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Program Requirements, Policies and Admissions

How to Apply


M.S. and Ph.D. Applicants must submit the following materials:

  • transcripts of undergraduate and graduate work;
  • a statement of purpose (short essay) from the applicant briefly describing background, interests, goals at CSM, career aspirations, etc;
  • three letters of recommendation; and
  • the general Graduate Record Examination (GRE).

In addition, international students must submit the following:

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores
  • International Student Financial Statement

A complete list of fees, deadlines and requirements, along with the online application, can be found on the Graduate Admissions home page.

Requirements for Admission to EE


The minimum requirements for admission to the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering are:

  • A baccalaureate degree in engineering, computer science, a physical science, or math with a grade-point average of 3.0 or better on a 4.0 scale.
  • Graduate Record Examination (Quantitative section) score of 151 or higher (or 650 on the old scale). Applicants who have graduated with an engineering degree from CSM within the past five years are not required to submit GRE scores.
  • TOEFL score of 79 or higher (or 550 for the paper-based test or 213 for the computer-based test) for applicants whose native language is not English. In lieu of a TOEFL score, and IELTS score of 6.5 or higher will be accepted.
  • For the Ph.D. program, prior research experience is desired but not required.

Admitted Students

The EE Department Graduate Committee may require that an admitted student take undergraduate remedial coursework to overcome technical deficiencies. The committee will decide whether to recommend regular or provisional admission.

Transfer Credits


Graduate level courses taken at other universities for which a grade equivalent to a "B" or better was received will be considered for transfer credit with approval of the Advisor and/or Thesis Committee, and EE Department Head, as appropriate. Transfer credits must not have been used as credit toward a Bachelor degree. For the M.S. degree, no more than 9 credits may transfer. For the Ph.D. degree, up to 24 credit hours may be transferred. In lieu of transfer credit for individual courses, students who enter the Ph.D. program with a thesis-based master's degree from another institution may transfer up to 36 hours in recognition of the course work and research completed for that degree.

400-level Courses


As stipulated by the CSM Graduate School, students may apply toward graduate degree requirements a maximum of nine (9.0) semester hours of department-approved 400-level course work.

Advisor and Thesis Committee


Students must have an Advisor from the EE faculty to direct and monitor their academic plan, research, and independent studies. Advisors must be full-time permanent members of the faculty. In this context, full-time permanent members of the faculty are those that hold the rank of professor, associate professor, assistant professor, research professor, associate research professor or assistant research professor. Upon approval by the Graduate Dean, adjunct faculty, teaching faculty, visiting professors, emeritus professors and off-campus representatives may be designated additional co-advisors. A list of EE faculty by rank is available in the faculty section of the website.

Master of Science (thesis option) students in EE must have at least three members on their Thesis Committee; the Advisor and one other member must be permanent faculty in the EE Department. EE Ph.D. Thesis Committees must have at least four members; the Advisor/co-advisor and two additional members must be permanent faculty in the EE Department, and one member must be outside the department faculty and serving as chair of the committee. Students who choose to have a minor program must select a representative from the minor area of study to serve on the Thesis Committee.

Degree Audit and Admission to Candidacy


Master students must complete the Degree Audit form by the posted deadline. Ph.D. students need to submit the Degree Audit form by the posted deadline and need to submit the Admission to Candidacy form two weeks prior to census day of the semester in which they want to be considered eligible for reduced registration.

Time Limit


As stipulated by the CSM Graduate School, a candidate for a Masters degree must complete all requirements for the degree within five years of the date of admission into the degree program. A candidate for a doctoral degree must complete all requirements for the degree within nine years of the date of admission into the degree program.

Ph.D. students must complete additional requirements.

Temporary and Permanent Graduate Advisor


When you are admitted to the EE graduate program, you will be assigned a temporary Advisor. Please arrange to meet with your Advisor to discuss your academic program. Thesis-based Masters and Doctoral students must identify a research topic and permanent thesis Advisor in their first two semesters of study and preferably as soon as possible. A registration hold may be placed for students who do not satisfy this requirement.

Introduction to Research Ethics


Any graduate students who receive support from an NSF-funded RA must complete SYGN 502 - Introduction to Research Ethics.

Independent Study Credits


University regulations limit Independent Study (599) to a maximum of 6 credit hours in fulfilling degree requirements. Students must work with their independent study professor to prepare an Independent Study Proposal/Syllabus, which must be approved by the EE Department head.

Minimum Grade Requirement


All graduate students at CSM must maintain an average GPA of at least 3.0. Students who fall below this threshold will be required to produce a Remedial Plan. The Remedial Plan must be agreed by the faculty Advisor, department head, and Dean of Graduate Studies. The plan should outline how the student plans to improve his or her performance, as well as a statement of any additional work that must be performed in those courses where the student's grade fell below a B.

Forms and Thesis Review


All required forms are available here.

Graduate students will submit their theses and dissertations to the institution for format review and archiving electronically. Information on the submission process including a newly revised Thesis Writer's Guide may be found here.

Financial Aid


In some cases the EE Department will be able to provide financial aid for its full-time graduate students, in the form of a Teaching Assistant (TA) or Research Assistant (RA) appointment. The amount and financial aid conditions when applicable are clearly specified in your acceptance letter. Normally, financial aid is not offered to provisionally accepted students or non-thesis MS students. If a non-thesis MS student decides to switch to the thesis option, he or she may become eligible for financial aid.

Summer Registration

Students working on their thesis-based degree and utilizing CSM facilities during the summer must register for a minimum of 3 research credit hours and will be assessed tuition and summer session fees. A waiver for tuition up to 3 credits may be available from the Graduate School for RAs.

Student Fees and Health Insurance


All graduate students registering for 3 or more hours will be assessed mandatory student fees and assessed a health insurance fee at the time of registration. The health insurance fee can be waived by providing the Registrar's Office with proof of other insurance. Health insurance is also available to summer session students. Students that paid health insurance in the previous spring will not have to pay health insurance in the summer.

Graduate Student Offices, Mailboxes and Keys


The EE front desk will be able to advise you how to get a desk in one of the graduate offices, assign a mailbox, and start any paperwork needed to obtain necessary keys. Desk space is usually allocated only to these-based students.

More information


Additional information is available in the Graduate Catalog.


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