University of Minnesota
Master of Science in Software Engineering

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Program Overview


The MSSE program is a two year full-time program that meets on alternating Fridays and Saturdays from 8:00 AM until 4:30 or 5:00 PM with a lunch break. Students commonly negotiate about 8 Fridays per semester with their employers and typically spend 15-20 hours per week studying including class time.

The curriculum is fixed for the first three semesters. The fourth semester offers electives, including an optional independent project. A total of 30 semester credits is required for graduation. A brief semester-by-semester outline of the curriculum is available on the course descriptions page.


Created by faculty from the Computer Science and Engineering Department and by industry experts, the MSSE curriculum provides a solid grounding in theoretical methods, principles, and tools, and an examination of fundamental software development issues and processes. These concepts are explored using realistic and relevant case examples and projects to ensure that the theory works in practice. Brief descriptions of required and elective courses are available on the course descriptions page.


The MSSE program has a single comprehensive fee. The comprehensive fee for students entering in Fall 2016 is $10,200 per semester. The fee remains the same for all four semesters and covers all program costs including textbooks, parking and catering. An installment fee and late fees may apply if payments are not made by the University due dates. The program costs are competitive with other CS Masters programs in the area, described in more detail on the cost comparison page. If your employer has a yearly limit on reimbursement, keep in mind that the program is over 3 calendar years (even though it is a 2-year program): Semester 1 = 2016; Semesters 2 & 3 = 2017; Semester 4 = 2018


The MSSE program is selective, and applicants are expected to have professional work experience prior to joining the program. Applicants are normally required to be currently employed with at least one year of work experience, a BS or BA in Computer Science or related field, and at least a 3.0 grade point average. Other educational backgrounds are considered if professional experience in the field is substantial. The application requirements (including requirements for international applicants) are described in more detail on the How to Apply page and the application procedure itself is described on the Application Procedure page.