Earn A Computer Science Degree Online

Coursera: 3 Programs

1. Arizona State University

Overall Requirements

#1 most innovative university in the U.S., U.S. News & World Report (2018)

1.2 Overview

A cutting-edge Computer Science Master’s degree from America’s most innovative university

1.3 This program is for

Students with undergraduate degrees in computing or related areas

1.4 Admissions Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree w/3.25 GPA in last 60 credits
  • Prerequisites include calculus and computer science coursework


  • Two semesters of advanced math in Calculus I and Calculus II
  • A background course in discrete math

Prerequisite Knowledge:
Demonstrated knowledge on official transcripts of at least 4 of the below topics, including Computer Organization and Data Structures prior to admission.
If the student is assigned any deficiency coursework upon admission, those classes must be completed with a grade of “B” or higher (scale is 4.00 = “A”) within one year of admission to the program.

  • Computer Organization and Assembly Language Programming
  • Register-level computer organization. Instruction set architecture. Assembly language. Processor organization and design. Memory organization. IO programming. Exception/interrupt handling.
  • Data Structures and Algorithms
  • Advanced data structures and algorithms, including stacks, queues, trees (B, B+, AVL), and graphs. Searching for graphs, hashing, external sorting.
  • Operating Systems
  • Operating system structure and services, processor scheduling, concurrent processes, synchronization techniques, memory management, virtual memory, input/output, storage management, and file systems.
  • Principles of Programming Languages
  • Formal syntactic and semantic descriptions, compilation and implementation issues, and theoretical foundations for several programming paradigms.
  • Introduction to Theoretical Computer Science
  • Introduces formal language theory and automata, Turing machines, decidability/undecidability, recursive function theory, and complexity theory.
  • Introduction to Software Engineering
  • Software life cycle models; project management, team development environments and methodologies; software architectures; quality assurance and standards; legal, ethical issues.

If you have not taken at least 4 of these prerequisite courses, but feel that your industry experience, self-study, or other knowledge has prepared you for the MCS program, you have the option to take an online Computer Science Proficiency Exam. To take the exam, please submit your information above and make this request to your assigned advisor so they can set you up.

  • English

TOEFL: 575 paper-based / 90 Internet-based

  • Additional Requirements:
  • Official Transcripts from all postsecondary institutions you have attended
  • Statement of Purpose
  • OPTIONAL: Three (3) letters of recommendation, with at least one coming from a current or former teacher

1.5 Application Information

Next application deadline is Apr 15, 2019

1.6 Degree courses & Specializations you can start right now

Core Database Concepts
Distributed Database Systems
NoSQL Database Systems
Big Data Tools
Data Management in the Cloud

Introduction to Data Exploration and Visualization
Multivariate and Geographical Data Analysis
Temporal and Hierarchical Data Analysis
Additional Tools Used for Data Visualization

1.7 Cost

Tuition for the complete degree program is $15,000 ($1,500/course).

1.8 Duration

18-36 months

1.9 Courses required

10 courses

1.10 How to complete an application

  • Submit online application and pay application fee
  • Send official transcripts to ASU’s Graduate Admission Services. Opens a New Window. . Scanned copies and/or transcripts sent by email will not be accepted.
  • If you earned your degree from an international institution, please include an attested copy of your degree certificate.
  • If you have submitted a request to take the computer science online proficiency test, please complete the test. ASU will immediately receive your score upon completion; you do not need to send ASU your score.
  • If needed, send proof of English proficiency, as instructed here Opens a New Window. (including exemption rules). Please note that the MCS degree requires higher English proficiency scores, as noted above.
  • If you are not a U.S. citizen but are living in the U.S., send a copy of your U.S. visa to gograd@asu.edu
  • If you are based outside of the US “Select JN” under Visa
  • For any questions, please call us toll-free at 1-844-353-7953 or email mcsenrollment@asu.edu

1.11 MCS Pathway

The MCS Pathway offers you an opportunity to establish a high Graduate GPA in order to meet admission requirements, while making progress towards the MCS degree.

Through the MCS Pathway, you choose and complete any three 500-level (3) courses that are part of the MCS degree program. If you complete all three courses with a 3.25 GPA, you have demonstrated ability to succeed in the subject matter, and can apply to the program using this new GPA.

To be eligible to participate in the MCS pathway, you must submit an application to the degree program. Once your application is received and reviewed, an academic success specialist will reach out to you with enrollment instructions if you are a good candidate for the MCS pathway.

