May 30, 2024  
2019-2020 UMass Dartmouth Graduate Catalog 
2019-2020 UMass Dartmouth Graduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Computer Engineering MS

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Master of Science Degree Requirements for Electrical and Computer Engineering Programs

The Master of Science degree programs in Electrical Engineering or Computer Engineering at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth provide sufficient structure to ensure that each graduate of either program has a firm foundation to go on to further graduate studies or to succeed at the advanced level in industry. However, there is enough program flexibility to allow students to pursue studies of their own particular interest. The MS in Computer Engineering and the MS in Electrical Engineering, although separate degrees, share some common requirements:

  1. At least 24 of the required 30 credits must be at the graduate level (500 level or higher); a grade of C or better is required for all graduate courses to be counted towards the degree. As many as six credits of 400-level courses will be allowed to compensate for variations in the student’s background; a grade of B or better is required for them to be counted towards the degree. Undergraduate courses in excess of the 6-credit limit are allowed but will not count for credit toward the degree.
  2. Each candidate for the Master of Science Degree must obtain a minimum of 30 graduate credits with the following constraints:

    1)    maintain a grade point average of at least 3.0 out of a 4.0 grading scale in all courses,
    2)    obtain no more than two course grades below B-minus,
    3)    have no more than three credits of ECE 595 Independent Study,  and
    4)    the credits must be in accordance with a program of study filed by the student and approved by the student’s graduate advisor.

  3. There are two tracks to the Master of Science degree that a student may choose from:

Master of Science Degree, Thesis Track

In addition to the common requirements listed above, a student pursuing the Thesis Track must successfully complete six credits of Master’s Thesis (ECE 600) and submit a thesis satisfactory to the student’s committee. In addition to the written thesis, successful oral defense of the thesis work is required prior to completion of the program.

Master of Science Degree, Non-Thesis Track

In addition to the common requirements, a student pursuing the Non-Thesis Track must successfully complete three credits of Master’s Project (ECE 501) or Engineering Internship (EGR 500). A written report of the project work is required to satisfy this program track. Students with at least 2 years post-BS work experience as an engineer may choose to submit a report documenting work project and/or research experience. If approved, the student will be able to satisfy the credit requirement by taking another graduate ECE course.

Course Requirements, Master of Science, All Tracks

Required Courses:

Four (4) courses are required of all Computer Engineering MS students:

  • A graduate math course that can be satisfied with one of the following courses: CIS 560, EAS 501, ECE 521, ECE 523, ECE 530, ECE 544, ECE 551, ECE 571, ECE 574, ECE 575, ECE 584,  ECE 620, ECE 640, ECE 646, ECE 671, ECE 672, ECE 674, MNE 539, MTH 501, MTH 505, MTH 521, MTH 573, MTH 574 or another course approved by the student’s advisor.

A Depth Requirement

Two depth courses must be taken, defined by the student’s advisor, in one of the following Specialization Areas:

Computer Systems Specification, Analysis, Design, and Performance Assessment
Computing Infrastructure Security
Database Systems
Distributed and Parallel Systems
Fault-Tolerant Computing

A Breadth Requirement

Students must also take one graduate course, defined by the student’s advisor, from a specialization area different from that selected to satisfy the depth requirement.

A Free Elective Requirement

Students in the Thesis Track must also take one additional ECE graduate course. Students in the Non-Thesis Track must also take two (or three) additional ECE graduate courses.
Note: Non-ECE graduate courses in a closely related discipline require approval of the ECE Graduate Committee.


Students are required to satisfy prerequisite requirements for all graduate courses taken. In particular, Computer Systems (ECE 561) is a prerequisite for ECE 562 (Advanced Computer Architecture) except for those students who obtained their BS degree in Computer Engineering from UMass Dartmouth.
For students pursuing the MS in Computer Engineering, ECE 561 will meet the Free Elective requirement and count toward the six-credit limit on 400-level courses.

Admissions Requirements

Qualified undergraduate scholars currently studying in the ECE department - typically those having a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above but not meeting the accelerated BS/MS requirement - will be identified at the conclusion of the fall semester of their junior year. The graduate committee will select nominees at the beginning of the spring semester. Students invited to participate in the program will then file an application through the Office of Graduate Studies, submitting the regular graduate application but without GRE or TOEFL scores or recommendation letters, by the end of the fall semester of their senior year.

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