Master of Science, Electrical Engineering: Professional

Umesh Patel, research associate in the McDermott Group in the University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Physics works in a clean room in the Wisconsin Center for Applied Microelectronics in the Engineering Centers Building on April 18, 2012.

The Professional Master of Science in Electrical Engineering degree is designed to deepen the student’s technical knowledge and sharpen their professional skills for a well-prepared entry into industry. The program provides a practical focus through a course-only curriculum, an accelerated and predictable 16-month completion time and a professional development summer session. Along with an academic advisor, the student will choose courses that align well academically and target their career interests. Areas of emphasis include computer engineering, fields and waves, solid state/photonics, or energy and power systems.

Is This Program Right For You?

The Professional program is intended for students looking for an advanced entry into an electrical engineering career in industry. Motivated students can complete all the requirements for the degree in a predictable 16-month timeframe.

The required coursework is customized based on the student’s technical interests and is taught by faculty conducting cutting-edge research in their respective fields. The goal of the student’s studies is to expand their knowledge in new technologies, design methods, and analysis techniques. The combined focus on technical skills and professional development will prepare graduates to assume leadership positions in industry.

The focus of the Professional program differs from the traditional research-based MS program by the replacing the independent research that leads to a written thesis with an accelerated coursework plan and professional development in the summer. Students interested in research and advanced concept development are better served pursuing a research-focused MS program. If you want to complete your degree in 16 months and enter the workforce, then the Professional program is right for you.

For more detailed information, please visit the program website.

What You Learn

  • Demonstrate a strong understanding of mathematical, scientific, and engineering principles in your emphasis area
  • Demonstrate an ability to formulate, analyze, and independently solve advanced engineering problems
  • Apply the relevant scientific and technological advancements, techniques, and engineering tools to address these problems.
  • Recognize and apply principles of ethical and professional conduct

At A Glance

DeliveryIn class instruction
Credits30 Graduate Credits
Time Frame Completion of program may be done within 16 months starting Fall semester only
Tuition$1,200 per credit plus fees (effective fall 2021), merit based scholarships available
Degree Conferred Master of Science in Electrical Engineering
Offered By The UW-Madison College of Engineering
Application DeadlineDecember 15

Degree & Prospective Student Information

Click HERE to view or download the most current ECE Graduate Student Handbook and Forms.

The M.S. Professional program requires 30 credits, with a core track of 12 credits in a technical emphasis area that are approved by the advisor.  Example tracks in Computer Engineering and Energy and Power Systems are provided below.  Tracks in other areas as well as custom advisor-approved tracks are also available.

Computer Engineering Tracks

Track 1:  Embedded Systems

Description:  This track offers practical insight into the field of embedded systems and will prepare you to develop low-level programs, tool chains and run-time systems and design and simulate low-power hardware for embedded processors.

Core course set:

Select 12 credits from the following list:

    • CS 537 Introduction to Operating Systems
    • ECE 551 Digital System Design and Synthesis
    • ECE 552 Introduction to Computer Architecture
    • ECE 555 Digital Circuits and Components
    • ECE 750 Real-Time Computing Systems
    • ECE 751 Embedded Computing Systems
    • ECE 753 Fault-Tolerant Computing

Track 2:  Networking and Security

Description:  This track offers practical insight into the fields of networking and security and will prepare you to implement protocols and applications for mobile and wireless networking, as well as assess security threats and apply defenses and best practices for secure hardware and software.

Core course set:

Select 12 credits from the following list:

    • ECE 537 Communication Networks
    • CS 537 Introduction to Operating Systems
    • CS 642 Introduction to Information Security
    • ECE 707 Mobile and Wireless Networking
    • ECE 751 Embedded Computing Systems
    • ECE 753 Fault-Tolerant Computing
    • CS 763 Security and Privacy for Data Science

Track 3:  Computer-Aided Design

Description:  This track offers practical insight into the field of computer-aided design and will prepare you to use design tools and develop algorithms and methodologies for simulating, synthesizing and verifying digital electronic systems.

Core course set:

Select 12 credits from the following list:

    • ECE 551 Digital System Design and Synthesis
    • ECE 553 Testing and Testable Design of Digital Systems
    • ECE 555 Digital Circuits and Components
    • ECE 556 Design Automation of Digital Systems
    • ECE 751 Embedded Computing Systems
    • ECE 755 VLSI Systems Design
    • ECE 756 Computer-Aided Design for VLSI

Track 4:  Computer Architecture

Description:  This track offers practical insight into the field of computer architecture and will prepare you to write microprograms, develop parallel applications and design and simulate hardware components for multiprocessors, caches and memory systems.

