Find your offline electrical-engineering program in minutes!

Most schools have rolling admissions and financial help so you can start your degree in a few weeks!

As a working electrical engineer, advancing your career into leadership roles or achieving higher pay may be your next move. Pursuing a master’s in engineering can help you secure positions such as engineering managers with a median salary of $165,370 or positions within the top 10% of electrical engineers, earning a median salary of $172,050.

Typically spanning two years for full-time students and four to five years for part-time students, these degree programs are a wise investment in your future. With an average tuition cost of $19,749, the potential for significant salary increases post-graduation makes this initial expense a valuable investment in your future.

How to Choose a Master’s in Electrical Engineering Program

Choose your area of study

Selecting an area of study is crucial when considering a master’s in electrical engineering, as this decision will directly influence your career trajectory and program selection. For instance, students aiming to work in energy transmission or renewable sources may be well-suited for a specialization in power systems, while those seeking careers in telecommunications may prefer to concentrate in communications and signal processing. Meanwhile, individuals interested in automation and advanced manufacturing may excel in robotics and control systems.

Research schools and programs

Once you’ve chosen your specialization, it’s time to research potential programs. Consider asking the following questions to help guide your search:

  • How does the curriculum support my intended specialization?
  • Who are the faculty, and what are their credentials and expertise?
  • What are the research and lab facilities like?
  • How does the program integrate with industry?
  • What are the career outcomes for graduates?

Answers to these questions can typically be found on university websites, by contacting program coordinators directly, or by attending an information session. You can also reach out to current students or alumni through LinkedIn or Reddit to gain more of an insider perspective.

Prepare for tests and applications

Now that you have a shortlist of schools that will be an excellent fit for your career goals, you’ll want to begin preparing early to streamline your application process.

It’s generally recommended to first focus on two of the most time-consuming elements of preparing your application — writing your personal statement and preparing for the GRE. For your personal statement, dedicate ample time to highlighting your academic achievements, career goals, and reasons for choosing your specialization. If your program requires GRE scores, consider enrolling in a test prep program well in advance to improve your performance.

Additionally, collect letters of recommendation and secure your transcripts ahead of time to avoid any last-minute stress.

Select your program

Ultimately, selecting your program is a personal decision. Still, you can make this easier by revisiting your initial research criteria and focusing on what matters most to you out of your educational experience.

This is also an excellent time to carefully review each program’s total cost of attendance alongside any financial aid offers, as this will ensure you’re making an economically feasible decision that’s aligned with your career goals.

Determine how you’ll pay for your degree

When planning how to finance your degree, it’s essential to prioritize options that minimize debt rather than increase it. Begin by seeking scholarships and grants, which don’t require repayment and can often be found through your institution. If available, consider assistantships that offer stipends or tuition waivers for teaching or research roles. If you’re continuing with the same employer, ask if your company provides tuition reimbursement as part of its employee benefits package.

Although federal loans are preferable to private loans due to more favorable interest rates and repayment terms, they should be used sparingly. Remember, every dollar borrowed will need to be repaid with interest, adding to the overall cost of your education.

Best 50 Accredited Master’s in Electrical Engineering Programs

Best Master's in Electrical Engineering Degree Programs_badge 2024

Stanford University

USC Viterbi

Columbia University

UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering

University of Washington

California Polytechnic State University

Washington University in St Louis

University of Michigan - Dearborn

University of South Florida

New Jersey Institute of Technology

California State University, Long Beach

Northwestern University

Texas Tech University

University of Pennsylvania

North Carolina State University

California State University, Los Angeles

George Washington University

Case Western Reserve University

Ohio University

Arizona State University

Cleveland State University

University of Virginia School of Engineering and Applied Science

University of Texas at Dallas

University of Missouri - Kansas City

University of Massachusetts Lowell

University of Dayton

University of Notre Dame College of Engineering

Stevens Institute of Technology

California Institute of Technology

Tufts University School of Engineering

Florida International University

Villanova University

NYU Tandon School of Engineering

Texas A&M University College of Engineering

Discover More Options

How we rank schools

Electrical engineering is a science and math-related field, and the degree programs highlighted on our list generally award either a Master of Science or a Master of Engineering. These programs are available in various delivery methods, including strictly online, strictly on-campus, and a combination of the two. Many of the online programs are available asynchronously, allowing distance learners to earn their degree on their own schedule.

