COMPUTER AND INFORMATION SCIENCES (CISC)

College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Computer and Information Sciences
O’Shaughnessy Science Hall (OSS) 402, (651) 962-5470
Werness (chair), Curran, Hansen, Jarvis, Kim, Pliego, Sawin, Yilek

Computer and Information Sciences is part of the liberal arts curriculum at the University of St. Thomas. Computing is constantly evolving. There is a growing family of computing related disciplines that have joined the initial discipline of Computer Science. Recognizing these many areas within the broader discipline in computing, this department offers four majors: (1) Computer Science, (2) Information Systems, (3) Information Security, and (4) Statistics. In addition, a track within the Computer Science major is offered for those students who wish to complete a Master of Science degree in five years through the Graduate Programs in Software (GPS) degree. Each is described in detail below.

These majors are concerned with the collection, organization, processing, storage, retrieval, communication, and use of information in today’s society. The emphasis is on the core of knowledge required to become an effective user of information; to design and implement system and application software; and to understand the concepts involved in areas such as database design, systems analysis, networking, security, artificial intelligence, statistics, and operations research. Program goals can be found on the department website: www.stthomas.edu/cisc.

The department has arranged its program to prepare students to work in business, industry, education, and government as designers or users; or to pursue entrepreneurial interests in technologically supported areas; or to continue study in graduate school. Courses are arranged to encourage participation of students from other disciplines. The department encourages majors to obtain a minor in another field. Students interested in teacher licensure should see the various science and mathematics programs in the Department of Teacher Education section of this catalog. A dual degree program with Engineering is also available, which is described in the catalog section under School of Engineering.

Major in Computer Science

Computer Science is a foundation for many different computing careers. Computer scientists design and build software and create efficient solutions to real-world problems in such fields as robotics, computer architecture, software engineering, and computer networking.  

Computer Science - Major Field Guide

  • CISC 130* Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving in the Sciences (4 credits) or CISC 131*
  • Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving (4 credits)

Note: CISC 131 is recommended for this major

  • CISC 210 Information Security (4 credits)
  • CISC 230* Object-Oriented Design and Programming (4 credits)
  • CISC 231 Data Structures Using Object-Oriented Design (4 credits)
  • CISC 310 Operating Systems (4 credits)
  • CISC 340 Computer Architecture (4 credits)
  • CISC 370 Computer Networking (4 credits)
  • CISC 450 Database Design I (4 credits)
  • STAT 220 Statistics I (4 credits)

* Note: A grade of C- or above must be earned by majors in these courses.

Plus eight credits from the following:

  • CISC 320 Systems Analysis and Design I (4 credits)
  • CISC 342 Computer Applications in Experimental Sciences (4 credits)
  • CISC 440 Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (4 credits)
  • CISC 451 Database Design II (4 credits) 

Allied requirements 

  • COJO 100 Public Speaking (4 credits) or COJO 105 Communications in the Workplace (4 credits)
  • MATH 114 Calculus II (4 credits)
  • MATH 128 Introduction to Discrete Mathematics (4 credits)

UST Undergraduate Fast-Track Majors with Computer Science (CS) or Information Systems (IS) Major

Students in the fast track program will take 4 Graduate Programs in Software (GPS) cross-listed classes and, after completing their undergraduate degree, continue on to take 10 additional GPS classes, instead of 14, to obtain their Master of Science degree in either Software Engineering or Software Management.

For each of the courses in the list below that a UST undergraduate student completes with a grade of at least C-, Graduate Programs in Software (GPS) will grant a three credit reduction in the number of credits required to complete the Master of Science (MS) degree (either major-software engineering or software management) and waive the corresponding required GPS course up to a maximum of 12 credits. 

Computer Science Fast Track to M.S. - Major Field Guide

The courses required for CS or IS are shown below*. 

