Qi Zhu

Qi Zhu

A University of Houston-Victoria graduate computer science program recently was ranked by a website as one of the nation’s most outstanding and affordable online programs.

Master Degree Guide, a website that ranks higher education programs, placed the UHV Master of Science in Computer Science program on its Best Affordable Online Master’s in Computer Science list.

The website determined the rankings based on factors that included the average cost of undergraduate and graduate tuition, graduation rate, average mid-salary of alumni, the number of students who apply versus the number who are accepted, and the number of programs offered online.

“Computer science is a field that is expanding in today’s world, and students who enroll in our computer science programs find that UHV is an affordable and invaluable investment in their future,” said Beverly Tomek, interim dean of the UHV School of Arts & Sciences. “The ranking of the graduate program shows that UHV is a place where students can receive a quality education at a cost that is not prohibitive.”

The UHV computer science graduate program includes two options for students – a Master of Science in computer information systems and an M.S. in computer science.

One of the main benefits of the graduate computer science and computer information systems programs is the flexibility of the class schedules, said Qi Zhu, a computer science professor and director of the programs.

“When we designed these programs, we considered the needs of our online students,” Zhu said. “We wanted programs where students who had jobs could continue their education without having to worry about being in a classroom. Our students needed the option of completing the programs 100 percent online.”

Students also can learn about trending topics, such as data science and artificial intelligence, at an affordable cost. Within the last couple of years, four faculty members have joined the school to teach different areas of computer science and provide more options and support for students, he said.

“There are a variety of companies in the Houston area, and while most of our students have a traditional computer science or programming job, they can expand their careers with a graduate degree from UHV,” Zhu said. “The graduate degree could open up their careers to working as a project manager, a digital game developer or in robotics.”

Katy resident Prashanti Pandit joined the graduate computer science program in 2018 at UHV because of the convenience of online classes. She graduated from the program in the summer and is interested in a career as either a business or data analyst.

As someone with a baby who worked full time, online classes were the only way for Pandit to continue her studies.

“It was a relief to be able to go to school in my free time, like when my baby was sleeping,” Pandit said. “It was so affordable, and the faculty members were available through email. I could not ask for a better graduate program.”

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