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UT-Austin vs UW-Madison [MS Computer Science]


thedreamykind
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Hi All,

 

I've narrowed down my choices to these two, for MS Computer Science. I'm interested in Machine Learning / NLP, but this may change based on what kind of exposure I get once I start grad school. Based on the information I've been able to gather, I see these as the pros of each -

 

UT-Austin

  • Cheaper tuition
  • Better weather (I'm from India, and not used to extreme cold)
  • Better internship/job opportunities (but shouldn't be a problem from Wisconsin either)
  • Live music :)

UW-Madison

  • Has a reputation as a research school. No differentiation between MS and PhD applicants. 
  • Easier to get TA/RA appointments. 
  • Smaller intake?

So far I've been unable to decide between the two. Any pointers would be appreciated.

 

Thanks! 

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I also have an offer from Madison, and I visited the school during the visit days. I do not know much about Austin, but in case you are looking for TA/RA, Madison is the place for you. At Wisconsin, you would surely end up getting funded (CS, not PMP)  from the first or second semester. The research is good, and lots of teaching positions are available since the undergraduate enrollment is high. 

 

So if tuition is the factor, Madison it should be.  

 

Feel free to let me know if you have any more questions about Madison. 

 

All the best! 

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Just my two cents here but every communication I've had with University of Wisconsin about funding has been negative, of course I was accepted for PhD in Electrical Engineering. Department talked about lack of money, professors I emailed talked about being able to take on PhD students but not having any funding. The general impression I got from this university is that funding is lacking big time this year. It suprised me when I read your insights about funding so I thought I might share the facts I've gathered.

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I also have an offer from Madison, and I visited the school during the visit days. I do not know much about Austin, but in case you are looking for TA/RA, Madison is the place for you. At Wisconsin, you would surely end up getting funded (CS, not PMP)  from the first or second semester. The research is good, and lots of teaching positions are available since the undergraduate enrollment is high. 

 

So if tuition is the factor, Madison it should be.  

 

Feel free to let me know if you have any more questions about Madison. 

 

All the best! 

 

Thanks for your reply newgrad2014. Like you said, it's easier to get TA/RA appointments (with tuition waiver) at Madison. It's not that hard to get some opportunities at Austin, though most of them lead to in-state tuition rather than a full waiver. Considering the tuition cost difference (Austin is around $4000 per semester cheaper), tuition is not the deciding factor for me.

 

I was trying to determine if one deparment is any better than the other, but everything suggests that they're equally good. I'm interested in Machine Learning / NLP, and there's nothing to indicate that the ongoing research is better at either place. I'm scared of the weather in Wisconsin (not used to extreme cold), so I may end up choosing based on that :P.

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Just my two cents here but every communication I've had with University of Wisconsin about funding has been negative, of course I was accepted for PhD in Electrical Engineering. Department talked about lack of money, professors I emailed talked about being able to take on PhD students but not having any funding. The general impression I got from this university is that funding is lacking big time this year. It suprised me when I read your insights about funding so I thought I might share the facts I've gathered.

 

Hmm, interesting. The general impression I've been getting is that historically, funding has not at all been hard to find, at least in the Computer Sciences department. Things may have changed this year - I'm not sure if their intake is any higher than usual..

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Why you haven't shortlisted GaTech, as I see you got in? I think it must be greater than the others; don't overlook it easily. Were I you, I would choose GaTech.   

 

I decided against Georgia Tech because I was told that they have larger class sizes than the others I'm considering, making it much more difficult to find funding opportunities. Also, they mandate 4 courses per semester, and I'm not too keen on that either.

 

Would you mind giving me your reasons for why you would've chosen it?

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I decided against Georgia Tech because I was told that they have larger class sizes than the others I'm considering, making it much more difficult to find funding opportunities. Also, they mandate 4 courses per semester, and I'm not too keen on that either.

 

Would you mind giving me your reasons for why you would've chosen it?

Actually my major is not CS but ECE--and more detailed, circuits. As an electrical engineering student people willing to work on signal processing have strong tendency to choose GaTech unless they get in Stanford or Berkeley or MIT. They are very well known in all sub areas of signal processing including but not limited to machine learning, machine vision or audio/ video  / multimedia processing and etc. The career prospects are also great after graduation. For us, they also ranks higher than your other admitted schools. They all are true facts for ECE-- I think they might be true for CS too.

 

Besides this the 4 course per semester does not seem rational--it's insane . How many courses you will need to complete for a MSc? Even for Stanford needing 15 courses for a MSc you will finish your MSc in a year by this requirement which is really rare I believe. Larger intake class also doesn't mean a lower quality or other thing. They might have students with course plans for very detailed sub-areas and have strong facility to accomplish this. I think it's better to wonder other people who have were there and get insights in all admitted schools of yours to decide wisely. After all, Gatech might be a rational choice if you are not worried about funds which might be competitive for them.

 

Good Luck

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Thanks for your reply newgrad2014. Like you said, it's easier to get TA/RA appointments (with tuition waiver) at Madison. It's not that hard to get some opportunities at Austin, though most of them lead to in-state tuition rather than a full waiver. Considering the tuition cost difference (Austin is around $4000 per semester cheaper), tuition is not the deciding factor for me.

 

I was trying to determine if one deparment is any better than the other, but everything suggests that they're equally good. I'm interested in Machine Learning / NLP, and there's nothing to indicate that the ongoing research is better at either place. I'm scared of the weather in Wisconsin (not used to extreme cold), so I may end up choosing based on that :P.

 

 

Hi, I have been offered a full tuition waiver and monthly stipend (with TA) at Wisconsin. Also, I was told that the department does not distinguish between funded and non-funded students, hence everyone is eligible to apply for TA postions during the start of the semester, and most of them end up getting it.  Since the undergraduate enrollment is huge, there are a lot of TA opportunities. By tuition, I meant tuition waiver and not the difference! :-P 

 

But if weather is a concern, I can understand that since Wisconsin weather is harsh. I am also an international student, and I completely understand that.

 

All the best with your decision! :)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks everyone for your inputs. Keeping everything in mind, I have accepted the offer from UT Austin. Though I was sad to give up Wisconsin, it had to be done :).

 

Wh00, just found this topic and that was my vote! :D Enjoy Austin!!

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Wh00, just found this topic and that was my vote! :D Enjoy Austin!!

 

Thank you PhDerp, I've started looking forward to it now :D. I'm not looking forward to the roommate finding and house hunting though.

 

Good luck at USC!

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  • 9 months later...

Hi,

 

I have applied to UTA as well for Fall 2015 and I am waiting for the results to come. Could you please provide details about your profile like CGPA, research experience, etc? 

 

Thanks!

Edited by rfvg
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  • 3 weeks later...
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