Doctor of Philosophy in Software Engineering


The PhD in Software Engineering program is tailored to the student. The student must arrange a course program with the guidance and approval of a faculty member chosen as their graduate advisor. Adjustments can be made as the student’s interests develop and a specific dissertation top is chosen.

The software engineering researchers in the Department of Computer Science are focused on issues related to effectively developing large-scale, complex systems. In particular, new categories of applications are emerging such as big data, cyber physical, and autonomous adaptable systems, which continue to drive leading edge research in software engineering on diverse topics. Key research areas include requirements engineering, architecture, design, service-oriented computing, testing and verification, static analysis, software maintenance and multi-agent systems.

Career Options

Virtually all major companies and corporations need software related core competencies. Software engineers are central in developing and making use of these competencies. They work in teams that interface extensively with clients, company executives, IT managers, data scientists, security and domain experts.

Software engineering professionals are creative, highly collaborative, well paid, and in very high demand with employers. Graduates of the program seek academic positions at universities, as well as positions as researchers, senior software engineers and data scientists. Graduates often become industry experts in various fields like cyber security, artificial intelligence, machine learning and natural language processing.

Application Requirements

Test score required: Yes

Deadlines: University deadlines apply.

Admission Option One

  • Degree requirements: A master's degree in computer science or its equivalent
  • GPA: Minimum of 3.5
  • Test score: Minimum revised GRE scores of 308, 153, 155, and 4 for the combined, verbal, quantitative and analytical writing components, respectively, are advisable.

Admission Option Two

  • Degree requirements: A BS degree in related area that includes two semesters of calculus and linear algebra.
  • GPA: Minimum of 3.5 in the last 60 semester credit hours.
  • Test score: Minimum revised GRE scores of 315, 156, 159 and 4 for the combined, verbal, quantitative and analytical writing components, respectively, are advisable.

Applicants are admitted on a competitive basis.