Computer Science


The Department of Computer Science maintains a rigorous, state-of-the-art program in Computer Science and Information Technology with eight full-time faculty and more than 250 majors.

We offer research and advanced undergraduate elective courses in computer graphics, artificial intelligence, networks, software engineering, databases, human-computer interaction, game programming, and parallel processing. The hardware and software in our laboratories are continually updated to support our student and faculty needs. By pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree, you can prepare for a rewarding, challenging career in business, industry, or government, or establish a solid foundation for graduate studies and research.

Millersville University began teaching programming courses in 1963. The Computer Science B.S. degree was approved in 1975, and Information Technology B.S. degree with a Health Care Analytics Option was approved in 2020, and the MDST in Data Science was approved in 2020. The Department has graduated over 1,500 majors who have become active, contributing members of the computing profession.

John Hynes Completes Department Honors Thesis Defense

Photo of John HynesDuring the last year through online instruction, an MU CS senior, John Hynes, was concurrently working on his Departmental Honors Thesis: "A GPU-Accelerated Ray Tracing Engine in Modern C++". John built off of Peter Shirley's Ray Tracing in One Weekend and re-engineered the code to enable GPU parallelism with CUDA.

The ray tracing engine supports different types of objects such as spheres, planes, and triangles; different types of materials such as Lambertian, metal, emissive, and diaelectric; and a custom scene file format. The engine can run on NVIDIA GPUs through CUDA or on multi-core processors.

The code created throughout this thesis is Open Source and available on GitHub:

Thesis Abstract: 

Ray tracing is a powerful and popular technique used in 3D graphics to simulate realistic light and shadows within a scene. Due to the high amount of computations that are inherent to ray tracing, engines often employ GPU acceleration and other such optimizations to greatly reduce render times, particularly in high-complexity scenes. This paper discusses the benefits and challenges experienced when implementing a GPU-Accelerated ray tracing engine in C++ using modern approaches and tools.

Various Scenes Rendered with John's Ray Tracing Engine


Computer Science Group Tutoring Starting February 1

The Department of Computer Science is offering Digital Group Tutoring this semester.

Tutoring will be accessible through either Zoom or the Department Discord Community. To access group tutoring within Discord, visit the #tutoring channel or Lobby voice channel under the TUTORING section

To access group tutoring via Zoom, join the Zoom Meeting ID: 964-0775-2255

Zoom Tutoring Discord Community

By Course:

Course Days
140 Monday, Thursday
161 Monday, Wednesday, Thursday
162 Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
330 Wednesday, Thursday
340 Monday, Thursday
362 Monday, Wednesday, Thursday
366 Monday, Tuesday
380 Tuesday

By Day:

Day (Time) Courses
Monday (4PM-7PM) 161, 162, 362, 366
Monday (5PM-8PM) 140, 161, 340, 366
Tuesday (5PM-8PM) 162, 362, 366, 380
Wednesday (5PM-8PM) 161, 162, 330, 362
Thursday (5PM-8PM) 140, 161, 330, 340

Introducing the CS Department Discord Community!

MUCS <3 Discord

The Department of Computer Science has a Discord Community which all students enrolled in Computer Science or Information Technology courses are encouraged to join. Discord is a social platform where people can collaborate and socialize together in text and/or voice channels.

We have premade channels for all courses, social activities, troubleshooting, and more. You can download Discord to your computer, phone, and/or tablet through your device's respective App Store or from

To join the Computer Science Department Discord Server, click this button:


Setting Up Development Environments

Trying to get your computer set up for one (or more) Computer Science class? The following resources have been made to help you!

Java Development

Java Development

Courses: CSCI 161, CSCI 162

A quick usage video has been made by Dr. Hogg and can be viewed here.

