Electrical and Computer Engineering
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M.S. in Electrical Engineering Overview

The Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering offers a program of graduate study leading to the Master of Science in Electrical Engineering degree with thesis and non−thesis options.

Funded research opportunities exist for master’s students in the following multidisciplinary centers, laboratories, and industry−sponsored programs. If you would like to see each of these research areas, please view the research areas using the navigation bar on the left.

Our requirements for the M.S. in Electrical Engineering degree are given as follows. Some of these requirements are university−wide and can also be found in the Texas Tech University Catalog under Graduate School.

Admissions

Admission to master’s study is restricted to applicants whose backgrounds show a distinguished record in previous work as evidenced by their university transcripts, three letters of recommendation, and competitive score on the Graduate Record Examination.

A substantial body of undergraduate work in electrical engineering and considerable breadth of background are essential for graduate study. Students whose undergraduate record is considered lacking in depth or breath may be required to complete preparatory courses without degree credit.

Leveling Requirements

Students who do not hold a bachelor's or master's degree in electrical engineering or a related field may be required to complete undergraduate leveling work. Required leveling courses generally follow the requirements for a minor in electrical engineering. A list of required courses is available on the electrical engineering minor web page.

Thesis & Non−Thesis Options

Students working toward the MSEE degree have the option of writing a thesis or taking additional courses. During their first semester, students must declare their option: thesis or non-thesis. Later, if desired, they may switch from the thesis to the non-thesis option with the permission of their thesis advisor, however thesis credit hours they may have earned will not count toward the non-thesis degree. Alternately, students may switch from the non-thesis to the thesis option with permission of the Graduate Advisor. Specific requirements for each option are as follows:

Thesis Option

Non−Thesis Option

Declared Minor

Students may choose, as an option, to divide their coursework between their major field of study, electrical engineering, and a minor field of study. Six or nine hours of coursework will be devoted to the minor, in the case of the thesis option or the non−thesis option, respectively. The courses will be taken in a department other then ECE, with the approval of the Graduate Advisors in both departments.

Degree Plan

Master's students must complete the form entitled "Program for the Master's Degree and Admission to Candidacy." This is typically done in a student's second semester. The form lists all of the courses that a student plans to take for the master’s degree together with his or her thesis title and committee members names, if the thesis option is chosen. It is prepared by the student based on his or her special interests with the advice of the ECE Department Graduate Advisor and the student's thesis advisor. In some cases up to six credit hours of graduate coursework with a grade of B or better can be transferred from another school. The form must be signed by the ECE Department Graduate Advisor and by the Graduate Advisor of the minor department, if any. The student is expected to follow the form in subsequent course enrollments and thesis work; if a course substitution or thesis change becomes necessary, the form can be amended.

Examinations

Master’s students must pass one of two comprehensive examinations:

  1. Fundamentals of Engineering Examination

    The nationally administered Fundamentals of Engineering Examination, also called the Engineer−in−Training (EIT) Examination, with the discipline−specific Electrical Engineering option. Students are required to provide evidence of the results of the examination to the Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering.

  2. Comprehensive Oral Examination

    A comprehensive oral examination covering undergraduate−level electrical engineering subjects conducted by the student’s Advisory Committee or by a committee appointed by the Graduate Advisor, in the case of the thesis option or the non−thesis option, respectively.

The examination represents a synthesis and application of knowledge acquired during studies leading to the master’s degree; consequently, satisfactory performance in course work does not guarantee successful performance on the examination. A student who fails this examination may repeat it only once.

Advisory Committee

Students who have selected the thesis option should find a thesis advisor as soon as possible. This is typically done in a student’s second semester. When a thesis research topic has been determined, the members of an Advisory Committee, consisting of at least two faculty members of the Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering, and one member from the minor department if a minor has been declared, will be named. All must be members of the graduate faculty. The student may propose members for the committee and inquire regarding their willingness to serve.

A master’s thesis describes independent work by the student conducted under the supervision of his or her committee. It is a document written in English following a format prescribed by the Graduate School of Texas Tech University. All members of the Advisory Committee must approve and sign the thesis.

Master students must deliver an oral presentation to their committee of their thesis work.

Grade Point Average (GPA)

The Graduate School at Texas Tech University requires that graduate students maintain a semester grade−point average (GPA) of B (3.0) or better. A graduate student is placed on academic probation at the end of any semester in which his or her GPA falls below 3.0. In order to remove probationary status, a student must make a 3.0 GPA or better in the next semester in which he or she is enrolled. The minimum requirement for graduation is a GPA of 3.0 in the major field of study and an overall GPA of 3.0 in all courses, exclusive of thesis, in the degree program.

Residence

The minimum residence required for a master's degree is one academic year or its equivalent.

Time Limit

Work credited toward a master’s degree must be completed within six years. Students whose graduate study is interrupted by military service will be granted an extension for the period of their service, up to five years.