The College of William and Mary, the United States’ second-oldest higher learning institute, was royally chartered in 1693 by Britain’s King William III and Queen Mary II. Called the “Alma Mater of Our Nation,” W&M educated several leading statesman, including George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and James Monroe. Though it closed temporarily in 1882, the College of William and Mary was re-chartered by the Commonwealth of Virginia as a public, co-educational ORAU research institution. Today, W&M educates more than 6,300 undergrads and 2,180 post-grads with a $803.7 million endowment. William and Mary’s campus stretches over 1,200 suburban acres in Williamsburg just 45 miles southeast of Richmond.
According to the U.S. News, William and Mary is the 32nd best national university, sixth top public college, and 19th best for vets school. In particular, W&M has America’s 12th best undergrad teaching and 70th best graduate computer science education. Forbes placed W&M as the 35th top value and 20th best research university nationally. On Niche, the College of William and Mary was graded “A+” as the country’s 74th best college for computer science. In 2014, Business Insider ranked W&M #1 for the smartest student body. Washington Monthly applauded William and Mary as the 43rd best institution for social mobility.
College of William and Mary Accreditation Details
Recently reaffirmed in 2016, the College of William and Mary is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). This regional agency located in Decatur, Georgia, is formally recognized by the Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). In terms of programmatic accreditation, W&M doesn’t hold approval from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). The B.S. in Computer Science curriculum adheres to the Association of Computing Machinery’s (ACM) guidelines.
College of William and Mary Application Requirements
Joining the College of William and Mary Tribe requires being among the 34 percent of students passing the “most selective” admission process. Freshmen must have finished a college-prep curriculum with four years of English, math, and science for a state-approved high school diploma. Scoring a 4 or 5 on the AP Computer Science exam could transfer. On average, W&M first-year students have a secondary GPA of 4.19. Besides earning As, applicants should score around 1430 on the New SAT or 30 on the ACT. Undergrad transfers typically take challenging liberal arts and science courses at accredited colleges for an overall GPA of 3.5 or better.
Graduate students interested in the M.S. or Ph.D. in Computer Science need to already hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or foreign equivalent. Visa-holding international scholars will need to score at least 93 on the Internet-based TOEFL or 7.0 on the IELTS. Advanced applicants must complete a B.A./B.S. with two calculus courses, a linear algebra course, and two computer programming courses. Each must be graded “B” or higher to avoid the remedial CSci 241 course. Competitive candidates will have a minimum GPA of 3.0-3.5 in the last 60 undergrad hours and score in the GRE’s 90th percentile.
Prospective computer science majors should send the Common Application to the College of William and Mary before the Early Decision deadline on November 1st or Regular Decision deadline on January 1st. Transfers can apply until March 1st for Fall and November 1st for Spring. Don’t forget to submit the following attachments:
• Payment for the $70 fee or waiver request
• Official transcripts or Secondary School Report
• Standardized test scores (SAT or ACT without Writing)
• At least one teacher evaluation form
• CSS Financial Aid Profile application
Tuition and Financial Aid
Thanks to the W&M Promise, Virginia residents will lock-in their annual tuition for four years. Full-time, in-state undergrads can expect paying $16,370 for tuition and $5,674 for fees annually. Undergraduates living outside Virginia are charged $37,425 for full-time tuition and $6,245 for fees per year. Room and board is estimated to add $11,799 while learning supplies like textbooks cost around $3,622. Total annual cost of attendance is $35,991 (in-state) and $57,031 (out-of-state). Graduate tuition can vary, but the School of Arts & Sciences will bill Virginia residents $15,002 and out-of-state students $31,864 yearly.
For an average aid amount of $18,179, the NCES reports that 54 percent of starting, full-time William and Mary students earn financial assistance. Institutional awards like the Monroe Scholars Program, 1693 Scholars Program, Hulon Willis Scholarship, and Army ROTC Scholarship are numerous. After filing the FAFSA, undergrads could claim the Pell Grant, FSEOG Grant, or Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant. “Old Dominion State” residents could receive the Virginia Guaranteed Assistance Program and Virginia Commonwealth Grant. Need-based Federal Work-Study jobs are available for a maximum of 29 hours weekly. If needed, computer science majors could also borrow interest-accruing Stafford, Perkins, and PLUS loans.
Studying Computer Science at William & Mary
Located in McGlothlin-Street Hall, the Department of Computer Science at the College of William and Mary offers three degrees for the systematic study of information algorithms. With a low 12:1 student-faculty ratio, majors interact directly with PhD-level professors trained at Dartmouth, Rice, Harvard, Princeton, and more. Computer science majors access state-of-the-art labs like the Jefferson National Accelerator Facility and collaborate with major IT firms like Hewlett-Packard. The W&M Tribe can consider pursuing the following:
B.S. Computer Science
Retaining 96 percent of freshmen, the B.S. Computer Science at William and Mary is a practice-oriented, liberal arts degree instilling the technical basics, including coding languages like Python, required for computing professions. The 12-course major integrates courses for software development, finite automata, computation theory, and algorithms with an optional Honors project.
M.S. Computer Science
Boasting an average starting salary of $73,700, the M.S. Computer Science was founded in 1986 to allow W&M post-grads to sharpen their professional skills in a stimulating, research-based community. Offering two tracks for Computational Science and Computational Operations Research, the 32-credit curriculum involves a master’s thesis or extra electives before a comprehensive exam.
Ph.D. Computer Science
Noted for producing eight NSF Faculty Early Career Development Award winners, the Ph.D. Computer Science is a five-year, scientist-practitioner program that prepares computing leaders for research in academia or industry. After the qualifying exam, students must finish four semesters of coursework before conducting an original dissertation with a minimum 3.7 GPA from the College of William and Mary.
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