ECE: Electrical & Computer Engineering
Graduate Programs

Ph.D. Program Admission

Graduate Manual

The ECE Graduate Policy Manual contains all current policies and procedures. Additional details about Ph.D. admissions are also available.

Students applying for the Ph.D. program typically have a masters degree from an accredited college or university in EE, CPE, or a related field. Highly qualified BSEE and BSCPE students are also admitted to the Ph.D. program (see below).

Minimum Grade Point Average

Students applying from a master's degree program must have a grade point average (GPA) of 3.5 or higher on work beyond the B.S. degree. BSEE and BSCPE applicants must have a degree from an institution of higher learning that is recognized by the ECE department and a GPA of at least 3.5 on the last 60 credit hours of undergraduate work.

Applications

Applicants must submit to the Graduate School the same application materials required for M.S. applicants, plus a one-or two-page discussion of career goals and proposed areas of study.

Completed applications are routed to faculty in the interest area most closely aligned with the applicant’s desired field of specialization. Faculty in the interest area then make recommendations to the Admissions Director or Graduate Administrative Committee regarding admission into the Ph.D. program and possible financial support.

MSEE/MSCPE Students from Virginia Tech

Students who are currently enrolled in the MS program at Virginia Tech, and desire to continue their studies toward a Ph.D. degree, must formally request admission into the Ph.D. program during the last semester of their MS degree work. The request should be made by submitting a readmission form to the ECE Graduate Admission Office.

This request must be accompanied by information as follows:

  • A letter from an ECE faculty member testifying to the student's ability to perform independent research and summarizing the student's past academic performance;
  • A letter from the student with a discussion of his/her career goals and proposed area of study;
  • A letter from the student's MS advisor (if different from the member above) commenting on the student's performance and potential in the Ph.D. program.

A student is expected to have at least a 3.5 GPA on the MS degree at Tech. The student's file and the above letters may be circulated to faculty in the area of interest just as a new student would be reviewed. Acceptance is not automatic; the willingness of a faculty member to be the student's PhD advisor is also required.

BSEE/BSCPE Applicants

Direct entry into the Ph.D. program requirements are the same as MS applicants, with the following additions:

  • a GPA average of at least 3.5 over the first 21 credit hours of regular courses, as well as having had a GPA average of 3.5 over the last 60 hours of his/her undergraduate degree.
  • The direct-PhD student must have established a relationship with at least one faculty member of the department who agrees to be the student's dissertation advisor.