Online CS FAQ

  1. What if I don’t meet one of the minimum requirements?
    We approach the admissions process from a holistic perspective. The overall goal is student success and graduation; therefore, our application review is comprehensive. All parts of your application will be considered carefully before making a decision. In some cases, our comprehensive review has allowed us to admit students who don’t quite meet one of the minimum requirements, but that is not the norm. Meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee you admission, but meeting or exceeding them does improve your chances of admittance.

  2. I’m not sure if I meet the math/English/communication requirement. How can I find out?
    Please check out our website page on equivalents.

  3. If I don’t meet the minimum requirements, can I take a course before applying?
    If you would like to take a course you are welcome to do so. All courses will be evaluated and considered as part of your application. Please ensure you use the Transfer Course Search tool that Oregon State provides to find equivalent courses. Before taking a course to meet the requirements, please check to see if you already meet them with an equivalent by checking out our website page on equivalents.

  4. What if I already have a computer science or related degree?
    If you already have a bachelor’s degree in computer science you are not eligible to do the post-bac online CS program. Oregon State University does not allow students to get a second degree in the same field as their first degree. If you have an associate’s degree in computer science or you have a bachelor’s in a related field, such as information technology, you are still eligible to apply.

  1. How do I apply? What are the steps?
    Please see our application process page.

  2. What should be in my personal statement? And where is it?
    The personal statement is part of the online application. Please clearly indicate how you satisfy the minimum requirements for admission and include anything else you would like the committee to know about you. Please keep this to around 200 words. Please note you cannot change this after you submit your application.

  3. Where do I send my transcripts?
    Please send them to the Office of Admissions.

  4. Do I have to send all of my transcripts? What if I only took one course at a community college in high school, do I still need to send my transcript?
    Yes. The Office of Admissions requires that ALL transcripts from ALL colleges and universities attended be submitted for consideration. All transcripts must be received by the application deadline. The Office of Admissions will provide you with updates on the status of your materials, but ultimately it is your responsibility to ensure all materials are received on time. There are NO exceptions.

  5. What are the deadlines to apply for this program?
    Please see our deadlines page.

  6. Do you accept late applications? What if my transcript was only 1 day late?
    No late applications will be considered. All transcripts must be received by the application deadline. The Office of Admissions will provide you with updates on the status of your materials, but ultimately it is your responsibility to ensure all materials are received on time. There are NO exceptions.

  7. I didn’t make the deadline. What are my options?
    You can do a change of term form and move your application to the following term. You will not need to resend transcripts or pay the fee again. Please note that you can only use this form once. If you are later admitted to program and then decide to defer your admission to a later term, you will not be able to do so because you have already used the change of term form once before.

  1. When will I hear of my admission decision?
    You will hear of your admission decision on a rolling basis no later than two weeks prior to the start of the term you’ve selected. For example, if you apply for fall term you will hear of your admission decision no later than two weeks prior to the first day of fall term classes. You will receive an email from the Office of Admissions with your decision. This will come to the email address you listed on your application. Be sure to check your junk folder to ensure you do not miss the email. Please see our website for our application timeline.

  2. I’ve been admitted but I think I want to defer. What are my options?
    Admitted students may defer once up to 3 terms after their term of admission. For example, if you are admitted Summer 2018 you can defer to Fall 2018, Winter 2019 or Spring 2019. After that however, you would need to reapply. In order to defer, you would fill out this change of term form prior to the deadline for the term you wish to start. Please note you can only use this form once. You must submit your deferral request prior to the application deadline for the term you wish to start. For example, if you want to defer to Summer term, you must submit your deferral request by May 1.

  3. What happens once I’m admitted? What can I expect?
    In addition to the admittance email you receive from Office of Admissions, you will also receive an invitation email during the timeline given on our website from our account asking you to sign up for a group advising appointment with your new EECS advisor. In order to register for courses you MUST follow the instructions in this email and sign up for a group advising session with your new EECS advisor. This is how you get your PIN to be able to register for courses. You must register for courses to confirm your admission. Note that you DO NOT have to pay the $200 tuition deposit fee to confirm admission. To review our application timeline please see our webpage.

