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Masters Program - Electrical Engineering

The Department of Electrical Engineering offers a Master of Engineering in Electrical Engineering. Students have the option of doing a thesis, or pursuing a non-thesis option.

The thesis track requires 24 credits of approved graduate level coursework (400-level classes), plus 6 credits of thesis (ECE499). The non-thesis track requires 30 credits of approved graduate level coursework (400-level classes), plus an identified special project (as described below).

The Master of Engineering program in Electrical Engineering challenges students to pursue one or more areas of specialization in depth, combining rigorous theory and enhancement of analytical skills together with a significant project experience. An essential aspect of the program is the close working relationship between the student and faculty advisor.

Possible areas of concentration or thesis research 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, natural language processing, and artificial intelligence; reconfigurable and distributed computing; autonomous systems and smart cities; and cross-disciplinary applications (e.g., sustainable engineering, connections with art and architecture).

Students are admitted into the thesis or non-thesis option, that is, this choice must be specified as part of the application to the program. Once admitted, students in the non-thesis option may petition the department to transfer into the thesis track. However, students following the thesis option may not switch to the non-thesis option.

Thesis Option:

The candidate must choose a full-time Cooper Union faculty member from the electrical engineering department as one of his or her thesis advisors. In addition to supervising the thesis, that advisor, in consultation with the other faculty in the department, approves the set of courses used to fulfill the requirements for the Master’s degree. There may also be a co-advisor for the thesis, approved by the principal thesis advisor and the electrical engineering department chair. Any co-advisor who is not a member of the full-time faculty of the school of engineering must also be approved by the Dean of Engineering.

Non-Thesis Option:

The candidate must choose a full-time Cooper Union faculty member from the electrical engineering department as the faculty advisor. The faculty advisor, in consultation with other faculty in the department, approves the set of courses used to fulfill the requirements for the Master's degree. As part of the requirements for the degree, the student must work on a substantial project in at least one of the classes taken. Most graduate level courses involve project work, and the student in conjunction with the faculty advisor will ensure that at least one of the course projects will satisfy the requirement. The grade for the selected project must be at least a B, taken from a course with grade of at least a B. Documentation for the project, approved by the advisor, will be provided to the Engineering Dean's Office to verify that the candidate for the degree has completed this requirement.

General Requirements:

As noted above, the advisor approves the set of courses used to fulfill the requirements for the master degree, subject to the following constraints. For each course, the course grade must be at least a C, and the overall GPA for the credits used to fulfill the master of engineering degree must be at least 3.00. A limited set of non-ECE courses may be permitted, but the overall course plan should indicate a strong concentration in some area within the broad discipline of electrical engineering. 

Undergraduate students at The Cooper Union are permitted to take graduate level courses as long as prerequisite requirements are met. Those who take additional courses at the graduate level beyond those required for the Bachelor of Engineering degree, who then enter the Master of Engineering program, may apply those additional credits towards the requirements for the Master degree, subject to the approval of the advisor.

Students entering the Master of Engineering program in electrical engineering are expected to have a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering or a related field from an accredited institution. The exception is that Cooper Union undergraduates or alumni with an engineering degree in a major other than electrical engineering, including the Bachelor of Science of Engineering degree, would be considered for admission into the Master of Engineering program in electrical engineering if they have a demonstrated preparation for advanced studies in the field.

  • 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.