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Christian College Strong in Computer Science

SpamusSpamus Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
edited April 2011 in Christian Colleges
I am looking for a good Christian College that has a strong/good Computer Science Department. I at first assumed Pepperdine would have a great one since I had heard they were really strong academically, but after looking at their website and a little research I realized they were about the worst Computer Science Department I'd ever seen (no Specific Computer Science major, 2 professors of computer science, and only one of those 2 being full time, one of the 2 not even having a PhD).
I know Harding supposedly has a good Computer Science department, but are there any other specific schools good in this major?
Post edited by Spamus on

Replies to: Christian College Strong in Computer Science

  • CorbettCorbett Registered User Posts: 2,656 Senior Member
    Computer science programs often have professional accreditation from ABET. This is the same agency that accredits engineering programs (although ABET/CAC accreditation for computer science programs is technically distinct from ABET/EAC accreditation for engineering programs).

    If a school has ABET/CAC accreditation for its CS program, then no one will doubt that it is for real. You can look up such schools at abet.org. Some examples include Calvin College, Notre Dame, Southern Adventist, SMU, and TCU.

    However, there is an important caveat to this approach. Professional accreditation is considered optional in Computer Science, because this field is not subject to strict licensing rules and regulations (unlike, for example, civil engineering). So some schools with strong CS departments don't have ABET accreditation in CS (like Stanford or Carnegie Mellon, for example).

    So if a school has ABET accreditation for CS, that's good. But if a school lacks ABET accreditation for CS, it doesn't necessarily mean that the program is bad. So you shouldn't rely exclusively on the ABET criterion.
  • SpamusSpamus Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
    Thanks for the response Corbett. I noticed that Computer Science Accreditation was pretty rare. However, I found a few schools I am interested in that are accredited in Computer Engineering. Is a school typically good in computer science if it has accreditation in Computer Engineering?
  • hudsonvalley51hudsonvalley51 Registered User Posts: 2,449 Senior Member
    Grove City College in Pennsylvania reputedly has a pretty rigorous program. They offer both Computer Science and Electrical/Computer Engineering. The ECE program is ABET accredited.
  • CorbettCorbett Registered User Posts: 2,656 Senior Member
    CompEng and CompSci are not the same thing, and are accredited separately by ABET. The former is more focused on the hardware, the latter on the software.

    But in general, I would take ABET accreditation in CompEng as a positive sign for CompSci. ABET accreditation in CompEng is hard to get, and it is a sign that a school takes the program seriously. And if a school is serious about its engineering program, then it more likely to be serious about its CompSci program. The correlation may not be perfect, but it probably does exist.

    But -- as with CompSci -- sometimes good CompEng programs aren't accredited. In general, there is little state licensing or regulation in either field. So programmatic accreditation is not as critical as in some other engineering fields.
  • CorbettCorbett Registered User Posts: 2,656 Senior Member
    Grove City College in Pennsylvania reputedly has a pretty rigorous program. They offer both Computer Science and Electrical/Computer Engineering. The ECE program is ABET accredited.
    GCC has a Dept. of Electrical/Computer Engineering. Technically, the dept. is only ABET-accredited as an Electrical Engineering program; it does not have ABET accreditation for Computer Engineering (you can verify this at abet.org).

    Nonetheless, I would say that ABET accreditation in Electrical Engineering is probably a positive sign as regards the CompSci dept.
  • covenantmomcovenantmom Registered User Posts: 1 New Member
    Have you looked at LeTourneau University? It is a Christian College, has one of the longest ABET Accreditations among Christian schools and has a variety of great Engineering Programs.

    LeTourneau University | Longview, Texas

    My husband and I both attended and got engineering degrees. My husband is working on his PhD now, and plans to teach within the next 3 -4 years. LeTourneau has not only great academics, but professors who care, are eager to help and instruct, as well as know you as a student. They have great scholarships!
  • HootenanyHootenany Registered User Posts: 84 Junior Member
    Wow. Please don't go to LeTourneau. If you're looking for a giant sausage-fest where you will be treated like a little child by the faculty, then that's the place for you. I went there for a semester- BIGGEST MISTAKE OF MY LIFE! I made some great friends, but you'll make friends wherever you go. Why not just study at a public university? You can pursue your spiritual development through a multitude of paths- you don't have to pay 30-40k a year to be a good Christian. Actually, LeTourneau is where I realized that I don't believe a lot of the stuff that I've read in the Bible- this certainly wasn't because of the school, but because of research which I conducted on my own, and because I finally started thinking critically for myself once I moved away from home. What I'm saying is, simply because you shell out tens of thousands of dollars to stay sheltered in a Christian environment doesn't mean that you'll somehow grow up to be a super powerful Christian. If you're okay with the following things, then maybe LeTourneau is the right place for you, but it certainly wasn't for me:

    1) $120,000+ spent on your college education
    2) A degree from a fairly unknown school, when compared to a good state university.
    3) At least 3-1 male-female ratio
    4) Required chapels
    5) Restrictive rules, internet censoring (they filter out some ABSURD things!)
    6) Living in a ghetto town with no livelihood

    I could go on, but these are the biggest things I can think of.

    On the flip side, they do claim to have great engineering and CS programs. Although, whenever I mention LeTourneau to an engineer --or anybody for that matter-- they have never heard of it. Good luck. I really hope that you consider your options, and understand that public school isn't the devil. That was the idea that I had for a very long time, but eventually I realized that that was just brainwash.
  • informativeinformative Registered User Posts: 1,900 Senior Member
    The top christian college's will usually have a good CS program. Just try to get into the best christian university you can get into and afford and you'll probably find that they have a great CS program.

    Georgetown Computer Science: Home

    Department of Computer Science | University of Notre Dame

    Computer Science Department - Boston College
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