Graduate Program in Computational Science and Engineering

A New Curriculum for a New Way of Doing Science

Computational Science and Engineering (CSE) is an exciting and rapidly evolving field that exploits the power of computation as an approach to major challenges on the frontiers of natural and social science and all engineering fields. In keeping with Harvard's emphasis on foundational knowledge, CSE degree programs focus on cross-cutting mathematical and computational principles important across disciplines. 

Students who complete the program will acquire mastery of approaches including mathematical techniques for modeling and simulation of complex systems; parallel programming and collaborative software development; and efficient methods for organizing, exploring, visualizing, processing and analyzing very large data sets.

The program is the culmination of discussions involving leaders from industry and the National Laboratories and faculty from across Harvard. These leaders were convened in 2010 by Efthimios Kaxiras, Founding Director of Institute of Applied Computational Science (IACS), and Cherry A. Murray, former dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences for discussions intended to inform Harvard's response to the need for graduate education in computational science.

As a result of these discussions, SEAS created:

  • core of four courses in Applied Math and Computer Science
  • an evolving menu of elective courses, offered by SEAS and other Harvard departments, that apply computation to various fields
  • graduate programs in Computational Science and Engineering including the master of science and master of engineering degree programs and a secondary field program for PhD students
  • community activities and short courses that support continuous exchange of ideas and mastery of computational tools and techniques essential to each student's plan of study