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Computational Science, B.S.

Computational science is a new, interdisciplinary field, one which uses applied mathematics and computer science to solve problems in another science. Computational science courses might address problems such as modeling the weather or earthquakes, or predicting subatomic particle behavior.

In this major, you will take courses in mathematics and computer science to gain the basic skills and knowledge you need. At the same time, you will take courses in your chosen area of concentration (chemistry, ecology, molecular biology or physics) to obtain depth in an applied science. Then, as a senior, you will complete a project with two faculty advisors—one in mathematics or computer science and the other in your area of concentration—that will demonstrate the power of math and computing to address issues in your concentration field.

Computational science is a great major for students who are interested in mathematics, computing, and a natural or physical science.

Requirements for the Major

23 credits in mathematics:  

  • MATH 202 Calculus II (4 credits)
  • MATH 207 Discrete Mathematics (3 credits)
  • MATH 253 Multivariable Calculus (4 credits)

  Choose three of the following five courses (12 credits)

  • MATH 304 Differential Equations (4 credits)
  • MATH 320 Modeling and Simulation (4 credits)
  • MATH 339 Linear Algebra (4 credits)
  • MATH 351 Probability and Statistics (4 credits)
  • MATH 456 Numerical Analysis (4 credits)

23 credits in computer science:

  • CS 201 Computer Science I (4 credits)
  • CS 202 Computer Science II (4 credits)
  • CS 219 Advanced Data Structures (3 credits)
  • CS 319 Algorithm Analysis (3 credits)
  • CS 329 Introduction to Database Management Systems (3 credits)

  Choose two of the following (6 credits):

  • CS 466 Parallel Processing
  • CS 498X Special topics: Data Mining
  • CS 498Y Special topics: Design and Analysis of Simulations
  • Other selected CS special topics courses; substitutions must be approved by the Computer Science Department.

An interdisciplinary senior project (3 credits):

  • CPSC 475 Computational Science Senior Project (one advisor from Mathematics Department or Computer Science Department; a second advisor from another science area)

A concentration in a science:

 Chemistry Concentration (16 credits): 

  • CHEM 209 Organic Chemistry I (4 credits)
  • CHEM 210 Organic Chemistry II (4 credits)
  • CHEM 215 Quantitative Analysis (4 credits)
  • CHEM 431/433 Physical Chemistry I (4 credits)

Ecology Concentration (15 credits):

  • BIOL 201 Evolution and Ecology (4 credits)
  • BIOL 203 Introduction to Cell Biology and Genetics (4 credits)
  • BIOL 338 Advanced Ecology (4 credits)
  • ENSP 407 Natural Resource Management (3 credits)

Molecular Biology Concentration (19 credits):

  • BIOL 201 Evolution and Ecology (4 credits)
  • BIOL 203 Introduction to Cell Biology and Genetics (4 credits)
  • CHEM 209 Organic Chemistry I (4 credits)
  • BIOL 316 Genetics (4 credits)
  • BIOL 437 Introduction to Bioinformatics (3 credits)

Physics Concentration (17 credits): 

  •  PHYS 203 Introductory Physics I (4 credits)
  •  PHYS 204 Introductory Physics II (4 credits)
  •  PHYS 222 Introduction to Modern Physics (3 credits)
  •  PHYS 324 Mechanics (3 credits)
  •  PHYS 325 Electricity and Magnetism (3 credits)