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Master’s Degree

Master's Degree

The Department of Computer Science offers two masters-level degree programs: an M.S.E. and an M.Eng. These are two-year, full-time programs. 

All admitted students will initially be enrolled in the Master of Science in Engineering (M.S.E.), thesis-required track. In the spring of year 1, as part of readmission, all students will be given the option to switch to the Master of Engineering (M.Eng.), non-thesis track. Students opting to remain on the M.S.E. track must have a confirmed research adviser and should also have a preliminary thesis proposal. Switching from the M.S.E. track to the M.Eng track will be permitted through January of Year 2.

All coursework must be taken for a grade. A minimum of 4 courses must be taken in year 1. If, due to scheduling conflicts, this is not possible, approval by the Director of Graduate Studies is required. In no event will time to degree be extended beyond two years.

Funding is normally in the form of teaching assistantships covering the four semesters of the program. Summer funding for M.S.E. candidates in the form of a research assistantship may be offered at the adviser's discretion.

Students wishing to continue on for a Ph.D. should apply through the normal application process during the fall of their second year of study.

For Princeton undergraduates interested in continuing at Princeton for a Master's Degree:  There is now a special policy that allows current Princeton students to count up to two courses taken as an undergraduate towards a Master's degree in Computer Science at Princeton. Those two courses must be upper-level COS courses that fulfill requirements of the Master's degree and have been taken in excess of the COS requirements for the undergraduate degree.* For example, if you take ten COS departmentals as an undergraduate at Princeton, and two of them are advanced classes that satisfy requirements of the Master's program, then you can count both towards a Master's degree if you are accepted into the program.  This is a way to reduce your expected time to completion by approximately one semester.

Princeton students still have to apply to the Master's program through the regular admission process, and by the December 1st deadline. Admission is competitive. If you are interested in being pre-screened for admission, please contact the computer science graduate coordinator (gradinfo@cs). You will need to submit (1) a one page personal statement describing your preparation to date and why you are interested in the master's program; and (2) an unofficial copy of your transcript. In addition, have two letters of recommendation from COS professors emailed directly to the graduate coordinator. Once these materials have been received, the Director of Graduate studies will perform an informal review and provide feedback about whether admission into the Master's program is "likely," "unlikely," or "possible." This feedback is not binding -- it is meant only to help planning for senior year.

Please have all information for pre-screening submitted by October 1st of the year you intend to apply to the Master's program.

*Undergraduate senior thesis and undergraduate independent work courses are not included in this policy.

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