Computational and Data Sciences
The mission of the Department of Computational and Data Sciences (CDS) is comprised of two objectives:
The first is the systematic development and application of computational techniques for modeling and simulation of scientific and social phenomena or social processes.
The second objective is the systematic development and application of techniques for mining, managing, and analyzing large sets of data.
The resulting interdisciplinary approach leads to understanding, interpretation, and prediction of phenomena that traditional theory or experiment cannot provide alone. CDS’s mission aims toward excellence in faculty and graduate student state-of-the-art research activities, as well as providing modern approaches to student education at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. The educational and research directions pursued in CDS are focused to reflect the interests of neighboring federal laboratories, scientific institutions, and high-technology firms to provide the students opportunities for continued or new employment. Graduate courses are also designed to accommodate part-time students, with most courses meeting once a week in the late afternoon or early evening.
The research and teaching activities associated with CDS’s programs are a reflection of the present central role of computation in the arenas of “big data” and of modeling and simulation.
The aim of this degree is to provide students with technical skills and knowledge for rigorously investigating physical and social phenomena. The BS is a transformative approach that integrates science at George Mason University based on the combination of real-world computer science skills, data acquisition and analysis, scientific modeling, applied mathematics, and simulation. As an interdisciplinary STEM-designated program, this degree addresses the current central role of computation in the areas of “big data,” modeling, and simulation. Graduates of the program will possess the computational, scientific, and mathematical skills necessary for participating effectively as members of the scientific simulation and data analysis groups that are of increasing importance in the federal and public sectors, and in high technology firms. Additionally, graduates of the program will be well prepared to pursue graduate studies.
The minor provides an attractive option for students majoring in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) who wish to augment their major degree program with additional courses in modeling, simulation, data science, and scientific computing. The combination of computer science, numerical methods, science, and computational and data sciences (CDS) synthesis courses will significantly enhance the practical knowledge and computational skills of the students when compared with the major field alone. Students will acquire the knowledge, skills, and techniques commonly used across scientific disciplines, which will allow them to apply their George Mason University education in a practical way in industrial, government, and academic settings. Computational and data sciences skills are highly sought after in today’s marketplace.