15 Fastest Online Master’s in Computer Science 2020

By CSDH Staff
June 2020

In today’s rapidly evolving industry of computer science, a master’s degree has become more important than ever. But who can stop everything  to go back to school? Fortunately, colleges and universities around the nation offer online master’s in computer science degrees that even the busiest of students can complete at any time, from anywhere. Best of all, there are a number of computer science master’s programs that can be completed fast! Keep scrolling for Computer Science Degree Hub’s rundown of the 15 fastest online master’s in computer science degree programs available for 2020. 

Methodology

As we began to put together our article, we found any and all programs that fit the bill — that is, master’s in computer science degree programs that can be completed entirely online. After coming up with approximately 50 programs, we used each program’s website to determine the fastest amount of time in which the degree can be completed. We included both accelerated programs and otherwise on our list. Finally, we ranked the programs in order of fastest completion time, and came up with this: the 15 fastest online master’s in computer science.

#1. University of Michigan – Dearborn
Michigan DearbornOnline Master of Science in Computer and Information Science 

Dearborn, Michigan
Program Cost: Varies

University of Michigan – Dearborn offers an online Master of Science in Computer and Information Science that is ideal for the busy student looking for a quick and flexible program. To earn the master’s degree, students must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours of core courses, electives, and a project or thesis. A total of four of the courses must be chosen from two of the concentration areas. Students have seven choices ranging from game design to networks and security.

#2. University of Illinois at Springfield
University of Illinois Springfield Online Master of Science in Computer Science

Springfield, Illinois
Program Cost: $11,704

The second fastest computer science degree on our list is that of University of Illinois at Springfield, which offers a Master of Science in Computer Science. Best suited for those interested in the design, analysis, and implementation of software programs, this degree can be completed entirely online. Springfield’s online computer science degree consists of 32 credit hours equalling eight courses. A full-time student could complete this degree in one academic year.

#3. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
University of Illinois-Top Computer Science Bachelor's DegreesOnline Master of Computer Science

Urbana, Illinois
Program Cost: $21,440

Next on our list of the fastest online computer science degrees is another member of the University of Illinois consortium: Urbana-Champaign. Students pursuing Illinois’s online Master of Computer Science degree have five years to complete it, though it can be finished in as little as 12 months. The 32-credit hour degree program consists of eight courses, and a thesis is not required. While four of the eight courses are required core classes, the remaining are chosen from the student’s choice of focus:

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Databases
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Software Engineering
  • Scientific Computing
  • High-Performance Computing.

#4. Nova Southeastern University
Nova Southeastern UniversityOnline Master of Science in Computer Science 

Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Program Cost: $26,220

Thanks to Nova Southeastern University’s online program, even those who aren’t based in South Florida can take part in the school’s online Master of Science in Computer Science degree program. Consisting of 10 courses, Nova’s fast-track computer science degree can be completed in as little as 12 months. The program combines theory and practice, and is tailored to give students “an enduring foundation for future professional growth.” Five of the required courses are required core classes, while the remaining are chosen from the student’s choice of concentration:

  • Software Engineering
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Computer Systems
  • Data Science
  • Information Assurance and Cybersecurity
  • Real-World Computing.

#5. Capitol Technology University
Capitol Technology UniversityOnline Master of Science in Computer Science 

Washington, D.C.
Program Cost: $18,540

As described by its website, Capitol Technology University offers an online M.S. in computer science degree which “provides the essential bridge into technology careers at the leading edge of transforming national capability and benefiting the community.” Ideal for both working professionals and soon-to-be working professionals, this degree program consists of 10 courses totaling 30 credits. Six courses are part of the required core, and include topics such as algorithms and theory of computation. The remaining four courses can be chosen from one of two focus areas: data science or software engineering.

#6. Georgia SouthWestern State University
Georgia Southwestern StateOnline Master of Science in Computer Science 

Americus, Georgia
Program Cost: $7,710

Georgia SouthWestern State University offers an online M.S. in Computer Science degree designed for busy working students who are unable to attend classes during daytime hours. To complete the degree, students must work through six core courses and four elective courses totaling 30 credit hours. Students may also choose to complete a thesis.

#7. Columbus State University
Columbus State UniversityOnline Master of Science in Applied Computer Science

Columbus, Georgia
Program Cost: $6,300 (non-thesis), $7,140 (thesis option)

The online Master of Science in Applied Computer Science degree program offered by Columbus State University is ideal for the student looking to work as a web developer, software engineer, or network manager. The degree consists of 10 courses totaling 30 credit hours, or 10 courses and a thesis totaling 34 credit hours. In addition to completing four required core courses, students complete six classes in their choice of concentration:

  • Cybersecurity
  • Software Development
  • AI and Machine Learning
  • Traditional.

