The 20 Best Graduate Programs in Computer Science—And How to Apply to Them

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19. University of California Los Angeles (UCLA)

UCLA Computer Science alumnus Vint Cerf, who wears three-piece suits in an industry known for casual attire, has received recognition as an Internet pioneer and been dubbed one of “the fathers of the internet.” His contributions have garnered him the National Medal of Technology, the Turing Award, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

This description paints a portrait of just one of many distinguished and highly honored alumni and faculty in the UCLA Computer Science department.

The department offers both Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. The master’s program entails either a thesis plan of study or an examination plan of study. Each plan includes core coursework which students can usually complete in a year and a half.

The doctoral program includes breath requirements and courses, exams, and a dissertation.

20. Yale University

With notable alumni such as Grace Hopper, computer language pioneer, it is no wonder students seek to enter the field of computer science at Yale University.

The Yale Computer Science department offers two graduate programs: Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree and a terminal Master of Science (M.S.) degree.  It typically takes a year to get a master’s, and between four and six years to obtain a doctorate.

The Master’s degree requires taking eight courses. The Ph.D. program focuses on research. The first three terms of the doctoral program have breadth requirements, but the third term has its main focus on research, guided by an adviser and supervisory committee.

Some of the areas of research include computer music, robotics, computer graphics, scientific computing and applied math, and machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Students can expect to work alongside notable faculty such as Brian Scassellati, whose research project in the robotics lab builds human-like robots to aid in the understanding human development (more specifically, the social development of children). Scassellati believes robotics offers a new kind of interdisciplinary tool for investigating human behavior.

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