Introduction to Probability for Computer Scientists


Stanford School of Engineering



Examine the application of probability in the computer science field and how it is used in the analysis of algorithms. Learn how probability theory has become a powerful computing tool and what current trends are causing the need for probabilistic analysis. Acquire an important understanding about randomness and its influence on the computing decisions made every day.


CS103 and CS106B or CS106X, multivariate calculus at the level of CME100 or MATH51 or equivalent.

Topics include

  • Counting and combinatorics
  • Conditional probability and independence
  • Discrete, normal, conditional and beta distributions
  • Point estimation
  • Limit theorems

Course Availability

The course schedule is displayed for planning purposes – courses can be modified, changed, or cancelled. Course availability will be considered finalized on the first day of open enrollment. For quarterly enrollment dates, please refer to our graduate education section.

Faculty Spotlight

Professor Mehran Sahami


Pre-register Now

Dates:March 29 - June 4, 2021
Units: 3.00-5.00
Instructors: Jerry Cain
Delivery Option:
For Credit $4,056.00-$6,760.00
Notes: Pre-registration Dates: February 1, 2021 at 9:00am to March 12, 2021 at 5:00pm

Computer Science Department Requirement
Students taking graduate courses in Computer Science must enroll for the maximum number of units and maintain a B or better in each course in order to continue taking courses under the Non Degree Option.

Pre-registration for this course will secure your enrollment request and ensure timely processing of your application for potential course approval. Please note: course enrollment will be confirmed after March 19, 2021; after completing your pre-registration, no further action is required on your part.


This course may not currently be available to learners in some states and territories.