Computer Science, B.S. (Behrend)

Program Code: CMPBC_BS

Entrance to Major

To be eligible for entrance to the Computer Science (CMPBC) major, a student must have completed MATH 140, MATH 141, CMPSC 121, CMPSC 122, and one of the following: BIOL 110, or CHEM 110 and CHEM 111 or PHYS 211 with a grade of C or better in each of these courses.

Degree Requirements

For a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science, a minimum of 122-123 credits is required:

Requirement Credits
General Education 45
Electives 1
Requirements for the Major 97-98

21 of the 45 credits for General Education are included in the Requirements for the Major. This includes: 6 credits of GQ courses, 6 credits of GWS courses, 9 credits of GN courses.

Per Senate Policy 83.80.5, the college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of coursework in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned.

General Education

Connecting career and curiosity, the General Education curriculum provides the opportunity for students to acquire transferable skills necessary to be successful in the future and to thrive while living in interconnected contexts. General Education aids students in developing intellectual curiosity, a strengthened ability to think, and a deeper sense of aesthetic appreciation. These are requirements for all baccalaureate students and are often partially incorporated into the requirements of a program. For additional information, see the General Education Requirements section of the Bulletin and consult your academic adviser.

The keystone symbol Keystone/General Education Course appears next to the title of any course that is designated as a General Education course. Program requirements may also satisfy General Education requirements and vary for each program.

Foundations (grade of C or better is required.)

  • Quantification (GQ): 6 credits
  • Writing and Speaking (GWS): 9 credits

Knowledge Domains

  • Arts (GA): 6 credits
  • Health and Wellness (GHW): 3 credits
  • Humanities (GH): 6 credits
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences (GS): 6 credits
  • Natural Sciences (GN): 9 credits

Integrative Studies (may also complete a Knowledge Domain requirement)

  • Inter-Domain or Approved Linked Courses: 6 credits

University Degree Requirements

First Year Engagement

All students enrolled in a college or the Division of Undergraduate Studies at University Park, and the World Campus are required to take 1 to 3 credits of the First-Year Seminar, as specified by their college First-Year Engagement Plan.

Other Penn State colleges and campuses may require the First-Year Seminar; colleges and campuses that do not require a First-Year Seminar provide students with a first-year engagement experience.

First-year baccalaureate students entering Penn State should consult their academic adviser for these requirements.

Cultures Requirement    

6 credits are required and may satisfy other requirements

  • United States Cultures: 3 credits
  • International Cultures: 3 credits

Writing Across the Curriculum

3 credits required from the college of graduation and likely prescribed as part of major requirements.

Total Minimum Credits

A minimum of 120 degree credits must be earned for a baccalaureate degree. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 credits. Students should consult with their college or department adviser for information on specific credit requirements.

Quality of Work

Candidates must complete the degree requirements for their major and earn at least a 2.00 grade-point average for all courses completed within their degree program.

Limitations on Source and Time for Credit Acquisition

The college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of course work in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. Credit used toward degree programs may need to be earned from a particular source or within time constraints (see Senate Policy 83-80). For more information, check the Suggested Academic Plan for your intended program.

Requirements for the Major

A student enrolled in this major must earn at least a grade of C in each 300- and 400-level course in the major field.

To graduate, a student enrolled in the major must earn a grade of C or better in each course designated by the major as a C-required course, as specified by Senate Policy 82-44.

