For students who entered the program before 2012, previous degree requirements can be found here.
Consideration for Master’s (M.S.) program admission requires completion of Graduate Studies’ online application, with fee payment, by the stated deadline. Admission requires a bachelor’s degree, three letters of recommendation, and a complete application form, including official transcripts, GRE scores, TOEFL scores or IELTS score if applicable, a statement of purpose, and a personal history statement.
In addition to the admission requirements stated above, applicants are expected to demonstrate proficiency at the undergraduate level in four fundamental areas of computer science and mathematics. The specified UCD courses exemplify the material:
|Computer Architecture||ECS 154A (Computer Architecture)|
|Mathematical Foundations||ECS 132 (Probability and Statistical Modeling for Computer Science) or MAT 135A (Probability) or STA 131A (Introduction to Probability Theory), and one additional upper-division mathematics course|
|Programming Languages||ECS 140A (Programming Languages)|
|Theoretical Foundations||ECS 120 (Theory of Computation) or ECS 122A (Algorithm Design and Analysis)|
|Operating Systems||ECS 150 (Operating Systems and System Programming)|
These are referred to as the undergraduate proficiency requirements.
Students may be admitted with one or more deficiencies in the undergraduate proficiency requirements. It is expected that the student will complete the undergraduate proficiency requirements by the end of the first academic year of residence. This deadline may be extended by approval of the Graduate Advisors Committee of the Graduate Group.
The Graduate Program of Computer Science offers two plans for the M.S. Degree with respective capstone requirements. Plan I requires successful completion of a thesis, while Plan II requires successful completion of either a project or a master’s exam. Students should decide, in consultation with graduate group faculty, which option best suits their individual goals.
All options require 36 units of upper division and graduate coursework. At most 6 of these units may be from upper division courses. The following table summarizes the specific requirements for the thesis, project, and exam options.
|Option||Requires||No. of graduate courses required||No of ECS 299 units allowed||Committee consists of|
|Thesis||A written thesis||6||12||Thesis Advisor plus 2 more faculty members|
|Project||A project deliverable||7||8||Project Advisor plus 1 faculty member|
|Exam||Oral or written exam||9||0||Three faculty members|
While ECS 299 units may be counted toward the required 36 units, up to the limits specified above, no other course numbered 290 or above may count towards the 36 units.
The courses a student will use in satisfaction of the 36 unit course requirement must be approved by the student’s Thesis Advisor or Project Advisor, or by a Graduate Advisor.
A student must have a GPA of 3.0 for the M.S. degree to be awarded, and a B or better in all coursework used to satisfy the degree requirements.
Full-time students must enroll in a minimum of 12 units per quarter. As per UC regulations, students may not enroll in more than 12 units of graduate level courses, nor more than 16 units of combined undergraduate and graduate level courses.
The breadth requirement requires the demonstration of proficiency at the graduate level in three of four specified areas: Theory, Systems, Architecture, and Applications. For each area, the student can demonstrate satisfaction of the breadth requirement in any of the following four ways:
The following list the Core classes in each of the four areas:
|Architecture Core||ECS 201A Advanced Computer Architecture||4 units|
|Systems Core||ECS 240 Programming Languages
ECS 251 Operating Systems
ECS 260 Software Engineering
|Theory Core||ECS 222A Design and Analysis of Algorithms
ECS 220 Theory of Computation
|Applications Core||ECS 230 Applied Numerical Linear Algebra
ECS 231 Large Scale Scientific Computation
ECS 234 Computational Functional Genomics
ECS 235A Computer and Information Security
ECS 236 Computer Security: Intrusion Detection Based Approach
ECS 252 Computer Networks
ECS 256 Performance Evaluation
ECS 265 Database Systems
ECS 267 Wide-Area Distributed Information Systems
ECS 268 Scientific Data and Workflow Management
ECS 270 Artificial Intelligence
ECS 271 Machine Learning & Discovery
ECS 272 Information Visualization
ECS 274 Automated Deduction
ECS 275A Advanced Computer Graphics
ECS 276 Advanced Volume Visualization
ECS 277 Advanced Visualization
ECS 278 Computer Aided Geometric Design
ECS 279 Computer Animation
A student’s Thesis Advisor or Project Advisor supervises his/her thesis or project, and serves as Chair of the corresponding committee. A student’s Graduate Advisor serves as a resource for information on academic requirements, policies, and procedures in the absence of a Thesis Advisor or Project Advisor. The Graduate Program Coordinator assists students with appointments, requirements, university policies, and in identifying a Thesis Advisor or Project Advisor. The Mentoring Guidelines can be found in the graduate student handbook at http://www.cs.ucdavis.edu/graduate/current-students/
After completing at least one-half the course requirements for the degree, a student must file an application for Advancement to Candidacy. A student must file for candidacy at least one full quarter before completion of all degree requirements and before going on filing fee status. The Candidacy for the Degree of Master form can be found online at: http://www.gradstudies.ucdavis.edu/forms. A completed form includes a list of courses the student will take to complete degree requirements. Students must have their Thesis Advisor, Project Advisor, or Graduate Advisor sign the candidacy form. If the candidacy is approved, the Office of Graduate Studies will send a copy to the student, his Thesis, Project, or Graduate Advisor, and the Graduate Program Coordinator. If the Office of Graduate Studies determines that a student is not eligible for advancement, the GGCS and the student will be told the reasons for the application’s deferral. Some reasons for deferring an application include a grade point average below 3.0, outstanding “I” grades in required courses, or insufficient units.
If changes must be made to the student’s course plan after s/he has advanced to candidacy, a Graduate Adviser must recommend these changes to Graduate Studies.
Plan I: It is expected that the student will complete the breadth requirements within the first four quarters of residence. It is expected that the student will complete the M.S. Degree by the end of the seventh (7) quarter of residence, including all course requirements and the approval of the thesis. These deadlines may be extended only by approval of the Graduate Advisors Committee of the Graduate Group.
Plan II: It is expected that the student will complete the breadth requirements within the first four (4) quarters of residence. It is expected that the student will complete all course work and project/examinations by the end of the sixth (6th) quarter of residence.
These deadlines may be extended only by approval of the Graduate Advisors Committee of the Graduate Group.
|THESIS||Year 1||Year 2|
|Fall||ECS201A, ECS235A, ECS299||ECS299 ; advancement to candidacy|
|Winter||ECS222A, ECS240, ECS299||ECS299|
|Spring||ECS265, ECS244, ECS299||ECS299; thesis completed|
|PROJECT||Year 1||Year 2|
|Fall||ECS201A, ECS275||ECS260 ; ECS299|
|Winter||ECS222A, ECS272||ECS299 ; advance to candidacy; project completed|
|EXAM||Year 1||Year 2|
|Fall||ECS201A; ECS260||ECS235A; ECS252|
|Winter||ECS222A; ECS240||ECS299 ; advancement to candidacy; exam passed|
Note that these samples do not take into account the student’s possible need of fulfilling undergraduate proficiency requirements. Depending on the added workload, the student may need additional quarters to complete the exam/project/thesis.
Financial assistance for graduate study comes in the form of fellowships, Teaching Assistant (TA) and Graduate Student Research (GSR) positions.
Information about PELP (Planned Educational Leave), In Absentia (reduced fees when conducting research out of California), and Filing Fee status can be found in the Graduate Student Guide.