The courses covered by this policy are:

  • CISC 605: Technical Communications (CS, IS)*
    • corresponds to SEIS 605
  • CISC 610: Software Engineering (CS)*
    • corresponds to SEIS 610
  • CISC 625: Software Project Management (CS, IS)*
    • corresponds to SEIS 625
  • CISC 630: Database Management Systems and Design (CS, IS)*
    • corresponds to SEIS 630
  • CISC 707: Enterprise Architecture and Development (IS)*
    • corresponds to SEIS 707

The MS degree with either major, software engineering or software management, requires the student to complete 42 graduate credits. With the above credit reductions for CISC courses taken as a UST undergraduate, that student as a graduate student must complete a minimum of 30 graduate credits (10 graduate courses) at the University of St. Thomas for GPS to award the MS degree.

The student must begin their GPS MS program within one year of completing their UST undergraduate degree to be eligible for these credit reductions.

Operational Considerations 

  1. To be admitted to the track when the student declares a major field, the student must have a current overall GPA of 2.70 To continue with the program after attaining a Bachelor’s Degree in CISC (CS or IS major) the student must have a GPA of 3.00 in the courses identified above.
  2. When the student is admitted to the track, GPS is also notified.
  3. When the student graduates with a BA degree in this track, he or she will apply to GPS for admission They will be automatically qualified to be admitted if they satisfy number 1 above but will need to submit an application so that GPS department can flag them to process admission. If they do not satisfy that requirement, they may apply but will not be automatically admitted. 

(I) Fast track to a Master of Science degree in Software Engineering (with undergraduate degree in CS)

See description above called UST Undergraduate Fast-Track Students with Computer Science (CS) or Information Systems (IS) Major 

The following are the requirements for that program:

  • CISC 130* Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving in the Sciences (4 credits)

or

  • CISC 131* Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving (4 credits)

Note: CISC 131 is recommended for this major 

  • CISC 210 Information Security (4 credits)
  • CISC 230* Object-Oriented Design and Programming (4 credits)
  • CISC 231 Data Structures Using Object-Oriented Design (4 credits)
  • CISC 310 Operating Systems (4 credits)
  • CISC 340 Computer Architecture (4 credits)
  • CISC 370 Computer Networking (4 credits)
  • CISC 605 Technical Communications (4 credits)
  • CISC 610 Software Engineering (4 credits)
  • CISC 625 Software Project Management (4 credits)
  • CISC 630 Database Design (4 credits)
  • STAT 220 Statistics I (4 credits)
  • One CISC or IDTH elective course numbered 100 through 499

* Note: A grade of C- or above must be earned by majors in these courses.

Allied requirements 

  • MATH 114 Calculus II (4 credits)
  • MATH 128 Introduction to Discrete Mathematics (4 credits) 

(II) Fast track to a Master of Science degree in Software Management (with undergraduate degree in IS)

See description above called UST Undergraduate Fast-Track Students with Computer Science (CS) or Information Systems (IS) Major

The following are the requirements for the Fast-Track in Software Engineering with undergraduate major in IS:

  • CISC 130* Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving in the Sciences (4 credits)

or

  • CISC 131* Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving (4 credits)

Note: CISC 131 is recommended for this major

  • CISC 230* Object-Oriented Design and Programming (4 credits)
  • CISC 320 Systems Analysis and Design I (4 credits)
  • CISC 321 Systems Analysis and Design II (4 credits)
  • CISC 370 Computer Networking (4 credits)
  • CISC 430 Information Technology Management (4 credits)
  • CISC 605 Technical Communications (4 credits)*
  • CISC 625 Software Project Management (4 credits)*
  • CISC 630 Database Design (4 credits)*
  • CISC 707 Enterprise Architecture and Development*
  • STAT 220 Statistics I (4 credits)

* Note: A grade of C- or above must be earned by majors in these programming courses.

