ACADEMICS

  • Computer Science

    The Computer Science program offers an undergraduate education that promotes lifelong intellectual growth and prepares students for professional careers and advanced study. The program is grounded in the principles, theories, and application of the science of computing with a special emphasis in the areas of Big Data Analytics and Software Development. Students will develop the ability to effectively apply discipline knowledge to solve real-world problems, adapt as the field changes, and make ethical decisions. The curriculum provides the foundations of team skills, and allows students to improve their interpersonal skills and professional attitudes. Students will have an opportunity to participate in an internship and in undergraduate research.

    Program Outcomes for the Major in Computer Science
    Upon completion of the Computer Science Major students will be able to:

    • Analyze a problem, develop/design multiple solutions and evaluate and document the solutions based on the requirements.
    • Communicate effectively both in written and oral form.
    • Identify professional and ethical considerations, and apply ethical reasoning to technological solutions to problems.
    • Demonstrate an understanding of and appreciation for the importance of negotiation, effective work habits, leadership, and good communication with teammates and stakeholders.
    • Learn new models, techniques, and technologies as they emerge and appreciate the necessity of such continuing professional development.

    It is highly recommended that entering students have four years of high school mathematics including the equivalent of pre-calculus.

    Students wishing to apply courses transferred from other institutions to the Computer Science major should meet with the department chair to determine the applicability of the courses before registering for any Computer Science courses at Worcester State University.

    Non-traditional students with more than 5 years of Computer Science work experience may be eligible to participate in the Next Step Program. The program offers an opportunity to gain credit in the major for writing a prior learning portfolio. The department chair can assist in determining if the program will serve each student's educational goals.

    Requirements for a Major in Computer Science:
    Students must complete a core of seven Computer Science courses, one of the two Computer Science concentrations, two Computer Science Elective courses, and 39 credits of Ancillary courses.

    Core Courses: 24 Credits

    • CS 101 Basics of Computer Science
    • CS 140 Introduction to Programming
    • CS 155 Computer Networking, Security and Databases
    • CS 242 Data Structures
    • CS 254 Computer Organization and Architecture
    • CS 282 UNIX Systems Programming
    • CS 373 Operating Systems

    Elective Courses: 6 Credits in Computer Science courses at the 300 level or above. Up to 3 credits of Internship (CS 498) and up to 3 credits of Independent Study (CS 499) may be used to satisfy the major elective requirements.

    Ancillary Requirements: 39 credits (may apply to LASC requirements). These ancillary courses cannot be taken on a pass/fail basis.

    • CM 110 Public Speaking
    • EN 252 Technical Writing
    • UR 230 Technology, Public Policy & Urban Society
    • MA 150 Statistics I or MA 302 Probability and Statistics*
    • MA 200 Calculus I
    • MA 220 Discrete Mathematics I
    • MA 290 Discrete Mathematics II
    • 2 lab science courses
    • 2 approved math or science course chosen from a department-approved list of courses. ** (7 credits)
    • Students planning a Mathematics minor or a Computer Science/Mathematics double major should take MA 302 Probability and Statistics.

    ** Students planning a Mathematics minor or a Computer Science/Mathematics double major should take math courses required for the Mathematics minor/major.

    Concentration in Big Data Analytics
    Data is being generated at high speed, in large volumes, and by a variety of systems around the world. In such a data-driven and information-centric world, the ability to analyze information and make informed decisions is crucial to every field including business, medicine, the sciences, entertainment, and government. This concentration provides students with the skills, techniques, and knowledge needed to pursue a career in this field.

    Present the project in at least one venuePresent the project in at least one venuePresent the project in at least one venue: 12 credits in addition to the Core, Elective, and Ancillary courses.

    • CS 353 Information Organization, Management and Retrieval
    • CS 383 Cloud, Parallel and Distributed Computing
    • CS 453 Data Mining
    • CS 483 Big Data Analytics Capstone

    Concentration in Software Development
    Software systems impact all aspects of life, from phones, to cars, to work lives, and beyond. Software developers analyze the software and infrastructure needs of people and organizations and then coordinate the design, implementation, and testing of the solutions. This concentration provides students with the skills, techniques, and knowledge needed to pursue a career in this field.

    Requirements for the Concentration in Software Development: 12 credits in addition to the Core, Elective, and Ancillary courses.

    • CS 343 Software Construction, Design and Architecture
    • CS 348 Software Process Management
    • CS 443 Software Quality Assurance and Testing
    • CS 448 Software Development Capstone

    Major in Computer Science, Concentration in Bioinformatics
    The purpose of this interdisciplinary concentration is to prepare Computer Science students to enter science-intensive fields of bioinformatics, computational biology, computational chemistry and molecular modeling including genomics and proteomics. With the advent of the Human Genome Project, an explosion of genomics information has occurred, and databases such as GenBank and EMBL have grown at a rate that now requires storage, organizing and indexing of the information. Questions of gene expression have led to computational biology, the process of analyzing genomic sequences and to the field of proteomics, the understanding of protein structure and function. The information obtained by computational biology and computational chemistry is used in the design of new drugs to treat a variety of diseases. Major drug and biotechnology companies are seeking people trained in bioinformatics.

    In addition to the requirements for the Major in Computer Science:

    • BI 141 Introduction to Cellular and Molecular Biology (4)
    • BT 378 Bioinformatics (4)
    • CH 120 General Chemistry I* (4)
    • CH 121 General Chemistry II* (4)
    • CS 400 Database Design** (3)
    • MA 201 Calculus II*** (4)
    • MA 303 Mathematical Modeling (3)

    One course from:

    • BI 203 Genetics+ (4)
    • BI 204 Microbiology (4)
    • BI 306 Developmental Biology+ (4)
    • BI 353 Tree of Life: Evolutionary Systematics (4)
    • BI 371 Molecular Biology+ (4)
    • BI 375 Virology+ (4)
    • BI/CH410 Biochemistry+ (4)
    • BT 376 Biotechnology (4)

    +requires additional prerequisite courses beyond those required for the major and concentration.
    *count as the two Lab Science courses required in the CS major Ancillary requirements.
    **counts as one of the two CS major Elective requirements.
    ***counts as the additional Math/Science course deom a department-approved list of courses. Required in the CS major Ancillary requirements.

    Requirements for a Minor in Computer Science: (Minimum of 20 credits)

    • CS 101 Basics of Computer Science
    • CS 135 Programming for Non-CS Majors
    • CS 140 Introduction to Programming
    • CS 155 Computer Networking, Security and Databases
    • CS 242 Data Structures
    • One more Computer Science courses at the 200 level or above.

    Interdisciplinary Minor in Web Development: (18 Credits)
    All courses must be chosen from the Computer Science (CS) and Communication (CM) department courses list (listed below).

    • Three (3) credits of the required 18 credits may be completed as an internship in the web development or web design area, in either the Computer Science or the Communication department in consultation with the CS department.
    • At least 9 credits (3 courses) must be completed from the CS courses list.
    • At least 6 credits must be completed from the CM courses list.

    List of Computer Science Department Courses:

    • CS 161 Basics of Web Design
    • CS 261 Advanced Web Design Using Scripting Languages
    • CS 155 Computer Networking, Security and Databases
    • CS 265 Database Applications

    List of Communication Department Courses:

    • CM 105 Media Writing
    • CM 160 Introduction to Digital Imaging
    • CM 180 Introduction to Advertising
    • CM 247 Introduction to Multimedia
    • CM 374 Advanced Multimedia