MSc in Computer Science Frequently Asked Questions
- FAQ - Graduation (2019-20 Cohort)
- FAQ - General
Is it possible to hold a part-time job while completing the M.Sc. programme in Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin?Some students do opt to work part time while undertaking the programme, however, the M.Sc. programme is quite intensive and requires the satisfactory completion of a substantial amount of coursework as well as a dissertation project. Undertaking any other substantial commitment while taking the M.Sc. programme is not recommended and will not be considered when awarding marks.
When are Michaelmas, Hilary and Trinity terms?
Traditionally the academic year at Trinity is divided into three terms:
- Michaelmas term (12 weeks of teaching, September - December) - sometimes referred to as Semester 1
- Hilary term (12 weeks of teaching, January - April) - sometimes referred to as Semester 2
- Trinity term (April - July); please note that students work on dissertations till end of August.
The exact dates of the terms differ from one academic year to another, information is posted at the following link when available:
TCD Academic Year Structure
Taught modules on this degree programme take place in the first 2 terms (Michaelmas and Hilary). Exams take place generally before the start of Hilary term (December) and in Trinity Term (May). The MSc research Dissertation takes place throughout the year with full-time work being completed in Trinity term and the subsequent summer months.
How many places are available on the MSc Computer Science?
We plan to accept 120 students next year, distributed across the strands. For some strands, where individual specialized equipment is required, we may need to cap numbers.
- FAQ - Application and Registration
What is the closing date for applications?The Data Science strand under the M.Sc. in Computer Science is now closed for applications. The closing date for applications for the Inteligent Systems, Future Networked Systems and Augmented and Virtual Reality strands is 31st July 2020. Please note that students are processed in order of application and popular course options can fill up quite early. Further details are available on the Applications page of the website.
How do I make an application to the MSc programme in Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin?
Applications for this course should be made online through Postgraduate Admissions.
Guidelines on how to complete the application form as well as the additional documents that must accompany an application are also available from the Graduate Admissions Office. Please give yourself plenty of time to obtain the transcript of your academic results to date, the copies of your degree certificates, and the academic references that must accompany your application. Further details are available on the Applications page of the website.
I don't have a degree in one of the disciplines mentioned in the course brochure, can I still make an application for a place on the M.Sc. programme in Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin?
Other than in exceptional circumstances, applicants for the MSc programme should have an upper second class honors degree , or better, in computing, information technology or another numerate discipline such as engineering, mathematics, statistics, or physics. In general, we expect all applicants to have substantial programming experience preferably, though not necessarily, including exposure to object-oriented programming (in a language such as C++ or Java). Some experience of concurrent (i.e., multi-threaded) programming and computer graphics programming would also be useful.
Is it possible to take the MSc programme in Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin on a part-time basis (e.g. evening or weekend attendance)?Unfortunately, it is not possible to take the MSc Programme on a part-time basis - it is a full-time day course that runs for one full year and is quite intensive. The course is very hands-on and features significant lab work, using specific hardware. Currently this precludes us from making the course available on any other basis.
Is it possible to take the MSc programme in Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin on a distance learning basis?Unfortunately, it is not possible to take the MSc Programme on a distance learning basis - participation in the programme involves working closely with both the teaching staff and other students, including participation in a number of team-based projects. The course also involves significant lab work in dedicated lab facilities which would be difficult to reproduce remotely. For these reasons we do not offer the course in this manner.
What financial assistance is available to students taking the MSc programme in Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin?We hope to be in a position to offer a number of industry sponsored full- or part- scholarships for this program - details will be provided as available. Details of college scholarships are available here
English is not my first language, what language requirements are there for those whose first language is not English?The language of instruction and communication, on this programme is English. All students on the course are required to write and present in English, and will, by the end of the course, be required to produce works of a publishable quality. All applicants whose first language is not English and who have not been educated through the medium of English must present one of the following qualifications in the English Language:
- a minimum score of at least 570 on the paper-based TOEFL test, or
- a minimum score of at least 230 on the computer-based TOEFL test, or
- a minimum score of at least 88 on the Internet-based TOEFL test, or
- a minimum of Grade 6.5 in the IELTS , or
- a minimum of Grade C in the Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English
- a minimum of Grade C in the Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English
What is the tuition fee for the MSc Computer Science at Trinity College Dublin?Details of the course fees are contained in the Applications page of this website.