#8. Georgia Southern University
Georgia Southern UniversityOnline Master of Science in Computer Science 

Statesboro, Georgia
Program Cost: $10,740

Those interested in a career in knowledge-based data systems will want to consider the online Master of Science in Computer Science offered by Georgia Southern University. Students receive a strong foundation of core classes before working towards their chosen concentration. Speaking of concentrations, Georgia Southern offers one of the only data warehousing and data mining concentrations found anywhere.

#9. Lewis University
Lewis UniversityOnline Master of Science in Computer Science 

Romeoville, Illinois
Program Cost: $26,730

The Lewis University website promises students pursuing its online M.S. in Computer Science will receive “a practical education that is rigorous, customizable, market-relevant, and immediately applicable to your career.” Consisting of 11 courses totaling 33 credit hours, Lewis’s online computer science graduate degree can be completed with the student’s choice of concentration:

  • Cyber Security
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Digital Forensics
  • Software Engineering
  • Enterprise and Cloud Computing

Students may also choose a non-declared concentration option. All students are also required to complete research and a master’s thesis. Full-time students can complete the degree in as little as one year.

#10. Syracuse University
Syracuse UniversityOnline Master of Science in Computer Science 

Syracuse, New York
Program Cost: $50,490

Thanks to Syracuse University’s online program, students from anywhere in the world can earn their M.S. in Computer Science from this top-ranked institution. Designed to be completed in as few as 15 months, this 30-credit degree program will prepare students “to question, analyze, and create solutions for today’s computer science challenges,” as described by Syracuse’s website. Unlike many other online degree programs, Syracuse’s online M.S. program uses an immersive online platform that allows students to take part in live classes with face-to-face interaction.

#11. Arizona State University
arizona-state-universityOnline Master of Computer Science

Phoenix, Arizona
Program Cost: $15,000

Arizona State University’s online Master of Computer Science degree program is one of the most innovative of those offered by anyone, anywhere. The program is offered in collaboration among the School of Computing, Informatics, and Decision Systems Engineering and the website Coursera. This collaboration makes it a breeze for students to complete the M.S. computer science degree during times that best fit their personal schedule. In about 15 months (each course takes 7.5 weeks to complete).  Students will work through coursework and real-world projects to gain a deep understanding of topics ranging from big data to AI.

#12. National University
National UniversityOnline Master of Science in Computer Science

La Jolla, California
Program Cost:
$25,857

National University’s online Master of Science in Computer Science is set up a little differently than most fast-track online programs. Instead of following the traditional quarter or semester calendar, National offers quick four-week sessions. Because the degree program is designed for working professionals, students take one class per session, thereby completing one course per month. The online M.S. in computer science offered by National University consists of 13 courses on everything from software engineering to cloud computing, plus a three-month project spent working with a real client.

#13. Auburn University
Auburn UniversityOnline Master of Science in Computer Science and Software Engineering 

Auburn, Alabama
Program Cost: $31,317

Students anywhere in the world have the opportunity to earn an M.S. degree in computer science from one of the top universities in the South, Auburn University. Designed for those who are seeking a program with both instruction and research, this 33-credit master’s program allows students to choose one of six areas of specialization:

  • artificial intelligence
  • computer networks
  • cybersecurity
  • human/computer interaction
  • machine learning
  • databases and data science

Though the 33-credits reflects a coursework-only option, online students do have the option of completing a thesis as well.

#14. Franklin University
Franklin UniversityOnline Master of Science in Computer Science  

Columbus, Ohio
Program Cost: $24,120

Ohio-based Franklin University offers an online M.S. in Computer Science that can be completed in as few as 20 months. As students work through a series of hands-on and relevant courses, they’ll be “introduced to […] critically needed skills such as algorithm analysis, distributed systems, verification and testing, and database design,” as described by Franklin’s website. In addition to the required core courses, students may choose to complete classes in one of three pathways:

  • Cybersecurity
  • Data Analytics
  • Software Systems

Students take two courses per 12-week term.

#15. Colorado Technical University
Online Master of Science in Computer Science

Colorado Springs, Colorado
Program Cost: $30,800

Rounding out our list of 2020’s fastest online master degrees is the online Master of Science in Computer Science offered by Colorado Technical University. Consisting of 48 units, this quick degree program can be completed in 22 months. Over the course of that time, students will continue building their computer skills while exploring topics ranging from software engineering to databases. The program culminates with a capstone course in which students focus on a major technical problem or an issue impacting their desired industry.

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