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College of Science

Computer Science

Using creativity, logic, teamwork and problem-solving skills, computer scientists solve problems throughout business, industry and government; discover new knowledge in research laboratories and universities; and help prepare students for careers in computing and many other areas. Today’s computer scientists need imagination, determination and the skills provided by a rigorous program like the one described here.

The demand for well-trained and highly qualified computer scientists in the United States remains strong. Virtually every field of science and engineering is affected by computing, and computer scientists play a key role in a number of interdisciplinary efforts. There are challenging opportunities in areas as diverse as:

  • Bioinformatics
  • Computational nanotechnology
  • Data integration and data mining
  • Distributed and peer-to-peer computing
  • Graphics and visualization
  • Security and information assurance
  • Mobile and wireless systems
  • Software engineering

Because computer science is a young and rapidly developing field, the curriculum must be revised frequently to keep it up-to-date. The information herein reflects the state of the curriculum effective Fall 2011. The most recent description, sample plans of study and more detailed information are usually available at the Computer Science website, www.cs.purdue.edu, and at the Computer Science Undergraduate Advising Office, Lawson Computer Science Building, Room 1123; 765-494-6010.

The Department of Computer Science offers a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree program with majors in:

  • Computer Science (CS major)
  • Computer Science/Honors (Honors major)

Qualified students in the bachelor’s program may participate in the Professional Practice Program.

The Department of Computer Science also offers a combined five-year B.S./M.S. program, a master’s program and a doctoral program.

To earn the B.S., students must fulfill the requirements of the College of Science and the requirements of one of the computer science majors. The flexibility of the computer science curriculum comes from requiring only six foundational (core) courses followed by one or more tracks, which allow students to deepen their understanding in a specific area of computer science. The current list of tracks includes the following: Computational Science and Engineering, Computer Graphics and Visualization, Database and Information Systems, Foundations of Computer Science, Machine Intelligence, Programming Languages, Security, Software Engineering, and Systems Programming.

All courses used to fulfill CS core and track requirements, regardless of department, must be completed with a grade of “C” or higher (“C-“ is not included).