Prescribed Courses
CMPSC 221Object Oriented Programming with Web-Based Applications3
MATH 220Matrices Keystone/General Education Course2
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
CAS 100AEffective Speech Keystone/General Education Course3
CMPSC 121Introduction to Programming Techniques Keystone/General Education Course3
CMPSC 122Intermediate Programming3
CMPSC 312Computer Organization and Architecture3
CMPSC 335Fundamentals of Communication Networks3
CMPSC 360Discrete Mathematics for Computer Science3
CMPSC 421Net-centric Computing3
CMPSC 431WDatabase Management Systems3
CMPSC 461Programming Language Concepts3
CMPSC 465Data Structures and Algorithms3
CMPSC 474Operating System & Systems Programming3
CMPSC 484Computer Science Senior Project I2
CMPSC 485WComputer Science Senior Project II3
ENGL 202CEffective Writing: Technical Writing Keystone/General Education Course3
MATH 140Calculus With Analytic Geometry I Keystone/General Education Course4
MATH 141Calculus with Analytic Geometry II Keystone/General Education Course4
STAT/MATH 318Elementary Probability3
Additional Courses
Select one of the following sequences:10-11
Chemical Principles I Keystone/General Education Course
and Biology: Basic Concepts and Biodiversity Keystone/General Education Course
and Biology: Populations and Communities Keystone/General Education Course
Chemical Principles I Keystone/General Education Course
and Biology: Basic Concepts and Biodiversity Keystone/General Education Course
and Biology: Molecules and Cells Keystone/General Education Course
Chemical Principles I Keystone/General Education Course
and Biology: Basic Concepts and Biodiversity Keystone/General Education Course
and Honors Biology: Molecules and Cells Keystone/General Education Course
Chemical Principles I Keystone/General Education Course
and Biology: Basic Concepts and Biodiversity Keystone/General Education Course
and Biology: Function and Development of Organisms Keystone/General Education Course
Chemical Principles I Keystone/General Education Course
and Biology: Basic Concepts and Biodiversity Keystone/General Education Course
and Honors Biology: Function and Development of Organisms Keystone/General Education Course
Chemical Principles I Keystone/General Education Course
and Experimental Chemistry I Keystone/General Education Course
and Chemical Principles II Keystone/General Education Course
and Experimental Chemistry II Keystone/General Education Course
and Organic Chemistry I
General Physics: Mechanics Keystone/General Education Course
and General Physics: Electricity and Magnetism Keystone/General Education Course
and General Physics: Fluids and Thermal Physics Keystone/General Education Course
General Physics: Mechanics Keystone/General Education Course
and General Physics: Electricity and Magnetism Keystone/General Education Course
and General Physics: Wave Motion and Quantum Physics Keystone/General Education Course
Select at least 15 additional science credits from department approved list15
Supporting Courses and Related Areas
Select 6 credits from the school approved list 16
Select 9 additional credits from department approved courses in CMPSC, CMPEN, or SWENG9

Academic Advising

The objectives of the university’s academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee’s unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.

READ SENATE POLICY 32-00: ADVISING POLICY

Erie

Naseem Ibrahim, Ph.D.
Program Chair, Associate Professor
Burke 173
Erie, PA 16563
814-898-6184
nii1@psu.edu

Melanie Ford
Advising Coordinator
Burke 211
Erie, PA 16563
814-898-6685
mrf11@psu.edu

Suggested Academic Plan

The suggested academic plan(s) listed on this page are the plan(s) that are in effect during the 2020-21 academic year. To access previous years' suggested academic plans, please visit the archive to view the appropriate Undergraduate Bulletin edition (Note: the archive only contain suggested academic plans beginning with the 2018-19 edition of the Undergraduate Bulletin).

Computer Science, B.S. at Erie Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
CMPSC 121*#†3CMPSC 122*#3
ENGL 15 or 30H†‡3MATH 141*‡#†4
MATH 140*‡#†4Science Sequence Course†34
PSU 71General Education Course3
Science Sequence Course (GN)#†34General Education Course (GHW)1.5
 15 15.5
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
CAS 100‡†3CMPSC 360*3
CMPSC 2213ENGL 202C‡†3
MATH 2202STAT 318*3
Science Sequence Course†32-3Computer Science and Science Elective3
General Education Course3General Education Course3
General Education Course (GHW)1.5 
 14.5-15.5 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
CMPSC 312*13CMPSC 421*23
CMPSC 335*13CMPSC 431W23
CMPSC 465*3CMPSC 474*3
SWENG 411 (Computing Elective)*3Computer Science and Science Elective3
Computer Science and Science Elective3Supporting and Related Area3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
CMPSC 461*13CMPSC 485W*23
CMPSC 484*12Computing Elective3
Computing Elective or Computer Science and Science Elective3Computer Science and Science Elective3
General Education Selection (GA/GH/GS)3General Education Course3
Computer Science and Science Elective3General Education Course3
Supporting and Related Area3 
 17 15
Total Credits 122-123