  • Affording College
    Learn about the different types of financial aid and scholarship opportunities available. ASU offers a Cost Calculator, Budget Worksheet Opens a New Window. and Scholarship Search Opens a New Window. to make the college planning process easier.

2. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

#5 ranked CS program in the U.S., U.S. News & World Report (2018)

2.2 Overview

Deepen your computer science knowledge and accelerate your career with a top ranked computer science program for computing professionals

2.3 This program is for

Students with a baccalaureate degree in a computing-related field; students who want to demonstrate computer science expertise in addition to a degree in another field

2.4 Admissions Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree w/3.0 GPA or higher in last 2 years
  • Background in object-oriented computer programming, data structures & algorithms
  • Sufficient background in object-oriented computer programming, data structures & algorithms (e.g. a “data structures” course or comparable knowledge)
  • Not already completed a graduate degree in computer science. (Those who already hold a graduate degree in computer science can complete the program to earn a Master’s Certificate that they can list alongside their existing graduate degree in CS.)
  • Applicants who do not hold a bachelor’s degree in computer science must have sufficient background in computer programming, data structures and algorithms, computer architecture, and theory of computation. We highly recommend applicants complete courses in these areas at a local university near them prior to submitting their application.

2.5 Application Information

Next application deadline is Feb 15, 2019

2.6 Degree courses & Specializations you can start right now

Cloud Computing Concepts, Part 1
Cloud Computing Concepts: Part 2
Cloud Computing Applications, Part 1: Cloud Systems and Infrastructure
Cloud Computing Applications, Part 2: Big Data and Applications in the Cloud
Cloud Networking
Cloud Computing Project

Data Visualization
Text Retrieval and Search Engines
Text Mining and Analytics
Pattern Discovery in Data Mining
Cluster Analysis in Data Mining
Data Mining Project

2.7 Tuition

$19,200 ($600 per credit hour) plus additional fees:
Coursera fees: $79 per each open Coursera course that is applied toward the MCS-DS. (Each credit-bearing course of enrollment at the University of Illinois requires concurrent enrollment in two associated Coursera courses for lecture content and some assessments.)
Note: If the required Coursera course has already been completed before the credit-bearing MCS-DS course started, students do not need to pay again.
ProctorU fees: Exams proctored through ProctorU will be billed when an exam is scheduled, at $8.75 (30-min. exam), $14.75 (1-hr. exam), $21.50 (90-min. and 2-hour exam), or $30.25 (3-hour exam).
Amazon Web Services fees: Vary, depending on the course.
Though the department does not have any assistantships or scholarships available for this program, domestic students may qualify for Federal Student Aid, since the MCS-DS is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Office hours or live event information:
If you have any questions, please review our FAQ section below, or the FAQs on CS@Illinois, or feel free to email us at mcs-ds@cs.illinois.edu.

3. Penn Engineering

Master of Computer and Information Technology


#8 Best National University, U.S. News & World Report (2018)

3.2 Overview

The only online Ivy League master’s degree in Computer Science designed for students without a Computer Science background.

3.3 This program is for

Motivated students who want to start or accelerate a rewarding career in Computer Science.

3.4 Admissions Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited school or university
  • GRE is optional
  • Required Courses
  • CIT 591 Introduction to Software Development
    This course is an introduction to fundamental concepts of programming and computer science, including principles of modern object-oriented programming languages: abstraction, types, polymorphism, encapsulation, inheritance, and interfaces. This course also focuses on best practices and aspects of software development such as software design, software testing, pair programming, version control, and using IDEs.
  • CIT 592 Mathematical Foundations of Computer Science
    This course introduces students to math concepts that form the backbone of the majority of computer science. Topics covered include sets, functions, permutations and combinations, discrete probability, expectation, mathematical induction, and graph theory. The goal of the course is to ensure that students are comfortable enough with the math required for most of the CIS electives.
  • CIT 593 Introduction to Computer Systems
    This course provides an introduction to fundamental concepts of computer systems and computer architecture. Students learn the C programming language and an instruction set (machine language) as a basis for understanding how computers represent data, process information, and execute programs.
  • CIT 594 Data Structures & Software Design
    This course focuses on data structures, software design, and advanced Java. The course starts off with an introduction to data structures and basics of the analysis of algorithms. Important data structures covered include arrays, lists, stacks, queues, trees, hash maps, and graphs. The course also focuses on software design and advanced Java topics such as software architectures, design patterns, networking, multithreading, and graphics.
  • CIT 595 Computer Systems Programming
    This course is a continuation of CIT 593 and introduces students to fundamental concepts in computing systems. The course is divided into two parts. The first half of the course introduces important concepts in modern operating systems: processes, scheduling, caching, and virtual memory. The second half of the course provides an introduction to fundamental concepts in the design and implementation of networked systems, their protocols, and applications. The course will use the C program language, and will develop your knowledge on C system calls, and libraries for process/thread creation and manipulation, synchronization, and network communication.
  • CIT 596 Algorithms & Computation
    This course focuses primarily on the design and analysis of algorithms. It begins with sorting and searching algorithms and then investigates graph algorithms. In order to study graph algorithms, general algorithm design patterns like dynamic programming and greedy algorithms are introduced. A section of this course is also devoted to understanding NP-Completeness.
  • CIT 591, 592, and 593 are the prerequisites for CIT 594, 596, and 595, respectively.
    Courses can be waived or replaced only with the permission of the instructor. Students may not waive or replace more than two required MCIT courses. Courses that are waived need to be replaced with a suitable alternative.

