Top universities in the USA for MS in computer science: A complete guide

Updated on: Feb 27, 2024
Top universities in the USA for MS in computer science: A complete guide
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The US is a leading study destination for international students planning to pursue computer science, with over 110 educational institutions offering remarkable programs in the discipline.

Computer science is the study of development, analysis and testing of computer systems and algorithms, and ensure their smooth functioning.

The United States is home to some of the world's finest universities, offering various specialised degree programs in computer science for international students.

This guide provides a complete walkthrough of the top universities in the USA for MS in computer science, considering rankings and other criteria such as student experience, curriculum design, research focus and career prospects.

Top 10 universities in the USA for MS in computer science

University nameUS News Rankings for CS programsTHE University Ranking 2024Average fees(in USD)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)103$59,750
Stanford University102$58,746
University of California, Berkeley109$53,034
Carnegie Mellon University424$54,420
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign542$29,034
University of Washington525$43,040
Cornell University720$29,500
Georgia Institute of Technology836$31,370
Princeton University806$59,710
University of Texas, Austin852$45,000

Data updated as of December 2023

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Pursuing an MS in computer science in the USA

Before we move on to the top universities, let’s see the significance of pursuing an MS in computer science in the US.

  • MS in computer science in the US is a postgraduate program that provides students with advanced functional and technical knowledge of hardware and software systems.
  • The curriculum covers remarkable topics like information systems, software engineering, artificial intelligence, computer networks, and programming languages.
  • During the program's first year, students take courses in core computer science topics such as algorithms, programming languages, operating systems, and computer architecture.
  • The program's second year includes more advanced topics and electives, allowing students to explore their interests.
  • The courses also help students specialise in various areas, such as databases, computer networks, graphics, and web development.
  • An MS in computer science offers several job opportunities for international students.

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual salary of a Computer System Analyst is around $102,240.

Also read: Computer science courses to study abroad

Eligibility criteria for top MS CS universities in the USA

The eligibility criteria for MS in computer science at top universities in the USA vary depending on the location and university. Here are the standard requirements for international students to pursue computer science.

MS computer science eligibility in the US

Eligibility factorDescription
Academic qualificationBachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field from a recognised university.
English language proficiencyIELTS: 6.5 TOEFL: 79
GRE score300
Student visaF1 Student Visa

Data updated as of December 2023

Note: The requirements may vary with different institutions. Make sure to check the university website before applying to the course.

Student requirements to study computer science in the US

Once you meet the eligibility criteria, US universities will request certain documents to initiate the application process. Here are some standard documents required by educational institutions.

  • CV
  • Academic transcripts
  • Application form
  • Letter of Recommendation (LOR)
  • English proficiency test scores
  • Statement of purpose
  • Admission exam results

Also read: How to get admission to US universities from India?

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Top 10 universities in the USA for MS in computer science

The United States is home to some of the world's best universities, offering a wide range of courses and degrees in various fields. The top 5 universities offering an MS in computer science are:

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

  • The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is widely regarded as one of the top universities in the USA for MS in computer science. MIT is located in Cambridge, MA, and is a member of the Association of American Universities.
  • It is top-ranked among US university rankings for MS in CS, according to US News & World Report.
  • It has a long-standing reputation for excellence in engineering and technology, and its Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) is one of the most advanced research centres in the world.
  • CSAIL provides students access to cutting-edge technology and resources and a network of world-class faculty and industry partners.
  • At MIT, students can choose from various research tracks and projects in computer science, including software engineering, computational science, artificial intelligence, and robotics, and also develop open-source tools, such as the widely used programming language Python.

Also read:How to Get Admission to US Universities from India

Stanford University

  • With its world-renowned faculty and staff, Stanford provides a comprehensive and detailed education in the field of computer science. Located in Palo Alto, California, Stanford is home to some of the best faculty and resources in the world.
  • The curriculum focuses on theoretical foundations and applied research, and students can explore a wide range of topics in computer science.
  • The MS in Computer Science program at Stanford offers various specialisations in areas such as artificial intelligence, computer networks, databases, graphics, human-computer interaction, information security, machine learning, natural language processing, software engineering, and more.
  • The program also offers several electives, allowing students to tailor the program to fit their interests and career aspirations.
  • MS in Computer Science is highly competitive, and admission is based on academic records, GRE scores, letters of recommendation, and personal statements.

University of California, Berkeley

  • The University of California, Berkeley, is widely considered one of the best universities in the USA for MS in computer science. The university’s computer science department is consistently ranked among the nation's top five computer science departments.
  • UC Berkeley offers an impressive selection of courses and research opportunities in topics like artificial intelligence, robotics, networks, mobile computing, embedded systems, databases and software engineering.
  • The curriculum provides a deep understanding of the theoretical foundation and hands-on experience with up-to-date technologies such as cloud computing and big data analytics.
  • The university also offers many innovative programs and research opportunities, such as the Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research (BAIR) lab, the Berkeley Institute for Data Science (BIDS), and the Berkeley Center for New Media (BCNM).
  • These centres provide opportunities for students to work on cutting-edge research projects in computer science.

