Attention: Prospective Graduate Students
If you have been offered admission without financial assistance, please note that we currently do not have openings for funded teaching assistant or grader positions.
ECE Graduate Handbook
Graduate Program Frequently Asked Questions
When does the department consider admissions? What are the deadlines for receipt of applications? Do I have to mail the application materials? How do I apply?
The department accepts applications for fall. On (very) rare occasion, selective admission may be possible for spring. The deadline is 28 February for fall admission. The entire application process is managed online (go to: NDSU Graduate Admissions page for instructions). Please do not mail application materials to the department.
Is the TOEFL required? If so, what are the minimum scores?
If you are an international applicant:
Yes, the TOEFL is required. The Graduate School requires a minimum TOEFL score of 525 (paper-based) or 71 (Internet-based). Effective starting the spring 2011 term, the minimum required IELTS score is 6.
To qualify for graduate teaching assistantship (GTA), the minimum TOEFL requirements are:
If you are a domestic applicant:
Domestic GTAs and international GTAs possessing a U.S. bachelor’s degree or higher are exempted from TOEFL provided that the degree included a minimum of two years in residence.
Is the GRE required? If so, what are the minimum required scores?
Yes. The general GRE is required for ALL applicants (with a BS or MS degree) seeking admission to the graduate program. The GRE subject test is not required. The minimum requirements in the revised GRE scale are: Verbal (150) and Quantitative (155).
Given my test scores, what are my "chances" of admission?
Admissions to the program are on a competitive basis. Each year, the ECE department admits approximately 10 to 20 new graduate students into the MS and Ph.D. program (total). Since the department normally receives many more qualified applications than it can accept, admission criteria may include factors beyond the minimum requirements.
The “chance” depends on the number of available openings, the number of applications received, and availability of funds. The stronger your credentials (educational background, academic performance, quality of reference letters, test scores), the stronger the chances for admission. Every qualified student admitted to the program is selected by a faculty member willing to supervise his/her graduate work. Prospective applicants are strongly encouraged to discuss their research interests with faculty members.
What about financial support?
Students with quarter-time (10 hrs/week) support in the form of a GTA or RA automatically receive full tuition waiver. Most students with GTAs are normally offered 10 hr GTAs. RAs could be 10 or 20 hrs, though the latter is more common. Typical stipends for RAs range upward from $1,000 to $1,500 per month for M.S. students and up to $2,200 per month for doctoral students.
For additional funding opportunities, please see: Graduate School Funding Opportunities.
What are the areas of study?
The department specializes in the broad areas listed below. For further details, please refer to ECE research areas, or contact the faculty members directly.
- Power and Energy Systems
- Wireless Communication and Signal Processing
- Electronics and VLSI
- Computer Engineering
- Cardiovascular/Biomedical Engineering
- Electromagnetic and Photonics
What are the degree options?
The Department offers a doctoral degree (Ph.D.) and three options for a Masters degree: M.S. (thesis option), M.S. (non-thesis, or paper option) and a newly formed M.E. (Masters in Engineering – which is coursework only).