Electrical Engineering

Mission Statement

To develop a highly trained, consummate engineer: able to lead, to practice in a professional manner, to grow with technological advances, to express himself or herself in written and in oral form, to function as a project engineer immediately upon graduation and to pursue graduate studies in a variety of professional fields.

Program Objectives

  • Our graduates will have positions where they function as first-class project engineers.
  • Our graduates will have positions that require
exceptional technical knowledge and professional design skills.
  • Our graduates will engage in activities that involve professional-level written and oral expression.
  • Our graduates will engage in activities that require demonstrating leadership skills.
  • Our graduates will engage in activities that demonstrate a commitment to lifelong learning, research, independent thinking and innovation.

Program description

Basic courses in electronic circuits, signal processing and computer engineering, along with core mathematics, science and humanities courses, are taken in the freshman and sophomore years. Students may then elect to pursue study through an appropriate choice of courses in two areas:

Signals and Electronics

Computer Engineering

There is overlap among the courses in the these tracks, and all students are exposed to a broad range of areas within electrical engineering, while being given the opportunity to study areas of interest in significant depth. The track designations are advisory in nature, and students may change their identified track as long as, by the time they graduate, they have fulfilled all the requirements in a selected track.

By the junior year, students are taking required advanced undergraduate courses that include material at the graduate level. The only required courses in the senior year are the capstone senior design project courses (ECE395/396). Undergraduate students with a strong background are encouraged, as part of the Integrated Master Program, to take graduate level electives once they have the proper prerequisites.

The curriculum interweaves strong theory, grounded in mathematics and science, with extensive use of CAD tools and practical projects. A broad education is supported by taking non-technical electives, including but not limited to humanities and social sciences. The electrical engineering department, as part of its advisory process, designates the set of courses that qualify as non-technical electives. The latest set of eligible courses is posted on the department’s website at:


Team and individual projects begin in the freshman year and culminate with year-long senior projects. All laboratory courses are project based, and many lecture courses require project work as well. By the time students commence their senior projects, they perform open-ended system design, implementation and testing, cost analysis and prepare written and oral presentations. They act as project managers, under the guidance of a faculty adviser.

There are numerous research and independent study opportunities involving close work with faculty and practicing professionals on cutting edge problems.

Students plan their courses with the assistance of a faculty advisor. Through extensive experience working on team projects and proper selection of courses, students obtain a well-rounded, diverse and challenging educational experience.

Graduate Program

The candidate must choose a full-time Cooper Union faculty member from the electrical engineering department as one of his or her thesis advisers. In addition, that adviser, in consultation with the other faculty in the department, approves the set of courses used to fulfill the requirements for the Master’s program.

A fundamental goal of the Master’s program is for the student to attain a higher degree of specialization within electrical engineering, beyond that achieved with an undergraduate degree.  Therefore, it is departmental policy that at most 6 credits of non-ECE courses can be used to fulfill the requirements of the Master of Engineering degree.

Possible areas of concentration or thesis topics are numerous and reflect the diverse interests of the faculty. Some examples are: digital signal processing (including speech, audio, image, video and biomedical signals); wireless communications and networks; big data, machine learning, NLP, reconfigurable and distributed computing; electronic materials and integrated circuit engineering; sustainable engineering.

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.