Accreditation of a master’s in electrical engineering program is extremely important. Not only does it ensure a high-quality education that meets the rigorous standards of the accrediting agency, but in many cases, having graduated from an accredited program is required in order to qualify for certain positions at the federal level or professional examinations. All of the institutions included here are fully accredited.

We evaluated each program on the basis of flexibility, faculty, course strength, cost, and reputation. Then, we calculated the Intelligent Score for each program on a scale from 0 to 100. For a more extensive explanation, check out our ranking methodology.

What Can You Expect From a Master’s in Electrical Engineering Program?

Graduate-level electrical engineering curricula typically include core courses in signal processing, power systems, telecommunications, and semiconductor technology. Like most other engineering degree programs, these programs emphasize practical application through hands-on labs and industry-relevant projects, allowing students to apply theories they’ve learned to real-world challenges.

While some programs offer a thesis option, many are more focused on application rather than research and, therefore, emphasize coursework and projects to develop problem-solving skills without a thesis requirement.

Full-time students can complete their master’s in electrical engineering in two years, while part-time students may take four to five years to complete degree requirements.

Potential courses you’ll take in a master’s in electrical engineering program

  • Advanced Digital Signal Processing: Often a core requirement, this course explores the algorithms and methods used to analyze and manipulate digital signals. Students learn techniques such as spectral estimation, adaptive filtering, and discrete Fourier transforms. Typically, the focus is on practical applications in communications, radar, and audio processing, giving learners the tools to innovate in these fields.
  • Power System Analysis: Another standard core course, this class covers the operation and design of electrical power systems. Topics include power flow analysis, stability of power grids, and fault detection. After completion, students will significantly understand how modern power systems are managed and optimized.
  • Semiconductor Device Fundamentals: Frequently an elective, in this course students analyze the physics and operation principles of semiconductor devices, including diodes, transistors, and LEDs. The course emphasizes the role of these components in electronic circuit design and the development of microelectronic systems.
  • Embedded Systems Design: While some curriculums consider this a core course, many offer it as an elective. This class provides practical experience in designing and implementing embedded systems, which combine hardware and software to perform specific tasks. Participants learn to integrate microcontrollers, sensors, and actuators, applying their knowledge to real-world applications like robotics and smart devices.

Master’s in Electrical Engineering Degree Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply to a master's in electrical engineering degree program?

To apply for your master’s in electrical engineering, you’ll need to meet several standard admission requirements, often including:

  • Bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering or a related field
  • GRE scores, although some programs may waive this requirement for meeting specific criteria
  • Official transcripts from all previously attended institutions
  • Letters of recommendation, usually two to three
  • Statement of purpose outlining your career goals and reasons for pursuing this degree
  • Resume or CV highlighting relevant work and academic experience

Given the variability in program requirements, it’s essential to consult an admissions counselor to ensure you meet specific prerequisites. They can also clarify program expectations and help strengthen your application.

How much does a master's in electrical engineering degree cost?

For the 2020-2021 academic year, the average tuition among graduate programs was $19,749. However, costs can vary significantly based on the institution’s reputation, whether it’s public or private, and your residency status.

In addition to tuition, you should also budget for textbooks, course materials, housing, and commuting costs. Considering these expenses will help provide a more comprehensive financial picture, helping you plan effectively for this educational investment.

How long does it take to earn a master's in electrical engineering degree?

Obtaining your master’s in electrical engineering will typically take two years if you enroll full-time, while part-time enrollment may extend this timeline to four or five years.

Completion timelines are considerably influenced by the total number of required credits, which can vary between programs. Some programs might require as few as 30 credits, but it’s more common for programs to require up to 45, affecting how quickly you can complete your degree.

Compare School Options

Related Degrees