Below is a brief overview of degree requirements within the Department of Computer Science. For a full explanation of requirements please visit the Graduate School Master of Science requirements page. Note that Department of Computer Science rules may be stricter than Graduate School rules.
- Choose an advisor. Choose an advisor in your first year (no later than the middle of the second semester). For coursework option students, the graduate director is your default advisor. You do not need to file the advisor form.
- Complete a total of 30 approved credits.
- Earn a grade of "B" or better in all but one course. At most one “BC” grade is allowed.
- Satisfy theory requirement by successful completion of CS 3311, CS 4321, and one of CS5321 or CS5311.
- Satisfy breadth requirement by successful completion of two graduate or senior-level undergraduate courses in each of Category A and Category B as listed in the Graduate Student Handbook, Section 4.2.2.
- Complete a Breadth Requirement Waiver form if you wish to count non-Michigan Tech courses toward the breadth requirement.
- Choose a plan. (A, B, or D)
- Present a research/project proposal. (A or B)
- Complete a thesis or project. (A or B)
- Complete an oral thesis or project defense. (A or B)
The CS Department allows up to 9 of the 30 hours of credit required for graduation to be in CS5990. In addition to completing the 30 hours of credit in approved courses (including CS5990 and up to 3 hours of CS5999 credit though not more than 9 total hours may be taken in CS5990 and CS5999), a student following the thesis option is expected to:
- Prepare a written plan describing the thesis research.
- Defend the research plan in an oral seminar presentation or meet with the advisory committee to discuss the research plan. The student and her/his advisor will determine whether the plan is to be presented in a department-wide seminar, or will be presented to faculty members individually.
- Prepare a final thesis.
- Defend the thesis in an oral seminar presentation.
The department recommends the following timetable for the milestones along the way to a thesis masters. (Note: items marked with a ‘+’ are milestones; items marked with a ‘*’ are requirements.)
- + present a thesis plan by the end of the 3rd semester in residence (not counting summers).
- * provide a defendable thesis to the entire committee no later than two weeks prior to the thesis defense. In addition, make a copy available in the CS main office for other interested parties.
- * defend the thesis in a public forum. This includes two question and answer sessions:
- the first consists of both students
- and faculty; the second being closed to the general audience consists of faculty only.
The report option allows 3-6 of the 30 hours of credit required for graduation to be in CS5990. In addition to completing the 30 hours of credit in approved courses (including CS5990 and up to 3 hours of CS5999 credit), a student following the report option is expected to: present written and oral project reports at the conclusion of the project. Thus, the student should
- Prepare a written project plan which describes any background work necessary for completion of the project and a project plan.
- Present the project plan to the advisory committee.
- Prepare a final report at the conclusion of the project.
- Defend the project report in a public oral seminar presentation.
The department recommends the following timetable for the milestones along the way to a project masters. (Note: items marked with a ‘+’ are milestones; items marked with a ‘*’ are requirements.)
+ find a major advisor during the first year in the program.
+ present a project plan by the end of the 3rd term in residence (not counting summers).
* provide a “defendable” project report to the entire committee no later than two weeks prior to the oral defense. In addition, make a copy available in the CS main office for other interested parties.
- * defend the project in a public forum. This includes two question and answer sessions:
- the first consists of both students and faculty;
- the second, closed to the general audience, consists of faculty only.
The course work option requires 30 hours of graded course work. None of the 30 hours of credit required for graduation may be in CS5990 and no more than 3 hours of CS5999 credit may be applied to the 30-hour requirement. Course work option students have the graduate director as their advisor.
Below is a general overview of tasks you will need to complete each semester:
- First Semester
- Complete a tentative MS Degree Schedule.
- Submit final official transcripts to the Graduate School showing proof of your previous degree (if not from Michigan Tech or done previously).
- Approval of transfer credits, if any.
- Fill out Patent, Research and Proprietary Rights form.
- Register for second semester courses.
- Follow department and advisor guidelines as detailed in the Graduate Student Handbook.
- Complete Basic RCR Training
- Second Semester
- Third or Final Semester
- Present your thesis or project proposal. (Plan A or B)
- Begin work on thesis or project. (Plan A or B)
- Submit MS Degree Schedule to the Graduate School and provide a copy to the Department of Computer Science graduate assistant.
- Final Semester
- Begin writing thesis or report. (Plan A or B)
- Submit draft of thesis or report to your advisor. (Plan A or B)
- Submit final draft of thesis or report to your advisor (Plan A or B).
- Schedule your degree-required presentation. (Scheduling a final oral examination ("Defense") is now completed in MyMichiganTech. Please see the student and advisor tutorial for additional assistance. This process replaces the "Pre-defense" form. This includes MS project defenses, optional MS thesis proposals, and MS thesis defenses. Announcements should be built and sent at least two weeks prior to a presentation. Include an abstract of the presentation and the date, time, and location. First, reserve a room by contacting the Department of Computer Science graduate assistant or emailing email@example.com. Then, create a Zoom meeting and Google Calendar invitation. Send the invitation to this list: firstname.lastname@example.org. Creating and sharing detailed invitations is the responsibility of the graduate student, not Department of Computer Science staff.
- Present your public oral defense of thesis or report. (Plan A or B). Submit the Report on Oral Exam Form, and MS Thesis and Defense Assessment form (Plan A) or MS Report and Defense Assessment form (Plan B).
- Upon passing your defense, make final required revisions to your thesis or report.
- Submit your final copy to Digital Commons.
- Submit your final copy to ProQuest. (Dissertations and theses only)
- Submit your final copy to the Computer Science department.
- Submit the Verification of Final Degree Requirements form. (Not required for students completing a research-based degree.)
- Submit the Degree Completion form.
- Submit the Graduate Student Workspace Cleanout form. If you have difficulty downloading the form, please visit the Leaving the University webpage for instructions.
- Complete the Exit Survey.