Aug 21, 2018  
2015-2016 Graduate Catalog 
2015-2016 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Computational Science, MS

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Program Objectives and Description

Computational Science is the field of study concerned with constructing mathematical models and quantitative analysis techniques and using computers to analyze and solve scientific problems. In practical use, it is typically the application of computer simulation and other forms of computation to problems in various scientific disciplines. Computational Science has become critical to scientific leadership, economic competitiveness, and national security.

CWU will offer this masters program with the aim to prepare students for professional computational science careers or to pursue a doctoral degree. The computational core of the program will be materialized in by modular and flexible inter-departmental collaboration. Professional computational scientists possess a broad grounding in computing related areas, mathematics, and sophistication in their area of concentration. The program promotes the expansion and strengthening of the collaborative educational and research efforts across the College of the Sciences.

The program will be entirely delivered at the CWU Ellensburg campus and will be a combination of traditional courses, seminar, and research work amounting to a total of 45 credits. Regular attendance to research seminars offered in the various departments involved in the program will also be required. Students will complete 22 credits of core course work in computer science and mathematics and 5 credits of thesis/capstone project work. Additionally, students will complete at least 8 credits of elective coursework in their selected area(s) of expertise. A full-time student has to take at least 10 credits per quarter. A typical break down for a student in the program would be:

  • 22 credits core courses
  • 18 credit electives, including graduate research
  • 5 credits master’s thesis/project

Students will have to complete the core course work of the program:

  • Advanced data structures and algorithms
  • High-performance computing
  • Advanced algorithms for scientific computing
  • Applied numerical methods I
  • Applied numerical methods II

Since research is a key part of student development in this program, the rest of the work in the master of computational science will focus on a (year-long) research project with an advisor in their selected area of expertise. Alternatively, and with the approval of the Computational Science Program Committee, students will have the option to do research, or work on a project in partner of the program. Regular attendance to research seminars will also be required.

Students who are part of the program will be required to do a master’s thesis or a project at the end of the program. The two alternatives (thesis or project) mean that students may choose between a research and a professional orientation.

The Thesis/Project Committee, having at least three members, will be chaired by a graduate faculty from the Computer Science Department. All actual professors from the Computer Science Department have the Graduate Faculty status: Dr. James Schwing, Dr. Boris Kovalerchuk, Dr. Ed Gellenbeck, and Dr. Razvan Andonie. Interdisciplinary membership in the graduate committee is strongly recommended. For this program, the graduate committee will be generally interdisciplinary.

Each core course will be offered one time per year. The elective courses will be generally offered every other year. Students will specialize in one of the following application areas:

  • Biological and environmental sciences
  • Chemistry
  • Computer Science
  • Geology
  • Mathematics
  • Physics


To be considered, an applicants to this graduate program must have been awarded (or about to be awarded) a 4-year bachelor’s degree, with a 3.25 or higher.

The target audience will consist primarily of computer science graduates (i.e., graduates with a major in computer science). We also target graduates with a minor in computer science and a major in one of the application domains (mathematics, biology, chemistry, physics, and geology). On a case by case basis, graduates from the application domains, without a minor in computer science, may be also accepted, if they have enough credits from computer related courses (computer programming, algorithms and data structures, and computer organization).

Elective Courses (to be selected by advisement)

Total Credits: 45

Computer Science Department Graduate Information

College of the Sciences
Hebeler Hall, room 219
Mail Stop 7520
Fax: 509-963-1449
See website for how this program may be used for educational and career purposes.

Faculty and Staff
(Interim) Aaron Montgomery, PhD

Razvan Andonie, PhD, computational intelligence, machine learning, parallel/distributed computing, big data analytics, data mining
Boris Kovalerchuk, PhD, artificial intelligence, visual big data analytics, machine learning, data mining, computer vision, simulation, computer architecture, soft computing

Associate Professors
Donald Davendra, PhD, optimization, evolutionary algorithms, manufacturing systems, chaos control, data analytics

Assistant Professors
Szilard Vajda, PhD, machine learning, medical image processing, document analysis, data analytics

Chris Dunn, secretary senior
Zachary Geesaman, systems analyst
Megan McConnell, advisor, recruiter

College of the Sciences Information

Administration and Organization

Tim Englund, PhD (Dean Hall, room 130)

Associate Dean
Mike Harrod (Dean Hall, room 130)

Associate Dean
Martha Kurtz, PhD (Dean Hall, room 130)

Brad Weekly, development officer
Velma Henry, administrative assistant
Cindy Klein, fiscal specialist
Janis Orthmann, administrative assistant
Colleen Falconer, program coordinator
Dannica Price, event coordinator

Mail Stop 7519
Fax: 509-963-1977

The College of the Sciences (COTS) is comprised of 13 departments and 12 interdisciplinary programs representing disciplines in the behavioral, natural, and social sciences, and mathematics. The departments and programs of the college offer undergraduate baccalaureate degrees, master’s degrees, minors that supplement other degree programs, and a comprehensive range of service coursework. As an essential part of its mission, the college offers an extensive general education curriculum. The departments play a major role in Central’s Teacher Certification Programs, offering bachelors and master’s degrees for students preparing to be secondary teachers and providing coursework in educational foundations and discipline-specific content and methods.

