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Rules for Graduate Studies

The Department of Computer Science offers Graduate Degree Programs that lead to Master in Advanced Information Technologies and PhD in Computer Science. The programs are published at the Department’s Guidebook. The Graduate Program Committee coordinates the programs based on the General Rules of the University of Cyprus.

[1] Admission Requirements

Ι.

  1. Τhe department announces once a year the maximum number of graduate students it can accept for the upcoming academic year starting in September. Applications arrived after the submission deadline is accepted only in case the number of graduate students is not met.
  2. The applicants must submit an application, a CV, official transcripts from all colleges/universities attended, a personal statement about his/her goals and interests, and two letters of recommendations (possibly by faculty members of their college or university, mailed directly to the department). It is not necessary for the applicant to hold an undergrad or college degree at the time he submits his application. However, the applicant must get / have a degree in Computer Science or related field of study before he joins the graduate program. The average grade (GPA) of the applicant should be 6.5/10 (or equivalent to that) and the degree should be from an accredited college / university (as it is defined by the General Rules of University of Cyprus).
  3. Applications are examined by the Graduate Program Committee. The Graduate Program Committee holds the right, based on its judgment, to call the applicant for personal interview or ask more information. The Graduate Program Committee writes an evaluation and admission report and submits it to the Department Council for approval. The Department Council holds the right to accept fewer students than it had announced. The department submits its report to the school it belongs to.

II. The department assigns an Academic Advisor to every new graduate student. To a PhD student the department assigns a Research Advisor. The Research Advisor is assigned by the Department Council, after suggestion of the Graduate Program Committee, and an agreement between the student and a faculty member. The Research Advisor watches over the research or any other work of the student and provides any necessary guidance.

III. For students whose undergraduate degree was not related to Computer Science there is a possibility to be asked to take some undergraduate courses offered by the department. The student must pass these undergraduate courses in order to continue the graduate program.

[2] Master Degree

I. To get a Master Degree in Computer Science, each student must complete successfully courses (a total of 60 ECTS units) from the Graduate Program and complete a Master Thesis of 30 ECTS units, under the supervision of a Research Advisor. The assignment of a Research Advisor is based on the rules of the University Senate and is done before the student submits the Thesis Proposal. The student can transfer up to 15 ECTS units from courses completed successfully from similar graduate programs. Theses completed at other graduate schools are not transferable.

II. The Thesis must deal with a research topic or a technical issue. It must be of some original contribution or show a thorough and clear understanding of some special topic. Full-time students normally complete the thesis in 6 months study time. When the student has completed successfully courses totaling to 30 ECTS units, he can submit a Form (signed also by his Research Advisor) stating his Master Thesis topic.

III. The Master Thesis is submitted at the department and defended within the time period decided by the Department Council.

  1. When a Master Thesis is submitted the Chair of the Department appoints a Thesis Examination Committee of three members. The head of the committee is the student’s Research Advisor. It is possible a member of this committee to be faculty member of other department. The Committee can have also external members who do not hold a faculty position. However, the membership must be approved by the Department Council and the external member must hold a PhD Degree or must have a reputation in the field of study.
  2. The Master Thesis is defended in a presentation before the Thesis Examination Committee. The head of the Thesis Examination Committee is responsible for the procedures that must be followed during the defense.
  3. The Thesis Examination Committee can accept (even with conditions) or reject a Master Thesis. The Thesis Examination Committee writes its decision in a Master Thesis Evaluation Form and submits it to the Department Council for approval. When the Thesis is accepted the department informs the Student Affairs Office for the graduation procedure of the student. When the thesis is rejected, the student can follow the suggestions of the committee and resubmit it for the first and the last time. The submission and thesis defense procedure is followed from the beginning.

IV. The minimum graduation time to get a Master Degree is three semesters and the maximum graduation time is eight semesters.

