FAQ -- Graduate (graduate/faq)

Frequently Asked Questions (graduate level)

Is the GRE required to be admitted?

GRE general exam scores are required for those applying to the PhD program and for those applying for full-time Masters study.  No GRE score is required for those applying for part-time Masters study.  Submitted scores must be no more than five years old.

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These are my GPA and test scores.  Will I be admitted?

The admissions committee considers each application individually and in its entirety. There are no test scores or GPA that guarantee acceptance. There are no minimum required test scores; however, generally it is necessary to have a B average in your undergraduate work.  To find out if you will be admitted, you must apply. You can apply here.

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I do not have a traditional background that includes a Bachelors degree in Computer Science or a closely related field.   Is it possible to be admitted to the Masters program in Computer Science?

Someone in your position has three options:

  1. Apply for the MS in computer science and hope you are admitted. Most admittees already have a BS in computer science, so you will be at a disadvantage. But sometimes people like you are admitted, with the requirement to take some/all of the foundation courses. Foundation courses DO count toward the 10 for the MS degree.

  2. Take some courses as a non-matriculated student and do well, then apply for the MS-CS. Good performance on courses as a non-matric will strengthen your application. You can apply up to 3 non-matric courses toward your MS. The risk is that if you are not admitted then you cannot use these courses for a Stevens degree and they may or may not be usable elsewhere. Logical courses to take as a non-matric are our foundation courses (CS 570, CS 590, CS 550) and CS 501.

  3. Apply to the MS in Service Oriented Computing. This is an all-online program specifically designed for people who have limited background in computer science and are seeking to make a career change.

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My sponsoring agency requires a letter of conditional admission. Can you give me conditional admission?

Stevens does not provide conditional admission.

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What is the application deadline?

Stevens uses "rolling admissions," meaning that applications are always being reviewed. There is no specific deadline. As a practical matter, allow at least one month for review of your application after you submit it. International students must also allow additional time following the review period to obtain a visa.

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How much is tuition?

The Computer Science department web site provides only academic information about computer science programs. To learn about tuition levels or any other general university matter, please visit http://www.stevens.edu and use the search feature. Graduate tuition and fees are shown at http://www.stevens.edu/sit/ssc/sfs/tuition-fees

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What is the English language requirement for admission?

Please see /sit/graduate/ELC.

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Can I get financial aid?

There are two forms of financial aid available to MS students: teaching assistantships and research assistantships. Assistantships are offered only to full time students.

It is rare for an MS student to be hired as a research assistant, but it does happen. To qualify, you must be an outstanding student in some course and have that course's professor approach you about joining his/her research group.

A teaching assistantship is more attainable. Teaching assistantships are given only to full time students who have been on campus at least one semester. To qualify as a teaching assistant, you must have strong command of the material of the course for which you are assisting, fluency and articulateness in English, and the ability to relate well to students.

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What must I do to register?

Meet with your advisor prior to the semester, preferably at the departmental advising meeting held a few days before registration starts, and fill out your study plan in consultation with your advisor. Then register via Web For Students.

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Who is my advisor?

The advisor for the Engineer degree is Prof. Wetzel.

The advisor for the MS degrees in Service Oriented Computing and Enterprise and Cloud Computing is Prof. Duggan.

The advisor for the MS degrees in Multimedia Experience and Management and Game Design and Simulation Programming is Prof. Duchamp.  Students are no longer being accepted into the MS degree in Multimedia Experience and Management.

The advisor for the MS degrees in Cybersecurity and Enterprise Security & Risk Management is Prof. Nicolosi.  Students are no longer being accepted into the MS degree in Enterprise Security & Risk Management.

For the MS degree in Computer Science, the advisors are: Prof. Mordohai, Prof. Klappholz, Prof. Nicolosi, Prof. Duggan, and Prof. Kleinberg.  Look up your advisor in Web for Students.

Prof. Mordohai is the director of the MS Computer Science program. Please contact him with any non-advising issue about that program.

To help Masters students, the Computer Science department maintains an advising center that provides several "drop-in" hours per week.  Any Masters student can visit the center to make inquiries.  The center is described here.

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I took a course at another institution. How do I transfer it and apply it to my Stevens degree?

The course may or may not be accepted toward your Stevens degree. Contact your advisor. He/she will direct you to the faculty member who teaches the Stevens course that most closely resembles the course you took. Fill out a transfer credit form and submit all possible documentation about that course (textbook, syllabus, assignments, exams, etc.) for that professor's consideration. He/she will determine if the course is equivalent to a Stevens course. If it is, you can apply the course toward your degree. A maximum of 3 outside courses can be applied toward a Master's degree; a maximum of 1 outside course can be applied toward a graduate certificate.

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I want to transfer into a program in your department. Tell me what courses I should take for that program.

