Fast Track B.S. + M.S. Program
Because the knowledge required for state-of-the-art design is much greater than can be gained in a four-year BS program, a master’s degree is now considered the “career” degree in the Electrical and Computer Engineering field. An ECE graduate who enters the field with a B.S. degree is expected to obtain a master’s degree as part of his/her long term career advancement. Graduates who enter the profession with master’s degrees start with considerably higher salaries and are eligible for more advanced positions.
The usual time required to earn a B.S. in Electrical Engineering or a B.S. in Computer Engineering and an M.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering is four years for the B.S. and an additional five quarters for the M.S. The Fast Track B.S.+M.S. program significantly shortens this path for top students by allowing up to 15 credits of ECE graduate credits to be used for both the Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering degree or Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering and the Master of Science in Electrical and Computer Engineering.
Students will apply for this program using an application form available online. Because many ECE students are attending on a part-time basis, students may apply to enter the program during any quarter. A GRE score is not required. The admission criteria for the program are as follows:
- Formally admitted to the ECE Department for a Bachelor of Science program
- 3.3 institutional (PSU) GPA
- 3.3 upper division major GPA with at least 16 credits of upper division ECE classes
- One ECE faculty recommendation
Submit applications to the Graduate Coordinator. One letter of recommendation is required. Please ask your faculty recommender to email a reference to the Graduate Coordinator. Applications for this program will be assessed by the Graduate Program Director. When a student is accepted, he will be assigned an ECE faculty advisor according to the M.S. track chosen in the application.
Because the M.S. tracks closely parallel the coursework tracks in the B.S. programs, the M.S. track chosen will usually be an extension of the track the applicant is pursuing in her undergraduate program. In most cases, the 400-level senior classes specified in an undergraduate track have both undergraduate and graduate levels available. The 500-level versions of these courses are included in either the “core” list or the “depth and breadth” list for the related graduate track.
With advisor approval, students in the Fast Track B.S. + M.S. program will take the 500-level versions of these classes and use up to 15 credits of these graduate courses to satisfy both B.S. requirements and M.S. requirements. Note that three credits from a four credit class can be used to bring the shared total up to 15 credits, but all shared classes must have grades of B or higher.