Plus eight credits from the following:

  • CISC 110 Introduction to Information Processing (4 credits) or CISC 200 Introduction to Computer Technology and Business Applications (4 credits)
  • CISC 210 Information Security (4 credits)
  • CISC 270 Web Development (4 credits)
  • CISC 325 E-Commerce (4 credits)
  • CISC 419 Accounting Information Systems (4 credits)
  • IDTH 400 Data Mining (4 credits) 

Plus four credits from the following:

  • MATH 109 Calculus with Review II (4 credits)
  • MATH 111 Calculus for Business and Social Science (4 credits)
  • MATH 113 Calculus I (4 credits) 

Plus:

  • ACCT 210 Financial Accounting (4 credits)

Major in Information Systems (IS)

Information Systems majors design computing solutions that provide companies, non-profit organizations, and governments with the information they need to achieve their goals. They work with the life cycle of information systems, including efficiency and reliability, meeting customers’ budgets, proper testing, and maintenance.

Information Systems - Major Field Guide

  • CISC 130* Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving in the Sciences (4 credits)

or

  • CISC 131* Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving (4 credits)

Note: CISC 131 is recommended for this major 

  • CISC 230* Object-Oriented Design and Programming (4 credits)
  • CISC 320 Systems Analysis and Design I (4 credits)
  • CISC 321 Systems Analysis and Design II (4 credits)
  • CISC 325 E-Commerce (4 credits)
  • CISC 450 Database Design I (4 credits)
  • STAT 220 Statistics I (4 credits) 

* Note: A grade of C- or above must be earned by majors in these courses.

Plus eight credits from the following: 

  • CISC 110 Introduction to Information Processing (4 credits) or CISC 200 Introduction to Computer Technology and Business Applications (4 credits)
  • CISC 210 Information Security (4 credits)
  • CISC 270 Web Development (4 credits)
  • CISC 370 Computer Networking (4 credits)
  • CISC 419 Accounting Information Systems (4 credits)
  • CISC 430 Information Technology Management (4 credits)

Allied requirements

  • ACCT 210 Financial Accounting (4 credits)
  • COJO 100 Public Speaking (4 credits) or COJO 105 Communications in the Workplace (4 credits)
  • MGMT 305 Management & Organizational Behavior (4 credits)

Plus four credits from the following:

  • MATH 109 Calculus with Review II (4 credits)
  • MATH 111 Calculus for Business and Social Science (4 credits)
  • MATH 113 Calculus I (4 credits) 

Major in Information Security

Information security studies the problem of protecting information stored on computing systems and travelling on computer networks. The discipline has emerged from a synthesis of software engineering, network technology, sociology of computing, and the mathematics of computer science. This major prepares students in the areas of computer security, network security, cryptography, and information assurance. 

Information Security - Major Field Guide

  • CISC 130* Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving in the Sciences (4 credits)

or

  • CISC 131* Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving (4 credits)

Note: CISC 131 is recommended for this major

  • CISC 210 Information Security (4 credits)
  • CISC 230* Object-Oriented Design and Programming (4 credits)
  • CISC 310 Operating Systems (4 credits)
  • CISC 320 Systems Analysis and Design I (4 credits)
  • CISC 370 Computer Networking (4 credits)
  • CISC 410 Information Security Analysis (4 credits)
  • STAT 220 Statistics I (4 credits)

* Note: A grade of C- or above must be earned by majors in these courses. 

Plus eight credits from the following:

  • CISC 270 Web Development (4 credits)
  • CISC 321 Systems Analysis and Design II (4 credits)
  • CISC 325 E-Commerce Systems (4 credits)

Allied requirements

  • COJO 100 Public Speaking (4 credits) or COJO 105 Communications in the Workplace (4 credits)
  • MATH 128 Introduction to Discrete Mathematics (4 credits) or ENGR 230 Digital Design (4 credits)

Plus four credits from the following:

  • MATH 109 Calculus with Review II (4 credits)
  • MATH 111 Calculus for Business and Social Science (4 credits)
  • MATH 113 Calculus I (4 credits)

Major in Statistics

This is an interdisciplinary major in the department of Mathematics and Computer and Information Sciences. This joint major allows students to pursue an interest in mathematical statistics, applied statistics, and related areas including biostatistics, operations research, and data mining.