3.5 Application Information

Next application deadline is May 01, 2019

3.6 Cost

$26,300 USD


20-40 months

3.8 Admissions

  • Who Should Apply and Eligibility

MCIT Online is intended for motivated students with little or no background in Computer Science who want to start a rewarding career in computing or pursue future study in the discipline. Students may come from backgrounds as diverse as chemistry, history, medicine, law, mathematics, literature and fine arts. However, they should possess an immense drive and a strong desire to succeed in the field of computing and technology.
Take our Online Readiness Assessment quiz if you are wondering whether an online program is right for you.
Eligibility Criteria

  • Applicants must have obtained a 3 or 4-year bachelor’s degree from an accredited School or University prior to intended matriculation date.
  • Current Penn students may apply, but must complete their on-campus degree programs before matriculating into MCIT Online. Current Penn students are advised to apply only after they are certain of their graduation date for their on-campus degree, and can confirm that they will graduate before the matriculation date of MCIT Online. See more information.
    Technology Requirements
  • Recommended browsers and devices
    Internal or external webcam
  • Application Requirements

Biographical information (part of the online application)
Personal Statement The personal statement should be a 500-1000 word essay that answers the questions below. Please provide detailed and specific examples from academia, industry or research when possible.

  • What makes you interested in the MCIT program?
  • How will you benefit from the program?
  • Why will you succeed in the program?
  • How will you contribute to the MCIT community?
  • Please describe your career goals and how MCIT Online will help to achieve them.
    Two [2] official Letters of Recommendation
    These may be from industry or academia. See more Letters of Recommendation FAQs.
    Unofficial Transcripts
  • From every university or college attended where course credit was earned, including transfer credit transcripts
  • In English
  • Must include courses taken, credit hours and grades earned
  • Diplomas will not be accepted in lieu of transcripts
  • If the grading is on a scale other than 4.0, please include documentation indicating the scale
  • If admitted, you will be required to provide official transcripts of all previous academic work to verify the information provided in the uploaded documents. If there are discrepancies between the self-reported academic work and official records, your offer of admission will be withdrawn. Offers of admission are not binding until academic records are verified. Official transcripts must be received before the time of matriculation. Details regarding the process for submitting official transcripts will be sent to admitted students.

$80 non-refundable application fee

  • This payment must be submitted with the online application.

The GRE is optional for the MCIT Online program. Exam results that are submitted with the application will be taken into consideration in the evaluation process and can have a favorable impact.

  • You may submit unofficial scores with the application.
  • If you want your GRE score to be considered in your application, we must receive your official GRE score by the application deadline. If we don’t receive your official test scores by the deadline, GRE scores will not be taken into consideration.
  • The institution code for the GRE exam is 2888 and major code is 0402 (Computer Science).
  • Test must have been taken within 5 years of application submission.

All international applicants, non-US Citizens, and non-US Permanent Resident applicants for whom English is not the native language must submit official scores for the Test Of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) will not be accepted in place of the TOEFL.

  • The institution code for the TOEFL exam is 2888. CS Major Code is 78.
  • We must receive your official TOEFL score by the application deadline.
  • Test must have been taken within 2 years of application submission.
  • A minimum score of 100 is recommended but it is not required.
  • This requirement can be waived if the candidate has completed a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree where the medium of instruction at the institution is English, by the time of matriculation. Applicants are required to submit documentation of the medium of instruction along with the waiver. Applicants will have the opportunity to apply for a waiver upon submission of their application.
  • Application Evalution

Applications are evaluated holistically, as a complete portfolio. An application is considered complete when all of the following materials have been received by our office: unofficial transcripts, personal statement, resume/cv, letters of recommendation and official test scores (if applicable). Applications that are not complete by the early admissions deadline will not receive an admissions decision until the regular deadline.

