Computer Science (CS)

The Computer Science (CS) program educates students to become world-class researchers and thought leaders in computer science. The program is designed to prepare students for a career in academia, industrial research, or advanced positions in industry.  

Students who complete the PhD degree will have demonstrated original research published in world-class prestigious conferences, journals, and other research forums. This degree is appropriate for those who want to pursue a career in research, either in academia or industry. Students who complete the MS degree by taking courses and writing a thesis will have demonstrated the ability to perform directed research and complete a research project. This degree is appropriate for students wishing to pursue a PhD later. 

Students who complete the MS degree by taking only courses will have demonstrated strong performance in graduate-level courses that prepares students for careers of advanced research and development in industry. 

The scope of research in the computer science program at KAUST includes the following areas: 

  • Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning 
  • Computational Biosciences 
  • Computing Systems and Databases 
  • High-Performance Computing 
  • Theoretical Computer Science 
  • Visual Computing 
  • Cybersecurity and Dependability 

Program Chair

Xin Gao-

Graduate Program Coordinator (GPC)

Aida Mizouni-Hoteit-

Course Definitions

To describe the course requirements, the CS program uses the following terms:

A 200-level course has a course number in the closed interval [200 – 299].

A 300-level course has a course number in the closed interval [300 – 399].

The course prefix is the abbreviation at the beginning of a course number specifies the program offering the course. A Computer Science course has a CS prefix. A CEMSE course is a course with a CS, AMCS, ECE, or STAT prefix. A BESE/CEMSE/PSE course is a course offered by any of the three divisions.

The term regular course (also referred to as a technical course) excludes:

  • CS 295 Internship, CS 297 Master Thesis Research, CS 299 Directed Research, or similar courses in other programs.
  • CS 397 Doctoral Dissertation Research, CS 398 Graduate Seminar, CS 399 Doctoral Directed Research, or similar courses in other programs.
  • Courses that CS students cannot take for academic credit toward their degree., which include CS 201 Introduction to Programming with Python, CS 204 Data Structures and Algorithms, CS 205 Systems Programming, CS 207  Programming Methodology and Abstractions.
  • Courses with a ENG, IED, WE prefix.

Computer Science Degrees