Applying to the Program
To be eligible for acceptance at a minimum you:
- have earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution
- have been in good standing at the last institution attended
- possess a grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.7 for the last 60 semester units (90 quarter units) attempted.
Students may be admitted on a conditional basis, subject to the requirement that they remedy any deficiencies subsequent to admission.
However, students with missing classes almost never get accepted.
Letters of recommendation are not required. There is no separate application for the department.
Apply online at Cal State Apply
For US residents
all application materials and admission questions should be
directed to CSULB Enrollment Services by the
For International students
all application materials
and admission questions should be directed to the
CSULB Center for International Education (Note: this includes questions related to Visas, English requirements, fees, etc.)
International deadlines are here
Information about English language requirements can be found here
The GRE is NOT required.
Students are required to have taken the following prerequisite courses (or their equivalents) in their undergraduate or post-baccalaureate study (Note: any deficiencies must be removed prior to Advancement to Candidacy):
- One year (two semesters) of instruction in an object-oriented programming language.
All of the following courses (or their equivalent at your undergraduate university):
- CECS 323 Database Fundamentals. Prerequisites: CECS 228, 277 all with a grade of "C" or better.
- CECS 326 Operating Systems. Prerequisites: CECS 282 and either 285 or 346 all with a grade of "C" or better.
- CECS 327 Introduction to Networks and Distributed Computing. Prerequisite: CECS 326 with a grade of "C" or better.
- CECS 328 Algorithms. Prerequisite: CECS 228 with a grade of "C" or better. Corequisite: CECS 277.
- CECS 341 Computer Architecture and Organization. Prerequisites: CECS 285 with a grade of "C" or better.
- CECS 343 Introduction to Software Engineering. Prerequisites: CECS 277 or 282 all with a grade of "C" or better.
- CECS 378 Introduction to Computer Security Principles. Prerequisites: CECS 229 and (CECS 274 or CECS 275) all with a grade of C or better.
- EE 380 Probability, Statistics and Stochastic Modeling [or MATH 380] Prerequisites: MATH 122; (CECS 100 or equivalent) with a grade of "C" or better.
One of the following:
- CECS 419 Theory of Computation (3) Prerequisite: CECS 328 with a grade of "C" or better.
- CECS 424 Organization of Programming Languages (3) Prerequisites: CECS 326 and 328 all with a grade of "C" or better.
- CECS 444 Compiler Construction (3) Prerequisites: CECS 285 and 328 with a grade of "C" or better.
Deficiencies in prerequisites must be made good before Advancement to Candidacy which for practical purposes means within three semesters.
- Transfer units: Students may transfer up to 6 of the 30 units required for the MSCS degree, subject to approval of the CECS graduate advisor. Units earned through the College of Professional & International Education are considered transfer units. No transfer units may be used to fulfill the 21-unit graduate credit requirement.
- 7-year limit: All requirements of the MSCS degree must be completed within seven years from the date the first course of the student's approved program was completed.
- Probation: Graduate students are placed on academic probation if they fail to maintain an overall grade-point average of at least 3.0 in all upper division and graduate level courses taken since admission to the degree program. Students who remain on academic probation for more than two consecutive semesters are subject to academic disqualification.
Classified vs. Conditional Classified
"Classified" means a student has completed all prerequisites needed for the MSCS degree.
"Conditional Classified" means a student has up to three prerequisite classes that are considered deficiencies and must be completed.
For Conditional Classified students:
- Prerequisites must be completed within the first year.
- If you have already completed a prerequisite that we mistakenly put on your list, you may petition to have it removed.
- If a Registration Hold has been placed on your account because of a prerequisite deficiency, you may petition to have the hold removed.
- Conditional Classified Students who have completed all deficiencies, should Apply to Change to Classified Status.