Associate Degree in Electrical Engineering

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Common Bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering Degree Courses

Expand AllCalculus All electrical engineering undergraduates learn calculus to prepare them touse functions commonly applied in engineering design, such as the Laplacetransform. Electrical engineering programs may combine this course with anintroduction to physics.Introduction to Computer Science This course familiarizes students with programming fundamentals that apply todigital design. Students learn the basics of programming languages, such asJavaScript, PHP, and CSS. Broader course topics include software engineering,algorithms, and data structures. At the end of the class, students may need toprepare a final programming project with their peers.Electronic Circuits This course covers foundational knowledge of electronic components, teachingstudents how to design functioning digital and analog circuit boards. Studentsleave the course with the skills they need to make detailed analyses offirst-, second-, and higher-order circuits. Commonly covered topics includedifferent types of responses, fundamentals of semiconductors, and DC circuitsvs. AC circuits.Information and Signals An information signals course covers ways of manipulating, preserving, andanalyzing signals carrying information, along with their roles in technology.This course frequently serves as a requirement in programs that emphasize datacommunications and digital signal processing.Logic Design Many electrical engineering undergraduates take coursework in logic design —the study of building digital circuits. Course topics include synchronoussequential logic, digital logic gates, and Boolean algebra.

Should I Get a Master’s in Electrical Engineering?

An electrical engineering master’s degree requires coursework in areas such asscience, math, technology, electrical circuit theory, systems design, designand drafting, and physics. Students need high academic standards and excellentreasoning and analytical skills. Learners also need good focus andmultitasking abilities to prepare for work on complex components and systems.Students can pursue a master’s degree in electrical engineering online or oncampus. Online degrees typically appeal to professionals who want to changecareers, learners who need to work while attending school, and those with busypersonal lives. On-campus programs are ideal for recent graduates ofbachelor’s programs who aspire to advanced engineering positions.Both online and on-campus students can develop a professional network of peersand professors, and many schools provide assistance with internship and jobsearches. A graduate degree can lead to higher earning potential and advanced,specialized career paths.

How to Choose a Master’s Program in Electrical Engineering

When choosing between electrical engineering master’s programs, studentsshould consider factors including program length, course format, availableconcentrations, and final project requirements. Most programs take about twoyears to complete, though some schools offer accelerated programs that requireonly one year. Students can study on a part-time or full-time basis, andlearners may continue working while earning their degree. Part-time studentstypically take about three to five years to graduate.Students can pursue online or on-campus programs. Working professionals oftenbenefit from the flexibility of online programs, which do not require learnersto commute to campus. Asynchronous classes, which are commonly offered online,allow students to complete coursework at their convenience.Students should also consider each prospective program’s curriculum and choosea program that offers a concentration that is relevant to their career goals.Additionally, many programs require a capstone project, which may involvecreating a new engineering design or participating in a final seminar orinternship.

Programmatic Accreditation for Master’s Programs in Electrical Engineering

The accreditation status of an engineering student’s program impacts futurecareer opportunities. Departments often receive programmatic accreditationfrom field-specific accrediting bodies. Accreditation indicates that theprogram meets set standards of quality for the profession.Students planning to pursue an electrical engineering master’s degree shouldlook for programs with accreditation from the Accreditation Board forEngineering and Technology (ABET). ABET accredits associate, bachelor’s, andmaster’s programs in the applied and natural sciences. A degree from an ABET-accredited program is required to sit for licensure examinations. A degreefrom an accredited institution ensures the quality of the education,demonstrates value to future employers, and qualifies graduates to pursuefurther education and certifications.

Master’s in Electrical Engineering Program Admissions

Though admissions requirements vary by school, most electrical engineeringmaster’s programs require applicants to hold a bachelor’s degree from anaccredited school, complete an application essay, and submit letters ofrecommendation. Most applicants choose three to eight graduate programs. Whenselecting schools, learners should consider each program’s curriculum andcost.Applicants to online programs may need to demonstrate their ability to succeedin school while meeting personal and professional obligations. Online learnersmay also need to declare their planned timeline for graduation and prove theyhave necessary resources, such as a laptop and internet access.

Courses in a Master’s in Electrical Engineering Program

Students earning a master’s in electrical engineering typically complete acombination of core classes and concentration courses. Curricula vary based onthe program and the student’s specialization. However, the sample coursesbelow are common requirements for electrical engineering students.Expand AllEngineering Electronics This course provides foundational knowledge for electrical engineeringstudents. Learners study the physics of semiconductors, circuits, andamplifiers. The course generally includes a lab component. The course preparesstudents for careers designing and building electronics and power suppliers.Computer Architecture This introductory course covers the micro-architecture of computers,processors, software, and hardware. Learners study computer design and systemsthat contribute to basic functions such as memory storage. This courseprovides knowledge necessary for computer hardware engineers.Electric Power Systems Students explore how electric power systems are used in different industries.They analyze how technology transforms and transmits energy. This classprovides critical concepts for students who aspire to careers in industrial oralternative energy systems.Physics of Semiconductors This course explores the theoretical foundations of semiconductors and theirusage. Students learn how states of matter, such as plasma, affect certainaspects of semiconductors. Coursework also covers current technologies thatuse semiconductor properties.Wireless Communications Students examine modern digital communication systems, including phones,internet, video, and radio. Learners explore the design and limitations ofwireless communications and study equalization, modulation, error correction,and transmission. This course benefits future communication systems engineers.

