MS Degree requirements and policies

The Wayne State University College of Engineering offers two master's degrees:

  1. Master of Science in Computer Engineering 
  2. Master of Science in Electrical Engineering

Both degrees require a minimum of 32 degree credit hours and are offered under the following options: 

Plan A: Thesis Option

  • ECE8999 – 8 Cr Hrs - The thesis topic must be in the major area. See MS Thesis policies below.
  • Four ECE courses in the major area (selected from the list below) including at least one 7000-level course – 16 Cr Hrs 
  • Two or more elective courses, including any of the following – 8 Cr Hrs
    • Any ECE graduate course, and may include up to 4 credits of ECE5990 (directed study)
    • Up to 8 credits of non-ECE graduate courses from our pre-approved list, or transferred from any ABET-accredited institution with a grade of B or better.

Plan C: Course Work Only Option

  • Five ECE courses in the major area (selected from the list below) including at least two 7000-level courses – 20 Cr Hrs
  • Three or more elective courses, including any of the following – 12 Cr Hrs
    • Any ECE graduate course, excluding directed study (ECE 5990).
    • Up to 8 credits of non-ECE graduate courses from our pre-approved list, or transferred from any ABET-accredited institution with a grade of B or better.

Academic Policies

  • GPA requirements. Only courses with grades of B- or higher can be counted towards the 32-credit hour requirement. An overall 3.0 GPA in all graduate courses taken at WSU is required for graduation.
  • Academic probation. A student is put on probation if his/her GPA falls below 3.0. Probation students will be permitted the next eight credits to restore their cumulative GPA to at least a 3.0; failure to do so will result in immediate termination from the program.
  • Course repeat. The department will only permit one course to be repeated. When a course is repeated, the new grade will replace the previous one.
  • Plan of work. To become an MS candidate, students must submit the plan of work document before completion of 12 credit hours. The plan of work may be resubmitted if plans change.
  • Ethics training. All students must complete ethics training before the completion of the first semester. Training is administered online via the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI). 
  • Internship credits. International students doing internships must register for 1 credit of ECE 6991 during the semester of employment. For domestic students, registration is optional. If ECE 6991 is elected, the start and end dates of the internship must coincide with the beginning and end of the semester. Internship credits may be counted towards the degree, but they do not count towards the minimum course requirement (6 courses for Plan A, 8 courses for Plan C).
  • Non-ECE courses and transfer courses. At the time of graduation, at least 24 credits must be from ECE courses. A maximum of 8 credits may be taken in other departments or transferred from another institution. Courses taken in other departments will count towards the degree only if they appear on apre-approved list (see below), which will be updated annually. Courses transferred from other institutions must be approved by the graduate program officer, based on the following criteria: 1) the course fits the student's MS program, 2) the student achieved a B or better, and 3) the course was taken at an ABET-accredited institution. Transfer courses taken after admission must be pre-approved by the graduate program officer.
  • Special topics courses. A maximum of 12 credits of special topics courses (ECE 5995/7995) may count towards the degree.
  • Time Limit. Master's degree requirements must be completed within six years of enrollment in the program. More information can be found at

Masters Thesis Policies

Students interested in research are encouraged to consider Plan A, the thesis option. The student will work closely with a faculty advisor of his or her choice, resulting in a publication quality master's thesis. Policies and detailed information are provided below.

Advisor and Thesis committee

  • The student must select an advisor who serves as the committee chair. If the advisor does not have a graduate faculty status in the ECE department, a co-chair is required.
  • The MS Thesis committee must consist of at least 3 members, with a minimum of 2 regular faculty members from the ECE Department.
  • At least 2 of the committee members must have a graduate faculty appointment.
  • The student should ideally choose an advisor 12 months before the defense date.
  • The thesis committee should ideally be formed at least 8 months before the defense date.

Thesis and Directed Study Credits

  • Plan A students must register for a minimum of 8 credits of ECE 8999 (Masters thesis).
  • The department suggests that plan A students work with their thesis advisors for 3 semesters, or at minimum two semesters. Students working with their advisor for 3 semesters may elect ECE 5990 (4 credits), ECE 8999 (4 credits), and ECE 8999 again (4 credits) over 3 consecutive semesters. Students who work with their advisor for two semesters may omit ECE 5990.
  • Before registering for ECE 5990 or 8999, the student and advisor must complete the appropriate forms prior to registration.

Thesis Requirements

  • The thesis will normally be completed in the last semester.
  • The MS Thesis is expected to have the length and content that is comparable to a peer-reviewed journal article or equivalent. Although not required, the department strongly suggests that the student and thesis advisor publish the research in a peer-reviewed journal or conference.
  • The thesis formatting must adhere to Graduate School guidelines.
  • The thesis must pass the plagiarism check.  The thesis advisor will run the check using Unicheck on our department's canvas site.

Thesis Deadlines

  • The public defense must be completed prior to the last day of classes.
  • At least 1 week before defense, the advisor must certify the thesis with a certification form. The certified thesis must be submitted to committee members at that time.
  • Within 24 hours after the defense, the manuscript must be submitted electronically to the Graduate School for format check and approval.
  • Final edits and changes to the thesis must be completed and approved by the graduate school deadline. This is usually the last day of final exams. The master's degree fulfillment form must also be submitted to the academic advisor by this time.

