Computer Science (BS)


The University offers a bachelor of science (BS) in computer science.

The rapid spread of computing and information technology has generated a continuing need for highly trained workers to design and develop new hardware and software systems and to incorporate new technologies. Emerging areas include areas such as cloud computing, machine learning and artificial intelligence, mobile computing, and data science. Traditional areas of computing—such as networks, databases, systems, and the web—also continue to be important. Students who see themselves as a part of this exciting and rapidly changing world will want to find out more about the Computer Science Program.

The computer science major provides students with a solid foundation for a career in computing and related areas. Students begin with a core sequence of courses that develops the programming and analytical foundation needed for delving into advanced study in the many areas of computing. Upper-level courses focus on an in-depth understanding of important areas of computing, including courses in both foundational and emerging areas. Courses in foundational areas taken by all CS majors include programming in a variety of programming languages, data structures, algorithms, discrete mathematics, programming language theory, and software design. Additional foundational courses are taken within one of the concentrations of the major. Courses in emerging and applied areas include data science, machine learning, computer graphics, artificial intelligence, database programming, computer networks, web programming, Unix/Linux administration, cyber security, and mobile computing.

Students select their electives to satisfy at least one of the concentrations within the major. The Computing Science Concentration builds more in-depth skills and knowledge in algorithms and data structures, and systems programming. These courses prepare students for positions which develop systems-level software or software requiring careful optimizing for efficiency. This concentration also prepares students who are interested in pursuing a PhD in computer science. The skills and knowledge in the concentration are fundamental to computer science and can be applied across other areas of computer science. The Data Science Concentration builds skills and knowledge related to data analysis, including dealing with large datasets and various data formats, applying machine-learning tools to datasets, storing data in databases, and user interfaces for data analysis and results. The concentration prepares students for a career in data science or related areas.The Information Science Concentration builds skills and knowledge in administration and development in areas that are in demand across all types of organizations - database and data management, web programming, security, and systems administration. The concentration prepares students for careers in any of these areas.

Relatively modest class sizes give students the chance to work one-on-one with our highly talented and dedicated faculty. At the same time students have opportunities for field and research experiences. Advisors work with students in the selection of their courses prior to registration each semester. Faculty stay up-to-date on the latest developments in the ever-changing world of computing and provide contemporary and relevant experiences to their students.

Computer science majors benefit from the department's state-of-the-art computer classrooms, laboratories, and servers. A computing lab is staffed by computer science graduate and undergraduate majors to provide academic assistance and mentoring for all students.

Opportunities are available for undergraduate research in computer science. In addition, students prepare projects that provide hands-on experience relating to real-world applications, and students are encouraged to get additional experience through internships, which are available at companies throughout the country. Students majoring in computer science can join and participate in the activities of the student chapter of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM). With more than 100 highly accessible student organizations on campus, each student's experience at Indiana State University abounds with student leadership opportunities that complement their studies.

Special Note: The Computer Science Program is offered on the Terre Haute campus. The program is also offered via online learning.

Required Courses


For the student prepared for the challenges, computer science is an exciting and dynamic discipline that can lead to excellent job opportunities in business or industry. Computer science ranks as one of the top bachelor's degrees in terms of starting pay and number of jobs that are available (for example, rated #1 by the Princeton Review).

Major employers of computer science graduates include the federal, state, and local governments; and private sector employers such as the airline industry, tech industry, pharmaceutical industry, research and testing services, educational services, security and commodity exchanges, management and public relations services, finance, insurance, and public utilities. ISU Computer Science alumni have gone on to work at large organizations such as the National Security Agency, Walt Disney, Google, Rolls Royce, Liberty Mutual, and Hewlett-Packard—and at smaller organizations such as the City of Terre Haute, Clabber Girl, ISU, and a number of area startups.

Students graduating with a degree in computer science are well-positioned to obtain positions in computing and related areas, including positions with job titles such as software engineer, database programmer/developer/administrator, web programmer/developer/administrator, systems administrator, networking administrator, and mobile app developer.

In addition, graduates can pursue graduate programs in computer science. The department offers a master's degree in computer science, after which students can obtain more senior positions in computing or careers in research or academia.

Those interested in pursuing a PhD after studying at ISU have been admitted with support at universities across the country, including the University of Arizona, Emory University, University of California at Merced and Riverside, and University of Texas-Dallas.

Financial Aid & Scholarships

Students have many sources of financial support for their studies, including financial aid, work-study programs, veterans' benefits, and special scholarships for entering freshmen and transfer students.

In addition, the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science offers a number of scholarships.

Further Information

Prospective students should contact the Office of Admissions for further information and assistance.

Currently enrolled students should contact the following:

Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
Indiana State University


The Graduate Catalog and Undergraduate Catalog of Indiana State University are the documents of authority for all students. The requirements given in the catalogs supersede information issued by any academic department, program, college, or school. The University reserves the right to change the requirements at any time.



Prospective students should contact the Office of Admissions for further information and assistance.

Currently enrolled students should contact the following:

Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
Indiana State University