Departments within the college are committed to teaching excellence, active engagement by faculty in research, scholarship and professional service activities, student involvement in research, community service, and employing practical applications of academic specializations.

All departments offer baccalaureate degree programs and, in some cases, minors, educational specialist degrees and master’s degrees. In addition to consulting department/program headings in this catalog, students are encouraged to contact individual departments and program offices directly.

Anthropology and Museum Studies: Kathleen Barlow, PhD, Dean Hall, room 356, 509-963-3201
Biological Sciences: James Johnson, PhD, Science Building, room 338, 509-963-2731
Chemistry: Levente Fabry-Asztalos, PhD, Science Building, room 302, 509-963-2811
Computer Science: Aaron Montgomery, PhD, Hebeler Hall, room 219, 509-963-1495
Geography: John Bowen, PhD, Dean Hall, room 301, 509-963-1188
Geological Sciences: Carey Gazis, PhD, Lind Hall, room 108B, 509-963-2701
Law and Justice: James Huckabay, PhD, Farrell Hall, room 300, 509-963-3208
Mathematics: Stuart Boersma, PhD, Bouillon Hall, room 108, 509-963-2103
Physics: Bruce Palmquist, PhD, Lind Hall, room 201A, 509-963-2727
Political Science: Todd Schaefer, PhD, Psychology Building, room 415, 509-963-2408
Psychology: Stephanie Stein, PhD, Psychology Building, room 421, 509-963-2381
Science Education: Bruce Palmquist, PhD, Science Building, room 107, 509-963-2929
Sociology: Delores Cleary, PhD, Farrell Hall, room 409, 509-963-1305

Interdisciplinary Programs
These programs offer specialized coursework, interdisciplinary baccalaureate majors or minors, master’s degrees or research, and public service functions.

American Indian Studies: Toni Culjak, PhD, Language and Literature, room 408D, 509-963-1531
Center for Excellence in Science and Mathematics Education: Martha Kurtz, PhD, Dean Hall, room 130, 509-963-2135
Environmental Studies: Carey Gazis, PhD, Lind Hall, room 108B, 509-963-2701
or Pam McMullin-Messier, PhD, Farrell Hall, room 441, 509-963-2222
Ethnic Studies: Nelson Pichardo, PhD, Farrell Hall, room 440, 509-963-1348
Interdisciplinary Studies - Social Sciences: Steve Schepman, PhD, Psychology Building, room 429, 509-963-2389
Museum of Culture and Environment: Mark Auslander, PhD, Dean Hall, room 334, 509-963-3209
Primate Behavior and Ecology Program: Lori Sheeran, PhD, Dean Hall, room 335, 509-963-1434
Resource Management Program: Karl Lillquist, PhD, Dean Hall, room 319, 509-963-1184
or Steve Hackenberger, PhD, Dean Hall, room 349, 509-963-3224
Science Talent Expansion Program (STEP): Lucinda Carnell, PhD, Science, room 338G, 509-963-2821
Women’s and Gender Studies: Judith Hennessey, PhD, Farrell Hall, room 436, 509-963-1574

Affiliated Centers and Institutes
Center for Spatial Information and Research: Anthony Gabriel, PhD, Dean Hall, room 320, 509-963-1166
Center for the Environment: Anne Johnasen, PhD, Science, room 207D, 509-963-2164
Central Washington Archaeological Survey, Anthropology: Patrick McCutcheon, PhD, Dean Hall, room 340, 509-963-2075
or Steve Hackenberger, PhD, Dean Hall, room 349, 509-963-3224
Community Counseling and Psychological Assessment Center: Heath Marrs, PhD, Psychology Building, room 346, 509-963-2349
or Elizabeth Haviland, PhD, Psychology Building, room 118, 509-963-2371
Geodesy Laboratory and Pacific Northwest Geodetic Array (PANGA) Data Analysis Facility: Tim Melbourne, PhD, Hebeler Hall, room 110A, 509-963-2799
Health Career Resources: Keith Monosky, PhD, Dorothy Purser Hall, room 108, 509-963-1145

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