FAQ for the UTSA CS in MS Program
Please study the Fall 2021 MS in CS Handbook before proceeding further.
Office Hours: Fridays 9am Central Time https://utsa.zoom.us/j/97891824426 during Spring and Fall classes only.
These are personal responses from Sumit Jha and reflect advice that he would offer in a one-to-one meeting. These do not reflect official UTSA policy which is well-defined on official UTSA pages. If your questions are not answered here, you can send email to CSMSGradChair@utsa.edu or join the Zoom session on Fridays at 9am Central Time: https://utsa.zoom.us/j/97891824426 Neither the chat nor the email is monitored during the summer break or during holidays. Email responses may take upto 2 weeks depending on the complexity of the query and the email traffic.
Question: I have just been accepted to the MS in CS program and need to register for classes. What should I do?
Response: Please accept the admission and follow the instructions from the university. The CS department hosts an incoming orientation in August to answer questions from incoming MS students. You will be invited to attend. Until then, the CS department does not expect you to do anything. Other areas of the university such as the language office may still contact you if needed.
Question: I have X score in GRE, Y GPA from Z university. What is the probability that I will be accepted?
Response: Please submit a complete application package. A committee will evaluate the complete application package and make a decision. It is not possible for me to predict these outcomes.
Question: I do not have a background in CS. I have another STEM degree. Can I apply to the CS MS program?
Response: Please see Bridge Courses for Non-CS Students | Department of Computer Science (utsa.edu) In short, from that website, "Interested in pursuing a Masters in Computer Science but don't have a Bachelors in the field? If you have strong STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) background and/or related degrees, that's OK!"
Question: I am interested in the PhD program.
Response: Please contact Dr. Dakai Zhu who is the graduate chair for the PhD program. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
Question: I have 3 years of undergraduate education. Is that okay?
Response: Admission in the MS program requires 4 years of study at the undergraduate level.
Question: I have been admitted with conditions? I do not agree with these conditions. Can I email you to remove these conditions before I join UTSA?
Response: Conditional classes and other conditions are carefully decided by a committee to maximize your learning experience. I will personally not be able to remove these conditions.
Question: I want to submit a late application and need your approval. Will you approve?
Response: No late applications will be accepted.
Question: I am a MS student at UTSA. Do I need to do X for graduation?
Response: Please see the MS department webpage: M.S. in Computer Science | Department of Computer Science (utsa.edu) The instructions are clear. Also, see the most recent MS handbook. The Fall 2021 is located here. Please contact email@example.com if you have procedural questions.
Question: I am in the MS program at UTSA, doing well and want to pursue a MS thesis that involves research. What do I do?
Response: Please contact me at CSMSGradChair@utsa.edu
Question: I am a newly admitted MS student. What do I do now?
Response: Please study the MS handbook and the details mentioned in MS department webpage: M.S. in Computer Science | Department of Computer Science (utsa.edu) Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have procedural questions. Also, you must attend the MS Orientation session where all your questions will be answered. The MS Orientation session is usually held at least one week before the start of the classes. You will receive an invitation once all MS students have been admitted and we have scheduled a orientation session. Till then, just sit back, relax and perhaps review your undergraduate CS knowledge!
Question: I am a MS student. I am planning to take these classes. Do they look good?
Response: If you are concerned that the classes may not fulfill your MS degree requirements, please contact email@example.com for assistance. If you are concerned that the classes may not align well with your goals, please consider asking your advisor or attending my online office hours. See above for Zoom instructions. Susan can help you find your advisor.
Question: I want to transfer from X program to CS MS program at UTSA. What should I do? Will I be admitted?
Response: Please apply to the CS MS program. Please submit a complete application package. A committee will evaluate the complete application package and make a decision. It is not possible for me to predict these outcomes.
Question: I want to make sure that I am on track to graduation in the CS MS program. How can I do that?
Response: Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have procedural questions. If you are concerned about the alignment of your classes with your career goals, please consider asking your advisor or attending my online office hours. See above for Zoom instructions. Susan can help you find your advisor.
Question: I want to substitute X class for Y class, request waivers or do something different in the CS MS program.
Response: Please contact email@example.com to submit a petition. A committee will evaluate the petition. Such requests can take 1-2 months to process and 3-4 months during the summers.
Question: I need the paperwork and next steps for setting up a committee or an oral exam. Whom should I contact?
Response: Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to obtain, complete and submit the forms. A committee will review and approve your forms.
Question: Are MS in CS students supported through partial tuition-waivers or GRAs?
Response: A small number of our MS in CS students have been partially supported in the past. So, support is not likely. GRA decisions are often made by individual faculty who are the principal investigators for their own projects and can choose to staff their projects with some discretion. You should contact the faculty directly if your research aligns with their ongoing projects. Many projects require PhD or post-doctoral training. So, the likelihood of being supported as a GRA is also small unless you are exceptionally qualified to support the ongoing research. In the latter case, why not apply to the PhD program?
Question: I have a question about my transcript, deadline extension, the application website, questions about the application itself, tracking the application or related matter.
Response: Please contact Graduate Studies at GraduateAdmissions@utsa.edu
Question: I have specific questions about the academic content of the CS MS program not answered here. What do I do?
Response: Please contact me at CSMSGradChair@utsa.edu
Question: I have specific questions about forms, procedures, deadlines, committee formation, orals, or admission in the CS MS program not answered above. What do I do?
Response: Please contact email@example.com
Question: This is my first semester at UTSA as a CS MS student. What classes do you recommend?
Response: I would not
recommend any classes. But, if I was a first-semester CS MS student, I would
take three of the following classes: CS 5363 Programming Languages and
Compilers, CS 5513 Computer Architecture, CS 5523 Operating Systems, CS 5633
Analysis of Algorithms,
or Software Testing and Quality - CS 5123