Computer Science, BS

Our BS program is accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET, ABET assures quality for degree programs in applied science, computing, engineering, and technology. The program provides a rigorous education in theory and practice of Computer Science in addition to outside science courses. A BS degree can be used as a basis for many jobs in industry or for graduate work in Computer Science and other fields. We have an Honors Program for students who complete an Honors Thesis.

We offer a curriculum stressing software development. It provides training appropriate for students with interests in areas such as systems programming, compiler development, artificial intelligence, database management, and software engineering. An aptitude for logical reasoning and mathematics is needed to complete the major successfully, partly because designing programs to solve problems requires good problem solving skills and partly because some of the requirements are relatively advanced theoretical Computer Science and mathematics courses.

Degree-seeking students must also satisfy the other requirements of the college such as the Core requirements, the English requirement, and the Writing Proficiency Examination requirement. These are not listed here.


Within three to five years of graduation, graduates of the BS in Computer Science Program at UMass Boston will achieve the following:

  1. Our graduates will obtain rewarding employment in industry or graduate programs in computer science using the technical skills and knowledge that they acquired during their studies.
  2. Our graduates will be informed and active members of their communities and be thoughtful CS professionals based on their awareness of the human and social issues in computer science.
  3. During their professional careers, our graduates will use and further develop appropriate organizational, communicative, and teamwork skills.
  4. Our graduates will maintain intellectual curiosity and stay informed and knowledgeable about current trends and technologies in their field.


In order to qualify for desirable industry employment and strong graduate programs in computer science, students of the BS in Computer Science Program will:

(1a) demonstrate proficiency in problem solving, software design and development, data structures, algorithms, computer organization and computer architecture;
(1b) apply this proficiency to larger (mid-sized) systems (such as compilers);
(1c) write programs, document programs and test programs, in a variety of programming languages, supporting different programming paradigms;
(1d) be proficient in at least one (in-demand) programming language;
(1e) learn to deal with different operating systems and computer architectures;

(2a) understand and work with some of the important theoretical underpinnings to computer science;
(2b) demonstrate an understanding of differential and integral calculus, linear algebra, probability, statistics, and discrete mathematics;
(2c) demonstrate the ability to do laboratory work in at least one of the natural scientific disciplines;

(3a) become familiar with the basic concepts and issues in the social sciences and the humanities;
(3b) demonstrate the ability to understand, write about and speak about the social and ethical issues of computing;

(4a) write about their programs and issues related to computing;
(4b) orally present material related to computing;
(4c) work effectively in teams.

Enrollment and Graduate Numbers

Annual Enrollment of BS Majors in Computer Science - Five-Years Trend

Academic Year 2008/09 2009/10 2010/11 2011/12 2012/13
Enrolled Students 124 139 180 216 269

Annual Number of BS Degrees in Computer Science Awarded - Five-Year Trend

Academic Year 2008/09 2009/10 2010/11 2011/12 2012/13
BS Degrees Awarded 18 15 10 16 27

Degree Requirements

The department requirements for a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in computer science are given below. 

1. CS110 or CS115L; CS210; CS240; CS310; CS320L; CS341; CS410 (this will be the capstone course for the major); CS420; CS444; CS450; CS451 or CS651; and CS285L (students who declared their major prior to January 27, 2003 may replace CS285L with an additional Computer Science elective)
2. Math140; Math141; and Math260; Math345
3. Physics113; Physics181; Physics114; and Physics182
4. One science elective. Information on allowable electives may be obtained in the department office
5. Two Computer Science electives chosen from: CS260; CS430; CS437; CS445; CS446; CS460; CS470;CS615; CS620; CS622; CS624; CS630; CS634; CS636; CS637; CS639; CS641; CS644; CS646; CS647;CS648; CS664; CS670; CS672; CS674; CS675; CS680. With prior permission it may be possible to take an independent study course in place of one of the above
6. At least four 300; 400; or 600 level Computer Science or Mathematics courses must be taken at UMass Boston. This limits the number of transfer courses that can be applied towards a degree
7. A major must maintain a C average (2.0 GPA) in all of the above. Only courses taken at UMass Boston are averaged

Sample Program for the Major
We present below a possible sequence of Mathematics and Computer Science courses leading to satisfaction of the department requirements in four years. We do not show courses in other departments.

This schedule is only an example; not a prescription or a recommendation. Programs of study will vary depending on students' interests and abilities. Stronger students may wish to do more than meet the minimal requirements.

1. CS110, Math140
2. CS210, Math141, Physics113, Physics181
3. CS240, Math260 , Physics114, Physics182
4. CS310, CS341, CS320L
5. CS420, CS450, Math345
6. CS444, CS451, science elective
7. CS410, Computer Science elective
8. CS285L, Computer Science elective