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TSYS School of Computer Science

TSYS School of Computer Science

FAQ - Graduate Admissions

  1. What is the required GRE score?
  2. What is te required TOEFL score?
  3. How many credit hours does the program entail?
  4. Is there a flexible payment plan?
  5. Can this degree be taken 100% online?
  6. Are Graduate Assistantships available?
  7. Are HOPE scholarships available for graduate students?
  8. Can the GRE requirement be waived?
  9. Do I need to have my transcript evaluated?
  10. Do I need to submit a GRE or GMAT score before I begin taking MS-ACS course work?
  11. How can I improve my GRE scores?
  12. How long does it take to finish the Masters Degree in Applied Computer Science?
  13. How long does the admission process take?
  14. I do not have an undergraduate degree in Computer Science or Information Systems. Will I meet admission requirements?
  15. I have a degree from a foreign university. Any problems?
  16. I work, sometimes out of town. Is class attendance mandatory?
  17. If I already have a graduate degree, do I still need to submit a GRE or GMAT score with my application for admission?
  18. In regards to my professional background and certifications, will I be allowed to transfer credits, if yes how many?
  19. Is the CSU program a part-time or full-time program?
  20. Is there a math requirement?
  21. Should I take the GRE or the GMAT? Does it matter? What parts of each test should I register for?
  22. What are the estimated expenses for online courses?
  23. What are the requirements?
  24. What are the starting dates for Masters Degree in Applied Computer Science?
  25. What do I need to submit?
  26. What is the Application Fee?
  27. What is the number of recommendation letters required?
  28. What is the total cost for the online program?
  29. What is the deadline for application?
  30. Why is a resume an optional part of the admission package? What should be in the resume?

  What is the required GRE score?

A minimum combined score of 900 (old scale) or 290 (after November 2011) on the verbal and quantitative sections of the GRE.


  What is the required TOEFL score?

A TOFEL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) score of 550 or higher on the paper based version, 213 or higher on the computer based version, or a minimum Internet based score of 79. (http://admissions.columbusstate.edu/international/)


  How many credit hours does the program entail?

For regularly admitted students, 36 graduate-level computer science credits are required. (https://academics.columbusstate.edu/catalogs/current/reqs/cobcs_msapcompsci.php#progstudy). Students who are admitted without a B.S. in Computer Science may be expected to take CPSC 6105 - Fundamental Principles of Computer Science and CPSC 6106 - Fundamentals of Computer Programming and Data Structures.


  Is there a flexible payment plan?

We don't have a payment plan, however, we do have an Emergency Loan that allows you to pay for tuition in three payments.


  Can this degree be taken 100% online?

Yes, all graduate courses are offered online. Several graduate courses are also offered on campus, alternating between day and night offerings.


  How many on-campus courses must be taken and the modus operandi?

Several graduate courses are offered on campus, alternating between day and night offerings. There is no minimum number of courses required on campus, however A student in the United States in an F-1 nonimmigrant status may take no more than one distance education or on-line class or three credits per semester towards his or her full course of study requirements. Such restrictions do not prohibit international students from completing programs that are offered on-line, as the students can enroll in the course without being admitted to the United States.


  Are Graduate Assistantships available?

Yes. There are a limited number of Graduate Assistantships (GAs) each year. Download the application (DOC) or pick up a copy at the Computer Science School office. Return the completed application to the Computer Science School office. GAs may be awarded at the end of each semester for the following academic year. Applications should be submitted to the Computer Science School no later than November 1 or May 1. Although graduate assistantships are awarded for an academic year at a time, renewal is based on eligibility and renewal criteria. Graduate assistants are expected to do research and may be asked to help as a tutor (total of 19 hours a week.)


  Are HOPE scholarships available for graduate students?

Not at this time.


  Can the GRE requirement be waived?

The only exception to this requirement is applicants who already have a graduate degree from a recognized, accredited institution.


  Do I need to have my transcript evaluated?