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy University Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

GWS, GQ, GHW, GN, GA, GH, and GS are abbreviations used to identify General Education program courses. General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ) and Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS, and Integrative Studies). Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of ‘C’ or better.

Integrative Studies courses are required for the General Education program. N is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate an Inter-Domain course and Z is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate a Linked course.

School-Approved Electives for Computer Science and Science Electives (15 credits):

Students may choose one of the below options in Computer Science (9 credits):

Students may choose from the following courses in Natural Science, MATH, STAT or other CMPSC courses (6 credits):

NOTE: Students who take the Chemistry Science Sequence will need to include one course with Natural Science (GN) credit.

School-Approved Computing Electives (9 credits):

Students may choose any courses from:

  • Software Engineering: SWENG 411 or higher
  • Computer Engineering: CMPEN 270 or higher (except CMPEN 441)
  • IE 418
  • Other CMPSC 400-level courses

School-Approved Supporting and Related Area Courses (6 credits):

Students may choose from the following:

  • 300- and 400-level courses in GAME, MIS, ACCTG, ECON, FIN, PSYCH and ROTC (except MIS 336)
  • CMPSC 494 – Research, CMPSC 495 – Internship, and/or CMPSC 496 – Independent Study
  • 300 and 400-level courses in CMPSC, CMPEN, and SWENG (except SWENG 311)

Career Paths

Typical beginning careers for B.S. in Computer Science graduates include applications programmer, systems programmer, systems analyst, systems administrator, and network administrator. You also can prepare for emerging careers in data science, cognitive computing, and artificial intelligence. Penn State Behrend has a comprehensive support system to help you identify and achieve your goals for college and beyond. Meet with your academic adviser often and take advantage of the services offered by the Academic and Career Planning Center beginning in your first semester.

Careers

Students entering the workforce with a degree in computer science will find many opportunities in business, industry, government, and academia, and particularly in organizations with a science emphasis. These include traditional and emerging careers such as application programming, systems programming, systems analysis, systems administration, bioinformatics, network administration, and computer modeling. Employers of recent Behrend B.S. in Computer Science graduates include Amazon, Erie Insurance, Genesys, IBM, Larson Texts, Lockheed Martin, and Northrop Grumman.

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT POTENTIAL CAREER OPTIONS FOR GRADUATES OF THE COMPUTER SCIENCE PROGRAM

Opportunities for Graduate Studies

Graduate programs in computer science often delve more deeply into the intersections of computer science and the natural sciences, leading to careers in bioinformatics, computational chemistry or physics, or scientific visualization. Or, you can use a master’s degree to learn management skills; Penn State Behrend offers a Master of Manufacturing Management (M.M.M) degree program for aspiring organizational leaders.

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT OPPORTUNITIES FOR GRADUATE STUDIES

Professional Resources

Accreditation

The B.S. in Computer Science is accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET, www.abet.org.

ABET is a nonprofit, non-governmental accrediting agency for programs in applied and natural science, computing, engineering and engineering technology and recognized as an accreditor by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. ABET accreditation is voluntary and provides assurance that a college or university program meets the quality standards of the profession for which that program prepares graduates. The School of Engineering at Penn State Behrend consistently places in the Top 50 in U.S. News & World Report’s rankings of the nation’s undergraduate engineering programs.

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT ABET ACCREDITATION

Contact

Erie

SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING
242 Jack Burke Research and Economic Development Center
5101 Jordan Road
Erie, PA 16563
814-898-6153
engineering@psu.edu

http://behrend.psu.edu/school-of-engineering