Published: Spring 2018 in Class Notes

Computer Science Minor Offers a Major Opportunity

Completing a minor in computer science just became easier thanks to a new program beginning in May 2018. Open to students from all majors, the minor requires five computer science classes. Students take one course in each of three consecutive May terms (five weeks of study in May) and two other computer science classes during their regular schedule.

Don Patterson, associate professor of computer science, encourages students to explore this new opportunity. “It will diversify your educational portfolio and open up additional opportunities,” he says. “Potential employers will see that you’ve learned how computer scientists think and work, which can set you apart from other applicants and make you more marketable.”

To complete the minor, students must begin early by taking two specific general education classes in their first three semesters: Design and Implementation of Solutions to Computational Problems (CS 010) and Discrete Mathematics (CS/MA 015). Four other majors (mathematics, biology, chemistry and psychology) recommend one or more of these classes.

Following their first year at Westmont, students will enroll in three consecutive May term courses: Abstract Models for Concrete Problems Using Java (CS 030), Space, Time, and Perfect Algorithms (CS 120), and Computer Organization and Hardware Architecture (CS 045) at the end of their junior year.

“Students in this program will acquire proficiency in Java and Python among other things. It’s a very flexible program, which is great for students who have lots of interests or haven’t committed to a particular course of study,” Patterson says.

Interested students should visit the computer science website or speak with any professor in the department.

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