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Course content

Program overview

The master of science degree in computer engineering provides students with a high level of specialized knowledge in computer engineering, strengthening their ability to successfully formulate solutions to current technical problems, and offers a significant independent learning experience in preparation for further graduate study or for continuing professional development at the leading edge of the discipline. The program accommodates applicants with undergraduate degrees in computer engineering or related programs such as electrical engineering or computer science. (Some additional bridge courses may be required for applicants from undergraduate degrees outside of computer engineering).

Plan of study

The degree requires 30 semester credit hours and includes Analytical Topics in Computer Engineering (CMPE-610), two core courses, four graduate electives, two semesters of graduate seminar, and the option of completing either a thesis research or a graduate project. The core courses and graduate electives provide breadth and depth of knowledge. The Computer Engineering Graduate Seminar (CMPE-795) provides students with exposure to a variety of topics presented by researchers from within RIT, industry, and other universities, and guides students to choose either a thesis or project as their culminating experience. The Project/Thesis Initiation Seminar (CMPE-796) guides students to complete their thesis proposal or project execution plan with their faculty adviser.

Students who pursue the thesis option complete nine semester credit hours of thesis research (CMPE-790) to conduct research with a faculty adviser to answer a fundamental science/engineering question that contributes to new knowledge in the field. Students are expected to formulate the problem under the faculty adviser's guidance and conduct extensive quantitative or qualitative analyses with sound methodology. Research findings should be repeatable and generalizable, with sufficient quality to make them publishable in technical conferences and/or journals. Students who pursue the project option take six semester credits of graduate electives directly related to their project deliverables and three semester credits of Graduate Project (CMPE-792) to professionally execute a project under the supervision of a faculty adviser. The project generally addresses an immediate and practical problem, a scholarly undertaking that can have tangible outcomes, where students are expected to give a presentation or demonstration of the final deliverables of the project.

Research tracks/Graduate electives

Students may select four graduate electives from within the following research tracks. Students are encouraged to choose most of their graduate electives within a single research track. At least two of the electives must be from the computer engineering department (computer engineering department courses begin with the prefix CMPE). Courses outside the lists below may be considered with approval from the department of computer engineering. Research tracks are available in the following areas (see website for research track details):
-Computer architecture
-Computer vision and machine intelligence
-Integrated circuits and systems
-Networks and security
-Signal processing, control and embedded systems
-Additional graduate-level math courses


Thesis and project options differ in course sequence, see website for a particular option's module information.

Other admission requirements

-Submit official transcripts (in English) from all previously completed undergraduate and graduate course work.
-Have an GPA of 3.0 or higher.
-Submit scores from the Graduate Record Exam (GRE).
-Submit two letters of reference from individuals well qualified to judge the candidate's ability for graduate study, and complete a graduate application.
-International applicants whose native language is not English must submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS).

Visit the Computer Engineering MS page on the Rochester Institute of Technology USA website for more details!




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