Computer Science

Computer science is both a fundamental science and an engineering discipline. It provides the theoretical and methodological requirements with which technical solutions can be created, systems built and products manufactured.

The field of study at a glance

As a basic science, computer science is closely linked to mathematical models; as an engineering discipline, it has a strong connection to electrical engineering/electronics and deals with technical and organizational problems in the development and application of information processing systems.

The field of study researches, on the one hand, information processing and, on the other hand, the application of information technologies (IT). This means that computer science formulates general laws through abstraction and modeling. From this she develops standard solutions for practice, e.g. when dealing with large amounts of data and information and controlling complex production processes.

The application-oriented computer science course enables you to develop models to describe complex systems, to recognize the main influencing factors, to find algorithmic solutions for detailed problems and to develop application systems. This requires analytical skills and in-depth knowledge of powerful programming methods, a broad portfolio of terms, models and procedures from mathematics, logic and theoretical computer science as well as basic knowledge of the logical and technical structure of computers.

The extremely high rate of innovation in IT requires constant adaptation of knowledge and increased specialization. Artificial intelligence, for example, is playing an increasingly important role and has already been present in everyday life since the publication of the chatbot ChatGPT. In the future, this area will bring many changes with new applications.

Course offered

Computer science is divided into four areas, which are also reflected in the courses offered:

  • Theoretical computer science deals with the abstract, mathematical foundations of this science. It examines what can be calculated and how algorithms can be designed and formulated (e.g. programming languages). Corresponding courses of study include computer science, data science or computer visualization.
  • Technical or engineering information technology is particularly concerned with hardware, i.e. the production and architecture of microprocessors, computers, embedded systems and their control software. Computational Engineering Science primarily deals with computer simulations.
  • Students learn actual programming and software development in practical computer science. The corresponding courses are often called “Applied Computer Science” or “General Computer Science”.
  • In the field of applied computer science there are also courses with specializations such as human-machine communication, IT security or IT management as well as interface courses. The latter include bioinformatics, media informatics, medical informatics, computer-controlled natural sciences (computational science) and environmental informatics. The young human-technology interaction and interface design course deals with communication between humans and machines as well as the user experience.

Contents of the course

In the basic studies (Bachelor), the focus is on modules on the core areas of computer science and mathematical fundamentals. These include: analysis, linear algebra, logic, basics of stochastics and statistics, algorithms, data structures and theoretical computer science. In the more application-oriented degree programs, additional modules are added, such as programming and software engineering, computer engineering, operating systems and networks, databases, computer architecture, operating systems and IT security as well as software engineering, applied computer science, applied analysis, electrical engineering basics, communication, digital technology, microprocessor technology , compiler construction or distributed information systems.

There are also software internships, project work (also as a company internship) and interdisciplinary courses, e.g. founding and managing software-oriented companies.

The Master's program deepens the acquired knowledge or specializes in certain specialist areas. It is also possible to build a profile by choosing minor subjects, e.g. physics, mathematics, life sciences, medicine, mechanical engineering, business administration, linguistics, economics. Application-oriented focuses include software technology, communication technology, image processing, database systems, signal processing, simulation, parallel and distributed systems, medical informatics, robotics and process informatics.

Admission criteria & application for study

Around two thirds of the bachelor's degree programs in the field of computer science are open to admission. At universities of applied sciences, a preparatory internship lasting several weeks is usually required, depending on previous school/professional training.

Career opportunities after graduation

Computer scientists work primarily at data processing/computer technology companies (hardware and software), at manufacturers of information and telecommunications technology systems (IT systems), at companies that offer information and telecommunications technology systems and services, e.g System and software houses, data processing consulting companies as well as in information technology departments of data processing user companies, i.e. in the IT departments of every industry. There are also work opportunities in the public sector.

Graduates take on tasks in a wide variety of areas, e.g. in research and development, production planning and control, business organization and the administration of networks and databases. Besides they are increasingly playing a role in healthcare (e-health) and administration (e-government) as well as in security technology. Since computer science is constantly evolving, new job opportunities are constantly emerging. In recent years, for example, chatbot and blockchain developers have been added.