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Master’s & Ph.D.

FAQs

How do I contact UW ECE Grad Advising?

Please email grad@ece.uw.edu to reach UW ECE’s Graduate Advising Office.

How do I apply?

Please use the online UW Graduate School online application.

Where can I find more information about the UW Graduate School application process and requirements?

Please refer to the UW’s Graduate School Admissions FAQs for detailed application resources and troubleshooting, GPA calculating assistance, test, transcript, and International Student resources.

What criteria do you use in making admissions decisions?

Our evaluation will be based on the application as a whole. We do not have rigid cut-off points on conventional criteria such as GPA. In general, we are looking for students whose capabilities and motivation will allow them to contribute significantly to the advancement of electrical engineering. These capabilities include the obvious intellectual strengths, the ability to reason clearly and insightfully, creative imagination, the ability to articulate one’s ideas, and mathematical and computational skills. It also includes diversity of perspectives, and the strength of motivation to pursue difficult problems.

Where can I find information about UW ECE courses?

For detailed information about UW ECE courses, annual course offerings, and registration resources, visit this page.

How much does Graduate School cost?

Please see our Tuition & Fees page for more information about tuition and funding/fellowship resources.

What are the UW’s English Language Proficiency Requirements?

Please refer to the Graduate School’s Memo 8: Graduate School English Language Proficiency Requirements and Memo 15: Conditions of Appointment for TAs who are not Native Speakers of English for detailed information about English Language Proficiency requirements.

Where can I find current information and resources about the novel coronavirus and COVID-19?

Please refer to the UW’s novel coronavirus & COVID-19: facts and resources for the most up to date vaccination and return to in-person learning information.

Can I visit the Department?

The UW Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering hosts an invitation only Visit Days weekend for prospective graduate students. Applicants who have been selected will be notified personally, so please be sure to get your application completed on time and have current contact information.

Applicants who wish to visit at other times should contact faculty (with whom they are interested in doing research) in advance to schedule  individual meetings prior to their visit. Meetings with faculty or current students (faculty might refer you to one of their students) are beneficial for visitors who are deciding if the UW ECE Graduate Program is the right fit. In their meetings with faculty and students, applicants can assess where their own research interests fit in relation to the current research being done at UW ECE.  Applicants may possibly be able to tour a lab, as well.

Applicants may also contact the Lead Graduate Adviser by email to schedule a meeting to discuss general admissions questions only. We will not review transcripts or critique writing statements, and we do not have insight into other graduate programs/departments. In-depth questions about labs and the research being conducted are better answered by our faculty or their graduate students.

Can I apply to more than one area?

Students need to select a primary area of interest, and may select additional areas. Leaving these blank may mean that your application does not get reviewed. The selected areas of interest are used to determine which faculty groups will review your application.  Your application will be first reviewed by faculty in the primary area, and then in a second round, the application will be reviewed by faculty in the secondary area. The selected areas of interest are not binding decisions on your graduate studies, but simply indicate how your application will be routed for review. Each application will be reviewed by at least three faculty, with usually at least two in their primary area of interest.

Do you accept Graduate Non-Matriculated (GNM) Students?

Please know that being accepted as a GNM student and completing a few classes with our department does not increase your chance of admission if you apply as a regular graduate student later on. Please email us directly, so we can properly advise you.

Do I need a GRE score? 

The UW ECE department no longer requires applicants to submit GRE scores for admission to MS or Ph.D. programs. They do not believe that the GRE scores are an accurate reflection of whether or not a student will be successful in our graduate programs. Scores, if submitted, will not be reviewed.

Do you accept transfer credit?

Ph.D. students can transfer up to 30 credits from a recognized MS program; these credits do not count toward the 18 credits of required numerically graded 5xx-level courses, but as a lump sum toward the 90 total credits required for the degree. MS students can transfer up to 6 graduate level credits as long as they do not apply towards the completion of another degree.

Can I do this program on a part-time basis, or on evenings or weekends?

It is not possible to participate in our program on a part-time basis. This is generally a more than full-time commitment, which includes coursework, lab work, participation in seminars and lab meetings as well as a possible 20 hrs./wk appointment as a teaching or research assistant. If you are interested in a part-time Master’s degree, please look into our Professional Master’s Program.

If I have a Master’s degree, will the program be shorter for me?

It is unlikely that having a Master’s degree before entering our program will significantly impact how long it takes to complete your degree. It is not required for one to have a Master’s degree before applying to our Ph.D. program.

How long does the program take to complete?

Our Master’s program generally takes 1.5 to 2 years. Our Ph.D. program generally takes 5 to 7 years to complete. Courses are typically chosen with the guidance of your advisers and supervisory committee, who take into consideration your individual career goals.