Degrees Offered and Requirements
Master of Science Degree
- Thesis Option – 24 course credits, 2 colloquium credits, 6 thesis credits.
- Paper Option – 30 course credits, 2 colloquium credits, 2 paper credits.
- With departmental approval, up to 10 credits may be transferred from other graduate institutions.
Doctor of Philosophy Degree
- 39 course credits beyond the B.S. degree, 2 colloquium credits, certification in the use of English, and passing of candidacy, comprehensive, and final oral exams. A two-semester period of residency is required.
- Graduate students within the Electrical Engineering graduate program can elect to participate in the Operations Research Dual-Title Degree Program. Operations Research is the use of scientific methodology in the formulation, analysis, and solution of problems of decision making. By a judicious selection of courses, a student can tailor a plan of graduate study to meet career objectives in both of the chosen fields. Students electing to participate in this program will earn a dual-title degree at either the Ph.D. or M.S. levels. The Ph.D. students can also elect to take Operations Research as a minor. Additional information regarding the dual-title degree Operations Research (OR) program can be found on the program website.
Students may be admitted to the M.S. program, to the Ph.D. program after completing an M.S. program, or directly to the Ph.D. program, bypassing the M.S. program. Applicants are expected to have a B.S. degree in electrical engineering. Exceptional candidates from related fields are also welcome to apply. Only well prepared and highly competitive candidates should apply to enter the Ph.D. program directly from the B.S. program, because they will be required to take the candidacy examinations within one year after entry into the program. Applicants are required to complete the University's application form. They must provide formal transcripts, general GRE scores (verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing), letters of reference, and a personal statement of technical interests, goals, and experience. An international student whose first language is not English must submit a TOEFL score and, for consideration as a teaching assistant, a score from the Test of Spoken English (TSE). It should be noted that students admitted to the graduate program who do not demonstrate satisfactory proficiency in English will be required to alleviate this deficiency by taking additional English and/or Speech Communication courses. Students who intend to continue from the M.S. into the Ph.D. program should apply to resume study at least one semester prior to the transition. An updated personal statement and a letter of reference from a professor should accompany that request. Standards for entry to the Ph.D. program are generally more rigorous than for the M.S. program. Satisfactory completion of the M.S. program does not guarantee admission to the Ph.D. program.
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Many graduate students are supported through research or teaching assistantships. For outstanding students, these assistantships are sometimes supplemented by fellowships. Half-time graduate assistantships typically pay from $14,000-$16,000 for two semesters, along with coverage of tuition. Summer support is often provided for research assistantships. The demand for both teaching and research assistantships is high and they are awarded on a competitive basis. To receive full consideration for these positions, all application materials should be submitted by January 5th (December 15th for international applicants) when applying for the following fall semester.
Tuition is $614 per credit for Pennsylvania residents and $1085 per credit for non-Pennsylvania residents if fewer than 12 credits are taken. For 12 or more credits, there is a full-time tuition rate of $14,738 per academic year for Pennsylvania residents and $26,050 for non-Pennsylvania residents.