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USA Undergraduate/Graduate Bulletin 2011-2012

 

SCHOOL OF COMPUTER AND INFORMATION SCIENCES
 

Dean: Alec F. Yasinsac (251) 460-6390

Associate Dean and Director, CIS Graduate Studies: R. J. Daigle (251) 460-7634
 
School of Computer and Information Sciences web site
http://www.cis.usouthal.edu
 
DEPARTMENTS OF INSTRUCTION
Computer Science
Information Systems
Information Technology
 
DEGREE PROGRAMS OFFERED
The School of Computer and Information Sciences (SCIS) offers programs of study leading to the following degrees:
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science (CSC)
Bachelor of Science in Information Systems (ISC)
Bachelor of Science in Information Technology (ITE)
Master of Science in Computer and Information Sciences (CIS)
 
MISSION STATEMENT

The mission of the School of Computer and Information Sciences is to prepare graduates who are professionally competent, motivated to lifelong learning, and demonstrate ethical behavior in the computing sciences; to provide an atmosphere for faculty to demonstrate research and teaching excellence; and to provide service in the computing sciences to our community and discipline.

 
ADMISSION TO THE DEGREE PROGRAMS AND COURSES
Admission to the University of South Alabama constitutes admission to the School.
 
GENERAL REQUIREMENTS FOR THE BACHELOR OF SCIENCE DEGREES IN THE SCHOOL OF COMPUTER AND INFORMATION SCIENCES
Majors in the School of Computer and Information Sciences must complete requirements for one of the three Bachelor of Science Programs offered: Computer Science, Information Systems, or Information Technology. Under special circumstances, and with approval of the Dean, a student may select a unique curriculum plan in which the general philosophy and requirements of the selected program are not violated.
All undergraduate students in the School of Computer and Information Sciences must comply with the University's general education requirements, see Academic Policies and Procedures. Although these requirements are not specifically organized according to the four general education areas, each of the Bachelor of Science Programs, Computer Science, Information Systems, and Information Technology, incorporates the general education requirements within the published programs.
All first-time freshmen in the School of CIS must successfully complete CIS 101: Freshman Seminar CIS as a degree requirement. Students must enroll during their first term at USA, except for summer-entry students who must enroll in the fall semester following entry.
In addition to an overall grade-point average of 2.0, all courses in the major, including Professional Component courses and prerequisites, must be passed with a minimum grade of “C.” Any course taken at the University of South Alabama with a grade of “D” or “F” may be retaken only at the University of South Alabama.
Any courses taken at another institution to meet degree requirements must have prior approval of the School of Computer and Information Sciences Dean. Failure to obtain prior approval may result in loss of transfer credit for the course work.
 
LAPTOP OWNERSHIP POLICY
All students enrolling in any undergraduate or graduate courses offered by the School of CIS except for CIS 100, CIS 101, CIS 110, CIS 150, CIS 175, CIS 210, CIS 211, CIS 227, CIS 250 and CIS 500, are required to own a personal laptop computer system that conforms to the current School minimum published standards. This is a one-student one-machine requirement. Students must register their laptops with the School of Computer and Information Sciences Office in FCW 20 during the first week of the semester. For more information consult Laptop Policy at http://www.cis.usouthal.edu.
 
TRANSFER STUDENTS
Transfer students must complete at least eighteen (18) credit hours of work at the 300-level or above at this University, in courses in their chosen program of study in the School of CIS. All undergraduate transfer students are required to take CIS 100, Information Technology in Society.
 
FIVE-YEAR COMBINED BACHELORS AND MASTERS DEGREE PROGRAMS
Qualified students may enroll in a program that results in both a bachelors degree and a masters degree. Students in this program will normally complete a B.S. degree in one of the three programs in the School of Computer and Information Sciences in four (4) years and complete the M.S. Degree in one (1) additional calendar year. Admission to the program is competitive. Students must apply in the second semester of their junior year. Minimum requirements are a 3.25 GPA and a composite score of 1100 on the verbal and quantitative portions of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) with neither score below 400. Financial aid is available to students admitted to the program.
 
CHOICE OF BULLETIN UNDER WHICH A STUDENT GRADUATES
Majors in the School of Computer and Information Sciences may choose any bulletin from their entry date to their time of graduation. This applies for entering freshmen and transfer students. Students at the University of South Alabama changing their choice of major in the School in CIS, changing their major in another college to a major in one of the programs in the School of Computer and Information Sciences or who interrupt their program of study for more than one calendar year are considered new students with respect to bulletin selection.
 
PROFESSIONAL COMPONENT
Upper division courses require Professional Component Standing (PCS). These courses must be completed with a minimum grade of “C” and are designated by the symbol PC for each of the three programs.
 
