First founded in 1851, the University of Minnesota at Twin Cities is the state’s oldest public land-grant, sea-grant, and space-grant research institution. As the flagship and largest campus in the statewide system, UM Twin Cities enrolls more than 30,500 undergraduates and 16,200 post-graduates across 19 academic colleges. The University of Minnesota at Twin Cities sprawls over 2,730 acres in the capital hub of Minneapolis and St. Paul adjacent to the Falcon Heights neighborhood. UM Twin Cities is famous for having developed Gopher, the precursor to the Internet. Housing the Charles Babbage Institute, UM Twin Cities has produced notable computer pioneers like Ed Chi, Leah Culver, Mark P. McCahill, and Imrich Chlamtac.

According to the U.S. News, the University of Minnesota at Twin Cities is ranked the 69th best national university, 25th top public school, and 57th best college for veterans. In particular, UM Twin Cities is recognized for America’s 28th best engineering school with the 29th top computer science programs. Forbes named UM Twin Cities the 59th best research university. The Milken Institute crowned the University of Minnesota at Twin Cities sixth worldwide for technology research. UM Twin Cities placed fourth nationally in Scientist Magazine’s list of “Patent Powerhouses.” Times Higher Education has also lauded the University of Minnesota at Twin Cities for being the 65th best global college.

University of Minnesota at Twin Cities Accreditation Details

Continuously since 1913, the University of Minnesota at Twin Cities has been institutionally accredited through the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association (HLC-NCA). This regional accrediting agency is approved by the U.S. Department of Education and Council on Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). The College of Science and Engineering has programmatic accreditation from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) through 2020. Computer science degrees specifically align with the standards of the Computing Accreditation Commission (CAC). Any management courses taken are accredited via the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

University of Minnesota at Twin Cities Application Requirements

The University of Minnesota at Twin Cities has an acceptance rate of 45 percent, so there’s a highly selective admissions process. First-year students must be graduating high school seniors earning a state-approved diploma. Aspiring computer science majors must fulfill prerequisites with four years of English, four years of math, three years of science (including physics), three years of social studies, and two years of a single second language. On average, freshmen have a high school GPA of 3.77. Admitted students also score an average of 1920 on the SAT and 28 on the ACT. Taking rigorous honors, AP, and IB courses is encouraged. Secondary factors include outstanding talent, volunteer work, military service, and contribution to cultural diversity.

Since UM Twin Cities’ computer science program is upper-division, it’s ideal for transfers from other regionally accredited colleges. Incoming transfers from other University of Minnesota system campuses simply must fill out the Change of College form. Other transfer students must hold at least 26 semester credits, but no more than 65. At minimum, transfers must carry a cumulative collegiate GPA of 2.75 or higher. Before pursuing the computer science degree, students must also complete college-level prerequisites, including statistics, calculus, physics, and engineering. Applicants who complete the technical courses with a GPA of 3.2 or above are guaranteed admission. Transfer students are also reviewed for relevant work experience, leadership, talent, ambition, and academic improvement.

Prior to the December 15th priority deadlines, applicants to the B.A./B.S. in Computer Science program at the University of Minnesota at Twin Cities must submit:

• Completed application for admission
• Official high school and college transcripts
• ACT or SAT scores, including writing test results
• Proof of English language proficiency
• At least one letter of recommendation
• Payment for the $55 non-refundable fee

Tuition and Financial Aid

Full-time undergraduates from Minnesota pay a 13-credit flat rate of $6,120 per semester for tuition. Non-resident undergraduates must afford $10,330 for taking 13 or more credits every semester. Part-time undergrad learners are charged $470 (in-state) or $794.62 (out-of-state) per credit hour. Tuition reciprocity is available for students from North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, and Manitoba, Canada. On average, campus room and board costs $8,920 each academic year. Textbooks and supplies are estimated at $1,000 extra. Total annual cost of attendance is $25,674 (in-state) and $32,924 (out-of-state) for full-time undergraduates.

The NCES reports that 78 percent of beginning full-time students at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities receive financial aid. Undergraduates can borrow money with Federal Perkins, Federal Direct Subsidized, Federal Direct Unsubsidized, or Parents PLUS loans. Private or alternative loans are accepted. Based on their FAFSA, some students could qualify for the Pell Grant, FSEOG Grant, SMART Grant, or Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant. In-state residents should apply for the Minnesota State Grant or Minnesota Veterans’ Dependents Assistance Grant. There’s also the University of Minnesota U Promise Scholarship for up to $4,000. Federal Work-Study (FWS) is offered for 10 to 20 hours per week. Institutional awards, such as the Johnson Brothers Scholarship, Granovsky Scholarship, Thielen Family Scholarship, and LaVerne Noyes Scholarship, are also numerous.

B.A./B.S. in Computer Science Program

Housed in the state-of-the-art Lind Hall, the B.A./B.S. in Computer Science program at the University of Minnesota at Twin Cities is granted through the ABET-accredited College of Science and Engineering. Leading to a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science, the program is focused on studying the software, hardware, and theoretical aspects of computers. The upper-division curriculum spans two years to cover the fundamental knowledge for making computing devices run more efficiently and safely. Students selecting the B.S. will take a more scientific, research-based approach, whereas the B.A. is rooted in liberal arts. Offered primarily face-to-face, the program requires a total of 120 credits.

Majors will complete a core of courses in computer programming and operating systems. Then, there are specialized tracks in Architecture and Hardware Systems, Artificial Intelligence/Robotics, Big Data, Bioinformatics and Computational Biology, Databases, Geographical Information Systems, Graphics and Visualization, Human Computer Interaction, Networks, Security, Software Development, and Software Engineering. In the final term, students complete an applied programming capstone project. Students also benefit from hands-on learning at the Center for Research in Intelligent Storage (CRIS). After graduation, students could pursue the M.S. in Software Engineering, M.S. in Data Science, or Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Minnesota at Twin Cities.

Another excellent resource:

The Top 10 Best Online Computer Science Degree Programs