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What schools should I realistically be looking at for an M.S.?


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Top 50 nation, Top 40 CS



Computer Science B.A., emphasis in Computational Geography.



Probably around ~3.4 by time I send applications in



2 units of independent research in Geography under a respected and well-known researcher in the field of computational cartography. I haven't started, but the goal is to use OpenCV and apply it to spatial analysis.



At the time of applying, I'll have two quarter of being an undergraduate "moderator" for the intro to programming class. Basically I provide students in the class after hours help with labs and homework.



- A full featured todo list. A personal pet project of mine

- Contributing with a professor and group on a library used to automatically generate quizzes for the discrete mathematics course. Goal is to apply these methodologies to the intro programming course.


Interests and Goals:

Really, I just want to know more about CS and see if I'd be into research. I feel like my BA was a good primer, but I'd really like to dig a little deeper. 


Letters of Recommendation:

I guess I won't know until I know, but I'd image they'd be a little better than average. I did well in all of the instructor's courses, and currently am in contact with them regarding projects, research, and the moderator duties I have.





As far as schools go, off the top of my head, I'm most interested in:


University of Chicago


Stony Brook

Cal Poly SLO


The first three seem to have a good mix of applied and theoretical focus, and Cal Poly is relatively close to where I'm currently located, and is fairly inexpensive to boot. I should note that by time I graduate I'll have very little debt, which is why I'm considering schools with higher price tags.


Can anyone suggest some programs I should be looking at, based on my profile?


Thanks :)

Edited by intervenient
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^ Thanks!


An update, I've narrowed down the list of schools I would like to attend to:


Cal Poly SLO

University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Texas A&M


UC Irvine

UC Santa Barbara

College of William And Mary



Do these all seem within reason? Additionally, at what scores should someone retake the GRE? I'm fearing I'm not going to do too hot, as I'm taking the test Saturday, and I've literally had not much extra time to get studying in in these last few weeks.

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I got into a top 20 MSCS with worse qualifications than you. Was an average college student with 3.0 gpa and an anthropology major no less. Fell into web development from the HTML and CSS picked up in college. Worked as a web developer for 10 years then decided to apply to grad school. I took 4 comp sci courses covering basics. Also took calc, discrete math and probability. Did well in all. Good references from profs and my boss. GRE Q: 160, V:167. Treated the MSCS application like I was applying for PhD. Talked about those researchers whose work was most interesting to me.

Convey your passion for comp sci in your SoP. Let the committee see exactly what excites you about it. But try to make sure the researchers you have selected are interested in the same things too! There are fine variations even in a specific field. The more perfectly your interests align with a researcher's the better. Make it up and be very specific if you have to, you can always switch topics after you get in.

Edited by Moonracer
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