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Computer and Information Science (BA, BS)

Computer and Information Science (BA, BS)


Computing has become the key enabler of fabulously rapid advances that have occurred, and that will continue for the foreseeable future, across all disciplines of the academy and throughout all segments of society. This makes Computer Information Science (CIS) a very interdisciplinary field. Fundamentals include algorithms and data structures, programming languages, computer architecture and graphics.

The BA in Computer and Information Science offers students a broad, liberal education, along with specialized study in computer and information science. The program permits students to combine the study of computer science with the study of some related field that has a strong potential for computing applications.

The BS in Computer and Information Science offers students a broad, liberal education in the physical sciences, mathematics, and humanities, along with intensive study in computer science.

CIS is an interdisciplinary major* delivered by both the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Engineering.

Why choose computer and information science?

Students interested in CIS as a major should develop strong oral and written communication skills, should become accustomed to teamwork and understanding people from different cultures. CIS combines the technical study of both software and hardware, with an emphasis on the former. The BS in CIS involves a more substantial computing component and more of a science focus than the BA in CIS.

What can you do with this degree?

Because computing is essential in all areas of society, the demand for people skilled in the computing field continues to grow. Recent Bureau of Labor Statistics projections for U.S. job growth in the next decade show computing jobs comprising the top two — and half of the top ten — positions in the rankings for jobs requiring an undergraduate degree. Beginning salaries average near $60,000.

*In order to implement a transparent admission process and recognizing the challenges in meeting the demand and space availability in Computer and Information Science (CIS in the College of Arts and Sciences) and Computer Science and Engineering (CSE in the College of Engineering), effective autumn 2023, only students in the pre-majors in these areas may apply to their respective major. For example, only CIS-PRE majors are permitted to apply to the CIS or CSE majors and vice versa.

Prospective Ohio State students (freshmen and transfers) interested in the CIS major will need to apply to CIS-PRE during the undergraduate admissions process, since major changes from other majors to CIS or CSE will no longer be allowed after summer 2023.