You must first request a change of program. Your request will be reviewed by the admissions committee for the new program. Expect that process to take at least two weeks and realize that you may not be admitted. If you are admitted into the new program you can then meet with your new advisor to form a study plan for the new program. The Computer Science department recommends that program transfer requests be submitted no later than December 1 (to begin the new program in the Spring) or April 1 (to begin in Summer or Fall).  New students should not request a transfer immediately upon enrollment; new students should spend the first semester in their admitting program.  The change of program request form is available here.

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How can I get CPT (curricular practical training)?

The Computer Science department offers two ways for a student to participate in CPT: cooperative education and our dedicated CPT course, CS 703.

Students who are admitted to the co-op program will have the opportunity to interview with employers who have been invited to advertise their open positions to Stevens students. The interview may or may not result in a job offer. A co-op position is a full-time, one-semester paid position at the sponsoring company. Despite working full time, the student's status as a full-time student is preserved.

The second path to CPT is CS 703, a graded one-credit course. Enrollment in this course permits a student to have an off-campus job, provided that the job activity supports the student's educational program. Students enrolled in this course must submit several written reports and one oral report for grading.

The advantage of CPT via co-op is that the student need not seek a job him/herself; the disadvantage is that there are eligibility requirements (such as GPA and courses taken) that the student may not meet. The advantage of CPT via CS 703 is that there are no GPA/background requirements; the disadvantage is that the student must locate his/her own job.

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Is there a limit on the number of WebCampus courses I may take?

There is no limit on the number of WebCampus courses that a US student may take.

International students are required to take at least 6 credits of classroom courses per semester. Since most graduate courses are 3 credits, an international student registered for 9 credits may take at most one WebCampus course that semester; an international student registered for 12 credits may take at most two WebCampus courses that semester.

There is no limit on the total number of WebCampus courses that may be applied to an international student's degree, only a per-semester limit implied by the 6-credit rule.

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How can I maintain full time status in my final semester?

Full time status for an international student is defined to be 9 credits, with the exception of the final semester. For example, if you have taken 9 credits in each of your first three semesters, then it is acceptable to take only 3 credits in your final semester.

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Does Developmental English count toward my MS degree?

Developmental English courses (those with ELC numbers) do not count toward your MS degree. However, in your first semester (only) the course credits do count toward the 9 credits required to achieve a full time course load. If you take English courses in later semesters you must submit a reduced load form.

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Do "foundation courses" (CS 550, CS 570, CS 590) count toward my MS degree?


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I'm being prevented from registering for a course because I haven't taken the required prerequisite course at Stevens. However, I've taken an equivalent prerequisite course at another institution or I have acquired the necessary background through work experience. Can I register for the course?

Possibly.  Fill out as completely as possible the change of enrollment form (aka "add/drop form") which is available by clicking here.  Email the form to the course instructor along with an explanation of why you think you have the background necessary to succeed in the course.  If the instructor agrees that you are adequately prepared for the course, he/she will finish filling out the form, digitally sign it, then email it back to you.  You can then present the signed form to the Registrar and you will be allowed into the course.

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What will cause me to be placed on probation?  If I am placed on probation, what must I do?

You must maintain a 3.0 GPA and not receive any F—otherwise, you will be placed on probation.  If you are placed on probation, you must meet with your advisor and develop a "remediation plan," which is a set of courses to pass, with a sufficient GPA, in the upcoming semester.  If you do not raise your GPA to or above 3.0 in the next semester, you may face dismissal.

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Can I substitute a different course for one required for a certificate?

Your advisor may allow substitution of another course, given sufficient documentation that the courses are very close in content. Otherwise, no.

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Admission Requirements

Admission into the Graduate Certificate or Master's Degree programs requires an undergraduate degree in Engineering, or in a related discipline, with a grade point average of "B" or better from an accredited college or university.

Required Documentation

All applicants must submit the following documents to be considered for admission:

  • Completed online application for admission
  • Official college transcripts from all colleges attended
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Statement of Purpose
  • GRE scores*
  • Application fee

Optional Documents:

  • Resume/CV

* Starting Fall 2014 GRE scores required for all applicants applying into a full-time graduate program in the School of Engineering and Sciences. (Code #2819) All scores are only valid for five years prior to the application term. GRE required for all PhD applicants.

Additional Requirements for International Applicants

TOEFL/IELTS - International students (Code #2819).  For English language proficiency requirements please click here.

Approximately two weeks following receipt of the above material, you will receive a decision letter from the Office of Graduate Admissions. If accepted you will receive an acceptance letter outlining the program to which you were accepted, as well as your assigned Academic Advisor's contact information.

For questions related to program requirements please check with the Office of Graduate Admissions at [email protected].

For more details on deadlines and how to apply please visit the Office of Graduate Admissions website at www.stevens.edu/graduate.