What are the rules for determining whether an application is considered to be an E.U.(European Union) application or a non-E.U. application?As approved by Board on the 3rd of December 2003, applications for admission are classified as E.U. applications or non-E.U. applications. An E.U. application is one made by a person who fulfils one or more of the following criteria:
- who is ordinarily resident in the E.U. and who has received full-time further or higher education in the E.U. for three of the five years immediately preceding admission; or
- who is ordinarily resident in the E.U. and has worked full-time in the E.U. for three of the five years immediately preceding admission; or
- who holds a passport from an E.U. state and has received full-time further or higher education in the E.U. for three of the five years immediately preceding admission.
What is an upper second class honors degree?An "upper second class honors degree" corresponds to an overall mark of at least 60% (or II.1) in your final degree examination or a Grade Point Average (GPA) of 3.5.
Is it possible to take the course starting in April rather than September?No. The MSc programme commences in September of each year and runs for one full year until August of the following year. Each module runs only for a set number of weeks during the year and is not repeated. Thus students can only be admitted to the course in September of each year.
What are the requirements for applying for the MSc Computer Science?There are a number of requirements that must be satisfied in order to apply for the MSc programme in Computer Science. These are outlined here:
- An upper second class honors (or greater) in an appropriate undergraduate degree .
- Appropriate competence in the English language (spoken and written).
- Submission of the required evidence of residency and educational transcripts.
- Evidence of ability to program in C, C++ or Java (we may ask you to take a test to confirm this)
When will I know if I have secured a place on the MSc programme?We are targeting a turn-around time of 2 weeks after the receipt of all necessary application materials to inform students whether they are accepted, conditionally accepted, wait-listed or rejected.
What kind of laptop do I need to bring?The college provides software and networking support for PCs and Macs. If your course requires particular hardware and specialized software, this will generally be provided for you in labs or as a service in the Cloud. Because of this, your choice of laptop is largely a personal one. Many students opt for Windows-based laptops or Apple Macs, but a variety of tablet computers are also in use and linux is a popular choice with students. Under the current covid-19 situation, students are advised to ensure they have a reasonably current
- FAQ - Syllabus
When does teaching on the M.Sc. programme begin for the next academic year?Teaching on the M.Sc. programme for the academic year usually begins in early to mid-September (candidates who are offered a place will be notified formally of the exact date). There will be a number of orientation events organised in the School and College which may fall in the week preceding the start of term. Some of these will be of particular relevance to new students to the College.
How many hours of classes are there each week?The M.Sc. programme entails approximately twenty contact hours per week (including lectures, tutorials, seminars, and laboratory classes) during the two teaching semesters. All modules require students to complete considerable further coursework and study in their own time beyond these timetabled hours.
How much time should I expect to spend completing coursework beyond that spent in class?This is a highly coursework focussed course with an emphasis placed on students both gaining experience with a wide variety of technologies but also aimed at students building a personal portfolio of work which is typically of great benefit when applying for employment in industry. On average, during teaching term, we expect students to spend at least as much time outside of class working on coursework as they spend in classes. This will be taken up with specific coursework, assigned reading material and research. The level of independent work increases after the end of the 2nd term when all lectures finish. At this time students are expected to be working full-time on their dissertations.
How do I choose a dissertation topic?Dissertation topics are suggested by the teaching staff as well as by companies who are active in the area of interactive entertainment technology. Students are, of course, welcome, and indeed encouraged, to suggest topics of their own. Projects should in any case be self-contained and related to interactive entertainment technology. The goal is that the results of dissertation projects should be of a publishable standard (for examples of publications by students on other MSc degree programmes in the School go here) and be submitted to appropriate international conferences and journals on completion.
- FAQ - TCD
- FAQ - Preparations before arrival
When should students plan to arrive before term begins
We recommend you plan to arrive on campus at least two weeks in advance of the start of teaching. This will allow you to attend the college orientation sessions and to make sure you have accomodation, registration and other formalities attended to before teaching begins.
Is there any information available on arranging accomodation
Unregistered students can join the TCD Student Union Accomodation Support Facebook group here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/486136618065958/
Are there any recommended academic preparations before I join the course
Each strand will have some assumptions on the material students have covered in their undergraduate programs. To help you prepare, we have assembled some helpful links:
- FAQ - Special Arrangements under COVID-19 [for the 2020-21 Academic Year]
Graduation is organised centrally by TCD's Graduation team.
The MSc in Computer Science graduation ceremonies usually take place in Spring (usually April). Due to covid-19, it is likely that the Spring 2021 ceremony will take place virtually. The Graduation team will update all students closer to the time. If students are abroad it is possible to receive the degree in Absentia
Please note that there are separate arrangements for conferral of PGDip awards.
More details: https://www.tcd.ie/academicregistry/graduation/
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