Graduate Degree Programs

Our graduate programs are ranked among the top in the country and our faculty are committed to providing well-funded interdisciplinary research programs and preparing our students to make an impact in a global economy.  At Iowa State, you can work closely with internationally recognized faculty and get one-on-one mentoring from your major professor.

Graduate Degree Options

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECpE) offers four ways to earn a graduate degree in electrical engineering and computer engineering: a Master of Science with thesis, Master of Science with creative component, traditional PhD, and direct entry PhD.

Our PhD students have earned degrees in as few as four years. Master’s degree students have earned degrees within two years.

Student also may select the ECpE department as their home department to pursue graduate degrees in one of four interdepartmental programs: bioinformatics and computational biology (PhD), information assurance (MS, PhD), and human-computer interaction (MS, PhD, and certificate).

The ECpE department also offers coursework-only Master of Engineering degrees, traditional Master of Science degrees, and graduate certificates online. These programs are convenient for working professionals. Learn more about our online electrical and computer engineering graduate programs.

Graduate Degree Requirements

Master’s degrees in electrical and computer engineering require 30 credits, and PhD degrees in electrical and computer engineering requires 72 credits. See Program of Study Requirements for complete details on graduate degree requirements.

Graduate Student Research

Iowa State is a Research I university, which means you can participate in pioneering research. The National Research Council recently ranked our electrical engineering PhD program among the top 28 nationwide. You can research topics in electrical and computer engineering ranging from developing a novel ultrasound therapy system to inventing new approaches and techniques for enhancing cybersecurity.

As a graduate student at Iowa State, you also can access national, state-of-the-art research facilities, such as the U.S. Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory, as well as two powerful supercomputers and the world’s first virtual cyber defense laboratory—the Internet-Scale Event and Attack Generation Environment.

Students can pursue graduate research in the following areas:

Graduate Admissions

Admission to our graduate degree programs strongly depends on students meeting application requirements, as well as on the ability to match a student’s area of interest and research specialties with the needs of faculty. Learn how to apply.

Financial Support

Nearly all full-time graduate students receive some type of financial support. All master’s and PhD students with assistantships receive a monthly stipend and tuition support. Opportunities for scholarships and fellowships also are available. Learn more about graduate program financial aid.

Who to Contact

If you have questions about our graduate programs, view our answers to frequently asked questions or contact our ECpE Student Services Office.