Computer Science, MS

Gain cutting-edge expertise with our Master of Science in Computer Science (MSCS). Through flexible electives aligned with your career goals, or two optional areas of specialization in data science or software engineering, the MSCS prepares you to excel in today’s fiercely competitive tech industry.

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About this Program

Computer Science Degree in Seattle’s Global Tech Industry

Seattle University's Master of Science in Computer Science (MSCS) program offers a curriculum based on theoretical foundations and practical applications. The curriculum includes advanced courses in core areas of computer science and flexible electives that align with your professional goals.

History-Making Program for Today’s Computer Science Leaders

Seattle University has long been a leader in computer science and software engineering education. We established our pioneering Master of Software Engineering program in 1979 and awarded the world's first MSE degree in 1982. Our curriculum has been shaped by close contact with local industry professionals, ensuring that courses are relevant to the workplace and that projects are tailored to the professional needs of our students.

As the Puget Sound region developed into one of the world's leading technology hubs, our faculty developed connections with industry leaders to ensure SU students remain competitive in the job market.  Today, computer science is the fastest-growing program on our campus, and our graduate students are employed by major tech brands such as Microsoft, Meta, Google and others.

Graduate Computer Science Degree at a Glance

Learn more about how this graduate degree from the Department of Computer Science will contribute to your career goals. Below you can explore the program variants and decide which path is the best fit for you. See for yourself how impactful a Seattle University degree can be.

In the general option, you get to choose your electives. You can develop a focused or broad foundation that aligns with your interests and academic goals. There are two variations of the MSCS general option:

  • Course Only: You take an additional elective course and a seminar that explores state-of-the-art technology advances in computer science.
  • Research Project: You complete a faculty-supervised research project spanning 2-3 academic quarters. The research projects enable you to focus on your specific areas of interest and the research interests of faculty members.

If you chose to participate in research project opportunities, you’ll have a chance to be mentored by faculty, publish your work, and present on campus or at conferences. These projects provide distinctive opportunities to gain hands-on research experience and prepare you for career advancement or for further post-graduate education at internationally recognized institutions.

Sample Plan for MSCS – General Option

The MSCS with a specialization in data science (MSCS-DS) provides you the opportunity to develop computer solutions related to data science. Our unique program is designed so that upon completion, you’ll receive both an MSCS degree and a specialization within data science.

This combination is very attractive to today's leading employers as there's growing demand for developers that have experience in data science. As a student in this specialization, you must complete the set of core courses that are part of all MSCS degrees at Seattle University, plus a set of data science courses. The program culminates in a capstone project that addresses real-world challenges in the field of data science.

The specialization can be completed in as little as five academic quarters, only if you start in the fall quarter. Due to course sequencing, if you start in the winter quarter you can complete the program in seven academic quarters, and if you start in the spring quarter you can complete the program in six academic quarters.

Data Science Specialization Outcomes

  • Demonstrate a solid foundation in core areas of data science theory and practice including data analysis methodologies, machine learning, and best practice in data visualization and presentation of analysis results and conclusions.
  • Demonstrate theoretical and practical skills in the systems and software engineering needed to process large data sets.

Sample Plan for MSCS - Data Science Specialization

The MSCS with a specialization in software engineering (MSCS-SE) enables you to build the skill set you will need for a fulfilling career in the software industry. You'll gain hands-on experience across the software development life cyclefrom requirements analysis, to architecture and design, to development and testing. The Department of Computer Science has been working with local tech companies for decades, meaning you'll benefit from close industry connections and a curriculum that is current and relevant to industry needs.

The MSCS-SE program consists of a set of core courses common to all MSCS degrees at Seattle University plus a set of software engineering courses. The program culminates in a capstone project that addresses real-world challenges in the field of software engineering.

The specialization can be completed in six academic quarters if you start in the fall quarter, five academic quarters if you start in the winter quarter and seven academic quarters if you start in spring quarter.

Software Engineering Specialization Outcomes

  • Demonstrate a solid foundation in core areas of software engineering theory and practice including all areas of the software development life cycle.
  • An ability to function effectively on teams to establish goals, plan tasks, meet deadlines, manage risk and produce deliverables.

Sample Plan for MSCS - Software Engineering Specialization

  • Demonstrate in-depth knowledge of core areas and advanced topics in computer science.
  • An ability to design, implement and evaluate computer-based solutions to meet a given set of requirements.
  • An ability to effectively communicate technical concepts in written and oral form.
  • An ability to make informed judgments in computing practice based on legal, ethical and social considerations.
  • An ability to understand computer science literature to maintain professional currency.

What You’ll Learn

Explore the classes you’ll take as a student here.

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Top 25% in Science & Engineering

Seattle University ranks #40 in the nation —U.S. News & World Report, 2023

Virtual Information Sessions

Have questions about Seattle University's Master of Science in Computer Science? Attend a one-hour virtual information session to learn more about graduate programs in the College of Science and Engineering, meet a knowledgeable admissions representative, and get answers to your questions about the program, the application process and more.

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Ready for Seattle’s Top Tech Jobs

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High-Demand Graduates

Our curriculum was developed in collaboration with industry leaders and designed to prepare you with the industry’s most in-demand technical and problem-solving skills, enabling you to distinguish yourself in a fiercely competitive job market. In fact, most MSCS graduates are employed within six months of graduation (2017–2020). Seattle University graduates are employed by Amazon, Microsoft, Google, F5 Networks and other major tech firms in the region.


Projected Job Growth (2022-2032)

According the the Bureau of Labor Statistics, demand for software developers is expected to grow 25 percent over the next decade.

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Inclusive, Global Education

As a student at Seattle University, you'll have the opportunity to learn in one of the largest and most culturally diverse independent universities in the Northwest. Our Jesuit values mean we see the world through a global, justice-focused lens. Our strong commitment to diversity and low student-to-faculty ratio help create a forward-thinking, close-knit community where everyone can feel at home—and go on to thrive in a global workforce.

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Support for Career Changers

Are you interested in the MSCS program but have no undergraduate computer science coursework? Bridge to the MSCS through the Computer Science Fundamentals Certificate. You’ll get the coursework you need to transition to the full computer science graduate program.

From Our Alumni

Rupansh Phutela

“The CS faculty at Seattle U is truly exceptional, combining deep expertise with a genuine commitment to student engagement and growth. Working closely with some of the best professors at the university, Dr. Shadrokh Samavi and Prof. Timothy Spinney, I witnessed an unwavering dedication to student success and willingness to provide guidance and mentorship. If you're looking to advance your education in computer science and explore cutting-edge technology stacks, I highly recommend Seattle U.”

MSCS ’23

Featured Faculty

Get in Touch

We’re here to help. For information about computer science graduate degrees at Seattle University, contact:

Computer Science Department