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Gateway to Computer Science Certificate Program

The online Gateway to CS graduate certificate program prepares you for entry into the world of computing and information technology. This certificate program is designed for those individuals with no background in computers or software or college-level math, but who are excited about computer technology and desire to have a career in software/IT or apply this useful set of skills to their current profession.

Overview of Program

The 4-course certificate program prepares students in programming and software development, website development and web programming, as well for entry into the Master’s in Applied Computer Science (see below). Upon completion of the Gateway to CS program, students will have the ability to:

  • Write code to work with data, to solve problems, develop websites;
  • Understand the principles of computer programming with modern object-oriented language that’s popular with employers;
  • Develop confidence in computers and technology.

Course Structure

The certificate is comprised of 4 total courses equaling a total of 12 credit hours. Courses are lockstep and must be taken in the following sequence:

  • Required courses:
    • CSCI 6001: Introduction to Computer Programming and Software Development
    • CSCI 6002: Introduction to Data Structures and Their Applications
    • CSCI 6003: Introduction to Software Design and Engineering
    • CSCI 6004: Introduction to Web Development (CSCI 6004 will also be counted towards an elective requirement for those participants who are admitted to the Master of Science in Applied Computer Science.)

Duration of the Program: Students participating in this program will register for one course per semester (including summer) so the total duration of the program is 1.5 years. There is no option for students to complete the program in an accelerated manner.

Mode of Instruction: All courses in the Gateway to CS program will be taught online.

Admissions Requirements

Eligibility: Students with a 4-year bachelor’s degree in any field are eligible to apply for the Gateway to CS certificate program. Students must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 out of a 4.0 scale in order to be considered for admission into the Gateway to CS program.

Prospective students must fulfill the certificate admissions requirements through submission of a complete online application form and other documents as listed by the deadlines noted.

Please note: GW does not have the authority to offer I-20 forms for F-1 visa-seeking students who are applying to the Gateway to CS certificate program. International students who are currently in the US not on an F-1 visa are eligible to apply to this program but must meet English language test score minimums listed under English Language Test Exam Requirements if they did not complete a bachelor’s degree from a US institution.

Application deadline: The deadline to apply for the fall start term: July 1

Start term: This program only offers a fall start term. There is no spring or summer intake.

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Apply to Master's Program

Upon successful completion of the Gateway to CS certificate and receiving a GPA of 3.0, students may be granted admission to the Master of Science in Applied Computer Science program at GW SEAS. Students who have completed additional mathematics coursework upon completion of the Gateway to CS certificate program may also be eligible to apply to the on-campus Master of Computer Science program. 

Please note: You must submit a new application for the selected master's program and provide the required documents and exam scores listed as part of the master's program admissions requirements.

For any questions, please contact [email protected].