Nov 13, 2019  
2016-2017 Undergraduate Catalog 
2016-2017 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Computer Science, BS

The computer science degree program is applied in nature and is designed to prepare students to begin or advance computing careers in business, industry, government, or education, or to pursue further study in computer science. The curriculum is thorough, current, and oriented toward the technical competencies required of a modern computer professional with emphasis on the development, evaluation, and integration of software systems.



The mission of the Computer Science program is to educate undergraduate and graduate students in the principles of computer science and to extend the understanding and use of those principles by conducting research and service in support of the people and economy of south Texas, the state of Texas as a whole, and the nation, consistent with the program’s function within a Hispanic-serving institution. 

Program Educational Objectives

Based on the mission statements of the university, college, department, and program, we have derived the following objectives for the computer science undergraduate program. The objectives are to graduate students from the baccalaureate program in computer science who:

  1. Contribute productively in a computer science discipline and be progressing towards their career goals.
  2. Communicate effectively and interact with clients and diverse team members during all phases of system development life cycle.
  3. Compare favorably in their knowledge of computer science with baccalaureate graduates from accredited programs at other universities.
  4. Be career-long engaged in improving their knowledge and skills in technical areas, enhancing their ethical sensibilities and broadening their global perspective of the field of computer science.
  5. Serve effectively in professional or other community organizations.

Student Learning Outcomes

In order to prepare students to attain the program educational objectives, the BS CS degree program has been structured to ensure that all students, by the time of their graduation, will have been enabled to meet the following outcomes:

  1. An ability to apply knowledge of computing and mathematics appropriate to the discipline.
  2. An ability to analyze a problem, and identify and define the computing requirements appropriate to its solution.
  3. An ability to design, implement, and evaluate a computer based system, process, component, or program to meet desired needs.
  4. An ability to function effectively on teams to accomplish a common goal.
  5. An understanding of professional, ethical, legal, security and social issues and responsibilities.
  6. An ability to communicate effectively with a range of audiences.
  7. An ability to analyze the local and global impact of computing on individuals, organizations, and society.
  8. Recognition of the need for and an ability to engage in continuing professional development.
  9. An ability to use current techniques, skills, and tools necessary for computing practice.
  10. An ability to apply mathematical foundations, algorithmic principles, and computer science theory in the modeling and design of computer-based systems in a way that demonstrates comprehension of the tradeoffs involved in design choices.
  11. An ability to apply design and development principles in the construction of software systems of varying complexity. 

The requirements for a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science include a total of 120-127 semester hours. The total is divided among the following groups: University Core Curriculum, Major Curriculum, and Electives.

There are five options for the degree, the Systems Programming Option, the Cyber Security and Infrastructure Option, the Computer Game Programming Option, the Computer Information Systems Option, and the Computer Science Education Option. Besides the University Core Curriculum, all options also share a common major curriculum that consists of 40 semester hours in computer science and mathematics.

For information about the minor, please see the Computer Science Minor  section

Curricular Requirements for Computer Science

 A summary of the required hours follows:

  Semester Hours

  0. First-Year Seminars (when applicable)

  I. University Core Curriculum Programs   42
 II. Major Curriculum for All Options 40

III. Courses Specific to Each Option

 IV. Electives as needed to fulfill university graduation minimum requirements 0-1
  Total Hours (minimum) 120-127

The specific requirements for each option of the Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science follow:

O. First-Year Seminars (when applicable) (2)

Full-time, first-year students are required to take

I. Core Curriculum Program 42 sem. hrs.

(See “University Core Curriculum Programs  ”)

All Computer Science options require one or more courses that also satisfy the University Core curriculum.  Before choosing a course to satisfy your University Core, verify that you will not be satisfying that part of the core with a required course.

Specific requirements for this degree:


*These are supporting courses that can be used toward a Mathematics Minor .

III. Courses Specific to Each Option 37-45

A. Systems Programming Option 37 sem. hrs.

This option is for those who intend to pursue careers as systems programmers or pursue advanced study in computer science. The degree program has an emphasis in system software programming and requires a one-year sequence in a physical science with a laboratory component.

B. Cyber Security and Infrastructure Option 39 sem. hrs.


This option is for those who intend to pursue careers in network administration, system administration, web administration and cyber security experts. The degree program has an emphasis on gaining these skills.

C. Computer Game Programming Option 37 sem. hrs.

This option is for those who intend to pursue careers as game programmers. The degree program has an emphasis on the skills necessary for creating and programing computer games.

D. Computer Information Systems Option 37 sem. hrs.

The Computer Information Systems option is intended for those who want to develop and maintain information systems. In this option, the student learns to develop software systems and function as a computer professional. The student should choose electives to link the application-independent foundations and processes of computing and information systems to the needs of a particular application area.  The student will gain knowledge of the particular application area by choosing a minor in an acadmic discipline highly related to the applicaiton area.

The minor should be appropriate as an application area for computer information systems and must consist of at least 18 semester hours. The coursework that satisfies the minor is determined by the faculty in the minor subject.

E. Computer Science Education Option 45 sem. hrs.

The Computer Science Education option is designed for those students seeking a Bachelor of Science Degree and a secondary teaching certificate (grades 7-12) in computer science. See the Computer Science, BS — Grades 7-12 Computer Science Education Concentration  section of this catalog for a full description.

Computer Science courses 18 sem. hrs.

Professional Development and Reading Sequence 27 sem. hrs.