Several schools offer online master's degree programs in electronic or electrical engineering, with at least one that offers these programs entirely online. Most courses are available online, but there may be a few classes, seminars and lab experiences that students must complete on the school campus. These programs are designed for working students, with online course offerings that can be accessed at any time. Some programs require students to complete proctored exams at their places of employment or at the school. It takes about two years of full-time study to finish a master's degree program in electrical engineering.
Admission requirements include a bachelor's degree from an accredited program in electrical engineering or a related field with a minimum grade point average. Applicants must have a background in math, science and engineering subjects, letters or reference and satisfactory graduate record examination (GRE) scores. Students must have a reliable computer with a fast Internet connection. They may be required to download and purchase special software.
Courses in a master's degree program in electrical engineering cover the development and implementation of new electronic designs and systems. Students may have the option of specializing in fields such as renewable energy and power systems. They may be required to write a thesis or complete a final research project.
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Master's Degree - Electronics Engineering
These programs prepare electrical engineers to research, develop and test new electronic designs and systems. Students learn how to work on many different projects in areas such as wiring, lighting, radar, navigation and cell-phone systems. Specialties may be available in power systems and renewable energy, dynamics and controls, nanostructures and devices, power electronics and computer engineering--among others. Some schools offer both a thesis and non-thesis option. The amount of course credit requirements vary, as does the program length.
Information and Requirements
Program applicants must possess a bachelor's degree and a background in math, science and engineering subjects. Prerequisites for entry typically include letters of reference, a minimum grade point average and satisfactory graduate record examination score.
Distance-learning students have flexibility in scheduling that allows them to access classes, assignments, lectures and testing in the convenience of their home. Communication with staff and peers is done via e-mail and online forums. However, some on-campus or approved-site requirements may apply, such as attendance to a specific seminar, course, conference or other approved activity.
Students must have access to a personal computer and Internet. Some schools use specific educational delivery systems and software that individuals may need to buy or install.
List of Common Courses
Electronics engineering coursework varies by specialty and degree; however, some classes are common to all master-level programs. Classes in control systems, devices, circuitry, networks, electromagnetism and power electronics are some of the topics covered, along with an emphasis in math and science.
Electrical Power Systems
This course emphasizes analysis, design, modeling and master theory of electrical systems. Fundamentals, background, parameters, pricing, stability, protection, decomposition, control and stabilization are also study focuses.
Electric Drive and Control
This class covers the function, dysfunction, theory, design, sensitivity and performance of electrical drives and controls. The curriculum also introduces various electronics-related converters, machines, operations and dynamics.
This course examines the physics, performance, structures and technology of power electronics. Students learn how to optimize magnetics and apply advanced topologies. Participants also use computer simulations and apply practical considerations related to interfaces, semiconductors, transistors, circuits, switches and converters.
All public engineers must be licensed by the state where they work. Requirements generally include completing an accredited education program, accruing real-world experience and passing competency exams.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in electrical and electronics engineering was expected to show little or no change between 2014 and 2024. The median annual wage for electrical engineers as of May 2015 was $93,010, and the highest levels of employment were through architectural, engineering and related service industries (www.bls.gov).
Continuing Education Information
Students wishing to continue their college education have options in doctorate programs related to electronics. Most of these require a dissertation, on-campus credit-hours and concentration on research.
All states require licensure for public engineers, usually involving an education at an accredited program, work experience and successfully passing a state examination in two stages of development. Continuing education is also required to maintain licensure in many states.
Students pursuing a master's degree in electrical engineering can complete the program entirely online or in hybrid format. Students in this program focus on control systems, networks, power electronics, and electromagnetism.