  4. I’ve been denied. What are my options?
    Thank you for your interest in Oregon State’s post-bac CS program. Students are welcome to apply as many times as they wish. There is no penalty for applying more than once, and having previously applied neither helps nor hurts you. Each time you apply it is viewed as a new application.

  5. I have taken Computer Science courses previously. Will they transfer?
    After admission you will work with your assigned advisor to articulate any transfer coursework you may have. In general students are able to transfer up to 15 credits of prior CS coursework. 45 of the 60 credits required for the program must be taken from Oregon State, hence the transferability of only 15 credits maximum. Check out Oregon State’s Transfer Course Search tool to check your possible course equivalents.

  6. I have work experience in the field of computer science. Is there a “test out” option for some classes?
    No, not at this time.

  1. How are the application process and minimum requirements different for international applicants?
    International students must apply through International Admissions. Be sure to consult with International Admissions on your application process and requirements. The minimum requirements for International applicants are the same as domestic students, except that international students with degrees from universities where English was not the primary language of instruction must take and receive a passing score on the TOEFL. Please check with International Admissions if you have questions about the TOEFL or about waivers for the TOEFL.

  2. How do I know if my degree is equivalent to a U.S. bachelor’s degree?
    Please check with International Admissions on bachelor degree equivalencies. In general, a useful resource for students is EducationUSA and also Oregon State University’s Graduate School country requirements website. Please note the Graduate School requirements are NOT the same as the post-baccalaureate requirements, but the website can be a useful reference guide when looking at bachelor equivalencies.

  3. I’m currently on a visa in the U.S. Will attending this program affect my visa?
    Yes, it could affect your visa. For specific visa questions, please contact Office of International Services.

  1. What will my diploma say after graduating from this program?
    Bachelor of Science in Computer Science.

  2. Is this program ABET accredited?
    No, this program is not ABET accredited. It is accredited through the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU), one of six regional accrediting bodies recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. If you are worried about ABET accreditation, search for the type of future jobs you are looking for to see if ABET accreditation is an important factor, or not, for the type of job you are searching for.

  3. What are the languages taught in this program?
    Fundamentally, a CS degree carries with it an expectation that the holder of the degree can work with many different programming languages. You will be taught how to program, not necessarily to know a particular language. The specific language is just syntax and special features, while programming is a thought process. Therefore a variety of languages are taught in the program, including Python, C++, C, and Assembly Language. For example, our introductory courses are taught in Python and C/C++. The databases class teaches SQL. The web development class teaches HTML, CSS, and JavaScript using the NodeJS implementation and Express framework. Other languages may be used in the program but not necessarily taught. For example, if you have a specific language you like to work with or want to work with on a particular project for a course, depending on the course and the project, you may consult with your TA and/or instructor to see if they are amenable to your language choice.

  4. Is this program self-paced? Or do I have to show up at certain times for a video lecture?
    No and no. The program is not self-paced, but you don’t have to “show up” at certain times either. What you do have to do is read all the materials for each week and ensure you submit your assignments, quizzes and exams by their respective deadlines. Each term follows a schedule, and you must remain on schedule. How you organize your time each week to ensure you meet the deadlines is up to you.

  5. Will I need a proctor for exams?
    Yes. Some courses require exams that need a proctor. You can either: 1.) find an accepted proctor location near your location, or 2.) in some cases you may use ProctorU. You can read more about finding exam proctors here.

