We offer a minor in Computer Science and support the interdisciplinary Robotics Minor.

These programs provide a solid foundation for integrating computing principles so that you can develop the skills needed to pursue your careers and interests. 

Computer Science Minor

In today’s world, more than ever, CS is used in the service of all diversity of disciplines from the arts and humanities to science and engineering.

  • Coding, problem-solving, and algorithmic thinking are invaluable skills that complement virtually any major – making you versatile and ready to tackle emerging challenges.
  • Nurture your ability to dissect complex problems and devise innovative solutions.
  • Understand fundamental concepts that empower you to interact with tech teams, bridge communication gaps, and contribute effectively in tech-related projects.
  • Turn your groundbreaking ideas into reality, whether it's developing apps, optimizing systems, or crafting digital solutions.
  • Expose yourself to the latest trends, tools, and methodologies driving industries forward – setting you apart in the job market.

The CS minor begins with our open, introductory programming course: CS 149. Students must apply for full admission into the minor the semester they are taking CS 159. 

The minor requires 18 credits and commonly takes at least four semesters to complete. Please check the current JMU Course Catalog for full details. Contact Paige Normand with any questions.

Select an area of focus to view relevant core course (in bold) and elective options:

Recommended for majors: Media Arts, Business, Biology, Chemistry, ISAT

This sequence includes an introduction to the software engineering practices that are used by professional developers, along with practical courses focused on building websites and databases. This group of courses would be good for students wanting to focus on practical software development skills that many employers are seeking.

Courses: CS 343, CS 345, CS 347, CS 374

Recommended for majors: Media Arts, ISAT, Humanities, Social Sciences, Business, Psychology

This sequence emphasizes the interaction between humans and computing systems. In addition to building technical programming skills, these courses examine how computing impacts society and how we design applications that are easy to use by non-technical users.

Courses: CS 343, CS 330, CS 345, CS 447

Recommended for majors: Physics, Engineering, ISAT, Philosophy

This sequence focuses on how to build autonomous robots and software that can automate decision making. These courses begin with the mathematical foundation for studying algorithms, which is necessary for evaluating what can and cannot be done with AI. It is also recommended that students take CS 330, which includes a discussion of the ethical implications of AI and automated decision-making.

Courses: CS 227, CS 240, CS 354, CS 444, [recommended: CS 330]

Note: CS 240 has a calculus prerequisite (MATH 231 or 235). CS 354 and CS 444 both have a statistics prerequisite (MATH 220, 229, or 318)

Robotics Minor

The Robotics minor combines courses and faculty from several departments that provides an introduction to the field of Robotics.

Through a variety of courses and a capstone project, you'll will learn the fundamental principles of robotics and have a chance to apply them with a hands-on project. In the Robotics minor, you'll

  • Have a basic understanding of robot control systems, sensors, motion, circuits, and the overall design of robots.
  • Design and develop autonomous robots and robot control software.
  • Develop an understanding of how advances in robotics technology can be used in real-life.
  • Learn to work on an interdisciplinary team developing a technical product.

The minor allows flexibility to choose courses that complement each student’s major studies. The curriculum also encourages breadth by requiring students to take some courses outside of their own major.

The minor has been designed for students with a major in one of the STEM fields, but it is open to any JMU student who has an interest and is willing to complete the required courses and prerequisites. Please check the current JMU Course Catalog for the requirements.

Contact Nathan Sprague to learn more.

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