Accelerated Master's Program (AMP)
The Department of Computer Science offers an Accelerated Master’s Program (AMP) that will enable currently enrolled, qualified, and motivated University of Arizona undergraduates to complete a BS and MS in computer science in 5 years. The BS and MS components dovetail in the student's fourth year, where they simultaneously complete the baccalaureate study and begin graduate work. Students complete the MS during the fifth year.
Why do an accelerated MS program?
A Master’s degree gives more exposure to advanced technical material and allows you to acquire and develop a stronger skill set before entering industry. The MS may also allow you to progress more quickly in your career. An accelerated MS program is quicker and cheaper than the traditional 4-year baccalaureate and 2-year Master's.
Who should consider an accelerated MS program?
If you have shown the initiative and drive to seek out the sort of applied experiences we hope to provide students at the junior- and senior-level, you may be able to tackle the rigors of our undergraduate program with greater facility and be well-placed to begin graduate study as early as the end of your junior year. Students interested in research or just gaining a more sophisticated skill set would particularly benefit from this program.
Do I have to do a thesis?
We offer both a thesis and non-thesis option to accommodate talented students who are interested in research and those who intend to go into industry.
How do I prepare myself for applying?
You will prepare yourself for the graduate degree by demonstrating excellence in your undergraduate coursework. This preparation will ensure you are able to take advantage of the same freedom to select graduate courses as counterparts in the traditional program. Finally, we encourage you to get involved in research early in your career. Connections with research faculty will assist in obtaining letters of recommendation for your application.
The expectation is that you will complete your undergraduate degree within four years, and the fourth year will coincide with the first year of graduate study. As such, successful applicants will be those who demonstrate the maturity, intellectual ability, and ability to work in a team necessary for the rigors of an accelerated, highly competitive program.
You will need:
a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.3 on a minimum of 12 units of undergraduate UA credit
a 3.5 computer science GPA
a minimum of 90 undergraduate credit hours is required at the time of entry into the AMP. If your cumulative GPA falls below 3.3, or your major GPA falls below a 3.5, at the time you have completed 90 units, you will not be admitted into the program.
to have completed or be near completion of general education requirements.
to be a Computer Science major
to have completed the undergraduate core curriculum (CSC 252, 335, 345, and 352) and be enrolled in or completed one 400-level CSC course.
Applications for the AMP will be considered at anytime. To apply for the AMP, the student needs to meet with the Graduate Program Coordinator to obtain the Application Authorization Code. The application must be submitted online at apply.grad.arizona.edu. Students should apply at least 10 weeks prior to the semester they would like to begin graduate coursework.
You will need to be prepared to upload:
A letter of intent/statement of purpose
The narrative, no longer than one single-spaced page, should outline why you are applying for the AMP, what your career goals are, what your academic/research interests are, and a description of your relevant research/work experience.
Names and email addresses of at least two references
The completed application will include two letters of recommendation from individuals who can comment on your aptitude for graduate study and ability to handle the rigors of the AMP. At least one reference must be a member of the Computer Science faculty. You will enter the names and email addresses in the online application, which generates an automated email to your references asking them to submit a letter on your behalf through the online interface.
Copies of your transcripts
You will need to upload copies of your unofficial transcripts (yes, even for the University of Arizona). Upload transcripts for other post-secondary schools you have attended.
Your curriculum vitae or resume
Include a copy of your CV, no longer than 2 pages, or resume, no longer than one page.
Questions about Applying
Do I need to take the GREs (Graduate Record Exam)?
You are not required to take the GREs as part of your admission to the AMP. However, the GREs are sometimes required for external fellowship or scholarship applications. If you think you might be interested in applying for outside sources of funding, it may be in your best interests to take them.
Do I get financial support as a student in the AMP?
We do not set aside any funding specific to students in the AMP. You will be expected to cover the costs of your undergraduate and graduate programs.
Once admitted to the Accelerated Master's Program students may take up to 12 units of graduate coursework which may apply toward both the Bachelor’s and the Master’s degrees. Students will be charged at the undergraduate rate and retain eligibility for undergraduate scholarships.
After completion of all Bachelor's’ requirements, students will be granted graduate status, be charged at the graduate rate, and be eligible for graduate assistantships. The student won’t be eligible to graduate nor will they be eligible for assistantships until all Bachelor's requirements are completed. While an undergraduate, students are required to keep their graduate coursework cumulative GPA at 3.0 or higher to be admitted to the MS.
Students will follow the standard course requirements for the MS degree.