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What is ECEE?

Electrical and Computer Engineers Make a World of Difference

Electrical and computer engineers are involved in the development and enhancement of nearly every aspect of our lives. As technology becomes integral to our everyday experiences, electrical and computer engineers are increasingly in demand by a wide range of industries.

What are the electrical and computer engineering all about?

Electrical Engineering

Aspects of electrical engineering are found in most consumer devices and appliances:

  • cell phones,
  • personal digital assistants,
  • MP3 and DVD players,
  • personal computers,
  • HDTVs,
  • the internet,
  • wind turbines,
  • electric and hybrid car drive trains,
  • medical devices,
  • and assistive technologies
  • are designed using several areas of specialization within electrical engineering.

    As a result of the diversity of applications, electrical engineering students in our department can choose an area of specialization through elective courses and study with experts in:

  • electromagnetics and wave propagation,
  • optoelectronics,
  • digital signal processing and communications,
  • power electronics,
  • nanostructures and devices,
  • controls,
  • and computer engineering.
  • Computer Engineering

    Our computer engineering program is designed for anyone interested in
  • building and programming computer and digital hardware,
  • understanding processor design, or
  • interfacing with digital circuits.
  • Our computer engineering degree is actually an electrical and computer engineering degree because it satisfies the program requirements for both an electrical engineering degree and a computer engineering degree. Such a degree is rare. Our faculty believe that a good computer engineer needs to have a basic understanding of electrical systems as well as computer systems. This degree provides both.

    How are Computer Engineering and Computer Science Different?

    We are frequently asked about the difference between a computer engineering program and a computer science program. In short, computer engineering focuses on hardware with software as a secondary emphasis while computer science focuses on software with hardware as a secondary emphasis.

    Computer engineering, which includes two software courses not required of electrical engineering majors, emphasizes

  • computer and digital hardware,
  • understanding processor design,
  • or interfacing with digital circuits.
  • The computer science curriculum, offered by the Department of Computer Science, focuses on

  • the theoretical and mathematical aspects of computing at all levels,
  • the interdependence of hardware and software,
  • and the challenge of large-scale software production.
  • What would I study?

    The curriculum for both degrees is identical for the first two years. All students take the required math and science courses and the department's core courses. During the sophomore and juniors years, students take the seven 5-hour lecture/laboratory courses, which, along with Intro to Probability, constitute the core requirements. There are three courses covering circuits and electronics, two in digital circuits, one in electromagnetics and one in linear systems.

    In the junior year, electrical engineering majors select a variety of elective courses that reflect their interests. Computer engineering majors continue to take required computer engineering and computer science courses, along with elective courses. All students take the capstone design laboratory course (ECEN 4610) in their final year.

    Want to learn more?

    The sites below contain extensive information for anyone interested in a career in engineering.