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CS Internship Syllabus

This page documents the policies and process for gaining academic credit for your internship, though that is not required for your degree plan.


    • myBoiseState allows you to enroll after your internship application is approved
    • Boise State University will charge you for the credit hours attempted
    • An internship cannot be used as an undergraduate CS elective
    • An internship counts toward your graduate degree if your advisor approves and incorporates it in your degree program
    • Academic internships require a term paper and you will receive a Pass/Fail grade
    • The CS Department internship coordinator is Eric Henderson.  Contact Eric to determine whether or not an opportunity can be considered for academic credit and how many credits the internship should be assigned.

Finding a Job Opening

Some intern positions for Computer Science majors maybe found through the Boise State University Career Center. You may also wish to consider Handshake to search for jobs on and off campus.

Work must be completed during the semester in which credit will be awarded. You cannot receive credit for work completed in previous or future semesters.

International Students

BSU International Student Services,, implements U.S. Government policies,, for off-campus employment. You may be asked if your Computer Science degree requires an internship.

      • An undergraduate academic internship is required if needed for a general elective; otherwise an internship is not a required course for CS students.
      • An internship is required for a graduate student if their program includes it; contact your graduate advisor for more information.

Undergraduate Internship Credit

To be eligible for undergraduate academic credit:

      • Internship work must be related to Computer Science (the “Description of Internship Duties and Learning Objectives” must describe software programming or testing activities — writing static HTML or building a WordPress site will not qualify)
      • You must have a grade-point average of 2.00 or better
      • No more than 12 internship credits may be applied toward a general elective; your advisor can help you determine if you need “General Elective” credits (many students don’t).

Internship credit cannot be used to fulfill a Computer Science elective.

Undergraduate credit is offered at two levels, CS293 for freshmen and sophomores, and CS493 for juniors and seniors. You will typically receive about one hour of academic credit for each three hours/week worked in a technical (software development) job throughout the semester. Please review the Boise State University policies at,

Graduate Internship Credit

Graduate credit is offered as CS590, and a higher standard is used to determine if your “Description of Internship Duties and Learning Objectives” qualifies. Although your work need not include original research nor result in a published paper, your internship application must explain how you will apply existing computing research to your project.  Example:  If your internship asks you to improve a classifier written in python, you might do a literature search on “python classifier” and your paper will describe and cite the existing work on python classifiers.  You may also be able to document the limitations of the existing technologies that led to your improvements.  In no case should you disclose your employer’s trade secrets about the improvements you are making.

The internship application process enables the registrar to offer the course to you, but does not incorporate CS590 into your graduate program nor ensure the course will count toward your degree. You must meet with your graduate advisor to incorporate CS590 into your program (just as you would for any other 500-level course). If you do not yet have an advisor, then you do not yet have an approved program, and thus cannot be certain CS590 (or any other course) will count toward your degree.

When Can I Register?

You must register for internship credit (see process below) by the “Last day to add undergraduate internship and independent study” on the registrar’s academic calendar for the term in which you will receive credit. This date is usually about one month into the semester.

Internship Application Process

    1. Start the application process at the Boise State University Career Center. The “Description of Internship Duties and Learning Objectives” section of your application must clearly identify how your internship relates to your Computer Science major.
    2. The Career Center will notify the departments internship coordinator when your application is ready for approval by the Computer Science Department. Applications that do not explain how the internship satisfies the department’s requirements will be rejected.
    3. The Career Center will eMail a request-for-approval to your employer.
    4. Within a day or two after the Career Center receives the approvals, CS293, CS493 or CS590 should be made available to you in your myBoiseState Student Center.
    5. Register for class prior to the “Last day to add undergraduate internship or independent study” identified in the registrar’s Academic Calendar.
    6. Do your internship
    7. Write your term paper (see below) and submit it via Canvas

Grading and Term Paper

All internships require submission of a term paper assigned on Canvas. All papers are due on the last day of classroom instruction – see the academic calendar (that is not necessarily the last day of your employment) and are graded as a Pass/Fail.

Graduate (CS590) term papers should cite existing computing research. In addition, your term paper must adhere to professional standards (e.g. ACM, IEEE, …) and include a bibliography referencing peer-reviewed papers related to your work. Appropriate professional templates are available from the ACM and IEEE at, and

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