More Information

ECE Courses in the Major Area

5000 and 6000 Level 7000 Level and above
Course EE CE
5020: Matrix Computation   ·
5100: Quantitative Physiology ·  
5280: Cyberphysical Systems (3 credits) · ·
5325: Smart Sensors and Fuel Cells · ·
5330: Modeling and Control of Power Electronics and Electric Vehicle Powertrains ·  
5410: Power Electronics and Control ·  
5425: Introduction to Robotic Systems · ·
5430: Electric Energy Systems Engineering ·  
5440: Computer-Controlled Systems · ·
5450: Control and Optimization for Integrated Electric-drive Vehicle Systems ·  
5470: Control Systems II · ·
5550: Solid State Electronics ·  
5575: Introduction to Micro and Nano Electro Mechanical Systems ·  
5610: Introduction to Parallel and Distributed Systems.   ·
5620: Embedded System Design · ·
5650: Computer Networks and Programming. · ·
5680: Computer-Aided Logical Design and FPGAs   ·
5690: Introduction to Digital Image Processing · ·
5700: Digital Communications ·  
5770: Digital Signal Processing · ·
5870: Optical Communication Networks ·  
5990: Directed Study1 · ·
5995: Alternative Energy Sources and Energy Conversions2 ·  
5995: Advanced Energy Storage Systems: Electrification of Vehicles2 ·  
5995: Cooperative Connected Vehicles2 · ·
5995: Deep Learning: Fundamental and Applications2 · ·
6180: Biomedical Instrumentation ·  
6570: Smart Sensor Technology I: Design ·  
6660: Introduction to VLSI Systems · ·
6991: Industrial Internship (1-4 Credits) 2 · ·
Course EE CE
7030: Mathematical Methods in Engineering I ·  
7100: Mathematical Modeling in Impact Biomechanics ·  
7160: Impact Biomechanics ·  
7400: Medical Robotics and Systems · ·
7420: Nonlinear Control Systems ·  
7430: Control of Discrete Event Systems ·  
7440: Dynamic Systems and Optimal Control ·  
7530: Advanced Digital VLSI Design Using VHDL4 · ·
7550: Advanced Solid State Electronics4 ·  
7570: Smart Sensor Technology II: Characterization and Fabrication ·  
7590: Biomedical Microsystems ·  
7610: Advanced Parallel and Distributed Systems   ·
7650: Scalable and Secure Internet Services and Architecture4 · ·
7660: Parallel Computer Architecture   ·
7680: Advanced Digital Image Processing and Applications · ·
7690: Fuzzy Systems · ·
7700: Statistical Communication Theory. ·  
7730: Telematics · ·
7740: Medical Imaging Systems (3 credits) ·  
7850: Fiber and Integrated Optics ·  
7860: Operation and Control of Modern Power Systems · ·
7995: Detection and Estimation2 · ·
7995: Information Theory2 · ·
7995: Micro and Nanofabrication2 ·  
7995: Embedded Systems for Vehicles2 · ·
7995: Antenna Design2 ·  
7995: Clinical Immersion for Engineers2 · ·
8999: Master's Thesis Research1 ·  

All courses are 4 credits unless otherwise indicated.
1 Plan A students only.
2 A maximum of 12 credits of special topics courses may count towards your degree.
3 Does not count towards minimum course number requirement.
4 Not recently offered.

Non-ECE Elective Courses

Masters students may select up to 8 credits of courses from the pre-approved list below, or transferred from any ABET-accredited institution with a grade of B or better. The courses on the pre-approved list, updated annually, are chosen because they provide diversification to ECE graduate students, but are also related to the core disciplines of the ECE graduate program. Please note that many of these courses are 3 credits. Therefore, in order to complete 32 credits, students may supplement these courses with internship credits, directed study, or additional courses.

  • Any Physics course 5000-8000 level except directed study, physics for teachers, research, and directed study, or internship.
  • Any Biomedical Engineering course 5000-8000 level except directed study, research, or internship.
  • Any Mechanical Engineering course 5000-8000 level except directed study, research, or internship.
  • Any Chemical Engineering course 5000-8000 level except directed study, research, or internship.
  • Any Material Science & Engineering course 5000-8000 level except directed study, research, or internship.
  • Electrical Vehicle Engineering (4 credit courses)
    • EVE 5110 Fundamentals of Electric-drive Vehicle Engineering (traditional section only)
    • EVE 5120 Fundamentals of Battery Systems for Electric and Hybrid Vehicles
    • EVE 5130 Fundamental Fuel Cell Systems
    • EVE 7310 Electric-drive Vehicle Modeling and Simulation
  • Computer Science (3 credit courses)
    • CSC 5825: Introduction to Machine Learning and Applications
    • CSC 7825: Machine Learning
  • Industrial Engineering (3 credit courses)
    • IE 7995: Stochastic Programming
  • Mathematics (3 credit courses)
    • MAT 5030: Statistical Computing and Data Analysis
    • MAT 5600: Introduction to Analysis I
    • MAT 5610: Introduction to Analysis II
    • MAT 5710: Introduction to Stochastic Processes
    • MAT 5870: Methods of Optimization
    • MAT 6830: Design of Experiments
    • MAT 6840: Linear Statistical Models
    • MAT 7600: Real Analysis I
    • MAT 7610: Real Analysis II