The NYU Computer Science Bridge Program is designed to prepare students with no computer science background for the Computer Science or Cyber Security graduate programs at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering. I was part of the summer 2019 24-week cohort, and I want to share my experience.
It has been 4+ years since I attended this program, and I expect it to have changed. Feel free to comment below your experience, and I will update it as soon as possible to give a better idea of what to expect for new Bridge students.
NYU Bridge to Tandon Program -Overview
NYU Bridge to Tandon Program is an intensive online program. It will provide you with the math, science, and engineering foundation needed for admission to one of the select NYU Tandon School of Engineering graduate programs. You do not need an engineering background to join, but some coding experience will help you tons. If you complete the program with a B+ or better, your GRE requirement will be waived.
There are two versions of this program. A 24-week program and a 17-week program. Both versions offer the same content but at different paces. I completed the 24-week program, and it was a lot to take in. I can’t imagine the workload required by a 17-week program, but I am sure it takes a lot of effort and time to complete the program successfully.
What to expect?
See a list of required texts here and where to get them.
The following is a list of topics that will be covered during this program:
- Fundamentals of system hardware
- Number Systems
- Compilation and Execution Process
- Data Types and Expressions
- Branching Statements
- Iterative Statements/Loops
- Functions, Abstraction, Runtime Stack
- Arrays, Strings, Pointers, and Dynamic Allocation
- Logic, Proofs, Sets, Mathematical Functions
- Discrete Probability
- Induction, Recursion
- Searching and Sorting
- Object-Oriented Programming (OOP) concepts
- File Processing
- Linked Lists
- Stacks and Queues
- Trees and Binary Search Trees
- Intro to OS Concepts
- Process & Threads
- Thread concurrency and deadlock
- Memory Management
- Introduction to Networking
- Networking Layers
During the summer of 2019, two professors taught the NYU Bridge to Tandon program. Professor Itay Tal led from week 1 to week 11. He covered topics in logic, discrete math, and part of C++ programming. Professor Daniel Katz taught from week 12 to week 24. He covered topics in advanced C++ programming, operating systems, and networking. They are both very knowledgeable. Professor Tal knows what he is talking about but does not take enough time to explain a topic, even if you still have questions. He will tell you to go to the TA’s hours. Conversely, Professor Katz explains every topic thoroughly and ensures the students do not have more questions. He even asks students to email him later if there is any concern. He is really helpful.
The grade breakdown for the summer 2019 24-week cohort was as follows:
- Weekly assignments: 20%
- Four Exams: each worth 20%
Homework varies from week to week. Also, depending on how familiar you are with the content presented, it may take 2 to 50 hours per week, so be prepared to put a lot of time into covering all topics each week. Try not to fall behind because it is tough to catch up later on. We used Piazza to post questions for TAs, but be prepared to find the answer independently since most TAs are not as helpful as you may expect.
There are four exams in the 24-week program. Each exam is worth 20% of your final grade. They are cumulative, so get ready to study a lot. Professor Tal’s exams are multiple-choice and coding questions ranging from 10 to 20 questions per exam. Professor Katz’s exams combine multiple-choice questions, open-ended/short-paragraph questions, and coding questions.
NYU uses ProctorU‘s platform to take online exams. When the professor sends the announcement, you must register for the exam through ProctorU’s website. Make sure to register for the exam on time. If you wait until the last minute, registration will cost you a small fee.
Update 1/21/2021: I have added a few exam resources. I hope this helps anyone getting into the program. Good luck! Resources can be found here: Exam Resources.
NYU Bridge to Tandon Program requires a lot of work, and the decision to join the program cannot be taken lightly. If you are here because you are undecided about whether to apply, I hope this information has given you some insights into what to expect once you are accepted into the program. If you have been accepted already, I hope this article gives you a better view of what is yet to come. I wish you all the best of luck, and if you have any questions, feel free to contact me by leaving a comment below or through social media.