Students take 4 required core courses, followed by 7 electives, which could be structured to focus primarily on their chosen concentration (depth), or from multiple areas (breadth). PhD students also complete at least one semester "rotation" project to explore a potentially research area.
For M.S. degree, the academic course work is expected to be completed within 2 years. Instead of one of the courses, students can elect to complete a M.S. thesis, which involves performing original research with the chosen M.S. advisor.
For Ph.D. degree, the academic course work is expected to be finished within the first 2 to 3 years, followed by a qualifying examination in the student's chosen concentration, and a thesis proposal, followed by the thesis defense and graduation. By year 3, and often earlier, students are expected to begin working closely with a Ph.D. advisor on original research. On average, a PhD degree in CS takes 5-6 years to complete.
Click here for brief descriptions of the courses offered in the program.