Welcome to the Computer Science Department -- the home of academic programs in Bioinformatics, Computer Science, Computer Security, Information Technology and Web Design and Programming. The department was created in 1970, and for the last 40 years has prepared thousands of students for careers in computing. As computing technology has evolved and changed, so have our courses -- we always make sure that we present a current view of the discipline.
Over the years the department has developed strategies for selecting appropriate courses for students with varying backgrounds. Whatever your math background, we will place you in a course suitable for you. If you have never taken any computing courses, you can start in CSC121 -- this will help you see which area of computing is most interesting to you. If you took computing courses in high school or in another college, you can transfer them to SUNY Plattsburgh and move immediately to our intermediate or high level courses. If you gained computer related experience on your own or on a job, we will let you learn new topics without sitting in a course whose material you have already mastered.
While the main computer lab at the college uses Windows, our department's labs use Linux/UNIX. If you are not familiar with Linux, a 1-credit CSC119 will get you started. This course takes only five weeks and can be taken concurrently with other courses in which students need to work in a Linux environment. Although all the work can be done in our computer labs, you may prefer to work at home -- in such a case any computer (Windows, Linux or Mac OS X) will allow you to do this (but tablets are not suitable for programming). We will recommend additional free software to install. The college provides recommendations for computer options, a computer service plan, free anti-virus software, on-line guides to using multimedia software, etc.
The department takes pride in offering students a lot of individual attention when they need help in their courses. Class sizes are small. Our weekly Video and Discussion meetings offer the opportunity to talk with faculty and fellow students about current issues in computing, science and engineering. Our students participate in national programs of research experience for undergraduates (REU). To find out about scholarships, please contact the Office of Financial Aid. Whenever you have any questions about requirements, courses suitable for you, preparation for a career, or searching for an internship or a job, please talk with your adviser or ask any member of the Computer Science Department. You are always welcome to contact me with your questions and concerns, or to stop by my office to chat.
I remember my college years well -- intellectually, they were the most exciting time of my life and offered a solid preparation for a lifetime career. I hope you will have the same experience and enjoy studying at the Computer Science Department of SUNY Plattsburgh!
Dr. Jan Plaza, Chair