If your degree is from a foreign university, it must be evaluated by an accredited service. CSU uses the following services for this purpose: World Education Services, Inc. and Josef Silny & Associates, Inc.

The complete list of recognized agencies is at http://www.naces.org/members.htm


  Do I need to submit a GRE or GMAT score before I begin taking MS-ACS course work?

Yes. You cannot be admitted unconditionally to the program without an admissible test score from one of these tests. Your application package will be considered incomplete and sit in the admissions office until complete. You may take these tests on-line at any one of several testing sites, with little or no waiting.

The only exception to this requirement is applicants who already have a graduate degree from a recognized, accredited institution.

You may receive provisional admission to the MS program without the admissible test score and may take graduate courses for one semester without having taken the GRE or its equivalent.


  How can I improve my GRE scores?

There are classes available through Continuing Education at Columbus State University - (http://columbus.augusoft.net/index.cfm?fuseaction=1013&courseid=718&categoryid=13&subcategoryid=105&catalogid)


  How long does it take to finish the Masters Degree in Applied Computer Science?

All work credited towards a graduate degree must be completed within seven years. The maximum course load for any graduate student in a semester is 12 hours, so a student could complete the degree in a minimum of three semesters. However the typical load for a full-time graduate student is nine hours in a semester, which would suggest that most full-time students would need four semesters to complete their degree. Students who are employed will typically only take 1-2 courses per semester and will require longer to complete the program.


  How long does the admission process take?

Once all of the application material has been submitted, it typically takes approximately two weeks to process the application.


  I do not have an undergraduate degree in Computer Science or Information Systems. Will I meet admission requirements?

Admission to the MS-ACS program requires an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution with a GPA of at least 2.75 (or 3.00 in your major), a GRE score of at least 900 on the verbal and quantitative sections, and successful completion of either course work or ability to show proficiency in an object-oriented programming language at the data structures level. You may be asked to take CPSC 6106 - Fundamentals of Computer Programming and Data Structures and CPSC 6105 - Fundamental Principles of Computer Science to make up for any course deficiencies. See the latest catalog of the computer science school.


  I have a degree from a foreign university. Any problems?

Maybe. Undergraduate degrees must be 4 years in length to be considered the equivalent of a bachelor's degree. Check with the CSU admissions office for transcript evaluation instructions.


  I work, sometimes out of town. Is class attendance mandatory?

Most students in our program works. Each professor will have their own attendance policy - all of which take into account that students will miss class due to travel, work, commitments, sick children, etc. Students should work out their schedule with their professor and other students on their project team.


  If I already have a graduate degree, do I still need to submit a GRE or GMAT score with my application for admission?

Maybe. If your graduate degree is from an accredited institution, the MS-ACS Admission Committee may not require you to submit a GRE or GMAT score. It depends upon the extent to which your previous graduate experience predicts success in the MS-ACS program.


  In regards to my professional background and certifications, will I be allowed to transfer credits, if yes how many?

We will accept for transfer a maximum or nine (9) credits of graduate level coursework from accredited universities. We do not accept credit for certification courses. The transfer has to be approved by a graduate student advisor in the school.


  Is the CSU program a part-time or full-time program?

That is up to you. All course work is offered in the evenings and/or online. The number of courses that you choose to take determines the pace at which you proceed and finish the program. Most CSU students are part-time and take 1-2 courses per semester.


  Is there a math requirement?

We do not have a math requirement.

There are a couple of courses that have been a little challenging for students with limited math: CPSC 6127 - Contemporary Issues of Database Management Systems which requires some statistics used with data mining and CPSC 6128 - Network Security and 6136 - Advanced Systems Security which may use some algebra and stats or encryption algorithms.

Most students have not needed any refresher math for any of our courses.


  Should I take the GRE or the GMAT? Does it matter/ What parts of each test should I register for?

The GRE is preferred. Both tests are measurements of general verbal, quantitative and analytical ability. Taking the writing portion of the test is not required.


  What are the estimated expenses for online courses?

Please review the Chart of Tuition and Fees.


