Majors & Programs


Computer Science/Computer Engineering

As an engineering school, we aspire to discover the unknown, educate students, and serve society. Our strategy focuses intellectual efforts through a new convergence paradigm and builds on strengths, particularly as applied to medicine and health, energy and environment, and security. Through innovative partnerships with academic and industry partners — across disciplines and across the world — we will contribute to solving the greatest global challenges of the 21st century.

Computer Science and Engineering

We are surrounded by the inventions of those who practice computer science and engineering: cell phones, wireless networks, applications for business and entertainment. The undisputed centrality of computing in our lives is just one reason that our introductory course has become the most popular course on campus, with more than 1,000 students per year learning not only how to program, but how to apply logic and computational thinking to solve problems. This in turn has contributed to dramatic growth in all of our programs. All of our students who seek employment after college find a job, with many students forced to choose between multiple offers. Many students continue their education at the master’s or doctoral level. The Department of Computer Science & Engineering says to all students, regardless of their background or areas of interest: "Welcome! You belong here!"

The Washington University Advantage

Our department has a unique approach to pedagogy that incorporates elements of active learning and collaboration throughout our curriculum. While obtaining a solid foundation in the fundamentals of our field, our students design and implement projects that are often based on the students’ creative ideas and interests.

Departments like ours continue to educate generations of students whose imagination, creativity, and hard work made possible the unprecedented growth in digital technology that took place in the last two decades. Computer science and engineering education plays a special role in preparing future technology leaders and innovators. It opens their minds to new horizons, unlocks doors to a broad range of career paths, accelerates professional advancement, and exposes them to ideas that are advancing the frontiers of science and technology beyond the field of computing.

Outside of our classrooms

We encourage our students to participate in research activities with our faculty, offering a general introduction to our areas of research in the first semester, a curated in-depth research experience opportunity during summer, and independent study available during the school year. Many of our students spend a semester studying abroad, where they can pursue cultural experiences as well as take courses that count toward their studies. There are abundant internship opportunities for our students, with top companies such as Google visiting on campus each semester to recruit for summer and full-time employment.

Career Opportunities

A degree in computer science and engineering opens many doors. Some of our graduates go to graduate school before beginning their professional careers, and others are hired by companies directly out of college.

A computer science or computer engineering major prepares you to work in a wide range of careers. A few examples of the many industry segments that employ our graduates are:

  • computer and software industry (e.g., Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Intel)
  • movie and gaming industries
  • telecommunications industry
  • financial and e-commerce industries
  • medicine and biotechnology
  • scientific research and development

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