PROFICIENCY EXAMINATION
The School of Computer and Information Sciences administers a Computer Proficiency Examination (CPE) for the Computing Proficiency requirement for some majors and for placement in CIS 250.
In addition to new student orientation, the proficiency exam is administered four times during the semester. Times, dates, and location of the exams are found at http://www.cis.usouthal.edu/proficiencyexam.
For more details see
 http://www.southalabama.edu/bulletin/academic.htm#placementexams.
 
THE MASTER OF SCIENCE IN COMPUTER AND INFORMATION SCIENCES
 
GENERAL REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MSCIS PROGRAM
The Master of Science in Computer and Information Sciences degree program is designed for students and professionals wishing to further their knowledge and expertise in computing. There are two major areas of concentration within the degree program:
1. COMPUTER SCIENCE (CSC) for students interested in the theoretical aspects of the discipline with an emphasis on the construction of system software or the development of scientific applications using software engineering principles. For more information about the Master of Science in CIS, Computer Science specialization, go to http://cis.usouthal.edu/index.php/computer-science-csc.
2. INFORMATION SYSTEMS (ISC) for students interested in business and organizational applications and information systems management. For more information about the Master of Science in CIS, Information Systems specialization, go to http://cis.usouthal.edu/index.php/information-systems-isc.
 
REQUIREMENTS FOR ADMISSION
Students are admitted each semester. Applicants who have earned an undergraduate or graduate degree from an accredited institution of higher education and who satisfy the admission criteria for the Graduate School (See http://southalabama.edu/graduateprograms/gradadmiss.html) may qualify for admission to the School of Computer and Information Sciences Graduate Program. The School of CIS rarely accepts Non-Degree admissions to the Master of Science in Computer and Information Sciences.
  • Applicants whose highest degree is a graduate degree from an accredited institution of higher education may qualify for Regular Admission based upon their previous graduate work.
  • Applicants whose highest degree is an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution of higher education must provide official scores on the Verbal, Quantitative, and Analytical Writing sections of the GRE in addition to the Graduate School requirements for Regular or Provisional Admission.
Applications and Graduate Bulletins are available from the Admissions website, or the Director of Admissions, Meisler Hall, Suite 2500, University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL 36688-0002. Telephone (251) 460-6141 or (800) 872-5247.
Final admission decisions are made based upon an evaluation of the applicant's complete file which consists of all official academic transcripts, undergraduate grade-point average; GRE scores; three (3) letters of reference regarding the applicant's ability to succeed in the Master of Science program in Computer and Information Sciences; the applicant's statement of purpose; TOEFL scores (for international applicants); and program enrollment and availability.
 
CIS GRADUATE PROFESSIONAL COMPONENT AND PROGRAM OF STUDY
All CIS graduate courses require CIS Graduate Professional Component Standing. Upon entering the School of Computer and Information Sciences Graduate Program, the entering graduate student meets with the coordinator of the student's specialization area (CSC or ISC) to prepare an initial draft of the student's personal program of study. To obtain a greater understanding of acquired computing skills and knowledge, the School of CIS may administer one or more CIS Foundation Placement Examination to students entering the School of CIS graduate program. The specialization coordinator reviews the student's previous academic work and placement scores to determine if any courses from the CIS Graduate Foundation or the Required/Supporting courses are to be included as part of the student's personal program of study. These prescribed courses form the CIS Graduate Professional Component requirement for the student. A student attains CIS Graduate Professional Component Standing if either a) the student is not prescribed Professional Component courses or b) the student successfully completes each prescribed Professional Component course with a minimum grade of "B". A student who earns a grade of less than "B" in any prescribed Professional Component course must repeat the course until a minimum grade of "B" is attained. The CIS Foundation and Requirement/Supporting Courses for each specialization are enumerated below:
1. CIS GRADUATE FOUNDATION COURSES:
A. Computer Science (CSC)
  Required CIS Foundation courses for the CSC specialization are:
  a. CIS 120 Problem Solving and Programming Concepts I And
    CIS 121 Problem Solving and Programming Concepts II
  b. CIS 320 Advanced Data and File Structures
  c. CIS 311 Networking and Communications
  d. CIS 322 Operating Systems
  e. CSC 333 Program Language Theory
  Supporting Courses for the Computer Science specialization are:
  a. MA 125 Calculus I
  b. MA 126 Calculus II
  c. MA 267 Discrete Math
  d. ST 315 Statistics
B. Information Systems (ISC)
  Required CIS Foundation courses for the ISC specialization are:
  a. CIS 115 Beginning Programming
    ISC 285 Intermediate Programming
  b. ISC 272 Systems Architecture
  c. CIS 321 Data Communications and Networking
  d. CIS 324 Database Design, Development, and Management
  Supporting Courses for the Information Systems specialization are:
  a. BUS 245 Applied Business Statistics I OR
    ST 210 Statistical Reasoning
  b. MA 120 Calculus and Its Applications
 
INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS’ SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS
International students must submit documentary evidence showing IELTS test scores of at least 5.5 or TOEFL test scores of at least 525 on the paper version, 197 on the computer version, or 71 of the internet version or an equivalent level of competence as exhibited by a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university in the United States. The School of CIS reserves the right to exclude students with more than three course failures. All international students will be required to take the ESL (English as a Second Language) examination and may be required to enroll in ESL courses as part of their graduate program in addition to the normal requirements for the degree listed below.
 
CHOICE OF BULLETIN UNDER WHICH A STUDENT GRADUATES
Students entering the CIS program may choose any bulletin from their entry date to their time of graduation. This applies for new students and transfer students. Students at the University of South Alabama changing their graduate specialization in CIS, changing their major to CIS, or who interrupt their program for more than one calendar year are considered new students with respect to bulletin selection.
 
COURSES TAKEN OUTSIDE THE
SCHOOL OF COMPUTER AND INFORMATION SCIENCES
No more than three graduate courses, maximum of nine (9) semester hours taken outside of the School of Computer and Information Sciences may be applied toward the degree. Only grades of “A” or “B” may be accepted. Transfer credit is approved only after completion of a minimum of nine (9) semester hours of graduate credit towards the degree. A formal request for transfer credits must be made to the coordinator of the student's specialization area (CSC or ISC). Any such transfer courses must be approved by the Director of Graduate Studies for Computer and Information Sciences and the student’s advisor and may not have been used to fulfill the requirements of another graduate degree.
 
SCHEDULING OF COURSES
The graduate program for CIS is primarily an evening program. The courses are scheduled to accommodate full-time students (normally two or three courses per semester) and part-time students (one course per semester). Special topics, directed study, and thesis courses are available as they are needed.
 
TIME LIMITATION
All requirements for the Master of Science in Computer and Information Sciences degree must be completed within seven (7) calendar years from the date of matriculation as a CIS graduate student. The five calendar year constraint also applies to all accepted transfer courses.
 
GRADUATE RESEARCH SEMINAR
The CIS Graduate Research Seminar is scheduled periodically during each semester as a forum for students and faculty to present and discuss research issues, ideas, and results. Attendance is expected of all graduate students. Attendance is required for students enrolled in any of these special courses: CIS 518, CIS 594, CIS 595, CSC 595, ISC 595, CIS 598, CSC 598, ISC 598, and CIS 599. Moreover students enrolled in these special courses are required to give a presentation each semester based on their work in the course in which they are enrolled.
 
PROFESSIONAL PARTICIPATION
Master’s students are expected to take an active part in at least one (1) professional computing organization. They are expected to be aware of the social impact of computing and adhere to the ACM/AITP code of ethics. For more information consult Current Student Information, Websites of Interest at http://www.cis.usouthal.edu.
 
GRADUATE ASSISTANTSHIPS AND FELLOWSHIPS
A limited number of graduate assistantships are available on a competitive basis and are awarded on the recommendation of the School of Computer and Information Sciences. Applications can be obtained from the School of Computer and Information Sciences Office in FCW 20.
All graduate assistants must enroll in CIS 597, Computer and Information Sciences Graduate Seminar.
 
COMPREHENSIVE EXAMINATION
All CIS masters students must complete a comprehensive examination for the CORE courses in their Specialization (Computer Science or Information Systems). The comprehensive examination may be repeated no more than twice. A written examination is required of students who choose the Course Only Concentration an oral examination is required of students who complete either the Thesis Concentration or the Project Concentration. The School of CIS Comprehensive Examination Policies and Procedures document and the Comprehensive Examination Application form are available at http://www.cis.usouthal.edu.
 
GRADUATE SCHOOL STANDARDS
For all other graduate policies and procedures not specifically stated for the Master of Science in Computer and Information Sciences degree program, refer to The Graduate School. Some policies and procedures that may be of interest are: Graduate Study for Advanced Undergraduates, Graduate School Academic Standards, Grade Standards, Change of Grade, Academic Dismissal, Final Grade Grievance Policy, Appeal Procedure, English Language Proficiency, Full Load of Course Work in a Semester, Change of Program, Student Responsibility, Degree Requirements for the Master’s Degree, Guidelines for Theses and Dissertations, Standards for Theses and Dissertations, and Application for Degree.
 
DESCRIPTIONS OF ALL COMPUTER AND INFORMATION SCIENCES COURSES:
 
 
 


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Last date changed: March 21, 2011 2:15 PM
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