Also read: Best MBA Universities in the USA

Carnegie Mellon University

  • Carnegie Mellon University is one of the top universities in the US, excelling in the department of computer science. Located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Carnegie Mellon offers a variety of innovative and rewarding programs for international students.
  • The university is renowned for its research excellence and offers a wide range of courses and research opportunities for aspiring computer scientists.
  • The MS Computer Science program allows students to gain expertise in artificial intelligence, computer architecture, computer networking, database systems, machine learning, programming languages, software engineering, and web development.
  • Carnegie Mellon is home to some of the most renowned computer scientists in the world. Its faculty includes names like David Gifford, Alan Turing, and John McCarthy, who have contributed significantly to the field.
  • The university also has strong ties to the industry, with many alums working at top companies like Google, Microsoft, and Amazon.

Also read: Machine learning courses in the US

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University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

  • The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign is one of the leading public universities in the US that offers several top-ranking courses for international students.
  • The university’s MS program in computer science offers research-oriented knowledge and enhances the technical skills for a scopeful career.
  • The University of Illinois’ curriculum has different specialisations like computer science, data science, cybersecurity, data structures, computer systems, and others.
  • Top recruits for graduates from the university include IBM, Intel, J.P Morgan Chase, Amazon, and many others.

University of Washington

  • Located north of downtown Seattle, the University of Washington is a widely popular institution for its computer science programs. The university is often praised for its comprehensive curriculum, excellent resources, and facilities.
  • The course includes various subjects in its curriculum, like artificial intelligence, operating systems, computer graphics, programming languages, machine learning, and algorithms.
  • Students get the opportunity to pursue their desired course with the help of cutting-edge research in state-of-the-art facilities.
  • Top employers of the University of Washington’s graduates include Microsoft Corporation, Amazon, Meta Platforms, Google, and many others.

Cornell University

  • Cornell University in New York is a pioneer in higher education for its quality education. This Ive League institution is considered one of the best places to pursue a degree in computer science.
  • The university’s MS program in computer science has various in-demand subjects like artificial intelligence, algorithms, data structures, machine learning and systems, and programming languages.
  • Students can also choose from the array of electives that suit their likes and interests. Some popular electives include computer graphics, computer vision, scientific computing, cryptography, databases and networks.

Also read: Machine Learning courses in the US

Georgia Institute of Technology

  • The Georgia Institute of Technology (also known as Georgia Tech) in Atlanta is consistently ranked among the top 10 universities in the US for its computer science programs.
  • The university is known for its world-renowned faculty, programs, state-of-the-art facilities, and cutting-edge research opportunities.
  • From introductory programs to advanced courses, the institute offers various computer science courses for international students.
  • Students can choose any specialisation from various topics, such as programming languages, computer architecture, artificial intelligence, computer networks, databases, and software engineering.
  • Georgia Tech has plenty of research opportunities for students, which include the Georgia Tech Research Institute, the Georgia Institute of Technology Research Institute, and the Georgia Tech Research Institute for Computer Science.

Princeton University

  • As one of the highest-ranked universities in the US, Princeton is widely praised for its globally recognised education, curriculum, and state-of-the-art facilities.
  • The university’s curriculum for computer science includes fundamental principles of computation, the study of hardware and software systems, algorithms and data structures, and scientific computing.
  • Princeton graduates are placed in companies like Meta Platforms, Amazon, and the International Monetary Fund.

University of Texas, Austin

  • The University of Texas, Austin, is considered one of the finest institutions in the US for its excellence in teaching, academics, and facilities.
  • The university’s computer science courses offer in-depth knowledge and understanding of the subject and enhance their practical skills.
  • University of Texas computer science courses include programming languages, artificial intelligence, and machine learning.

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Frequently asked questions

Is MS in CS in the USA good?

A master’s in computer science in the US offers many perks for international students.

  • Increase your knowledge and skills
  • Strive to provide practical and hands-on experience
  • High-paying career opportunities

How do I choose a university in the USA for an MS CS?

Here are some top factors to consider while choosing the right university for an MS CS in the US.

  • Location of the institution
  • Check if the course suits your requirements
  • University’s academic reputation
  • Tuition fees and other expenses
  • Accommodation
  • Scholarships

Do Indian students get jobs in the USA after MS?

Indian students have a good chance of getting placed in various companies after graduating MS. Computer science graduates have plenty of high-paying opportunities in the tech industries. For example, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics says the average annual salary of a Computer System Analyst is around $102,240.

Is the GRE compulsory for MS in the USA?

The GRE is a common requirement for international students to exhibit their knowledge and readiness to pursue an MS in the US. However, some universities have not mandated GRE scores. So, checking the program requirements before applying for the exam is advisable.

Is MS in the USA tough?

An MS degree in the US is sometimes considered challenging for international students. The program’s curriculum, syllabus, and competition can make students determine that the course is tough. However, once they understand the course’s objectives and curriculum, the program will eventually become easy and exciting to pursue.

Here’s your chance to study in the US!

The US is a popular study destination with rewarding opportunities! Edvoy is here to offer a remarkable study-abroad experience for higher education aspirants. Talk to an Edvoy Counsellor, and begin your journey today!

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MS in Computer Science
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