Either a thesis option or a course option may be selected. The special requirements for these options are as follows:

Course Option

The Master of Science in Electrical Engineering is an academic master's degree designed mainly for both full-time and part-time students interested in proceeding to the departmental full-time doctoral program and/or an industrial career. Under the course option, students may not take ESE 599 Master's Research. With faculty permission, they may take up to 3 units of graduate-level independent study.

Thesis Option​

This option is intended for those pursuing full-time study and engaged in research projects. Candidates for this degree must complete a minimum of 24 units of course instruction and 6 units of thesis research (ESE 599); 3 of these units of thesis research may be applied toward the 15 core electrical engineering units required for the MSEE program. Any of these 6 units of thesis research may be applied as electives for the MSEE, MSSSM, MSDAS, MCEng and MEngR programs. The student must write a master's thesis and defend it in an oral examination.

Degree Requirements

Students pursuing the degree Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (MSEE) must complete a minimum of 30 units of study consistent with the residency and other applicable requirements of Washington University and the McKelvey School of Engineering and subject to the following departmental requirements:

  • A minimum of 15 of these units must be selected from the following list of core electrical engineering subjects taught by the Department of Electrical & Systems Engineering (ESE):
ESE 415Optimization3
ESE 513Large-Scale Optimization for Data Science3
ESE 516Optimization in Function Space3
ESE 519Convex Optimization3
ESE 520-529Applied probability category
ESE 530-539Applied physics and electronics category
ESE 540-549Control category
ESE 550-559Systems category
ESE 560-569Computer engineering category
ESE 570-579Communications category
ESE 580-589Signal and image processing category
ESE 599Master's Research (thesis option only)max. 3
  • The remaining courses in the program may be selected from senior or graduate-level courses in ESE or elsewhere in the university that are approved by the department. Please consult the ESE departmental website for a list of allowable electives.
  • At least 15 units of the 30 total units applied toward the MSEE degree must be in ESE courses which, if cross-listed, have ESE as the home department.
  • A maximum of 6 credits may be transferred from another institution and applied toward the master's degree. Regardless of the subject or level, all transfer courses are treated as electives and do not count toward the core requirements for the degree.
  • ESE 590 Electrical & Systems Engineering Graduate Seminar must be taken by full-time graduate students each semester. This course is taken with the unsatisfactory/satisfactory grade option.
  • The degree program must be consistent with the residency and other applicable requirements of Washington University and the McKelvey School of Engineering.
  • Students must obtain a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.0 out of a possible 4.0 overall for courses applied toward the degree. Courses that apply for the degree must be taken with the credit/letter grade option.