Computer Science Department

Over the course of three decades, the computer science department at Washington and Lee has built a curriculum that provides outstanding computer science education in a liberal arts setting.  We offer students courses in all of the major areas of computing, as well as opportunities to participate in several ongoing research programs sponsored by our faculty.

Beginning students take a two-semester introductory programming sequence course in the Python language, where they become proficient in problem solving and developing software using the latest and most advanced programming techniques.  They then take courses in software development with Java, computer organization (assembly language and C programming), programming language design, and algorithm analysis.  Electives in many areas are then available.  You can enter the honors program and write a senior thesis if you qualify.

Research areas included robotics, web applications, digital humanities, and genetic programming.  The department also has strong interdisciplinary ties to such areas as neuroscience, engineering, mathematics, business administration, and digital humanities.

Faculty sponsor student research with summer internships, and you can also find summer opportunities at other universities, in government, or in the private sector.  Some graduates have been admitted to some of the top graduate schools in the country.  Other graduates use our aggressive career office and strong alumni network to find permanent employment in government or the private sector.

Students have majored in computer science and also majored in almost any other subject here.  Many students have another science major, such as biology or physics; some have a second major in our commerce school, and a few have a second major in a subject like philosophy, classics, or theater.  Students can also have a minor in a subject that offers one, where you take approximately one half of the courses required for  a major.  In all cases, we encourage our majors to pursue a broad sampling of subjects in the liberal arts, which we believe is the best way to get a true education.

We have a collegial and fun-loving group of students in the program at any given time, and our record of attracting women and students of underrepresented groups to the major is unsurpassed.  Our majors, like other students, are involved outside the classroom in many extracurricular clubs, organizations, and athletic teams.

In short, if you want a first-rate computer science education at a first-rate liberal arts college, you should check out the computer science department at Washington and Lee.  Please feel free to contact the department chair, Professor Ken Lambert at, if you have any questions.

Computer Science Department Blog

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

2020 Computer Science Degrees, Scholarships, Prizes and Awards

Congratulations to the Class of 2020 Computer Science Majors and Minors for their outstanding achievements! 2020 Graduates: KELLY ANNE AMAR (’20) – Bachelor of Arts GEORGE BERNARD BARKER (’20) – Bachelor of Science, Phi Beta Kappa, summa cum laude LOGAN McCRAY BRAND (’20) – Bachelor of Science ROBERT COOPER BREITHAUPT (’20) – JOSEPH LEO CALIHAN …

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

2020 Phi Beta Kappa initiates from the Computer Science Department

The Annual Convocation for the Phi Beta Kappa/Society of the Cincinnati  took place on Sunday, March 22, 2020 in Leyburn Library’s Northen Auditorium. Following are the Computer Science student inductees: George Barker, ’20 Collin Glatz, 20 Ryan Lesher, ’20 Max Masaitis, 20 Trevor Stalnaker, 20 Kush Attal ’21 CONGRATULATIONS! The post 2020 Phi Beta Kappa initiates from the Computer Science Department first appeared on W&L Computer Science Blog.

Friday, October 25, 2019

Spotlight on CSCI senior major George Barker ’20

George, a double major in both computer science and chemistry, worked this past summer with Professor Sprenkle to develop a web application that specializes in tutoring students in the basics of general chemistry. Click the link to learn more about George and his achievements!   The post Spotlight on CSCI senior major George Barker '20 first appeared on W&L Computer Science Blog.

Friday, May 24, 2019

CS major athletic accolades!

Senior Cooper Baird , (Fort Worth, Texas/Fort Worth Country Day) was one of three W&L athletes  honored  at The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) 2019 NCAA Division III men’s outdoor track and field ceremony.  The ceremony was held in New Orleans on Sunday, May 19th.   Cooper recorded the third-fastest …

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