[3] Ph.D. Degree

I. The basic requirements to get a PhD Degree are:

    • Successful completion of at least 60 ECTS units of graduate level courses. A student with a Master or equivalent degree is partially or fully exempt from this requirement.
    • Successful completion of the Comprehensive Examination which must be taken no later than the fifth semester of his/her studies. The student submits to the department a request to take the Comprehensive Examination.
  1. The Department assigns a Research Advisor to the student that has completed the ECTS units mentioned above.
  2. The structure and the subjects of the Comprehensive Examination are decided by the Department. The Comprehensive Examination is general and attempts to measure the student ability to complete the degree. The topics that are examined are Theory, Software, Hardware, and Applications.
  3. The Comprehensive Examination is presented before the Comprehensive Examination committee which is elected by the Postgraduate Committee of the department after it has been requested by the student’s academic research supervisor. The formation of the Comprehensive Examination committee must be approved by the Department committee. The academic research advisor of the student is the chair of the Comprehensive Examination committee.
  4. The Comprehensive Examination consists of three phases.The student should obtain a passing grade in all of them to ensure success in the examination. The three phases are the following:
    • Submit to the Comprehensive Examination Committee a written literature review on the student’s Research area.The review should have the length and the quality of a published survey article and must demonstrate the student’s adequate knowledge and understanding of the topic under investigation and the open problems. To prepare the review, the Research Supervisor may give the student an indicative bibliography.The review is graded by the members of the Comprehensive Examination Committee with a Pass / Fail. When a review receives a passing grade, the student may proceed to an oral examination.
    • The student should make an oral presentation of his/her survey to the committee.The presentation lasts 50-60 minutes, including questions addressed by the committee and the audience. The presentation is open to the public and should be announced to the members of the department and the University.
    • The oral examination of the student, which is made by the members of committee, is closed to the public.The purpose of the examination is to further investigate whether the candidate has the skills and capability to conduct Doctoral-level research work in Computer Science.
  5. The Comprehensive Examination Committee submits for approval to the department a list of students that have succeeded in the examination.
  6. A student that fails to pass the first comprehensive examination must take the examination the next time it is offered. A second fail of the student in the Comprehensive Examination disqualifies the student from the PhD program of the department.
  7. Second failure in the comprehensive examination implies exclusion from the PhD candidature in the Department.

II.

  1. The Post Graduate Program Committee taking into consideration the suggestions of the Research Supervisor appoints a three member Research Committee for the PhD candidate. The chair of the Research Committee is the Research Supervisor of a student. At most, one member of the Research Committee may be a faculty member of another department.
  2. The student is allowed to change his/her Research Supervisor. He/She must submit for approval by the Department Board a request explaining in detail the reasons he/she wishes to change supervisor.

III. When the student has passed the Comprehensive Examination he/she submits a written Doctoral Thesis Proposal to his/her Research Committee. The proposal is also presented orally before the Committee members.

  • The Doctoral Thesis Proposal must have the following structure:
    1. Introduction
    2. Motivation
    3. Problem Statement – Hypothesis
    4. Approach
    5. Roadmap
    6. RelatedWork
    7. PreliminaryWork
    8. Work to be done
    9. Timeline
    10. Future work
  • The Research Committee must examine the Doctoral Thesis Proposal before the end of the next semester. The proposal might be accepted or recommended for resubmission. The final acceptance of the proposal must be given before the start of the seventh year of the student study time. Otherwise, the student case (whether to continue or to terminate his PhD candidacy) is discussed at the Department Council.

IV.

  1. Every Doctoral student must submit to the Research Supervisor an annual progress report. This report must be submitted before the end of each academic year.
  2. The annual progress report is graded by the Coordinator of the Graduate Studies and the Research advisor of the student with a Pass/Fail.The grade is submitted to Student Affairs and is marked in the student’s records to which level the student progress in his/her studies (research, writing).

V.

  1. Every PhD candidate completes a Dissertation which must be an original and important contribution to the field of study.
  2. The written format of the Dissertation is described in the Department’s printed forms. The Dissertation can be submitted no sooner than four semesters before student’s admission and completing successfully his Comprehensive Examination.

VI. The student submits to the department six (6) copies of the Dissertation and a request (signed also by his Research Advisor) for the formation of a Dissertation Examination Committee. After this procedure, the graduate Program Committee, with suggestions from the Research Advisor, appoints an Examination Committee (based on the rules of University’s Senate). The Graduate Program Committee assures a copy of the dissertation is sent to the members of the Examination Committee. The dissertation is defended by the candidate before the Examination Committee. Note that the three faculty members of the Department are usually the three members of the Research Committee.

VII. The Chair of the Examination Committee decides the date of the Dissertation Defense. The Defense must take place within three months from the Dissertation submission. All members of the Examination Committee must be present at the Defense. The defense procedure is based on the rules of the University’s Senate.

  1. The approval of at least four members of the Examination Committee is required to award the degree. In this case, the Examination Committee has the right to request for changes or additions, which considers as necessary. The procedure for monitoring the changes or additions is decided by the Examination Committee and is written clearly in the Evaluation Report.
  2. The Examination Committee hands over to the Department Chair a written Evaluation Report of the Dissertation and of the Doctoral Candidate in general, together with its recommendations, in a printed form. The Chair verifies that all the rules and procedures have been correctly followed and hands in the report to the Senate.

VI. A maximum of eight (8) academic years are allowed for the completion of the Doctoral Program.