Core course set:

Select 12 credits from the following list:

    • CS 537 Introduction to Operating Systems
    • ECE 551 Digital System Design and Synthesis
    • ECE 552 Introduction to Computer Architecture
    • ECE 553 Testing and Testable Design of Digital Systems
    • ECE 752 Advanced Computer Architecture I
    • ECE 755 VLSI Systems Design
    • ECE 757 Advanced Computer Architecture II
    • CS 758 Advanced Topics in Computer Architecture
    • ECE 759 High Performance Computing for Applications in Engineering

Energy and Power Systems Tracks

Track 1:  Electric Machines and Drives

Description:  This track offers practical insight into the field of electrical machines and drives.  This knowledge prepares you for career opportunities in the design and control of electric machines for traction, drone, and other propulsion systems as well as electric generators for wind, high-speed turbines, and other renewable energy systems.

Core course set (pick at least 4 of 7):

    • ECE 411 Introduction to Electric Drive Systems
    • ECE 412 Power Electronics Circuits
    • ECE 427 Electric Power Systems
    • ECE 504 Electric Machines and Drive System Lab
    • ECE 511 Theory and Control of Synchronous Machines
    • ECE 711 Dynamics and Control of AC Drives
    • ECE 713 Electromagnetic Design of AC Machines

Track 2:  Power Electronics

Description:  This track offers practical insight into the field of power electronics.  This knowledge prepares you for career opportunities in the design and control of power electronics hardware for propulsion, renewable energy and charging systems.

Core course set (pick at least 4 of 7):

    • ECE 411 Introduction to Electric Drive Systems
    • ECE 412 Power Electronics Circuits
    • ECE 427 Electric Power Systems
    • ECE 512 Power Electronics Lab
    • ECE 711 Dynamics and Control of AC Drives
    • ECE 712 Solid State Power Conversion
    • ECE 714 Utility Application of Power Electronics

Track 3:  Power Systems

Description:  This track offers practical insight into the field of electrical power systems.  You will explore the construct of the electric utility as well as power flow control and stability through a variety of modeling and simulation exercises and projects including emerging grid technologies such as microgrids to large-scale power systems dominated by renewable energy sources and power electronics.

Core course set (pick at least 4 of 8):

    • ECE 411 Introduction to Electric Drive Systems
    • ECE 412 Power Electronics Circuits
    • ECE 427 Electric Power Systems
    • ECE 511 Theory and Control of Synchronous Machines
    • ECE 524 Introduction to Optimization
    • ECE 714 Utility Application of Power Electronics
    • ECE 723 On-Line Control of Power Systems
    • ECE 731 Advanced Power System Analysis

Applicants must first meet all of the requirements of the Graduate School.
Please visit https://grad.wisc.edu for details.

Applicants must also meet department specific requirements as outlined below:

  • Must have a bachelor’s degree or expect to earn a bachelor’s degree before their first semester in the program
  • Submit a Statement of Purpose

Guidelines

  • Submit 3 letters of recommendation
  • Non-native English speakers must have a Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with a minimum score of 580 (written), 243 computer-based test), or 90 (Internet version).
  • Scores from one these exams are required unless you met one of the following exemptions:
    • English is the exclusive language of instruction at the undergraduate level
    • You earned a degree from a regionally accredited U.S. college or university not more than 5 years prior to the anticipated semester of enrollment
    • You completed at least two full-time semesters of graded course work (excluding ESL courses) at an institution where English is the exclusive language of instruction, not more than 5 years prior to the anticipated semester of enrollment

Apply now http://grad.wisc.edu/admissions/ or program website

Can I complete the program in less than 16 months?

Yes, it is possible to complete the M.S. Professional program in less than 16 months for students who are extremely well-prepared and motivated. Students who earned their bachelor’s from UW-Madison may also find it easier to complete the program in less than 16 months by transferring up to seven credits. Generally speaking, most students find 16 months (three academic semesters, plus summer) to be the most comfortable timeframe.


Can I take more than 16 months to complete the program?

It is expected that students complete the program within three academic semesters plus summer.  In some circumstances, such as a coop or extended internships, students may be allowed (with faculty advisor approval) to take longer than 16 months from start to finish to complete the program.


Am I eligible for department funding?

Due to the accelerated nature of the program, M.S. Professional students are not eligible for Research Assistantships (RA), Teaching Assistantships (TA), or Project Assistantships (PA) either in the ECE (Electrical and Computer Engineering) department or elsewhere on campus. Students are encouraged to focus on their coursework, as the program is designed to have heavy credit loads each term.  Limited merit-based scholarships are available to highly qualified students.


Can I do research while in this program?

The M.S. Professional program is a course-only master’s program with an emphasis on professional experience and development. It is not a research-focused program. However, students are encouraged to demonstrate practical application of the concepts they are learning by way of an internship.

