Foundations in Computer Science Graduate Program

Stanford School of Engineering

  • Graduate Certificate
  • Fee:
    Fee may apply



The Foundations in Computer Science Graduate Program provides a solid course of study in the mathematical foundations of computing as well as important aspects of computer programming.

  • Learn the essential elements of computing theory including logic, proof techniques, combinatorics, algorithm analysis, discrete data models (sets, relations, trees), and finite automata
  • Explore various programming paradigms as well as principles of building object-oriented software

Plan your Foundations in Computer Science Graduate Program road-map

The program is designed to be completed in nine months, but you may take up to three years to complete it. Courses are available during Autumn, Winter, and Spring quarters:

  • Autumn Quarter: CS103, CS107, CS154, CS157
  • Winter Quarter: CS108, CS110, CS161
  • Spring Quarter: CS109, CS103, CS107, CS110

Note: Course offerings may be subject to change. You do not need to enroll in the program to take the courses. You may enroll in any courses if you meet its prerequisites.

Who Should Apply

Practitioners looking to solidify their understanding of the foundations of computer science in theory and practice.

Earning the Certificate

  • Earn a Stanford Graduate Certificate in Foundations in Computer Science
  • Begin the program any academic quarter that an applicable course is offered, subject to prerequisites
  • Take courses for graduate credit and a grade
  • Receive a B (3.0) or better in each course
  • If you took CS107 and CS103 as part of the Introductory Programming Graduate Program, you may take additional electives instead to complete the Foundations in Computer Science Graduate Program

Need further planning guidance?

See the Foundations in Computer Science Graduate Program Planning Document.


  • Background in programming methodology and abstractions (CS106A and CS106B or equivalent).
  • A conferred Bachelor’s degree with an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or better.


To pursue a graduate program you need to apply.

Apply Now



Tuition is based on the number of units you take. See Graduate Course Tuition on our Tuition & Fees page for more information.

Time to Complete Certificate

1-2 years average
3 years maximum to complete


Submit an inquiry to receive more information.