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Welcome to Graduate Studies in ECEE

Thank you for your interest in graduate studies in Electrical, Computer, and Energy Engineering at the University of Colorado at Boulder. These pages contain an overview of our program.

Students with diverse backgrounds and interests find a vibrant, stimulating program. Our goal is to help students build a solid foundation of knowledge and experience in electrical engineering and information technology.

Our faculty include 7 IEEE Fellows, 3 OSA Fellows, and 2 RASEI Fellows. Our faculty are active in research with expenditures totaling nearly $9 million annually. Research is concentrated in nine areas, and includes two interdisciplinary, industry-sponsored centers. Grants from NASA, DARPA, NSF, NOAA, and collaborative industrial and military funding provide support for qualified graduate students. Unique facilities and equipment for experimental and theoretical training and for conducting subject-specific research is available. For more information, see our ECEE Research Groups and Centers page.

Degrees Offered

The Department offers three graduate degrees:
  1. Master of Engineering. The Master of Engineering (ME) is a professional degree comprised of advanced courses of relevance to working electrical, computer, and energy engineers. A new professional masters program in Embedded Systems Engineering is a world-class program that cultivates creative, practical embedded systems engineers instilled with comprehensive, current knowledge and industry context. For complete requirements, see the M.E. Degree Requirements page.

  2. Master of Science -- two options:
    • With thesis (MS-I). This option also requires 30 semester hours, of which 4 to 6 are thesis credits. The remaining hours are technical courses in ECEN or approved science, engineering, and math. For specific requirements, see the M.S. Degree Requirements page.
    • Without thesis (MS-II). This option is essentially the same as MS-I except thesis hours are replaced with course work, and specific requirements are somewhat less stringent. For complete requirements, see the M.S. Degree Requirements page.

  3. Ph.D. Degree. The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) is the terminal degree for those seeking a technical or research career in ECEE. It requires completion of relevant 30 course credit hours, plus 30 hours of dissertation, passing preliminary and comprehensive examinations, and a successful dissertation defense. There is a foreign language requirement. For complete requirements, see the Ph.D. Degree Requirements page.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must:
  1. Hold a baccalaureate degree from a college or university of recognized standing (or the equivalent) and submit official transcripts showing that degree.
  2. Have adequate technical preparation to enter graduate study in ECEE.
  3. Have an undergraduate grade point average of 3.00 or higher. Note: provisional admission is sometimes possible for applicants with lower GPAs.
  4. Submit GRE general exam scores (verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing sections all required) if applying for the M.S. or Ph.D. degrees. GRE scores are not required for admission to the M.E. program.
  5. Provide four letters of recommendation from qualified referees.
  6. Provide a statement of purpose describing the applicant's goals and interests.
  7. For non-native English speakers only, provide certification of adequate spoken and written English. A TOEFL score greater than 600 (paper-based), 250 (computer-based) or 100 (internet-based) is desired. Equivalently, one or more years (evidenced by transcripts) of prior instruction at a U.S. university or at a university in a country in which English is one of the official languages may be accepted. An IELTS score of 7.0 or higher is accepted in lieu of a TOEFL score.

Application Deadlines

Fall Admission
Visa (international) student deadline November 1 for full financial aid consideration,
otherwise January 15
U.S. citizen/permanent resident deadline December 1 for full financial aid consideration,
otherwise January 15
Spring Admission
Visa (international) student deadlineSeptember 1
U.S. citizen/permanent resident deadlineSeptember 1
Summer Admission Only for those enrolled and advancing to Ph.D.

How to Apply

**Please note that the University has recently changed to a new online application software. If you experience problems or concerns with the new software, please contact directly.**

Visa Student On-Line Application:

- Please note that at you will find the links to submit an electronic application.
- Read the "Preparing to Apply" section.
- Click on the "How to Apply" link and then on the "Complete Your Application" link.
- Please follow the rest of the links, at that site, in order.

Domestic Student On-Line Application (includes U.S. Citizens, U.S. permanent residents, and refugees only):

- Please note that at you will find the links to submit an electronic application.
- Read the "Preparing to Apply" section.
- Click on the "How to Apply" link and then on the "Complete Your Application" link.
- Please follow the rest of the links, at that site, in order.

Application Submission

Submit online via the web site listed above. For specific requirements, see application information for

Opportunity for Underrepresented Students

The Colorado Advantage Graduate Preview Weekend provides an opportunity for underrepresented students to preview the doctoral programs of ECEE and other CU Boulder Science, Technology, Engineering and Math departments. This year's program will take place Thursday, October 24 to Saturday, October 26, 2013, with the option to stay on until Sunday.

Application review will begin October 1st and continue until the program is full. Application details may be found by clicking here.

Financial Assistance

Financial assistance offers Teaching and and Research Assistantships. At any given time, about one-third of currently enrolled graduate students are funded by either a teaching or research assistantship. These assistantships are highly competitive and availability is limited.

  • Offers for Teaching Assistantship positions are made by April 15 for the following academic year, beginnin in the fall semester. TA offers are determined by supervising professors. Select TA position offers are made in mid-December for the spring semester. All applicants are automatically considered for TA offers; no additional paperwork is necessary.
  • Research Assistantship positions are awarded as research money becomes available throughout the year. These offers are usually made only after faculty get to know the students and their abilities and interests. As with TA's, no additional application is required.

For more information about the requirements for holding a TA or RA position or for information about graduate fellowships or scholarships, see the financial aid section of this web site.

Contact Information