See Statistics

Teacher Licensure

Elementary Education with a co-major in Science and Mathematics for Elementary Education

See Education

Minor in Computer and Information Sciences

Required: Five courses

  • CISC 130 Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving in the Sciences (4 credits) 

or 

  • CISC 131 Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving (4 credits)

Note: CISC 131 is recommended for this minor

  • Four additional CISC courses, at least two of which must be numbered 300 or above.

Note: One of these four may be chosen from IDTH numbered 300 or above.

Students should choose courses appropriate to their major field of study in consultation with the department chair or a member of the CISC department faculty. 

Minor in Information and Decision Theory

  • CISC 130 Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving in the Sciences (4 credits)

or

  • CISC 131 Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving (4 credits)

Note: CISC 131 is recommended for this minor

  • STAT 220 Statistics I (4 credits)
  • STAT 320 Statistics II (4 credits)
  • IDTH 460 Senior Project/Practicum (4 credits)

Plus one elective IDTH course taken from this list:

  • IDTH 400 Data Mining and Machine Learning (4 credits)
  • IDTH 410 Operations Research I (4 credits)
  • One approved IDTH Topics Course (IDTH 489 or 490)

Allied requirements

  • MATH 113 Calculus I (4 credits) 

Plus, depending on the IDTH Course choice, either:

  • MATH 114 Calculus II (4 credits) or MATH 128 Introduction to Discrete Mathematics (4 credits)
Course Number Title Credits
CISC  110 Intro - Information Processing 4
CISC  120 Computers in Elementary Educ 4
CISC  130 Intro-Program&Prob Solving-Sci 4
CISC  131 Intro-Programming&Prob Solving 4
CISC  200 Intro-Computer Tech & Bus Appl 4
CISC  210 Information Security 4
CISC  216 Quantitative Techniques - Busn 2
CISC  230 Object Oriented Design & Prog 4
CISC  231 Data Structures-Object Design 4
CISC  238 Software Design Using Bus Lang 4
CISC  243 Individual Study 2 OR 4
CISC  269 Research 2 OR 4
CISC  270 Web Management 4
CISC  295 Topics 2
CISC  296 Topics 2
CISC  297 Topics 4
CISC  298 Topics 4
CISC  310 Operating Systems 4
CISC  320 Systems Analysis and Design I 4
CISC  321 Systems Analysis and Design II 4
CISC  325 E-Commerce 4
CISC  340 Computer Architecture 4
CISC  342 Computer App-Experimental Sci 4
CISC  370 Computer Networking 4
CISC  389 Research 2 OR 4
CISC  393 Individual Study 2 OR 4
CISC  410 Advanced Information Security 4
CISC  419 Accounting Information Systems 4
CISC  430 Information Technology Mgmt 4
CISC  440 Artfcl Intelligence & Robotics 4
CISC  450 Database Design I 4
CISC  451 Database Design II 4
CISC  460 Senior Project 4
CISC  475 Experiential Learning 2
CISC  476 Experiential Learning 2
CISC  477 Experiential Learning 4
CISC  478 Experiential Learning 4
CISC  483 Seminar 2
CISC  484 Seminar 2
CISC  485 Seminar 4
CISC  486 Seminar 4
CISC  487 Topics 2
CISC  488 Topics 2
CISC  489 Topics 4
CISC  490 Topics 4
CISC  491 Research 2 OR 4
CISC  495 Individual Study 2 OR 4
CISC  605 Technical Communications 4
CISC  610 Software Engineering 4
CISC  625 Software Project Management 4
CISC  630 Database Design 4
Course Number Title Credits
IDTH  243 Individual Study 2 OR 4
IDTH  269 Research 2 OR 4
IDTH  295 Topics 2
IDTH  296 Topics 2
IDTH  360 Advanced Statistical Software 4
IDTH  389 Research 2 OR 4
IDTH  393 Individual Study 2 OR 4
IDTH  400 Data Mining & Machine Learning 4
IDTH  410 Operations Research I 4
IDTH  411 Operations Research II 4
IDTH  460 Senior Project 4