Computer Science

Theoretical and Applied

Computer science is a discipline that provides a scientific foundation for a variety of practical skills including software engineering, computer system design, software system design, data base design and applications, distributed computing, network design and applications, computer graphics, scientific computation, and the use of specialized computer applications. Cybersecurity-focused programs are also available. The computer continues to have a dramatic effect on many aspects of contemporary society, and the demand for people who are trained to use computers and software systems will increase for the foreseeable future. The curriculum in computer science prepares students for a variety of careers that involve the extensive use of computers.

Students who enroll in the Computer Science Program will find themselves immersed in an environment of learning and challenged by the rigorous coursework. This program provides education based on a theoretical, experimental, and ethical foundation further enhanced by opportunities for participation in research, internships, international studies, interdisciplinary programs, and/or programs in entrepreneurship. Students will advance in state-of-the-art fields, incorporating technical disciplines from electrical engineering and mathematics as well as computer science.

WSU Tri-Cities computer science program is ABET accredited — the most prestigious accreditation awarded to a computer science program.  Accreditation assures that a program has met quality standards set by the profession. To employers, graduate schools, and licensure, certification, and registration boards, graduation from an accredited program signifies adequate preparation for entry into the profession.

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Computer Science students have access to an open computer lab that has 16 computers and a Unix server. Students also have shell access that allows them to connect remotely so they can program from home at any hour.

In the world of technology Computer Science evolves quickly. The foundation of Computer Science is based around computation or transforming ideas into algorithms used for computer applications. Computer Science is a broad discipline that includes topics like computer graphics, programming language theory, and software engineering.

There are two degree options in Computer Science.

Bachelor of Science

The bachelor of science degree requires substantial basic and advanced computer science course work and is the traditional computer science degree.

Students may apply for certification into the Bachelor of Science in Computer Science degree program after completion of the following courses:

  • CPT S 121 Program Design and Development C/C++
  • CPT S 122 Data Structures C/C++
  • CPT S 223 Advanced Data Structures C/C++
  • MATH 171 Calculus I
  • MATH 172 Calculus II
  • MATH 216 Discrete Structures
  • PHIL 201 Elementary Logic

All listed CPT S courses, required electives, and prerequisites to these courses must be completed with a grade of C or better.

Check out the WSU Catalog for major requirements.

Bachelor of Arts

The bachelor of arts degree is designed for multidisciplinary students who wish to learn the basics of computer science and apply them to a different field. The BA requires a minor in another area, such as art, biochemistry, economics, or criminal justice, among others.

Students may apply for certification into the Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science degree program after completion of

  • CPT S Program Design and Development C/C++
  • CPT S Data Structures C/C++
  • CPT S Advanced Data Structures C/C++
  • MATH 201* Mathematics for Business and Economics
  • MATH 202* Calculus for Business and Economics
  • MATH 216 Discrete Structures
  • PHIL Elementary Logic

*Math 171 and MATH 172 may be substituted for MATH 201 and MATH 202.

All listed CPT S courses, required electives, and prerequisites to these courses must be completed with a grade of C or better.

Check out the WSU Catalog for major requirements.

Undergraduate advising is a partnership between you, your professional advisor, and your faculty mentor and it goes beyond course selection. Whether you plan to enter the workforce or continue on to earn an advanced degree, your academic advisors and professional mentors will guide you toward that goal. This holistic approach ensures that you are engaged in your academic plan, connected to the campus community and resources, and earn your degree as efficiently as possible. Comprehensive advising information is available at the SEAS Advising Gateway.

Computer Science study plans and technical-elective requirements:

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In order to graduate as profession-ready students, you will benefit from industry internships. These are exceptional opportunities that allow you, our students, to gain experience, expand your perspectives, and stand out with potential employers.

Learn more about the internship process.

While the majority of students’ courses and credits are completed within the major, the UCORE curriculum provides courses that are the foundation basic skills that all WSU students must develop no matter their major.

The University Common Requirements (UCORE) is the center of the undergraduate curriculum and you will start taking these courses starting your first semester at WSU Tri-Cities. If you took AP, IB, or Running Start courses in high school, then you may already have met some of the requirements.

The UCORE curriculum is designed to be flexible enough to work for all majors. The program offers a wide variety of course choices and provides many individual pathways through the curriculum.

Not admitted yet? Talk with an Admissions Counselor and learn how easy it is to apply.

Transfer students who have completed an approved Associate of Arts and Science (DTA) degree at a Washington or Oregon community college will have fulfilled most of the lower-division UCORE requirements. Because students have to also meet the College of Arts & Sciences requirements, some students must take additional courses in a foreign language in order to complete the degree. Otherwise, transfer students will have their transcripts evaluated for UCORE requirements.

Use the transfer credit equivalency guide to learn how your credits will transfer.

If you are currently enrolled at Columbia Basin College and intend to transfer to WSU Tri-Cities, then check out our Bridges Program that provides a direct academic path.

Students who have already earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university, must complete a minimum of 30 credits of WSU coursework and fill the major requirements to earn a second degree. UCORE requirements are not required as they are met by coursework from the first bachelor’s degree.

Not admitted yet? Talk with an Admissions Counselor and learn how easy it is to apply.

Minoring in a discipline outside your major field of study, allows you to focus elective credits, expand your perspective, and increase your skills. A minor will make you stand out to potential employers because it demonstrates an eagerness to learn and emphasizes your willingness to go above and beyond minimum expectations.

The minor in computer science consists of 20 credits which must include:

  • CPT S 121 Program Design and Development C/C++
  • CPT S 122 Data Structures C/C++
  • CPT S 223 Advanced Data Structures C/C++

Three courses must be at the 300-400-level computer sciences, courses excluding computer skills and literacy courses. All prerequisites for minor courses must be met. The minor program must be approved by an academic advisor.

See what other minors and certificates are available at WSU Tri-Cities.

Graduates of WSU Tri-Cities leave campus fully prepared to enter the workforce. The Career Development Office offers workshops on how to develop a job search strategy, write a compelling résumé and cover letter, and sharpen interview skills – all of which will help students land a job in today’s competitive market.

The Career Development Office posts on- and off-campus positions for student employees and also work with students to identify internships, cooperative work experience, and post-graduation career opportunities.

See how you can become career-ready with a major in Computer Science.

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