  What are the requirements?

Requirements for all applicants for admission into the program for the Master of Science in Applied Computer Science include the following:

  1. An undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university
  2. A minimum 2.75 undergraduate cumulative GPA
    OR
    A minimum 3.00 cumulative GPA in the student's undergraduate major
    OR
    Significant experience (as judged by the Computer Science School) in the industrial software development as documented by a resume and other appropriate documents, including published papers or patents.

Students may be admitted to the program unconditionally or conditionally (provisionally).

Additional requirements for unconditional admission into the MS program include:

  1. An undergraduate major in Computer Science, Applied Computer Science, Computer Information Science/Systems, Computer Engineering or other closely related field from an accredited college or university AND
  2. Demonstrated experience in the fundamentals of computer programming, as evidenced by either
    • passing with a grade of "C" or better in a course substantially equivalent to CPSC 2108 - Data Structures at CSU OR
    • a score of 50th percentile or higher on the GRE computer science test OR
    • passing a test of programming competency in data structures AND
  3. A minimum combined score of 900 on the verbal and quantitative sections of the GRE

Students admitted conditionally to the program must show proficiency in Fundamental Principles of Computer Science (CPSC 6105) and Fundamentals of Computer Programming and Data Structures (CPSC 6106) before being allowed to take any 6*** course for graduate credit in Computer Science. Students who have not taken these courses, either at Columbus State University or at another accredited college or university may "test out" of the courses.

Students admitted conditionally to the program are required to take and obtain the minimum combined score described above on the Graduate Record Examination within the first semester of initial enrollment at Columbus State University.


  What are the starting dates for Masters Degree in Applied Computer Science?

Students may enter the Masters program at the beginning of any of the three semesters. See https://academics.columbusstate.edu/calendars  for the exact dates.


  What do I need to submit?

All applicants must submit to the Columbus State University Admissions Office:

  1. The university's application form
  2. Copies of transcripts from all colleges and universities attended
  3. Scores from the GRE test, unless the applicant has already earned a graduate degree from a regionally accredited institution

Applicants who believe that the above material might not accurately reflect their readiness to undertake graduate study are invited to submit two letters of recommendation from employers or college-level instructors to the TSYS School of Computer Science.

Applicants with significant industrial experience are invited, but not required, to include a resume to demonstrate practical experience in software development.


  What is the Application Fee?

$30 (http://admissions.columbusstate.edu/grad/)


  What is the number of recommendation letters required?

Two letters of recommendation, either from college-level instructors or employers, are preferred but not required.


  What is the total cost for the online program?

Students who only take online courses in Computer Science are only required to pay tuition and the Technology fee. Tuition for online courses in the graduate Computer Science program are charged at a rate of $210 per semester hour. The Technology fee is $66/semester.

For graduate students who are admitted without any deficiencies, the total tuition is 36 * $210 = $7,560. Students who are admitted without a B.S. in Computer Science may be expected to take CPSC 6105 - Fundamental Principles of Computer Science and CPSC 6106 - Fundamentals of Computer Programming and Data Structures. Both courses are 3 credits and are charged at the same rate per credit hour.

These calculations are based on tuition for Fall Semester 2010. For the most up-to-date information see the current Chart of Tuition and Fees.

Some faculty require that exams be proctored at an approved testing facility. Approved testing facilities may charge a fee for each proctored exam.


  When is the deadline for application?

It varies term to term. See http://academics.columbusstate.edu/calendars/ for the dates for each semester.

Application Deadlines:

  • Spring Semester - December 9th
  • Summer Semester - May 15th
  • Fall Semester - June 30th

  Why is a resume an optional part of the admission package? What should be in the resume?

Work experience is an important part of professional development in the CS field. Your detailed resume helps the admissions committee determine your preparedness for the MS-ACS program. Include all CS-related skills, projects and responsibilities. The resume is designed for cases in which the traditional methods (grades, GRE scores, etc.) are ambiguous. If you think that a resume will improve your chances, include one.