Visual Studio Code

Software Setup

NOTE: Docker component only necessary for Devcontainer

Remote - SSH

The SSH extension will/can be used in: CSCI 330, CSCI 370, CSCI 380, CSCI 450

Remote - Devcontainer

The Devcontainer extension will/can be used in: CSCI 330, CSCI 362, CSCI 450

Autolab CLI

The Autolab command line utility will/can be used in: CSCI 330, CSCI 362, CSCI 370, CSCI 375, CSCI 380, CSCI 450

Millersville Computer Science Goes to CPOSC

The 11th Annual Central Pennsylvania Open Source Conference (CPOSC) was held on Saturday, September 21st 2019 at the Ware Center in downtown Lancaster. Millersville University was well-represented with over 20 students and faculty in attendance. The computer science department also had three different presentations throughout the day!

  • "Evolving Neural Network Topologies with NEAT" by Connor Billings (an MUCS Senior)
  • "Application of Cryptography: Public Key Infrastructure and Digital Signature" by Dr. Nazli Hardy
  • "Machine Learning with Random Forests: How (and Why!) They Work" by Dr. Stephanie Schwartz

Two Millersville University Computer Science Alumni also gave talks this year at CPOSC: Ed Schwartz (2007) gave a talk on "Code Reuse Attacks and How to Find Them" and Mike Newswanger (2009) gave a talk on "Software Principles from Kubernetes".

CPOSC is organized by many local technology enthusiasts. This year two MUCS alumni, Court Ewing (2008) and Elyse Ewing (2009) were two primary coordinators. We look forward to next year!

Coding Club Attends Mid-Atlantic ICPC

Photo of Students

Millersville University Department of Computer Science had two teams participate in the 2019 ICPC Mid-Atlantic Regional Competition held at the John Hopkins University site on November 9th, 2019. Both of our teams solved three of the eight problems during the 5-hour competition!

  • Marauder Gold Team, consisting of team members Connor Billings, Amy Burnett, and Dan Hartenstine, placed 70 of 160 in the region (9 of 16 at the site)
  • Marauder Black Team, consisting of team members Lauren Deaver, Matt Fossett, and Jimmy Roche, placed 88 of 160 in the region (11 of 16 at the site).

If you see any of these students, please congratulate them on their hard work and excellent performance representing Millersville University. Matt Fossett, Jimmy Roche, Dan Hartenstine, and Connor Billings are all graduating in the fall or spring semester. If you are interested in participating or improving your programming skills / problem solving ability, the Coding Club of Millersville University meets during common hour on Thursdays in the Linux Lab. You can also contact Prof. Killian ( or Todd Echterling (

MUCS Students Win at PACISE

PACISE 2018 Participants

On the weekend of April 6th, 2018, Millersville University sent three teams to the annual PACISE conference to compete in their hosted programming competition. The competition, which runs from 8 AM until 12 PM Saturday morning, tasked teams of up to three students to solve 5 problems in the allotted time.

  • The team of Ryan Peterson, Hugh Quinn, and Alayna Woleslagle placed first and solved 4 of the 5 problems.
  • The team of Daniel Hartenstine, Connor Billings, and Henry Schmale placed third and solved 3 of the 5 problems.
  • The team of Jack Fazio, Nick Russell, and Jessie Hildebrandt competed in their first competition and we look forward to their future contributions.

MUCS Alum Takes Off for NASA

Jason Zimmerman with NASA signJason Zimmerman, a recent MUCS alum (Dec 2015), will be spending this spring working as a NASA intern at the Johnson Space Center. Jason will be working on a team writing flight control software that communicates between Orion's Guidance Navigation and Control's (GN&C) Space Integrated GPS / Inertial Navigation Unit (SIGI) and Orion's Launch Abort System (LAS). He will be modeling the software with System Modeling Language (SysML), which encapsulates UML2 and also includes hardware modeling along with many other types of models.

Congratulations to Jason for earning this terrific opportunity. The MUCS faculty are sure he'll make valuable contributions to his project at NASA!

You can learn more about Orion's Launch Abort System at this address,

Take a Virtual Tour!

From new residence halls to high-tech facilities, learn why students refer to MU as a “home away from home.”

Take the tour

Computer Science Alumni

If you are a Millersville University Computer Science Alumni, please update your contact information.

Ville Alumni

Congratulations 2020 Graduates!

A virtual commencement was held in May 2020 for our graduating seniors! A in-person commencement on campus will be announced at a future date.