Students are permitted to enroll in Independent Study under the guidance of a faculty member. An Independent Study is an opportunity for a student to study a topic in more depth, allowing students to delve into a specific area of interests. Please note that it is the student’s responsibility to find a professor willing to supervise the independent study. The number of faculty available is limited and students should not assume they will be able to pursue this option in advance.


Who will I be taking classes with and who will be teaching these classes?

M.S. Professional students take all courses with other Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) M.S. and Ph.D. students, as well as other engineering students. The classes are taught by professors that are experts their fields.


What courses will I take?

The program is designed for flexibility in course selection, and students can take a wide variety of applicable courses across campus.  The program offers multiple predefined emphasis tracks, but students may design a custom track with advisor approval.  A total of 30 credits is required with at most 9 credits outside of the ECE department (for example, computer science, mechanical engineering, or math).  Detailed curricular requirements can be found in the ECE Graduate Student Handbook.


Can I switch to the M.S.-Research or Ph.D. in program once on campus?

Student’s goals and intentions may change overtime.  To change to an M.S.-Research or Ph.D. program, students are required to have support from a faculty research advisor, and then must apply to change to a different ECE program.  Please note that the M.S. Professional program is intended to be a terminal degree program and should not be viewed as a guaranteed stepping-stone to the ECE Ph.D. program.


Is summer enrollment required?

Summer enrollment is not required.  However, students are encouraged to enroll in ECE 702 in conjunction with an internship.


Can I do an internship for longer than just the summer?

Students are allowed to continue summer internships through the following fall semester.  In this case, students are permitted to extend the duration of the program accordingly.  If students do an internship for summer and fall, they must enroll in two credits of ECE 702 summer and two credits of ECE 702 in fall.


Can I enroll part-time in my final semester?

Domestic students can enroll part-time in their final semester.

International students are often eligible for a Reduced Course Load in their final semester per International Student Services (ISS). If students only require six more credits, for example, that can be a reason to be able to enroll part-time. This is something that international students should confirm and work out with ISS at a later date, but it is a relevant point to consider.


What resources are available to help me find a job?

Engineering Career Services (ECS) is a fantastic job-search service specifically for engineering students. Students can schedule appointments with ECS for resume and cover letter review, practice interviews, salary negotiation advice, and job searching tips. ECS hosts career fairs in the fall and spring semester and coordinates campus interview opportunities with a large number of companies. For example, over 500 companies recruit students through ECS. ECS services are available free of charge to all MLSP students.


What is the cost of tuition?

$1,200 per credit plus fees (effective fall 2021). Merit based scholarships available.

Questions about financial aid and housing? Please see the helpful links below:

Financial Aid

University Housing

Campus Area Housing  – Off-Campus


Additional Questions?

For content and curriculum-related questions please contact:

 

Electrical and Computer Engineering Admissions

ecegradadmission@engr.wisc.edu

Katie Bourassa

Graduate Student Services Coordinator

kbourassa@wisc.edu

608.890.2204

 

Duachi Yang

Graduate Student Services Coordinator

duachi.yang@wisc.edu

608.890.2879

Information for Current Students

Click here to be directed to Graduate School information.

Learn more about the Professional Master of Science in Electrical Engineering degree accelerated program.

View The Guide here.

Curriculum

Master of Science Electrical Engineering, Named Option: Professional

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Credits Requirement: 30

 

Suggested Course Credit Allocation:

Fall Semester I                                    9-12 Credits

Spring Semester                                 9-12 Credits

Summer Session (optional)              0-3 Credits

Fall Semester II                                   0-12 Credits

 

Mandatory Courses

  • ECE 610 Graduate Seminar 1 credit (take once)

 

Elective Courses

  • 12 of the 30 credit hours must be taken within one of the sample curriculum paths below. (Special topics courses ECE 601 or 901 may be used for up to 3 of these credits with advisor approval.)
  • Remaining ECE electives are listed at http://guide.wisc.edu/courses/e_c_e/. Most elective courses will be from this list and numbered 500 and above.

