is an interdisciplinary, integrative degree involving faculty from the College of Engineering and the College of Sciences. The program is designed for those engineers will extend the frontiers of engineering. The graduate will have knowledge that is both broad in fundamentals as well as strongly focused in the area of his/her research. Research is the centerpiece of a Ph.D. program. It is expected that the graduate's research will substantially expand the knowledge of the engineering profession.
Admission to the doctoral program is based on reasonable evidence that the applicant will prove capable of scholarly research on a broad intellectual foundation. All students enrolling in the program must have a Master's degree from an accredited college or university in engineering, physics, mathematics, earth and environmental sciences, computer science, or a closely related field, or be willing to complete coursework required in an existing Master's program in one of the participating departments at UNO while pursuing the Ph.D. Admission decisions will be based primarily on grade-point average, Graduate Record Examination scores, and letters of recommendation. Foreign applicants (non-English speaking countries) must also provide proof of English proficiency.
Following are the formal procedural requirements for students to receive the Ph.D. degree in Engineering and Applied Science.
Ph.D. candidates must complete a minimum of 51 semester credit hours of graduate course work in an approved program beyond the Bachelor's degree, not including dissertation research. The credit hours may include up to 30 semester hour credits obtained in a Master's degree program, if the area of the Master's degree is relevant to the doctoral program. Up to six of these 30 credits may be for thesis research.In addition at least 30 semester hours of dissertation research credit must be earned. A doctoral dissertation based on the results of original research under the guidance of a faculty committee and defended in a public examination is required for the completion of the doctoral program. Departments participating in the program are Civil and Environmental Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Engineering Management, Mechanical Engineering, Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering, Computer Science, Earth and Environmental Sciences, Mathematics, and Physics. The student's dissertation advisory committee will consist of at least five members. No more than three can be from any one department. There must be at least one committee member from each of the colleges of Engineering and Sciences. Program qualification, in the form of a Qualifying Examination, is administered by the department of the principal advisor(s). It is based on material in a typical departmentalized master's degree program, or equivalent. Courses are chosen with the consent of the dissertation advisory committee. The committee shall consider the interdisciplinary nature of the program when it approves the courses. A minimum of nine credits (three courses) must be taken in each college. A General (comprehensive) Examination will be administered by the dissertation advisory committee. The examination will be based on material in the student's program of study. After passing the General Examination the Ph.D. student is expected to write a dissertation prospectus and defend it before the dissertation advisory committee. After a successful defense and committee approval of the prospectus, the student may pursue research leading to the dissertation. (The student must register for a minimum of 12 dissertation credits before successful defense and approval of the prospectus provided that Program Qualification has been successfully completed.) The dissertation should reflect the interdisciplinary nature of the program. There must be a final public defense of the dissertation administered by the dissertation advisory committee.
Graduate Student Financial Aid
Teaching and research assistantships are available to qualified graduate students on a competitive basis.