The 5 Best Online Master's in Electrical Engineering Programs

Once you’ve decided to narrow your focus to electrical engineering, you’ve got to think about what area within electrical engineering you would like to specialize in. Most engineering programs offer a wide range of specialties, including telecommunications, VLSI design, and microelectronics. Thinking about your future career goals should help you narrow your focus to the best electrical engineering degree program for you. If you’re undecided about which path you’d like to go with, it’s probably best to choose a school with a number of specialties available, or a university that allows you to design your own program within the electrical engineering field. The five schools listed below stand out by offering some of the best online master’s programs for electrical engineers.

Columbia University offers a broad selection of online master’s in electrical engineering programs, giving you a lot of flexibility to choose a focus that interests you the most. Some possible options include telecommunications, microelectronic circuits, multimedia networking, and wireless and mobile communications. There is also a rather unique Systems Biology option where you’ll study computational neuroscience and neuroengineering. If none of those appeal to you, Columbia University allows you to design your own program with the help of an academic advisor. This enables you to tailor your degree to suit your desired career in electrical engineering. Admission to Columbia University is a competitive, but you can expect a world-class education from some of the top professors in the field.

The University of Southern California is another online school, like Columbia University, that offers several excellent online master’s in electrical engineering programs to choose from. Students who choose the electric power path will learn about power generation and distribution as well as renewable energy sources. The telecommunications program would make a great choice if you’re interested in learning about sustainable infrastructure, and VLSI design is another option for students who are interested in specializing in very-large-scale integration (VLSI) circuits. The University of Southern California was rated the number one graduate engineering program ranking from , you can be sure that you’ll receive a top-notch online education.

Purdue University-West Lafayette is another great school to get your online master’s degree in electrical engineering from, because it offers six different specialities for you to choose from. These include microelectronics and nanotechnology; fields and optics; and communications, networking, signal, and image processing. All of these different programs should make it easy to find one that will prepare you for your desired career in the electrical engineering field. You can also choose whether you would like to take the thesis option or the non-thesis option. If you choose the thesis, you need only 18 credits and your thesis to earn your degree, whereas if you choose the non-thesis option, you’ll need at least 30 credits of coursework in your area of specialization within electrical engineering.

North Carolina State University offers a very strong online master’s program in electrical engineering, which focuses heavily on power systems, nanoelectronics, and computer and signal processing. Another good reason to choose North Carolina State University is because their tuition rates are far more affordable than the majority of other online master’s in electrical engineering programs, particularly if you live in North Carolina. In addition to their electrical engineering program, North Carolina State University also has online master’s programs available for nanoengineering, computer engineering, and computer networking, which may appeal to some electrical engineering students as well. Another characteristic that North Carolina University’s engineering department has going for it is that its faculty has about 10 years of online teaching experience on average, so you can rest easy knowing that you’re getting a quality education from professors who are well-versed in electrical engineering topics.

The University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA) rounds out the list of the best online master’s programs in electrical engineering. While it doesn’t offer the variety of different options found in some of the other online universities on this list, the programs that it does offer are very strong. You can earn your engineering degree with a certificate in one of three areas: electrical engineering, signal processing and communications, and integrated circuits. Though it’s listed as simply a master’s in engineering with a certificate, these programs are equivalent to the online master’s in electrical engineering degrees that you would earn elsewhere. Students enrolled in the online program don’t have the option to complete a thesis, so you’ll have to complete nine courses and pass a comprehensive examination in order to earn your degree.