Computer Science


Computer Science is concerned in the broadest sense with the study of computers and applications of computers. Its development was stimulated by the use of computers in many areas, such as Engineering, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Statistics and Business. Yet Computer Science involves much more than just developing techniques for these application areas. Computer Science is offered as a specialist and major.


1) The primary criteria for entry are listed in the Academic Calendar: Complete 4.0 credits, including CSC148, MAT102, and a calculus course; earn the minimum mark in specific courses; and meet the CGPA requirement (set annually).

The CGPA requirement for both the May and August 2017 POSt admissions periods is 2.70 for the CSC major and all CSC specialists.

2) If you do not obtain entry into the major or specialist in the first year due to a minimum course mark requirement, you may choose to re-take MAT102, CSC148, or calculus if you did not obtain the minimum requirement. However, you may wish, instead, to enroll in the CSC Minor and to take the second year CSC courses. If you do so, then we will consider the second year courses you take instead of the first year courses (CSC207 *and* CSC209 instead of CSC148, CSC236 *and* CSC263 instead of MAT102 or calculus).

3) If you do not obtain the required minimum course marks after taking the second year courses, then you should set up an appointment with the faculty advisor (Andrew Petersen, to consider your options. However, very few students will be accepted into the program in the third or fourth year if they do not obtain the minimum course marks in the first and second years.

4) If you do not obtain entry into the major or specialist due to the CGPA requirement, you can apply in later years. (For example, if you did not get into the major in 2016, then you can re-apply in 2017, but you will need to meet the requirement that was set for 2017.)

If you are significantly impacted by low marks from the first year, then we will consider you for entry in the program in the third or fourth year using your annual GPA (your sessional GPA in the last fall, winter, and summer terms you completed). However, this is risky, and we strongly recommend that you have a backup plan (an alternate major and additional minor) to make sure you graduate on time.


All third year courses in computer science (CS) have a writing prerequisite, and all CS majors and specialists contain a half-credit writing requirement. The recommended course to satisfy this requirement is CSC290H5, but students may petition to satisfy the writing requirement using a different course. To do so, draft a formal letter naming the replacement course and describing how it will improve your communication or writing skills. Your letter should also explain why the alternate course will benefit you more than CSC290H5. Submit this letter to the Faculty Advisor. If your petition is approved, then the course you propose will be accepted in lieu of CSC290H5.

NOTICE (2017-08-04) :

The MCS department will be removing students from courses who are NOT in a CS major or specialist (including information security and bioinformatics) and who are enrolled in more than 3 300 or 400 year courses. We are removing these enrollments to give all students a fair chance to take the upper year courses they are entitled to take.

If you are not enrolled in a CS major or specialist and your total completed *and* enrolled 3rd and 4th year courses is above 3, you will be removed from courses.

We strongly recommend that you drop courses voluntarily, so that you can choose which courses to keep.

We will run these filters twice: once in late August and again on September 6, in the first week of classes. After September 6, you are permitted to enroll in as many CS courses as you would like, as long as there is space in the course. We believe this strikes a fair balance between (a) providing access to courses for students in the specialist and major, (b) providing access to courses for students in the minor who have not yet completed three upper year courses, and (c) providing access to extra courses for students in the minor.