Masters after some time in the industry?

<p>Hello everyone,</p>

<p>I just finished my junior year in computer engineering, and have started thinking about grad school. I don't know much about how to get a masters degree (other than to take the GRE exam to get into grad school) or how it may be useful, but I want to know if it is possible to go to grad school after a few years of working. If so, how long is the maximum time I should work in the real world before the real experience starts to be worth more than a potential masters degree? Is it better to go to grad school right after undergrad even if I prefer not to? Thank you. I am mainly interested in Computer Science for masters.</p>

<p>If your goal is an industry software career, a master's degree is unlikely to make much of a difference compared to an extra year or two in the work force.</p>

<p>The exception is if the extra year or two would be in the unemployment line. Many civil engineering students in recent years went to graduate school because the real estate crash eliminated their job opportunities; they hope that spending two years getting a master's degree will let them enter the job market at a better time. For computer science, the equivalent time was back in 2001-2003, after the tech bubble crash.</p>

<p>So apply to graduate schools (including a "safe" one where your study would be funded) just in case, even if your goal is an industry job and career. If the industry has economic problems and is not hiring when you graduate, you can go to graduate school to wait out the downturn.</p>

<p>Thanks for the advice. How long would it take to get a masters in computer science considering my background degree is in computer engineering. If it's only one year I might as well do it after undergrad.</p>

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Thanks for the advice. How long would it take to get a masters in computer science considering my background degree is in computer engineering. If it's only one year I might as well do it after undergrad.

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<p>Depends how many "core" CS courses your CompE major required and/or if your took the "core" CS courses as electives. The core CS courses usually required/preferred for CS grad school are:</p>

<p>Algorithms (may be part of combined Algorithms & Data Structures course)
Data Structures (may be part of combined Algorithms & Data Structures course)
Theory of Programming Languages
Operating Systems</p>

<p>...and sometimes</p>

<p>Computer Architecture (which you probably already have being in CompE anyway).</p>

<p>Those 4 courses will either be:
a) Required for admission to the graduate CS program...and/or
b) Taken as graduate course versions....and/or
c) Will be part of a comprehensive exam before graduating</p>

<p>Most Masters in CS programs will require those 4 core courses, 3 more CS electives and 3+ technical electives.</p>