The Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree allows you to combine computer science with another discipline. You might find the BA degree of interest if you are also interested in biology, entrepreneurship, game design, graphic arts, financial engineering, foreign languages, or other disciplines.

Degree Requirements

Students must complete the Bachelor of Arts General Education Core, which is described in the General and Graduate Information Catalog, and an advising sheet available from the College of Arts and Sciences Student Academic Services office.

For the major, students must complete:

  • Required courses: ICS 111/L, 141, 211, 212, 241, 311, 312 or 331, 313 or 361, 321
  • Junior/senior electives: three ICS (or approved) 400-level courses, including at most three credits of ICS 499 and three credits of ICS 491.
  • Area concentration electives: four upper division (300-level or above) courses in some area of concentration (e.g., art, business, music, education).

All seven electives must be approved by an ICS advisor. The intent of the Bachelor of Arts degree is to allow computer science to be combined with another discipline. Students seeking a BA should write a short (one page or less) proposal specifying the seven courses they will use for their ICS and area concentration electives. The proposal should explain how these courses form a coherent plan of study combining computer science with another field. Some examples of reasonable proposals are:

  • I want to work in computer games programming, which requires 3D animation, computer graphics, and software engineering skills. ICS electives: ICS 485 Video Game Design and Development, ICS 462 Artificial Intelligence for Games, ICS 481 Intro. to Computer Graphics. Area electives: ACM 315 Narrative Game Design, ACM 316 3D Character Animation, ACM 415 Computer Game Production, ICS 414 Software Engineering II.
  • I want to do machine translation of Japanese and English, which requires artificial intelligence, cognitive science, and Japanese language skills. ICS electives: ICS 461 Artificial Intelligence I, ICS 661 Artificial Intelligence II(3.0 GPA required), ICS 464 Intro. to Cognitive Science. Area electives: JPN 301 Third-Year Japanese, JPN 302 Third-Year Japanese, JPN 350 Intro. to Japanese Linguistics, JPN 425 Japanese Translation.
  • I want to create web pages, which requires hypermedia, databases, and graphic design skills. ICS electives: ICS 465 Intro. to Hypermedia, ICS 665 User Interfaces & Hypermedia (3.0 GPA required), ICS 421 Database Systems. Area electives: ART 363 Design: Studio 2, ART 364 Design: Studio 3, ART 465 Design: Typography 3, ART 322 Advanced Color.
  • I want to use computers to predict the stock market, which requires statistics, databases, and business skills. ICS electives: ICS 442 Analytical Models & Methods, ICS 471 Probability, Statistics, & Queuing, ICS 421 Database Systems. Area electives: BUS 310 Statistical Analysis for Business Decisions, BUS 311 Information Systems for Global Business Environment, BUS 316 Quantitative Business & Economic Analysis, BEC 389 Applied Business Economics: Forecasting.

This course proposal must be approved by an ICS undergraduate advisor and can be modified later with written approval to account for availability of courses or changes in the student’s interests (which may require a new proposal and rationale).

See our ICS Academic Plan document for more information regarding  our program and our requirements.

Here is a diagram illustrating some possible paths through our degree program:


B.A.: Security Science (SecSci) Focus


For the B.A. in Security Science, students need to take the following courses:

  • core courses: ICS 111, ICS 141, ICS 211, ICS 212 or ICS 215, ICS 222, ICS 241,
  • at the 300-level ICS 355, ICS 311, ICS 314, ICS 321, ICS 332 ICS 351,
  • at the 400-level: ICS 414, ICS 455 and one from each of the following sets:
    • ICS 415 or ICS 423
    • ICS 425 or ICS 426 or ICS 491 or ICS 495
    • ICS 441 or ICS 451

B.A.: Information Technology (IT) Focus


  • ICS 111, 141, 211, 215, 222, 241, 311, 314, 315, 321, 351, 355, 414, 425, 426, and 464
  • At least two additional ICS courses at the 300-level or above

Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Students can apply knowledge of computing and mathematics appropriate to the discipline.
  2. Students can analyze a problem, and identify and define the computing requirements appropriate to its solution.
  3. Students can design, implement, and evaluate a computer-based system, process, component, or program to meet desired needs.
  4. Students can function effectively on teams to accomplish a common goal.
  5. Students have an understanding of professional, ethical, legal, security and social issues and responsibilities.
  6. Students can communicate effectively with a range of audiences.
  7. Students can analyze the local and global impact of computing on individuals, organizations, and society.
  8. Students can recognize the need for and an ability to engage in continuing professional development.
  9. Students can use current techniques, skills, and tools necessary for computing practice.

In addition, the B.A. in Information Technology program has the following additional student learning outcomes:

  1. An ability to use and apply current technical concepts and practices in the core information technologies.
  2. An ability to identify and analyze user needs and take them into account in the selection, creation, evaluation and administration of computer-based systems.
  3. An ability to effectively integrate IT-based solutions into the user environment.
  4. An understanding of best practices and standards and their application.
  5. An ability to assist in the creation of an effective project plan.