2020-2021 Academic Catalog 
    
    Oct 21, 2020  
2020-2021 Academic Catalog

Computer Science Minor


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Computer Science Overview


The Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at Clark University provides a supportive environment and offers rigorous undergraduate programs in two disciplines: mathematics and computer science. We think of computer science neither as a narrow path to the next killer app, nor indeed to any specific product. Rather, computer science is a broad discipline that provides the means to solve complex challenges more efficiently and effectively than ever before.

As a computer science student, you will develop a strong foundation in theory and computational thinking and problem solving skills that are broadly applicable to many disciplines and careers. You will also build your expertise by applying your foundation and skills to practical applications. Our liberal arts curriculum will give you an appreciation for the interconnected nature of our society, and you will graduate ready to apply and extend your skills in society, industry, or research  through digital innovations, new discoveries, and never-before-imagined solutions.

Our faculty are well-known researchers, care deeply about teaching, and work hard to help our students achieve their potential. What sets us apart is two-fold:

  • We have outstanding faculty with expertise in a variety of fields - more diverse than what you will find at most small colleges.

  • We are a small department and can provide a more supportive environment than what you will find at a bigger university.

Our faculty and students work together to provide a nurturing community such as one finds in small colleges, with the quality of a big university.

Excellent co-curricular and extra-curricular opportunities


Computer science students at Clark have excellent opportunities inside and outside the classroom, including but not limited to the following.  Many of these opportunities are normally reserved for graduate students in other institutions.

  • Work with faculty on research projects, publish co-authored papers, and participate in professional conferences.

  • Follow their own interests, developing innovative projects while working with a faculty advisor.

  • Train and work as undergraduate teaching assistants and computer lab administrators within the department; and work at Clark’s Information Technology Services and other departments.

  • Participate in programming competitions and hackathons - our students have excelled in these events.

Diverse Options for Double Majors, Minors and Concentrations


Computer science student at Clark often have other interests or come from students who initially planned to study other disciplines.  Clark offers a variety of wonderful programs, and many of our students double major or pursue one or more minors.  A popular double major is Computer Science and Mathematics! Other disciplines popular with our students include Data Science, Economics, Natural Sciences (Biology, Chemistry, and Physics), Mathematical Biology and Bioinformatics, Computational Science, Environmental Science, Business Management, Political Science, Geography/GIS, Psychology, Education, English, Foreign Languages, Music, Philosophy, and Graphic Design.

Our students also volunteer in the community, study abroad, create startups, and work toward making a difference in the world.

Outstanding Student Outcomes and Return on Investment


We have an outstanding placement record of computer science students. Our graduates have gone on to some of the most prestigious companies, research labs, and graduate schools in the world. Others choose Clark’s Accelerated Degree Program (also known as “fifth-year free”), offering master’s degrees in many fields such as information technology, finance, business administration, and education. The Columbia Combined Plan Program (also known as the 3-2 Engineering Program at Clark) allows students to earn a BA degree from Clark and a BS degree from Columbia University (subject to their admission) in diverse disciplines such as applied mathematics, applied physics, computer science, computer engineering and operations research.

Recent articles about our students on the Clark website (https://clarknow.clarku.edu/topic/computer-science/) and our department Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/MathCSAtClark/) highlight many of their achievements. These students have diverse interests, including double majors and minors, and have been active in student organizations such as Student Council, Model UN, Diversity, Hip Hop, Theatre, Standup Comedy, Martial Arts, Investment, and Entrepreneurship.

For more information, please visit the Mathematics and Computer Science Department website.

Minor Requirements


The computer science minor requires six courses: (CSCI 120  Introduction to Computing and CSCI 121  Data Structures) or CSCI 124   Honors Introduction to Computing, and four or five other courses in Computer Science (although MATH 114  Discrete Mathematics may substitute for one), at least one of which is at the 200 level.

The introductory computer science courses are also part of Clark’s Program of Liberal Studies (PLS). More specifically, CSCI 120, 121, and 124 are science perspective (SP) courses, and Math 114 is a formal analysis (FA) course.

Students must earn a minimum course grade of C- in order to receive major or minor credit in Computer Science. No course can be taken as pass/fail for the computer science major or minor.

Below are some sample course sequences for the computer science minor. You’re welcome to consult the computer science faculty and choose other courses that interest you.

Computer Science Faculty


Kenneth Basye, Ph.D.
Frederic Green, Ph.D.
Li Han, Ph.D., Chair
John Magee, Ph.D.
Shuo Niu, Ph.D
Natalia Sternberg, Ph.D.

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