Computer Science program

MUndergrad major mUndergrad minor GGraduate program

Learn to harness the power of computers to help solve problems.

In the modern world, software is at work all around us — telling computers how to operate. From cell phones to cars to video games, we interact with it every day, leaving little that the field of computer science does not touch.

With a computer science degree, you'll join one of the fastest growing sectors of the economy and a field that rewards hard work, logic and creativity.

In UWL's Computer Science program, students gain foundational knowledge for software development, computer systems and theory of computation. The program has a reputation for small class sizes, excellent graduate placement rates, undergraduate research opportunities and accessible professors who can give students a level of attention not found on larger campuses. 

What is computer science?

Computer science is the study of computing systems and the software processes that control them. Computer scientists have developed powerful algorithms in the areas of artificial intelligence, data mining, machine learning, computer vision, security and many other areas. These algorithms are then used for medical imaging, stock market analysis, computer graphics, video processing, and other fields. UWL's program emphasizes software development and includes a variety of electives to allow students to study specific areas of personal interest.

The Computer Science Department at UWL has fantastic professors who are passionate about computer science and teaching. As a student I had opportunities to learn advanced material, make interesting projects, and do my own research.

Salvatore Skare

Computer science jobs

As software has become an integral and growing part of our society, graduates find work in all types of businesses and industry. Although job titles may vary, computer scientists find work involving software and the intercommunicating systems it creates.

The demand for computer scientists continues to grow. The National Bureau of Labor Statistics' Occupational Outlook Handbook consistently projects the software industry to be among the fastest growing sectors of the economy. And the employment of software developers is projected to grow 22 % from 2019-2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. Starting salaries for computer science majors from UWL are among the highest of any major on campus with starting salaries exceeding $65,000. Many graduates are now in management positions and return to campus to interview new graduates.

Career opportunities

  • Software engineers
  • Software developers
  • Programmers
  • Database administrators
  • Systems analysts

What distinguishes UWL's Computer Science program?

Excellent job placement including grads working at Fortune 500 companies

UWL Career Services placement statistics show the majority of computer science majors find work upon graduation. Recent employers include: Epic, Trane Technologies, Lockheed Martin, Microsoft, Amazon, Google, SpaceX, Boeing, Expedia, Fastenal, Capital One, American Express, Yahoo, Oracle, Federated Insurance, Apple, IBM, LHI, Skyward, TDS, Sentry, and SAP.

Undergraduate research opportunities

Computer science students at UWL frequently work directly with faculty on cutting-edge research. This research is often supported by grants and scholarships and frequently leads to conference presentations and academic publications. Examples of recent research opportunities for students:

Talented students, top-notch faculty

ACT scores for entering computer science students are among the highest at UWL. Faculty come from diverse backgrounds in the field, but all share a love of teaching. Twelve professors hold doctorates in computer science or engineering. Three faculty members are nationally-recognized authors of college level computer science textbooks. Faculty members remain active in research, give presentations, write publications and successfully apply for grants each year.

Distinguished Lecture Series in Computer Science

Each year a leader in computing is invited as the UWL Distinguished Lecturer in Computer Science. This guest makes several presentations to students and staff during a two-day campus visit.

High school preparation

The department strongly encourages high school juniors to take an appropriate math class their senior year, even though they may have met their math requirements. Calculus or Pre-Calculus will better prepare students for the computer science program.

Computer science internships

UWL has one of the largest and most active internship programs in Wisconsin. Many computer science juniors and seniors choose to gain work experience via internships available through local companies or throughout the country. Paid internships are the norm in computer science compared to other fields of study.

50-year-history, strong reputation

The department is the second oldest in Wisconsin, only behind Madison, and has a fine reputation within the computing industry during the past 50 years.

Access to cutting-edge computing technology

Computer Science students have convenient access to some of the best computing technology available in the world. The department maintains a software development laboratory for general use by all majors, along with more specialized systems and services.

  • A Eucalyptus Cluster allows students to deploy and configure virtual machines to support class projects. It is an open-source version of Amazon’s AWS, one of the most used web computing platforms in the world.
  • Four V100 Nvidia GPUs provide extremely high computing power for research in machine learning and data science.
  • Docker Server provides an environment for deploying containerized services.
  • XSEDE Supercomputer access through the Campus Champion program provides for large scale parallel programming projects using world-class computing resources.
  • A collection of 3D printers gives students the ability to fabricate parts and components for projects in robotics and embedded systems.
  • The pick-and-place machine provides students with experience in the automatic assembly of printed circuit boards.
  • The department maintains other facilities and equipment for information security, robotics, graphics and visualization, and hardware design and fabrication.
Student organizations
  • Computer Science Club - The department sponsors a student chapter of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) that hosts professional speakers, organizes field trips, hosts LAN parties and promotes social functions for computer science students.
  • CODERS - This student group is dedicated to community outreach, diversity, and facilitating an inclusive community within the CS department. They welcome students who wish to share their passion for computing with peers and the greater community through social, professional development, and community events with organizations.
  • Makeshift Computer Science & Engineering Club – Welcoming all majors, Makeshift is a club about making stuff. They hack together wires, solder, and code to make and repair gadgets and games.

Areas of study

Sample courses