OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

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Computer Science

Computer science is the study of algorithms and problem solving. These problems apply to every scientific, engineering, and mathematical field, making computer scientists relevant in every professional field today. A computer science degree at Oregon State can give you the skills to program a custom low level sensor board all the way up to coordinating cloud datacenters full of servers.

Students can choose from the accredited Computer Systems option, or one of the applied options including building your own custom curriculum. Oregon State University-Cascades offers an option in Web and Mobile Web Software Development.

CS Options

Martin Erwig and Margaret Burnett

One of the benefits of the Systems option lie in its ABET (Accreditation Board of Engineering & Technology) accreditation. The Computer Systems option gives students the necessary training and preparation that many large companies (such as Google, Apple, and Intel) desire. Computer Systems also gives the student the necessary preparation to continue and pursue computer science or other engineering fields in graduate level programs. The extra preparation required in the Systems option is more math, physics, and required CS courses; however, as a Systems option, a student can still take a minimum of 2-5 CS elective courses.

View an example path to get an idea of a student's course schedule. For more details about completing an academic plan see the Academic Plans page.

The Applied option allows students to develop a degree program that focuses on their area of interest. Students can shape a program that includes fields outside computer science such as music, chemistry, mathematics and medical fields, or specialize in an area of computer science such as artificial intelligence, bioinformatics, game and simulation development, human-computer interaction, and computer security. Students pick 32 credits of electives to develop a cohesive focus area and shape their degree to their particular interest or needs.

Important Notes

  • All Applied Option students must complete and submit an Approval Form for Applied Options to an advisor by the end of their first term in the Professional Program.
  • Any changes to the Applied Plan must be approved and documented by the CS Curriculum Committee.
  • PLAN AHEAD! Not all courses are offered every term and can be limited even to certain years.

View an example plan to get an idea of a student's course schedule. For more details about completing an academic plan see the Academic Plans page.

At first glance, you might not think biology is even remotely related to computer science. But in recent years, computer science has helped other scientists make enormous advances by giving them access to huge amounts of data.

Today, computer scientists develop ways to model and analyze biological data that can help scientists speed up their research or discover new insights into the secrets of life. And the Human Genome Project, for example, would not have been possible without having computers to analyze huge amounts of genetic data. Combining biology with computer science is called bioinformatics or computational biology.

Jobs

Bioinformatics scientist: develop algorithms, integration & analysis of biological data across multiple databases. Companies: Ceres Inc. Somalogic Inc. Ocean Ridge Biosciences, ACGT

Bioinformatician: design, develop, maintain data processing of biological data. Companies: UC Davis, University of Chicago, DNAnexus, Qiagen

Faculty

Courses

Fundamentals

Core

Electives

  • BI 445 (Evolution)
  • BI 370 (Ecology)
  • BOT 331 (Plant Physiology)
  • BOT 341 (Plant Ecology)
  • BOT 425 (Flora of the Pacific Northwest)
  • ENT 420 (Insect Ecology)
  • HSTS 415 (Theory of Evolution and Foundation of Modern Biology)
  • MB 448 (Microbial Ecology)
  • Z 345 (Introduction to Evolution)
  • Z 351 (Marine Ecology)
  • Z 361 (Invertebrate Biology)
  • Z 365 (Biology of Insects)
  • Z 371 (Vertebrate Biology)
  • Z 423 (Environmental Physiology)
  • Z 425 (Embryology and Development)
  • Z 430 (Principles of Physiology)
  • Z 431 (Physiology)
  • Z 432 (Vertebrate Physiology)

Simulation and Game Programming requires a solid multidisciplinary background. In this OSU CS Applied Option, you will take courses in computer graphics programming, math, physics, and new media. The combination of these experiences will let you do amazing things in SGP and in many other innovative areas as well.

Potential Jobs

Engine programmer: design, develop, maintain the software that handles the physics, graphics, sound, and performance of modern games. Companies: Bungie, Epic, Dice, Blizzard, Pipeworks, Zynga, Gearbox, Bethesda.

Game server programmer: design, develop, maintain the backend of games that handles online multiplayer matchmaking, gameplay data, and user behavior. Statistics and data mining heavy. Companies: Bungie, Epic, Dice, Blizzard, Pipeworks, Zynga, Gearbox, Bethesda.

Faculty

Courses

Fundamentals

Core

Electives

This option is for current students only. Computer science and business are both highly desired, especially when mixed together. Many CS companies start small and these companies need employees that have the basics to help make a company grow successfully. Business is also desirable with CS because it can add management and communication skills to a technological degree. Students that choose this option are setting themselves up for a number of opportunities:

  • Students gain the experience to create their own start-up or business.
  • Students have the background necessary to work with other smaller companies.
  • Students can work with a business advisor to be prepared for an MBA program.

Courses

Information Systems requires a business minor.

Fundamentals

Core

Electives

View an example plan to get an idea of a student's course schedule. For more details about completing an academic plan see the Academic Plans page.