Completed master’s applications will be promptly evaluated by our admissions committee once each application cycle has ended. Admittance is based on an estimate of the applicant’s ability to successfully complete our graduate program and on the compatibility of student interests with our programs.

When an admissions decision is reached, the applicant will be notified directly through the online application system. Please note that admission decisions cannot be revealed over the telephone. It is the practice of the School of Engineering and Applied Science not to discuss application results with prospective students. We do not reconsider applications, due to the large volume of applicants.

Please also review these insights from our faculty program directors regarding eligibility and how to improve your application.

  • Admission Deadlines

Spring 2019 Addmissions
Fall 2019 Admissions

  • Costs and Financial Aid
    Total Tuition = $25,000 USD ($2,500 per course unit)

Total Fees = $1,300 USD ($130 per course unit)

Applicants who are admitted and decide to join the program will need to submit a $300 USD enrollment deposit. Payment schedules will vary depending upon how many courses a student enrolls in each semester, please see table below for details.

Number of Courses Cost
1 Course $2,630 ($2,500 Tuition + $130 Fee)
2 Courses $5,260 ($5,000 Tuition + $260 Fee)
3 Courses* $7,890 ($7,500 Tuition + $390 Fee)
4 Courses* $10,520 ($10,000 Tuition + $520 Fee)

*Full time will be available beginning Fall 2019
Online students who are enrolled at least half-time will be eligible to apply for federal student loans. International students’ eligibility may vary depending upon their international status. Also, domestic students who pay a bill during this calendar year are eligible for the 2018 Educational Tax Credit.

EDx 1 Program

1. University of Texas at Austin

1.1 Overview

The master’s program in Computer Science is expected to launch in fall 2019 subject to final approval by UT System and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

Texas is consistently listed as a top-ten university for computer science by U.S. News. The University has now made it possible to combine that top-tier reputation with the flexibility of online study through the new Master of Science in Computer Science Online. The program’s rigorous curriculum is based on UT’s on-campus degree, ensuring that you will receive the elite quality of instruction that defines a UT education.

You will be able take classes in a flexible format that gives you the ability to pursue your educational goals in the manner most consistent with your career goals. The master’s degree you receive at the end of your studies will be indistinguishable from its on-campus counterpart (will not say online) at only a fraction of the on-campus program costs.

Our graduates will enjoy access to world-class professors, a professional network of talented peers from across the globe, and a degree that will enable you to pursue career opportunities from one of the most in-demand fields in the modern economy.

#10 Nationally in Computer Science (US News Best Graduate Schools)
#8 Artificial Intelligence (US News Best Graduate Schools)
#8 Systems (US News Best Graduate Schools)
#7 Theory (US News Best Graduate Schools)

1.2 Details

  • Tuition
    Tuition (30 credits at $333 each) $10,000
    Additional fees per term TBD
    *Students may be eligible for federal financial aid subject to federal aid requirements.
  • Application deadlines
  • FALL 2019
    Priority Decision Deadline
    April 1, 2019 at 11:59 PM CST
    Regular Decision Deadline
    June 1, 2019 at 11:59 PM CST
  • SPRING 2020
    Priority Decision Deadline
    September 1, 2019 at 11:59 PM CST
    Priority Decision Deadline
    September 1, 2019 at 11:59 PM CST
  • Prerequisite coursework

A bachelor’s degree in computer science is preferred for admission to the online master’s program. Other degrees may be considered (particularly in related fields such as electrical engineering, computer engineering or mathematics), however, applicants who do not hold a degree in computer science should have prior coursework or experience equivalent to the following Texas Computer Science undergraduate courses:

  • Discrete Math for Computer Science (CS 311)
  • Introduction to Programming (CS 312)
  • Data Structures (CS 314)
  • Algorithms and Complexity (CS 331)
  • Computer Organization and Architecture (CS 429)
  • Principles of Computer Systems (CS 439)
    Exceptions will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Use of computers at work or some experience programming are not considered to be equivalent to a CS degree and courses.
  • Application requirements
    A full master’s program application includes the following:
  • A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution in the United States or a comparable degree from a foreign academic institution
  • Transcripts from all universities attended
  • GRE
  • TOEFL: Required for international students only
  • Optional: CV, personal statement, and three contacts to submit letters of reference
    NOTE: The University cannot waive the GRE requirement for applicants with work experience or advanced degrees. These scores are an important part of the evaluation.
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