FAQ

Why MSSE?

The MSSE Professional Master’s degree is the first truly interdisciplinary Master’s program at UC Berkeley. It offers in-demand skills that allow its graduates to easily fit in a multidisciplinary team. Skills such as software engineering practices, leadership and management, molecular modeling and machine learning are not only taught by UC Berkeley professors and researchers but also, they are applied to real-world projects from industry and government labs through capstone projects. The degree utilizes the immense strengths of multiple departments, colleges, and institutes. In our first course offerings for the MSSE program we have worked with the departments of Chemistry, Statistics, and Computer Science, as well as the Fung Institute. While these departments offer individual computational and software courses in the component areas of their target constituency, these courses have not been integrated into a coherent academic program and furthermore do not address training in business analytics or project management.

Compare the Berkeley MSSE program to other UC Berkeley College of Engineering professional degree programs.

Workforce readiness in the development and use of software and high end computing infrastructure is seen as a limiting factor in addressing what will certainly be even more complex grand challenge science problems as well as societal issues of the future. Standard MS degrees do not tackle these highly multidisciplinary and technological demands. There has been a paradigm shift that the computational sciences disciplines, broadly defined, would be better served through the training of a Professional Master’s in computational “technology” that can integrate these individuals into software related industries with a well-defined reward and promotion structure. Such professional training may overcome one of the primary challenges of defining a career track for a computational “generalist” who can move smoothly into and out of the related science domains of molecular simulation, quantum chemistry, condensed matter physics, computational materials, etc as needs arise for their expertise, and have those contributions integrated into a degree-granting home that recognizes their value. It also addresses a vacuum in management and leadership in the simulation software sciences that have a rich ecosystem of code bases and users that intersect with literally thousands of institutions and industries world-wide, thereby making software project management a growing issue.

Yes, the program is designed for both, baccalaureate students who just finished school and those who have been working for a while and are interested in learning the latest technologies in software engineering, data science, machine learning and high-performance computing and how to apply them to molecular science.

Admissions

We launched recently so the program does not yet have any statistics to offer regarding admission rates and demographics of its students.

The program is currently approved to admit students in the Fall of each year. There may be opportunities in the future to offer students greater enrollment and completion flexibility.

Most certainly. The online nature of the program especially accommodates international students since the coursework is predominantly asynchronous. In the case there are synchronous discussions or other activities, the program will provide options to accommodate the time differences. Also there will be two leadership/entrepreneurship bootcamps that will be taught on campus: one at the beginning of the program (August) and another at the end of the program (May). These bootcamps last 2 weeks.

There are no preferences granted to students who meet the eligibility requirements for consideration. The program seeks to admit a diverse student pool, which should be reflected through the comprehensiveness of the application materials and in particularly the statement of purpose and outside activities.

“Candidates are required to provide evidence of the following to be considered for the program: B.A. or B.S. in a physical science or engineering discipline from an accredited institution. Transcript from every post-secondary school ever attended. GRE Scores. Prior coursework in linear algebra and multivariable calculus, and chemistry, materials, or physics. Prior exposure to programming methodology. Minimum grade-point average (GPA) of 3.0 (B) on a 4.0 scale. Minimum TOEFL score of at least 90 for the Internet-based test (IBT) or 570 for the paper-based format (PBT) or at least a 7 on a 9-point scale for the IELTS, as appropriate. “

No work experience is required.

Academic records should be issued in the original language and accompanied by English translations if required (usually prepared by your university or Ministry of Education, unless the institution issues original documents in English). In general, records or transcripts must be issued by the school and include the school’s stamp or embossed seal and the signature of the authorizing official.

Yes, you will be considered a UC Berkeley Graduate student. Some student services require an additional payment.

Program Information

Standing at the intersection of computational science, data science, management, and software engineering, MSSE is a unique program that provides critical thinkers with the practical skills needed to develop sophisticated computational models to solve large-scale challenges. You can review the MSSE Course Curriculum plan to learn more about the course offerings, units per course and timeline for the 2-year part time program.

You can review the MSSE Course Curriculum plan to learn more about the course offerings, units per course and timeline.

With the exception of the Leadership bootcamps all other MSSE courses will be offered online.

Fall 2020 is the first cohort of the new degree so the program does not yet have any statistics to offer regarding admission rates and demographics of its students.

You can review the MSSE curriculum on our “Curriculum” page.

With the exception of the Leadership bootcamps all other MSSE courses will be offered online.

Fall 2020 represents the MSSE first cohort. You can submit questions and sign up for our email updates to be notified of Information session this fall on our MSSE website.

Our program launched in 2019. It is small but it is expected to grow in the next few years.

Yes, almost all the MSSE courses include projects.

Applications for Fall 2022 open in September 2021, and close January 2022. Sign up for our mailing list for more updates!

The program has not yet indicated which criteria would enable a candidate to forego some or all of the current eligibility requirements. For example, the number of years of work experience, type of position, and the industry that could enable an applicant to forego any of the requirements have not been defined. Candidates can voluntarily submit their application without the requested tests and entrance exams but should do so knowing that it may disqualify their application.

The Program does not currently honor any transfer credits since the courses that MSSE provides are developed to meet the specific pedagogical needs and requirements of the degree. Any future possibility of honoring transfer credits would require programmatic and campus approval.

Cost & Financial Aid

“The MSSE Program is committed to providing financial access to a quality education. Applicants must complete the “”need-based grant application”” section of the admissions application to be considered for a need-based award. All admitted applicants are automatically considered for merit-based awards; no additional application materials are required. Financial assistance and student loans are available through the Offices of Financial Aid. To apply for Financial Aid, please complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application: https://fafsa.ed.gov(link is external). • Select academic year. • Include UC Berkeley school code 001312. • Students must report most recent tax information. • Students who wish to be considered for need-based scholarships must also complete the Parental Data section of the FAFSA form. (The federal instructions will indicate parental data is not needed for federal loans. However, in order to assess relative financial need for institutional scholarships, parental data will be analyzed). For students under the age of 30 by December 31, 2019, parents’ information must be submitted on the FAFSA to be considered for Full Funding. International Students – please contact us for more information. For more information about graduate student financial aid, please go to:

Financial Aid

The AY2022 approved fee is $2,546 per unit regardless of residency. Students normally enroll in 16 units the first year and 14 units the second year. This fee structure enables students to complete all 30 units in one year when all courses are provided every semester. The fee does not include any applicable campus-based fees, health insurance, the cost of living and any personal costs that may be required to complete the program. The fee may increase in subsequent years based on the approval of the UC Office of the President.

Careers After MSSE

MSSE prepares you for careers as bioinformatician, data scientist, data analyst, software engineer, cheminformatics software engineer, computational chemist.

MSSE’s curriculum includes a captsone project which is a project done is collaboration with our industry partmers. In addition, we offer opportunities to collaborate with industry partners who may need help on various projects.

MSSE provides opportunities for students to connect with our industry and governement lab partners.