  6. What are the courses like? What will I be doing?
    The online CS courses are all on an online platform called Canvas. This is where you will access the course materials. You will need a computer with internet in order to accomplish most tasks. You can check the College of Engineering’s general computer requirement recommendations. Courses will have videos and/or slide lectures, supplemented by reading, programming, and homework assignments. There will be periodic online discussions and quizzes. Students will use online discussion boards to interact with their classmates, the teaching assistants and with instructors. Some courses also have group projects and assignments. We encourage students to be proactive in communication with the instructors and TAs if they need help. Most courses will require proctored exams (typically no more than 1 midterm and 1 final).

  7. What’s the curriculum like? What courses will I be taking?
    You will be taking 60 credits of computer science courses in order to graduate. These courses provide you with a solid foundation in the field of computer science, preparing you to be a computer science professional in areas such as software engineering, mobile and web development, and databases. Please see our general curriculum page for a list of the classes and the general areas of computer science they cover. For a course description and incoming expectations for each course, see our Academic Plans page. Also check out OSU’s College of Engineering graduation requirements.

  8. How long does this program take?
    The curriculum is set up to be flexible so students can create their own plans. It takes 60 credits to complete the program, with each class being 4 credits. How long it takes to complete the program depends on how many courses you take per term. If you take 4 courses (16 credits) a term, you will finish in about 5 terms, or just over one year. If you take 1 course (4 credits) a term, you will finish in about 15 terms, or about 4 years. All of our required courses are offered every term: fall, winter, spring and summer. However, the program electives vary term by term. In consultation with your advisor, you can vary how many courses you take per term, taking 2 courses one term and then 1 course another term if needed. Please be aware that to be eligible for financial aid you must take at least 2 courses per term. You can see some sample plans, on the Academic Plans page. Most students complete the program in 2-4 years.

  9. How much will this program cost me?
    Tuition is $499 per credit. Each course is 4 credits and there are 60 credits total required to graduate, putting the total tuition cost for the program at $29,940. You should also estimate $200 each term in addition to tuition for books, materials, proctoring, etc.

  10. How will I pay for it?
    Depending on how many credits you take per term, online CS post-bacc students are eligible for financial aid in the form of student loans. Students are required to take a minimum of 6 credits (two courses) per term to be eligible. There are also scholarships available through the College of Engineering. All students are welcome to apply. For additional questions, you can contact the Financial Aid Office at 541-737-2241 or If you are an Oregonian living in Multnomah County or Washington State and are interested in learning about how WorkSource can support your success please contact Students from other states may explore similar opportunities with their state employment departments.

  11. I want to pursue a Master’s degree or PhD in computer science. Will this degree prepare me for that?
    This program will give you a broad and solid foundation in the field of computer science. Since requirements for Master’s and PhD programs vary, please check with the graduate programs you are interested in to see what they are looking for what they want you to have prior to applying. Then check out our coursework to see if this program is meeting those needs. We have had prior students successfully go on to graduate school after completing our program.

  12. Are there internship opportunities?
    Yes, some of our students do complete internships while enrolled in our program. If you are interested in doing an internship you can discuss this with your assigned advisor after admission. As an Oregon State student you have access to Handshake, an online management system for job or internship search.

  13. What resources do you provide for helping to secure a job after graduation?
    Check Oregon State's Career Services for detailed information about career services available to our students.

  1. I don’t want the degree but I’m interested in taking classes. What are my options?
    Interested in taking one of our online CS courses, but don’t want to do the whole degree? Please refer to our non-degree student page.

  2. Are there any programs or services for veterans?
    OSU offers a variety of veteran services; through the Office of Student Life. Their office also has Information on VA Education Benefits. For additional information, please contact OSU Veteran Services at

  3. Who do I speak with about accommodations?
    You will want to speak with Disability Access Services (DAS) for more information on accommodations.

  4. Am I eligible to join a club? What other services are available to me as an Ecampus student?
    Yes, there are some student communities and organizations where our online students participate. There are also a host of other resources offered to our Ecampus students.

  5. I still have more questions. Who do I contact?
    Check out our contact page.