Five of the eight required courses must be 200-level courses specifically covering topics in computer science. Generally this means they must be offered as courses in Computer Science. In particular, for Computer Science graduate degrees, Applied Computation courses may be counted as 100-level courses, not 200-level courses. The CHD may approve exceptions.
At least one of these five 200-level courses must be in Theory. There is no specific list of Theory courses; this rule is enforced by the faculty advisors and the CHD. However, in almost all cases, any class with a course number Computer Science 22x is acceptable as a theory course.
Just as we expect all students obtaining a S.M. to have experience with the theoretical foundations of computer science, we expect all students to have some knowledge of how to build large software or hardware systems, on the order of thousands of lines of code, or the equivalent complexity in hardware. That experience will be evidenced by coursework. In almost all cases a course numbered CS 26x or CS 24x will satisfy the requirement (exceptions will be noted in the course description on my.harvard). For projects in other courses, the student is expected to write a note explaining the project, include a link to any relevant artifacts or outcomes, describe the student's individual contribution, and where appropriate obtain a note from their class instructor.
CS 290hfa/b cannot be used towards the S.M. degree.
A complete application consists of:
Online application form and fee payment ($105)
Transcripts uploaded to the application
Letters of recommendation
Statement of purpose
GRE (not required by applicants to the Department of Astronomy program)
Demonstration of English proficiency, where required
Writing sample, where required
GSAS may request additional academic documents, as needed.
Students interested in Computer Science may earn their Doctor of Philosophy through SEAS. Doctoral students may earn the Master of Science (SM) degree en route to the Ph.D. Additionally, some Harvard College students may be eligible to apply for the Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science (A.B./S.M.) program. (More information on this program can be found here.) Current Harvard students interested in more information about obtaining an S.M. degree in Computer Science in addition to their other degree program should review the SM Degree Requirements.
At this time, Harvard SEAS is not admitting students to the terminal SM or ME degree programs in Computer Science.
Harvard offers two master’s degrees in Computational Science and Engineering which may be of interest to applicants who wish to apply directly to a master’s program.