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General Information

Plan I:

Thesis Plan. The thesis option is available for graduate students who may wish to continue on to a Ph.D. program or those who wish to concentrate on a specific problem. To qualify for this option, students must be in good academic standing with their Department. The student must enroll in at least two quarters of Thesis Supervision (INF 298) that will substitute for two electives. All required courses must be completed with a grade of B or better, and the student must write a research or thesis project. A committee of three faculty members (voting members of the Academic Senate) will guide the student and give final approval of the thesis. The committee will consist of an advisor (faculty member from the student’s department) who is willing to supervise the thesis project, and two other faculty members (one of which must be from the student’s department) who are willing to serve on the committee as readers of the thesis. An oral presentation of the thesis to the committee will be required as outlined below, under “Final Examination.”

Plan II:

Comprehensive Examination Plan. The student completes the required units as specified. Each course must be completed with a grade of B or better. The student must take a comprehensive examination given by Informatics faculty. The examination covers the core requirements.

Unit Requirements

This degree program requires 48 units of coursework, including 24 units of core requirements, and 24 units of electives (of which, up to 12 units may be used as independent study).

Required Core Courses
INF 261: Social Analysis of Computing
INF231: INF 232: Research in Human Centered Computing
INF 209S: Seminar in Informatics (twice, usually in first year)

Research Methods Core
INF 201: Research Methods
INF 203: Qualitative Methods
INF 205: Quantitative Methods

Electives in Informatics  (6 graduate level classes)
A set of six elective courses at the graduate level. The selection of courses should form a coherent educational plan to be approved by the student’s faculty advisor or by the program director in the case that the student is not working with a faculty advisor. Although the courses may be chosen from any graduate level courses on campus, it is recommended that at least three be chosen from within the school of ICS. Students may use up to 12 units of independent study (Inf 298/299) as electives. Undergraduate courses cannot be used for graduate electives.

Final Examination

Plan One:

The MS thesis defense committee is formed in accordance to UCI Senate regulations. This committee must approve the following for the student to pass the final examination:

Thesis document: The student must prepare the written dissertation in accordance with Academic Senate regulations and present this document to the committee with enough advance notice for appropriate review and critique prior to an oral defense. Following an oral defense of this document, any changes required must be approved by the entire committee.

Oral defense: The student must pass an oral dissertation defense that consists of a public presentation of the student’s research followed by an oral examination by the student’s doctoral committee. To ensure the public has an opportunity to participate in this examination, the student must announce the defense title, date, and time at least two weeks prior to the event to all faculty and doctoral students in the department.

Plan Two:

In the final quarter of study, the student must take a comprehensive examination given by Informatics faculty. The examination covers the core requirements.

Students transferring from the PhD program in Informatics to the MS program in ICS with a concentration in Informatics who pass the PhD Advancement exam at a Masters level may substitute that exam for the comprehensive exam. This is, however, an exception, that requires a memo from the department, approval by the Associate Dean for Student Affairs AND approval by the Vice-Provost for Graduate Education. It is (1) time-intensive and (2) not guaranteed. So, if you want to go this route, you need to start that process EARLY. As a note, as for all graduate degrees at UCI, you must petition to advance to candidacy the quarter before you actually graduate. So, you must decide by around mid-point in the quarter BEFORE the quarter at the end of which you plan to graduate. START EARLY.