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MS in Electrical and Telecommunications Engineering

The telecommunications industry is at the forefront of the information age - delivering voice, data, graphics, and video at ever increasing speeds and in a growing number of ways. Whereas wireline telephone communication was once the primary service of the industry, wireless communication services and cable and satellite program distribution are becoming increasingly dominant. Telecommunications engineers design, develop, test, and debug software and hardware products for communications applications. These products range from modems and encoders to computer-assisted engineering programs for schematic cabling projects; modeling programs for cellular and satellite systems; and programs for telephone options, such as voice mail, e-mail, and call waiting. The ECE Department prepares students to contribute to advances in the rapidly changing field of telecommunications by providing advanced studies as part of the Master of Science (MS) in Electrical and Telecommunications Engineering degree program.


The MS in Electrical and Telecommunications Engineering curriculum encompasses completion of a minimum of 45 or 48 (with the two-term graduate co-op participation option) approved graduate quarter credit hours, chosen in accordance with the following requirements and a program plan arranged with the graduate advisors in consultation with the student's supervising professor, if applicable.

Core Courses

A minimum of 30 credit hours must be taken from among the graduate course offerings of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Drexel University. These core courses must be broken down in the following manner:

Course Requirement Credits
Total 30 cr.
Telecommunications coursework*
6 cr.
Telecommunications elective coursework*
15 cr.
General ECE coursework
9 cr.

* Research-intensive courses (ECEx 697, ECEx 898, ECEx 997, & ECEx 998) cannot be used to fulfill this requirement.

Elective Courses

The remaining courses needed to reach the minimum credit hour requirement for the degree program are considered elective courses. Elective courses can be chosen from among the graduate course offerings of:

  • Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE, ECEC, ECEE, ECEP, ECES, ECET)
  • Other departments within the College of Engineering (AE, CHE, CIVE, CMGT, EGEO, EGMT, ENGR, ENVE, ET, MATE, MEM, PROJ, PRMT, SYSE)
  • The School of Biomedical Science, Engineering and Health Systems (BMES)
  • Department of Mathematics (MATH)
  • Department of Physics (PHYS)
  • Department of Chemistry (CHEM)
  • Department of Biology (BIO)
  • Operations Research graduate-level coursework in the Department of Decision Sciences (OPR)
  • Computer Science graduate-level coursework in the College of Computing & Informatics (CS)

In order to have courses outside of the departments, schools, and subjects listed above count towards degree completion, they must be approved by the graduate advisors prior to registration for said courses.

Please note that ECEC 500 (Fundamentals of Computer Hardware) and ECEC 600 (Fundamentals of Computer Networks) do not count towards the credit requirements needed to complete this MS degree program.

Master's Thesis & Independent Research

Although not required, students pursuing an MS degree, especially those interested in eventually pursuing a Ph.D. or entering a research-intensive career, are encouraged to complete a Master's Thesis as part of their MS studies.

Learn More about Master's Thesis

It is also possible for MS students to engage in research for academic credit outside of the scope of the thesis option. This research is still performed under the supervision of a faculty member; however, the end result is not submission of a Master's Thesis. This option is best suited for those students interested in gaining exposure to the research process and environment without the commitment to writing a thesis or for those students interested in delving deeper into a topic that is outside the scope of the normal graduate course offerings.

Learn More about Graduate Student-initiated Courses

Regardless of whether or not a Master's Thesis is being completed, a total of 9 credits of research-intensive coursework (ECEx 697, ECEx 898, ECEx 997, & ECEx 998) may be counted towards the minimum credit hour requirement for the MS degree program. These credits are counted as core courses.

Graduate Co-op Program

Students pursuing an MS degree may choose to participate in the graduate co-op program, where up to 6 credit hours can be earned for up to two terms of full-time co-operative education experience in industry, working on curriculum related projects. Students participating in a single-term full-time co-op experience will earn 3 credits, which are considered an elective course. Students engaging in a two-term full-time co-op experience will earn 6 credits, 3 credits of which are considered an elective course; the other 3 credits are considered as an additional course, increasing the total minimum credit requirement for graduation from the MS degree program with a two-term full-time graduate co-op to 48 credits.

Learn More about Graduate Co-op

Previous Curriculum

Students are given the option of completing the current degree requirements as explained above or the curriculum that was active during their term of first enrollment in the degree program. Past curricular requirements can be found below.