Sep 29, 2023  
2020-2021 Catalog 
2020-2021 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Computer Science, BS

Department of Computer Science, College of Science and Engineering

94 credits from computer science and mathematics (plus 12-15 credits in supporting science)


The proliferation of desktop computers, laptop computers, mobile devices and networks is transforming the world rapidly and irreversibly. Search engines and social networking sites have provided information to and forged connections between people worldwide. Advances in areas such as the World Wide Web, robotics, video games, multicore computing, artificial intelligence and cyber security are obviously central to the discipline of computer science. However, other fields such as genetics, atomic physics, renewable energy, and health care depend upon computers for advancement as well. The increasing use of and reliance on computers in our modern technological society makes the study of computer science an exciting and challenging one.

Computer Science at Western is composed of core classes organized around the study of design and analysis techniques used to write software in various application domains along with details about the internal workings of computers and networks. Elective classes in areas such as artificial intelligence, mobile device programming, robotics, graphics, web programming, bioinformatics, computer security, and video game programming allow students to explore areas of individual interest.

Why Consider a Computer Science Major?

Computer science is an exciting, growing, challenging field that is critical to many aspects of everyday life. As a computer scientist you can make an impact on the advancement of medicine, clean energy, entertainment, communication for the disabled, climate research, and automotive technologies to name a few. For some, the most motivational aspect of being a computer scientist is being involved in creating the next great technology that will help people the world over.

Apart from the compelling work you can do is the fact that computer scientists are highly sought after and can attain lucrative jobs directly out of college.

Anyone who enjoys abstract thinking and problem solving would most certainly appreciate computer science because the discipline is not just about programming. It is about the ways we organize data, solve problems, discover applications, and build devices and associated software that are effective and easy to use.

 Contact Information

Department Information
Communications Facility 495

CS Undergraduate Advisor
Mary Hall
Communications Facility 459

Transfer Advisor
Wesley Deneke
Communications Facility 479

 Sample Careers

Computational Scientist | Computer Engineer | Data Scientist | Database Administrator | Educator | Game Programmer | IT Consultant | Network Engineer | Project Manager | Research Analyst | Robotics Programmer | Software Engineer | Systems Administrator | Systems Analyst | Systems Engineer | Technical Writer | User Experience Designer | Web Developer

 Major/Career Resources

How to Declare (Admission and Declaration Process):

Admission to the Computer Science BS major is a two-phase process. Students are classified as pre-majors until they have completed CSCI 141, CSCI 145, CSCI 241, CSCI 247 and CSCI 301 as well as MATH 124. Students may declare the CS Pre-major when they are enrolled in CSCI 145. The premajor application is on the advising tab of the CS Department website.

Students are eligible to apply to the full major when they are in the last of CSCI 241, CSCI 247 and CSCI 301 (typically in late sophomore year). We look at the student’s cumulative GPA in these three courses, as well as involvement in the CS Department community (clubs, activities, research, volunteering). The application to the computer science major includes an application form and a major declaration form. Students should apply by the deadline, which is early in the quarter in which they will complete CSCI 241, CSCI 247 and CSCI 301 (fall, winter or spring terms only). Upon being admitted to the major students will be assigned an advisor from the computer science faculty.

Students may retake at most one of CSCI 241, CSCI 247 or CSCI 301 to improve their major application GPA. We make exceptions only in cases of hardship withdrawal from the quarter. Please note that we count late withdrawals as one attempt.

The application to the computer science major includes an application form and a major declaration form. Application materials are available from on the Computer Science department website at

Grade Requirements

A grade of C- or better is required for a student’s major or minor courses, and supporting courses for majors and minors.