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About the Department


The Department of Computer Science was founded in 1970, and has been part of the College of Engineering and Applied Science since 1980. The Department offers the BS, MS, ME, and PhD degrees in Computer Science, as well as a Computer Science Minor. It prides itself on achieving excellence at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Academic Programs

The Department offers both undergraduate and graduate degree programs:

Undergraduate Program

The undergraduate program has several features that distinguish it nationally. One of these is a very successful year-long senior projects course, taken by nearly all majors, in which students work in teams on significant projects mainly submitted by industry. Another is a trailblazing High Performance Scientific Computing course sequence that has been adopted by many universities nation wide. The department has excellent Computer Science Educational Labs for its undergraduate students that are run almost entirely by the students and offer excellent opportunities for training in system administration.

Graduate Program

At the graduate education and research level, the department is one of the leading departments in the nation, as measured by the prominence of its research programs and the placement of its students. It has prominent research groups in human-computer interaction, neural networks, numerical and parallel computation, databases, networks, software engineering, systems, and theoretical computer science. Currently, its faculty and students are supported by approximately $4 million annually in research grants, primarily from federal agencies. In addition, the department has been the recipient of two consecutive five-year research infrastructure grants from the National Science Foundation, totaling roughly $5 million, and millions of dollars of grants for parallel computers. These grants have produced excellent computing facilities for research and graduate education.

Research Areas

The Computer Science Department currently has 32 faculty and 15 research and administrative staff. There are 213 graduate students (24 ME students, 93 MS students and 96 PhD students), 432 undergraduate majors, and 46 undergraduate minors in the department. The department has strong research programs in computer architecture, operating systems, networking, mobile computing, computer security, computational biology, robotics, algorithm design, artificial intelligence, software and web engineering, programming languages, database design and data mining, human-computer interaction, computer-supported cooperative work, machine learning, lifelong learning and design, numerical and parallel computation, speech and language processing, scientific computing and theoretical computer science.

Collaborations with Other Centers and Departments

The Department of Computer Science maintains a variety of active collaborations with the Departments of Department of Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering, Aerospace Engineering Sciences, Linguistics and Psychology; the Institute of Cognitive Science, the Center for LifeLong Learning and Design, the Center for Computational Language and EducAtion Research, TerraSpark Geosciences, the College of Architecture and Planning, and the School of Medicine. The mission of the Center for LifeLong Learning and Design is to establish, both by theoretical work and by building prototype systems, the scientific foundations for the construction of intelligent systems that serve as amplifiers of human capabilities. The mission of the Center for Spoken Language Research is to create the next generation of advanced dialogue systems -- systems that enable natural conversational interaction between people and machines to accomplish specific tasks.

Awards and Recognition

The Department has received four successive five-year NSF, CER, and RI awards to support its computing infrastructure and collaborative research among its faculty, most recently for the period 2000-2005. Our faculty were instrumental in the recently announced largest gift ever given to an American public university. This $250 million gift will establish an endowment to fund advanced research and development of innovative technologies that enhance the lives of people with cognitive disabilities.

In the most recent NSF Information Technology Research competition our faculty participated in proposals funded for more than $13.5M. The Department is a member of the ARPA National Consortium in High Performance Computing and was a recipient of an NSF Educational Infrastructure Grant to promote undergraduate courses in high performance scientific computing. Five of our faculty have been designated NSF Presidential Young Investigators, and one faculty member was the recipient (out of only twenty nationwide) of a five-year Packard Fellowship.

At Colorado, we are committed to the ideals of the research university as a special institution in our society, creating important knowledge, partnering with industry to develop technology that improves peoples lives, and at the same time, changing the lives of young people.

More Information ...

There is much more information about the Department of Computer Science available on this website. See the following quick links to items of particular interest to various groups:

See also:
Department of Computer Science
College of Engineering and Applied Science
University of Colorado Boulder
Boulder, CO 80309-0430 USA
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March 2, 2011