- Program Overview
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The MS in Computer Science - Data Science provides students with a core background in Computer Science and specialized algorithmic, statistical, and systems expertise in acquiring, storing, accessing, analyzing, and visualizing large, heterogeneous and real-time data associated with diverse real-world domains including energy, the environment, health, media, medicine, and transportation.
|Spring 2024||September 15, 2023|
|Fall 2024||December 15, 2023|
Visit our Ready to Apply page for more information.
Applicants are expected to have completed or be in process of completing an undergraduate degree in computer science or its equivalent. For those who do not, they should meet the eligibility criteria on our MSCS Eligibility Criteria page.
Applications are reviewed holistically; simply taking these courses does not guarantee admission.
The following materials are required to be included with your online application:
- Personal Statement
- Letter of Recommendation (Optional)
NOTE: The GRE is not required for 2024 applications.
For tips on completing your application visit
Ready to Apply
The following link will take you to an overview of the tuition & fees for graduate engineering students, including payment information. Both on-campus and DEN@Viterbi students pay the same tuition
Download the Cost of Attendance to see a summary of tuition and fees by semester. The document is a typical example and the number of courses, and time to complete the program, will vary by student.
Tell us a little bit about yourself
I did my undergraduate studies at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Mandi, Himachal Pradesh. Then I worked for Microsoft India for two years. That’s when I realized the need to specialize in a specific domain and wanted to explore the field of data science. So, I decided to earn a Master’s degree and chose USC’s MSCS (Data Science) program.
Tell us about your interests outside the classroom.
Outside the classroom, research was my major interest. I worked in the Human Robotics Interaction Lab during the first year. Then I started working with Prof. Sukhatme to solve robotic path learning problems. I was also involved with the Graduate Mentorship program and guided new graduate students to make sure they have a smooth transition and get comfortable here. I share my experience and knowledge with the new students to help them adjust well at USC.
Tell us about some exciting and unforgettable incidents from your two years at USC?
Well, during the initial phase of my journey at USC, I was focused on pursuing PhD. I was always focused on PhD and never thought about getting a job after completing my masters. But after I did my first internship, I thought of giving the job hunt a shot and interviewed for positions in my field of interest. I had PhD offers from USC and Carnegie Mellon University and job offer from Nvidia and a few other companies. I chose the job offer from Nvidia. Two years back, I was thinking only about PhD and now I am working at Nvidia, the American tech company. I believe that when there is a chance to take a risk, you should go for it.
MOUNICA NAIDU MANYAM
Mounica Naidu Manyam, grew up in Bengaluru, and received her bachelor’s in computer science and engineering from the Ramaiah Institute of Technology. She was working for Philips healthcare division in Bengaluru as a Software Engineer when she decided to go to graduate school at Viterbi. She chose Viterbi because it was ranked in the top 20 in machine learning programs. In addition, the university’s location in California, appealed to her as she believed it might provide greater opportunities and more vocational control. It also didn’t hurt that a lot of her friends had studied at USC. Everything just came together.
Having never traveled alone before, Mounica set out with a friend to travel to USC where they both decided to attend school. At first, she was a little scared: it was the first time that Mounica set foot in Los Angeles and her first time in the U.S. She need not have worried; she found people helpful and friendly. About 15 students from her class at her undergraduate university also came to USC. In total, she imagines about 40 students from her school ended up attending USC.
On campus, Mounica studied computer science with a specialization in Data Science. Once she settled in, Mounica spent time going to Santa Monica and exploring downtown LA at night. Being a foodie, she enjoyed the famous taco trucks in L.A.
One of the projects Mounica worked on caught the attention of AI expert Yolanda Gil, who works at the USC Information Science Institute. Professor Gil recruited Mounica for a project analyzing LA’s traffic data. The project took advantage of USC’s other professional schools, the Annenberg School of Communications and Journalism, and Mounica converted vehicle traffic data from around L.A. into a usable format for emerging student journalists to analyze. In addition, she secured a student job at the school’s Marketing and Communications department where she built out the school’s website.
Her next position this summer will be an internship at Amazon in company’s advertising division in Silicon Valley. She knows that this requires a move to a new place but also knows that she won’t be alone. There are many student interns and alumni from USC who are working for the same company and in the same location.
2022 First Destinations Survey - Outcomes*
Alumni Employment - 2022*
(Companies & Job Titles)
- Amazon - Software Development Engineer
- Fortinet - Software Development Engineer
- G.K. Monoid - Application Software Developer
- Google - Software Engineer
- Intel - Software Engineer
- Leaf Group - Data Scientist
- Meta Platforms, Inc. - Software Engineer
- Nuleep - Application Developer
- Pinterest - Data Scientist & Machine Learning Engineer
- Red Hat - Technical Consultant
- Walmart - Data Scientist (Machine Learning Infra Engineer)
Internships (Summer 2023)**
Amazon; American Express; Barclays; Bytedance Inc.; Nutanix, Inc.; PayPal, Inc.; PwC; Reliable Business Services; Secure Talent, Inc. dba Eastridge Workforce Management; Sungrow; Volvo Group North America LLC; Zscaler, Inc.
* Information is based on a voluntary survey and should not be interpreted as a comprehensive view of the 2022 graduating class.
** Internship data is from CPT internships done by our international student population.
This program is also available online to professional engineers through DEN@Viterbi. Because the DEN@Viterbi program provides a fully equivalent academic experience, the degree a USC engineering student earns is the same whether they are on-campus or online. If you are interested in beginning classes as a DEN@Viterbi student next semester, explore the requirements and steps to enrolling as a Limited Status Student. Learn More About DEN@Viterbi
Detailed Program Curriculum and RequirementsSchedule of Classes
DEN@VITERBI ONLINE COURSE OFFERINGS The following courses and program requirements serve as program planning for DEN@Viterbi students. Course offerings and availability are subject to change. Please consult with advisor if you have any questions.
|3 Courses Required - 12 units total.|
|CSCI 561 | Foundations of Artificial Intelligence (4 units)|
|CSCI 570 | Analysis of Algorithms (4 units)|
|CSCI 585 | Database Systems (4 units)|
|Group Elective Courses|
|Three courses required from Group Electives - minimum of one course per group - 9-12 units.|
|Group 1 - Data Systems (Students must take CSCI 572)|
|CSCI 572 | Information Retrieval and Web Search Engines (4 units)|
|Group 2 - Data Analysis (Students must take at least one course from this group)|
|CSCI 567 | Machine Learning (4 units)|
|CSCI 573 | Probabilistic Reasoning (3 units)|
|8-11 units should be selected with the approval of a department advisor.|
|Any 500 or 600 level course in CSCI (including additional group electives or special topics)|
CSCI 585 (required course)
Principles of Database Systems
Published on July 10th, 2017
Last updated on October 20th, 2023