Computer Engineering (M.S. & Ph.D.)

UMBC's Computer Science and Electrical Engineering Department offers both M.S. and Ph.D. programs in Computer Engineering. Below you will find information on both Computer Engineering graduate programs, and information about how to apply.

Program Requirements

All students (both PhD and Masters) must take at least five courses from the courses listed under Groups A and B, and at least two of these courses must be from Group A.

Group A Courses (offered every year):

  • CMPE 611          Computer Architecture
  • CMPE 640          Custom VLSI Design
  • CMPE 650            Digital Systems

Group B Courses (offered at least every-other year)

  • CMPE 615 Digital Signal Processing Hardware Implementation*
  • CMPE 641 Advanced VLSI Design II
  • CMPE 645 Computer Arithmetic Algorithms & Implementation   
  • CMPE 647 Analog IC Design
  • CMPE 670 Biomedical Microsystems
  • CMPE 684 Wireless Sensor Networks
  • ENEE 610 Digital Signal Processing (Cross-listed with CMPE 422)
  • ENEE 612 Digital Image Processing
  • ENEE 620  Probability and Random Processes   
  • ENEE 621  Detection and Estimation Theory
  • ENEE 622  Information Theory
  • ENEE 630  Solid-state Electronics
  • ENEE 631 Semiconductor Devices
  • ENEE 680  Electromagnetic Theory
  • ENEE 683 Lasers
  • ENEE 684 Introduction to Photonics
  • ENEE 691 Introduction to Engineering Mathematics & Computation

*New course application is in progress.

Students must consult with their assigned advisors prior to registration and finalize their course selection with their advisors. All courses need to be approved by the student’s advisor.

Masters: Within five years of admission, the student must earn a minimum of 30 credit hours for the thesis option (six of which are MS thesis research credits CMPE 799) or 33 credit hours (three of which are the graduate project research CMPE 698) for the non-thesis (w/project) option. All M.S. students must choose either the thesis or non-thesis (w/project) option: there is no course-only option.

At least six of these courses (18 credits) (for both Masters options) must be graduate ENEE or CMPE courses, i.e., ENEE/CMPE courses at the 600 or 700 level. The remaining four courses (12 credits for MS w/project) and two courses (six credits for MS thesis) can be CMSC, MATH, STAT, or from any other related discipline at the 600-level or above with the following exception: a maximum of two 400 level courses (six credits) are allowed in MATH/STAT only, and a maximum of three credits of Independent Study (ENEE/CMPE 699) are allowed.

Students must receive a grade of B or better in two of the Group A courses.

Requests for approval of non-CMPE/ENEE course credits must be submitted before registering for the course. There is a form available for this request and must be signed by the student's research advisor.

Ph.D.: Students are required to take a minimum of 11 courses (33 credits) beyond the bachelor’s degree. At least seven of these courses (21 credits) must be graduate ENEE or CMPE courses, i.e., ENEE/CMPE courses at the 600 or 700 level. The remaining four courses (12 credits) can be CMSC, MATH, STAT, or from any other related discipline at the 600-level or above with the following stipulation and exception:

  • Only three credits of Independent Study (ENEE/CMPE 699) can count toward the total course requirement.
  • Students who have received their Masters at UMBC are allowed to count two 400 level MATH/STAT courses for the PhD degree with approval of their advisors.

The doctoral dissertation must be an original and substantive contribution to knowledge in the student’s major field. It must demonstrate the student’s ability to carry out a program of research and to report the results in accordance with standards observed in the recognized scientific journals related to that field.

Doctoral students must: (a) submit their PhD Comprehensive Portfolio and receive a pass grade (P) within four (4) semesters of entrance to the program (six (6) semesters for part-time students); (b) develop and defend a doctoral dissertation proposal and be admitted to doctoral candidacy within four (4) years of entrance to the program (five (5) years for part-time students); and (c) complete all Ph.D. requirements for their field of specialty within four (4) years of admission to doctoral candidacy.

Students must receive a grade of B or better in two of the Group A courses.

Requests for approval of non-CMPE/ENEE course credits must be submitted before registering for the course. There is a form available for this request and must be signed by the student's research advisor.

For students who are already in the program (admitted prior to Spring 2012):

  • CMPE 691 (Embedded Systems and FPGAs), ENEE 601, and ENEE 623, can each count as a Group B elective.
  • The minimum number of ENEE/CMPE course requirement is four.

Research Areas

  • VLSI design and test: mixed signal design and test, test structure design for process variations, power supply modeling, hardware security.
  • VLSI arithmetic algorithms and security: arithmetic algorithms, cryptology, computing security, anonymity, security in cloud computing data, networks, architecture.
  • Mixed-signal VLSI: analog and digital VLSI design, intelligent sensor interfacing, imaging systems, VLSI hardware security.
  • Embedded systems: RTOS, distributed real-time systems, fault tolerant computing, energy-aware design, security.
  • Bioelectronics: novel energy conversion systems using bioelectronics design and theory, optimization methods for physical circuit design, low-voltage and biologically inspired computing, sensor-processor integration, and communications.
  • Wireless Networks: design and management of wireless sensors networks, MAC and routing protocols, network planning and topology repair, anonymity and anti-traffic analysis measures for wireless networks, underwater communication and networks.           

Meet the Professors

Dr. Tinoosh Mohsenin, Energy Efficient and High Performance Systems

Dr. Tinoosh Mohsenin runs UMBC's Engergy Efficient High Performance Computing Lab, where she works to develop highly accurate, low-power communications and healthcare devices. Currently, Dr. Mohsenin is pursuing three distinct projects in conjunction with her lab that fall within the realm of digital signal processing (DSP) and VLSI implementation: 1) many-core architectures for DSP and secured trusted platforms, 2) low-power processors for portable healthcare devices, and 3) efficient error correction techniques for communication devices. For more information, read her research profile.

Dr. Gymama Slaughter, Bioelectronics

Dr. Gymama Slaughter runs UMBC's Bioelectronics Laboratory (BEL@UMBC), which combines different projects in the areas of electronics, biology, medicine and chemistry. She is currently working on designing a closed-loop system that monitors blood glucose levels and administers insulin to diabetic patients. Dr. Slaughter says that what she desires most is to reduce complications in the lives of diabetic patients and their families. “If I can do that,” she says, “I will count what I do as successful. ” For more information, read her research profile.

Click here for a complete list of Computer Engineering Faculty.

Click here for the PhD Comprehensive Portfolio.


 

How to Apply

Pre-requisites for Admission

An applicant to a graduate program in Computer Engineering is expected to have a strong back­ground in computer engineering and mathematics courses. This includes Calculus I and II, Linear Algebra, Differential Equations and Probability & Statistics in Mathematics. Applicants are expected to have taken the equivalent of the following UMBC courses:

  • CMPE 212: Principles of Digital Design
  • CMPE 306: Basic Circuit Theory
  • CMPE 310: Systems Design and Programming
  • CMPE 314: Electronic Circuits
  • CMPE 315: Principles of VLSI Design
  • CMSC 341: Data Structures
  • CMSC 411: Computer Architecture

The Application Process

Apply online through UMBC's Graduate School Website. Applicants must also submit:

  • An Official Transcript
  • Three Letters of Recommendation
  • Statement of purpose
  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores or GRE Waiver Form
  • TOEFL scores (International students only)

Application Deadlines

International Students

  • Fall: January 1st
  • Spring: June 1st

Domestic Students

  • Fall: January 1st (for financial consideration), June 1st
  • Spring: June 1st (for financial consideration), November 1st

Apply Now!