Computer Science Master's Degree FAQ (for Prospective Students)

This FAQ deals with admissions-related questions for prospective students. If you have questions about the program itself, please consult the FAQ for current students.

What are the requirements to apply?

The department requirements are:
There are additional college-wide requirements at the Hunter College Graduate Admissions website.

How/when do I apply? How much does it cost?

You apply through the Hunter College Graduate Admissions website.  The site also has application deadlines, tuition/fees rates and various other useful pieces of general college information. Note that deadlines are significantly earlier for international students.

We accept applications for both fall and spring semesters.

Late applications might be accepted, but contact the graduate director.

Do I need to have met all requirements before applying?

No, but be aware that decisions are made on a rolling basis and we can't make a decision without your recommendations and GRE scores. Since it takes a few weeks for your GRE scores to be reported, we recommend taking it before you apply or at most a few weeks later. If you are applying for spring entry, the schedule is particularly tight and you should take the GRE by the application deadline.

I work during the day. Can I still get a Master's degree?

Yes! All our master's courses are evenings only (after 5), with a few occasional exceptions.

Do you offer financial aid?

Please contact the graduate student financial aid office for information about loans and work-study. Some of our students also work in NYC industries, and a few students are employed at Hunter.

I don't have a 4 year degree. Can I still apply?

No, 2 year degrees are not sufficient. However, if you are an international student and your degree is considered equivalent to a 4-year degree, you are eligible.

Instead of the GRE, can I take the GMAT/etc.?

No, the GRE Quantitative is required.

Can I apply if my undergraduate degree isn't in computer science?

Yes, if you have sufficient mathematics and computer science preparation. This consists of the following courses:

Hunter Course #
Calculus I
MATH 15000
Calculus II
MATH 15500
Matrix Algebra or Linear Algebra (linear preferred)
MATH 16000 or 26000
STAT 21300
Data Structures
CSCI 23500
Discrete Mathematics
CSCI 15000
Computer Systems
CSCI 26000 or CSCI 34000
Several of these courses have additional prerequisites that you will either have to take or learn by yourself before taking. In general you will need to know everything above the red line in our undergraduate curriculum though you may wish to also take other undergraduate courses.

If you feel that you already know a course but haven't taken a formal course on it, contact the graduate director (see bottom) to figure out a suitable alternative method to verify that you have sufficient knowledge. In some cases, a test-out exam may also be possible.

As you are not allowed to take undergraduate courses after you join the master's program, please contact the graduate director if you feel that there are undergraduate courses you need.

Do I need all of the prerequisite courses?

Yes. However, you may apply if you are currently taking the last of these. If you are still a course or two away from completing these, you may wish to contact the graduate program director for additional alternatives.

Do I need to take the prerequisite courses at Hunter?

No, but you should take the same subject at an equivalent college (e.g., another CUNY senior college). Some students also have taken bridge programs at other colleges.

But you may wish to first contact the graduate director  to ensure that they are equivalent.

How do I take prerequisite courses at Hunter?

You can take them as a non-degree student.  If you happen to be affiliated with another CUNY college, you can also take them through the E-Permit system (contact your department or advisor).

I have already started a master's program elsewhere. Can I get transfer credit?

Yes, if the courses are at a comparable university, and subject to limits.

I'm in a masters program at another CUNY college. Can I transfer to Hunter?

Not exactly. The CUNYs are independent, so there is no concept of transferring. But you can apply to Hunter as normal. See previous question too.

I'm not sure if this is for me. Can I take some graduate courses on a trial basis?

Yes, you can apply as a non-degree graduate student.  However, you will register after existing students do, and some courses may have  filled. If you get a satisfactory grade (B or higher), the course will count towards master's degree requirements.

Do you offer PhD programs?

The CUNY Graduate Center offers a PhD program, and most of our faculty are also members of the doctoral faculty there. The Master's program is an excellent intermediate step towards the PhD program, and you may even be able to take a first step towards your doctoral research as part of your master's program.

Tell me more about the program!

Program information for current students is here.

Other questions?

Contact the computer science graduate program director at