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Learn About the Many Flavors of CS-Related Master’s Programs

By Susanne Hambrusch (Purdue), Victoria Interrante (Minnesota), Borja Sotomayor (U of Chicago) 

Today, anyone exploring graduate programs at the MS level – from the BS graduate with a CS degree to the computing professional in the workforce – finds a wide range of graduate program options and choices. The question “Which program is right for me?” is often not easy to answer.

Education Committee

CRA’s Education Committee (CRA-E) has published answers to Frequently Asked Questions on the types of MS programs and their relation to PhD programs. The programs discussed include Academic, Professional, Non-terminal, and Online MS programs. The answers contrast and try to clarify differences in the application process, competitiveness of the admission process, characteristics of a successful applicant, financial support options, research opportunities, teaching careers for MS graduates, possible pathways to a PhD program in a computing field, and new career options.

We hope departments will share the FAQ resource with undergraduate advisors and interested faculty. We welcome comments and suggestions on additional questions to address. Please email