 

Other Course Requirements

  • 24 of the 30 credit hours must be taken in ECE. Approved graduate or undergraduate transfer credits may count towards the 24 ECE credits.
  • 15 of the 30 credit hours must be at the graduate level; 9 of these must be in ECE
  • No more than 3 independent study credits count towards the degree. This includes ECE 699 and ECE 999.
  • Thesis credits are not allowed (ECE 790 or ECE 890)

 

Professional Development Activities

Students are strongly encouraged to participate in one of the professional development activities below:

  • With assistance from Engineering Career Services, obtain a summer internship and enroll in up to 2 credits of ECE 702 Graduate Cooperative Education
  • Enroll in the summer course InterEGR 601 Introduction to Interdisciplinary Design and Innovation – 3 credits.
  • Enroll in up to three credits of ECE 699 and be co-supervised by an advisor working in industry (choice of industry advisor is subject to program approval).
  • Complete at least two of the online Foundations of Professional Development courses. Each course is eight weeks and 1 credit.
  • EPD 701 Writing for Professionals
  • EPD 702 Professional Presentations
  • EPD 703 Managing Digital Information
  • EPD 704 Organizational Communication and Problem Solving
  • EPD 706 Change Management
  • EPD 708 Creating Breakthrough Innovations
  • EPD 712 Ethics for Professionals
  • EPD 713 Key Legal Concepts for Professionals
  • EPD 781 Financial and Business Acumen
  • EPD 782 Marketing for Non-Marketing Professionals
  • EPD 783 Leading Teams
  • EPD 784 Project Management Essentials
  • EPD 785 Effective Negotiation Strategies

 

Sample Curriculum Paths

The curriculum paths below are examples aligned with curricular groups within the ECE department. Students may take courses from combinations of different paths to create custom degrees that are well-aligned with their professional goals.

 

Computer Engineering (CMPE)

ECE 453 – Embedded Microprocessor Design

ECE 454 – Mobile Computing Laboratory

ECE 537 – Communication Networks

ECE 551 – Digital System Design and Synthesis

ECE 552 – Introduction to Computer Architecture

ECE 554 – Digital Engineering Laboratory

ECE 555 – Digital Circuits and Components

ECE 556 – Design Automation of Digital Systems

ECE 707 – Mobile and Wireless Networking

ECE 750 – Real-Time Computing Systems

ECE 751 – Embedded Computing Systems

ECE 752 – Advanced Computer Architecture I

ECE 753 – Fault-Tolerant Computing

ECE 755 – VLSI Systems Design

ECE 756 – Compute-Aided Design for VLSI

ECE 757 – Advanced Computer Architecture II

 

E&M Fields and Waves

ECE 453 – Embedded Microprocessor System Design

ECE 545 – Advanced Microwave Measurements for Communications

ECE 547 – Advanced Communications Circuit Design

ECE 552 – Introduction to Computer Architecture

ECE 740 – Electromagnetic Theory

ECE 742 – Computational Methods in Electromagnetics

ECE 744 – Theory of Microwave Circuits and Devices

 

Energy and Power Systems

(The on-campus program, not the online MSEE Power Engineering program)

ECE 411 – Introduction to Electric Drive Systems

ECE 412 – Power Electronic Circuits

ECE 427 – Electric Power Systems

ECE 504 – Electric Machine and Drive System Laboratory

ECE 511 – Theory and Control of Synchronous Machines

ECE 512 – Power Electronics Laboratory

ECE 711 – Dynamics and Control of AC Drives

ECE 712 – Solid State Power Conversion

ECE 713 – Electromagnetic Design of AC Machines

ECE 714 – Utility Applications of Power Electronics

ECE 723 – On-line Control of Power Systems

ECE 731 – Advanced Power System Analysis

 

Solid State/Photonics

ECE 434 – Photonics

ECE 445 – Semiconductor Physics and Devices

ECE 466 – Electronics of Solids

ECE 536 – Integrated Optics and Optoelectronics

ECE 541 – Analog MOS Integrated Circuit Design

ECE 542 – Introduction to Microelectromechanical Systems

ECE 544 – Processing of Electronic Materials

ECE 548 – Integrated Circuit Design

ECE 549 – Integrated Circuit Fabrication Laboratory

ECE 741 – Semiconductor Diode Lasers and Other Optoelectronic Devices

ECE 743 – High-Power Diode Lasers and Amplifiers

ECE 745 – Solid State Electronics

ECE 746 – Quantum Electronics

ECE 845 – Transport in Semiconductor Devices

ECE 901 – Special Topics in Electrical and Computer Engineering

Please do not mail any paper copies of application materials. They will not be reviewed. Please only upload the required application materials with the Graduate School application. This includes official transcripts. If an applicant is admitted by the ECE Admissions Committee, they will receive further instructions from the ECE Graduate Admissions Office.

Applicants should monitor your application status by visiting the “Graduate Application Status” window within your MyUW portal (information on this is received after submitting an application). You may need to activate a NetID to gain access to the MyUW portal.

We anticipate most decisions will be made no later than mid-March for Fall semester applications. Applicants will receive an e-mail from the ECE Graduate Admissions Office with the Admissions Committee’s decision as soon as the office receives it.

Further questions related to the ECE admissions process may be directed to ecegradadmission@engr.wisc.edu.