How Much Is a Master’s in Electrical Engineering?

Earning a master’s in electrical engineering requires a significant financialinvestment. In addition to tuition costs, students should consider the cost ofbooks, housing, and technology fees. Tuition rates vary dramatically,depending on the type of program and school. Tuition for an online electricalengineering master’s degree typically costs $15,000-49,000, or $500-1,470 percredit.While some schools charge the same tuition rate for online and on-campuslearners, many schools offer discounts for online students. For example,public schools may charge online learners in-state tuition rates, regardlessof their state of residency. However, distance learners may need to payadditional technology fees.The type of institution also impacts tuition costs. Public schools, whichreceive state funding, typically charge lower tuition rates and accept morestudents. Private schools; however, run on funding from tuition and donations.Therefore, most private university programs charge significantly highertuition rates than public schools.

Resources for Graduate Electrical Engineering Students

NSPE promotes the licensure of professional engineers and upholds publichealth and safety in the field. Student members can access scholarshipopportunities, free classes and webinars, mentoring opportunities, anddiscounted publications.EEP provides research articles, publications, guides to using electricalsoftware, calculation spreadsheets, and downloadable programs that can handlecomplex calculations.Electronics offers an online repository of learning objects from collegesacross the country. Tools include interactive learning modules and audiopresentations, which help students understand electromechanical engineeringtopics such as circuits and motors.This website includes news and articles on electronics, educational games,webinars, videos, a professional forum, and a job board. Undergraduate andgraduate students can visit the website to learn more about the electricalengineering field.AAC provides video lectures, worksheets, and webinars. Students can accesselectronic tools to perform calculations and study circuit designs.

Associate Degree in Electrical Engineering

Associate degrees in electrical engineering traditionally take students twoyears to earn and feature 60 credits. Required classes may cover topics suchas general and technical physics, engineering drawings, and electric circuits.Some schools offer expedited degree programs that students can complete inless time.Graduates can pursue entry-level technician roles in areas such as electricalinstallation and electronics repair. Professionals with an associate degreemay also pursue careers in manufacturing.While an associate degree offers a practical and relatively inexpensive way tointroduce students to careers in electrical engineering, it is common forlearners to continue their education by completing a bachelor’s.

Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical Engineering

Electrical engineering bachelor’s programs typically take around four years tocomplete. The curriculum includes general education requirements coveringtopics such as the sciences and humanities, along with coursework inengineering fundamentals.One of the many benefits of bachelor’s in electrical engineering programs isthe ability to tailor the degree to your specific needs and career ambitions.Electrical engineering electives cover a diverse array of topics, includingbiometrics and microcomputer design. Internship opportunities and project-based work in lab settings prepare students for engineering careers.In addition to the comprehensive training provided by an electricalengineering bachelor’s degree, many schools provide additional resources toprepare graduates for the Fundamentals of Engineering Exam. This test acts asa first step towards obtaining professional licensure.

Master’s Degree in Electrical Engineering

Master’s degrees in electrical engineering traditionally support students whopreviously obtained an accredited baccalaureate degree in electricalengineering or a closely similar field. Students with a degree or experiencein engineering or other related STEM fields typically take prerequisiteelectrical engineering courses to prepare for the degree.Master’s programs usually consist of 30-40 credits and take about two years tocomplete. While two years is the norm, degree-seekers can sometimes completeaccelerated online master’s programs in as little as a year. Engineeringschools also sometimes offer a 4+1 curriculum, allowing learners to completeboth their BS and MS in just five years.Curricula vary, but master’s programs typically allow learners to dig deeperinto a concentration. This helps students prepare for more advanced careers inelectrical engineering and leadership positions, all while increasing earningpotential.

Doctoral Degree in Electrical Engineering

Typically taking 4-6 years to complete, electrical engineering doctoralprograms usually require 60-90 credits and provide rigorous and highlyspecialized training. Graduates can find work in academia, research labs, andthe private sector.Learners often spend the first two years of a program tackling coursework,projects, and preliminary research, preparing for an eventual dissertation.Following their initial coursework, doctoral candidates spend the majority oftheir remaining time working on their dissertation. This work is oftenaugmented by publishing scholarly articles and attending academic conferences.While doctoral programs typically prepare graduates for careers related toconducting research and teaching, securing a terminal degree can offer a widevariety of lucrative career options. Whether a student aspires to file patentsor work in upper management, a doctorate can provide them with in-depthtraining and technical expertise.

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