With a growing need for technical skills in the workforce, a degree in computer science can lead to a career across a variety of industries. For students looking for an MS in computer science at a highly competitive program, here are the top five in the U.S. according to the U.S. News & World Report 2018.

  • Carnegie Mellon (Pittsburgh, PA,) – The Computer Science department offers an MS degree in many different areas of CS including human computer interaction, machine learning, computer vision and robotics to name a few. CMU is on the leading edge of artificial intelligence research and will offer a Master of Science in Automated Science: Biological Experimentation beginning in Fall 2019 and is accepting applications for its initial class through Dec. 1.
  • Stanford University (Stanford, CA) – Located in Northern California’s Silicon Valley, Stanford offers students the proximity to work at many innovative tech companies to hone their skills. The MS program allows students to specialize in one of several areas of CS such as artificial intelligence, theory, human computer interaction, or systems. The curriculum is flexible for students interested in pursuing a more interdisciplinary degree.
  • University of California – Berkeley (Berkeley, CA) – Also located in the Bay Area, UC Berkeley’s CS department has some unique areas students can specialize in such as education, database management systems and graphics. The department offers a research based MS degree that is designed for students who plan to continue with a PHD degree. UCB also offers the M.Eng– a one year professional degree for students planning to work in industry.
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Cambridge, MA) –  Located in the heart of Boston, MIT’s combined EE/CS department has advanced labs in areas such as artificial intelligence and microsystems technology. The department does not offer a terminal MS degree but will accept students from outside of MIT into its PhD CS program.
  • University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign (Urbana, Illinois) – Located just a few hours from Chicago and Indianapolis, UIUC boasts one of the largest CS departments in the nation with over 1000 graduate students and over 90 classes offered in CS. The department offers a Master’s of Science in CS with a research focus, a Master’s of Computer Science professional degree with no thesis requirement and a Master’s of Science in Bioinformatics.

These programs are all highly competitive and require GRE scores, letters of recommendation, an undergraduate transcript, personal statement and TOEFL results for international students who haven’t received formal education in English.

About the author
Marc Zawel

As author of Untangling the Ivy League, Marc literally wrote the book on gaining admission to highly selective colleges. He earned a BA from Cornell University – where he met AcceptU’s co-founder – and an MBA from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. At UNC, Marc chaired the admissions advisory board; he has also conducted alumni interviews for Cornell for more than fifteen years.

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