The state of Virginia offers a few programs in the field of electronics engineering. Prospective electronics engineering students must often apply to an electrical engineering degree program that includes the option of concentrating in electronics engineering. Virginia students can find these programs at 4-year universities at the undergraduate and graduate levels.
With full- and part-time study options, some programs may include laboratory work and frequently culminate with a capstone design project. Upper-level students could conduct research and participate in teaching assistantships. Graduate students might also fulfill thesis and dissertation requirements. The related programs of study in Virginia include but are not limited to:
- Electrical Engineering with a concentration in Microelectronics
- Electrical Engineering with a concentration in Microelectronics/Nanoelectronics
- Electrical Engineering with a concentration in Electrophysics
- Electrical and Computer Engineering
George Mason University (GMU)
Fairfax-based George Mason University offers prospective electronics engineering students a program at the bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree levels within the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. The bachelor's degree program aims to provide students with a broad education in engineering and encourages students to specialize in a number of subfields, including electronics. The program is ABET-accredited and includes technical elective and advanced engineering lab courses, as well as a design project that must be completed by all seniors. This program meets the licensure exam requirements in Virginia.
The master's degree program allows students to specialize in microelectronics and nanoelectronics. Classes are taught by more than 20 full-time faculty members, several of whom belong to distinctive professional engineering societies. Master's students can also take advantage of departmental research and teaching assistantships. The doctoral program is designed to train research and technical engineering specialists. Students must choose a research emphasis to complete the degree, which includes electronics and control and robotics concentrations. All students work on nationally sponsored research projects and have the option of attending the program on a part-time or full-time basis.
The School of Engineering and Computational Sciences at Liberty University in Lynchburg offers an ABET-accredited electrical engineering program that focuses on electromagnetic and electronic circuits. Within the BS program, students complete coursework in logic design, circuit analysis, electromagnetic fields, electronics and computer networks. The 139-credit program also includes directed research. Graduates of this program will be prepared for the licensure exam.
Norfolk State University (NSU)
Norfolk's NSU has a bachelor's and master's degree program in electronics engineering. Offered within the Department of Engineering, the bachelor's degree consists of 128 credit hours and includes courses in electrical network theory, microprocessors and electronics laboratories. The master's degree consists of 34 credit hours without the thesis option and 30 credit hours with the thesis option. Course topics include microcomputers, signal processing electronics and digital control systems. Both degree programs provide students with the opportunity to specialize in computer engineering, communications, microelectronics and optoelectronics. The bachelor's degree is accredited through the ABET and prepares students for the licensure exam.
University of Virginia (UV)
Located in Charlottesville, the University of Virginia offers students two master's degree programs and one doctoral degree program that include an electrophysics specialization. This research specialization focuses on device theory and modeling, novel electronic devices and superconducting devices. The Master of Science requires 30 credits, including six credits of thesis work. The Master of Engineering includes 30 credits as well, but is designed for students who do not need financial assistance. The doctoral degree program includes 72 credits of coursework. All engineering students also have access to more than ten research groups and organizations both on and off campus. Research and teaching assistantships are open to all qualifying students. The Charles L. Brown Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering also offers an ABET-accredited bachelor's degree program with a specialization in microelectronics that will prepare students for the licensure exam.
Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU)
VCU, which is located in Richmond, has one bachelor's degree program in electrical engineering with a microelectronics concentration. Students learn to design and fabricate different types of electronic materials and devices. After completing the core curriculum and technical courses, microelectronics students take classes in photonic engineering, nanoscale fabrication and microfabrication. All students are also required to complete a capstone project in order to graduate. VCU's bachelor's degree program is accredited by the ABET and will prepare students for the licensure exam.
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech)
Blacksburg's Virginia Tech provides prospective electronics engineering students with one bachelor's degree, two master's degrees and one doctoral degree program. Offered within the Bradley Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering, the bachelor's degree in electrical engineering does not include an electronics concentration, but does offer students the flexibility to take elective courses in a number of sub-fields related to electronics engineering. The electives are divided into engineering and science and technical categories. Bachelor's degree students must also complete a capstone design project experience. Graduates of the program are prepared for and encouraged to take the FE exam.
Both master's degrees and the doctoral degree include the option of specializing in electronics/circuits. The Master of Science degree is earned with the completion of a thesis, while the Master of Engineering degree is earned by completing the program without the thesis option. The doctoral degree consists of 92 credits of coursework and includes two comprehensive exams, in addition to a dissertation. Engineering students also have the option of participating in a number of student organizations and projects, including the university's own branch of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).
To work as a professional engineer in Virginia, applicants must obtain licensure through the state's Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation. Licensure applicants must first graduate from an ABET-accredited college or university with an engineering degree and take the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam to become an engineer-in-training. After gaining at least four years of experience as an engineer-in-training and passing the Professional Engineering (PE) exam, applicants may be granted a license to officially work as a professional engineer. Applicants with different educational backgrounds or with more years of experience have slightly different licensing requirements. Six public and private, non-profit schools in Virginia offer degree programs or concentrations in electronics engineering.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type & Setting||Electronics Engineering Degree Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2018-2019)|
|George Mason University||Four-year, public; large suburb|| BS in Electrical Engineering,
MS in Electrical Engineering: Microelectronics/Nanoelectronics,
PhD in Electrical and Computer Engineering: Electronics
| $12,462 in-state (undergraduate); $35,922 out-of-state (undergraduate)
$15,138 in-state (graduate); $35,724 out-of-state (graduate)*
|Liberty University||Four-year, private not-for-profit; small city||BS in Electrical Engineering||$22,584*|
|Norfolk State University||Four-year, public; midsize city|| BS in Electronics Engineering,
MS in Electronics Engineering
| $9,490 in-state; $20,658 out-of-state*
$12,136 in-state (graduate); $23,908 out-of-state (graduate)*
|University of Virginia||Four-year, public; small city|| BS in Electrical Engineering,
ME in Electrical Engineering
MS in Electrical Engineering
PhD in Electrical Engineering
| $17,653 in-state; $49,032 out-of-state*
$18,848 in-state (graduate); $29,660 out-of-state (graduate)*
|Virginia Commonwealth University||Four-year, public; midsize city||BS in Electrical Engineering: Microelectronics||$14,493 in-state; $35,834 out-of-state*|
|Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University||Four-year, public; small city|| BS in Electrical Engineering;
MS in Electrical Engineering
PhD in Electrical Engineering
| $13,620 in-state; $31,908 out-of-state*
$15,510 in-state (graduate); $29,025 out-of-state (graduate)*
Sources: *College Navigator, National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).