Rochester Institute of Technology

Academic Program Overviews

Student Skills & Capabilities, Salary Data, Career Information 

Computer Science MS

Program Overview

The computer science masters is designed for students who have an undergraduate degree (or minor) in computer science, as well as those who have a strong background in a field in which computers are applied, such as engineering, science, or business. You’ll apply theoretical principles underlying computer science, ensuring you acquire the intellectual tools necessary to keep up-to-date in this rapidly evolving discipline. With focused course work in areas such as computer graphics and visualization, data management, distributed systems, intelligent systems, programming languages and tools, and security, you’ll be prepared for career advancement in a range of areas.

The program consists of a core curriculum, a diverse set of clusters, and many additional electives. The clusters provide students with the opportunity to obtain depth in a computer science discipline. The electives add the necessary breadth of knowledge required by industry. This combination prepares our graduates to engineer modern computing systems and contribute to all aspects of systems life cycles.

Clusters are offered in a variety of areas, including computer graphics and visualization, data management, distributed systems, intelligent systems, programming languages and tools, security, and theory. Certain pre-approved courses from other departments also may be counted toward the degree.

The program helps students prepare for academic and research careers in computer science or a related discipline. The program is designed for students who have an undergraduate major or minor in computer science as well as those who have a strong background in a field in which computers are applied.

Faculty members in the department are actively engaged in research in artificial intelligence, wireless networks, pattern recognition, computer vision, visualization, data management, combinatorics, and distributed computing systems. There are many opportunities for graduate students to participate in these activities toward thesis or project work and independent study.

Degrees Awarded

  • Master of Science Degree


  • Approximately 450 students are enrolled in this program.

Cooperative Education & Experiential Education Component

  • Co-op is optional for this program
  • Minimum co-op requirement: 1 block, 15 weeks/semester
  • Co-op availability: fall through summer

Salary Information

Co-op:   $28.78                     $10.50 - $58.00
MS:        $105,000

Student Skills & Capabilities

Computing skills include, but are not limited to the following:
Languages: Java, C++, C#, C, Lisp, Prolog, XML
Operating Systems: Linux, OSX, Windows
Hardware: Mac, PC

Equipment & Facilities

Over 150 Linux workstations,
40 PC’s Windows/Linux, 40 Macs.

Training / Qualifications

While there are many training paths available for computer science specialists, mainly because employers’ needs are so varied, the level of education and experience employers seek has been rising, due to the growing number of qualified applicants and the specialization involved with most programming and analysis tasks.

Employers look for people with the necessary programming skills, especially on newer, object-oriented programming languages and tools, such as C++ and Java, who can think logically and pay close attention to detail. The job calls for patience, persistence, and the ability to work on exacting analytical work, especially under pressure. Ingenuity, creativity, and imagination also are particularly important when programmers design solutions and test their work for potential failures. The ability to work with abstract concepts and to do technical analysis is especially important for systems programmers, because they work with the software that controls the computer’s operation. Because programmers are expected to work in teams and interact directly with users, employers want programmers who are able to communicate with non-technical personnel. Many colleges offer classes in a variety of areas, such as computer graphics and visualization, database systems/data mining, distributed systems, intelligent systems, languages and tools, security, and theory.

Students can participate in consulting or research in the areas of artificial intelligence, wireless networks, computer vision, computational combinatorics, and distributed computing systems. There are many opportunities for graduate students to participate in these activities for thesis or project work and independent study and for employment upon graduation.

Job Titles

Software Engineering Intern, Firmware Engineer, Web Developer, Software Developer, Data Scientist Intern, System Engineer Intern, Site Reliability Intern, API Developer, Mobile Apps Development Intern, Back End Developer

Full Time:
Application Engineer, Data Scientist, Cognitive Software Engineer, Full Stack Developer, .NET Programmer, Software Developer, Software Development Engineer, Software Engineer, Web Developer

Significant Points

  • Employment is projected to increase much faster than the average for all occupations.
  • Job prospects are expected to be excellent

Selected Employer Hiring Partners

Intuit, Paychex, Ahold-Delhaize, Apple, Tesla, Indeed, Amazon, CarGurus, IBM, Tripadvisor, VMware, Watfair, Barlcays, Cisco, Facebook, PayPal, Qualcomm, Esri, Datto

Full Time:
Amazon, Apple, Bloomberg, Google, IBM, Intel, Intuit, Paychex, PricewaterhouseCoopers, State Street, Twitter, Viacom, Wayfair, Walmart, VMware

Contact Us

We appreciate your interest in your career and we will make every effort to help you succeed. Feel free to contact Amanda Thau, the career services advisor who works with the Computer Science MS program. You can access information about services through our web site at
Amanda Thau, Career Services Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; 585.475.5456
Rochester Institute of Technology . Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education
Bausch & Lomb Center
57 Lomb Memorial Drive . Rochester NY  14623-5603