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MS | Degree Requirements

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The central requirement for the MS CS degree is completion of at least 45 units that represent an approved academic plan. The concrete representation of that academic plan is your program sheet, which lists the courses you intend to use to satisfy the 45-unit requirement.

Enrollment: Master's students are required to enroll in at least 8 units per quarter (Autumn, Winter, and Spring quarters).

The following exceptions apply:

  • Summer enrollment is optional, and during the summer you can enroll in 0-10 units.
  • HCP students can enroll in as few as 3 units in Autumn, Winter and Spring quarters.
  • The last quarter before graduation a student can enroll in as few as 3 units by submitting a Request for Graduate Part-Time Enrollment eForm.

Leave of Absence: The MS CS program allows students to take a Leave of Absence, for any reason, for up to one year. This translates to three non-summer quarters. The one year limit is cumulative; if you take a leave for one quarter, for example, then you have two quarters of leave available to you. If you are not ready to return to Stanford after your Leave of Absence is exhausted, you should discontinue your program. When you are ready to return, you can apply for reinstatement into the MSCS program. The CS department is not obligated to accept you back into the program. But as long as you left Stanford in good academic standing, we want to see you come back. You can read more about the process for withdrawing from the program and applying for reinstatement here.

Note: CS Master's students must complete 45 units at Stanford. Units cannot be transferred from a different institution. Coterm students must complete 45 units that are unique to their MS program.

Overall Requirement
Foundations Requirement
Significant Software Implementation (SSI) Requirement
Breadth Requirement
Depth Requirement
Elective Requirement

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