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Master's degree study in Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) at Duke prepares students for a career in today's fast-moving tech industry. Duke's master's degree programs give students the skills to compete and lead in a demanding industry that is changing the way information is stored, analyzed, and communicated.

At Duke, students get to work on today's hot research topics: Big Data, robotics, and computer programming. Duke's software curriculum creates serious programmers of students whose undergraduate degrees may not be in engineering or computer science.

A Duke graduate student also gets the chance to join an inviting and inclusive community of scholars located near one the premier high-tech corridors in the world - Research Triangle Park. At Duke ECE, students have opportunities to explore cutting-edge areas of engineering such as computer engineering, signal and information processing and robotics, engineering physics, microelectronics, photonics, and nanotechnology.

Master's study in ECE at Duke prepares students to work with some of the world's most important tech companies and to develop their own entrepreneurial ideas. Learn more about where Duke ECE master's students go and meet ECE alumni.

Benefits for Master's Students

Duke offers students a flexible, individualized curriculum tailored for industry- or research-oriented careers, with interdisciplinary training in engineering, science, and management. Project-based courses translate state-of-the-art research into experiential learning. Duke students work with dedicated career services, which with an industry advisory board and Duke Alumni network, provide internship resources with startups and industry partners.

Research and Career Support

In addition to providing outstanding technical training, Duke helps students launch their careers.

Students in the Master of Engineering (MEng) program complete a required internship, gaining real-world experience and industry contacts. Duke provides dedicated career development services for all master's students including mock job-interview sessions, career fair preparation and unique TechConnect events, which bring together tech companies and interested students for internships and job opportunities.

Duke's events bring tech company recruiters to campus: Master's students participate in both the TechConnect annual recruiting event, hosted by the Pratt School of Engineering and the Duke Department of Computer Science (CS), and the CS/ECE Career Showcase.

The college's graduates have gone on to work from some of the world's most prominent technology companies.

Welcoming, Inclusive Community

By choosing Duke, students join an engaged, diverse, and welcoming community that values and supports its community. Duke places great importance on faculty-master's student interaction.

A Great Location

Duke's engineering campus is next to one of the nation's leading academic medical centers. Plus, the Duke campus is just miles from Research Triangle Park (RTP), home to more than 200 major tech companies and a global hub for biotechnology research.

Durham, North Carolina enjoys a mild climate, acclaimed restaurants, a thriving arts scene, and an affordable cost of living. While a Duke degree can take someone anywhere in the United States and beyond, many students choose to remain in the area, which consistently ranks among the best places to live in the U.S.

ECE Master's Degrees at Duke

Master of Science (MS) in Electrical and Computer Engineering

The Master of Science is an advanced engineering degree comprising technical coursework culminating in a final exam, project, or thesis.

It typically takes 1.5 to 2 years to earn the degree. Duke's ECE MS forms an excellent foundation for a career in industry or academia.

As part of their professional development, MS students take seminars on current topics in applied engineering management and entrepreneurship. Students select a path from four areas of concentration: Computer Engineering, including software development and hardware design; Signal and Information Processing and Robotics, including Big Data analysis and robot design; Engineering Physics, including information physics and metamaterials; and Microelectronics, Photonics and Nanotechnology, including nanoelectronics, and optoelectronics.

Master of Engineering (MEng) in Electrical and Computer Engineering

The Master of Engineering (MEng) in Electrical and Computer Engineering is an industry-focused degree comprised of strong technical and business coursework, and an internship.

Students complete the Core Industry Preparatory Courses and Internship, Departmental Requirements, and choose technical electives in one of these areas of concentration: Computer Engineering, Micro-Nano Systems, Photonics, Sensing and Waves, and Signal Processing and Communications (including Big Data Analysis and Robotics).

It typically takes 1.5 years to earn this degree. The MEng degree is right for students interested in product design, product development, and innovation in industry.

Master of Engineering (MEng) in Photonics and Optical Sciences

The Master of Engineering (MEng) in Photonics and Optical Sciences is an industry-focused degree comprised of strong technical and business coursework, and an internship.

Students complete Core Industry Preparatory Courses and Internship, three technical electives (two from similar areas of concentration) and Departmental Requirements including an advanced mathematics course, two Optics/Photonics courses, one technical optics/photonics course from Duke's biomedical engineering (BME) department and one from the ECE department.

It typically takes 1.5 years to earn this degree. The MEng degree is right for students interested in product design, product development, and innovation in industry.

The PhD in Electrical and Computer Engineering

The Duke ECE PhD program offers highly motivated students an opportunity to develop their research skills in close collaboration with world-renowned engineers and other scientists in Duke's uniquely interdisciplinary environment. Duke graduates go on to great things.

About 75 percent of recent PhD graduates went to work in the private and public sectors — including working for leading technology firms and important national laboratories.

Around 21 percent went into academia — including taking positions at pre-eminent research universities.

Those considering a PhD in electrical and computer engineering should be individuals interested in specialized research. Duke provides opportunities for students to publish with their faculty adviser, to present research at professional conferences, and to explore their field in a highly collaborative, cross-disciplinary working environment. Through programs like PhD Plus, students learn essential skills for their professional careers. Professional interests are most often realized through research and technology development careers.

PhD students benefit from direct admission to a research group, full funding, plus conference & travel support, and dedicated career development. Learn more about the PhD in Electrical and Computer Engineering at Duke.

Degrees & Awards

Degrees Offered

Degree Concentration Sub-concentration
Master of Science (MS)
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Master of Engineering (M Eng)
Juris Doctor/Master of Science (JD/MS)

Degrees Awarded

Master's Degrees 48
Doctoral Degrees 26

Earning Your Degree

Part-time study available? No
Evening/weekend programs available? No
Distance learning programs available? No
Terminal master's degree available? Yes

Degree Requirements

Doctoral Degrees Entrance Exam GRE General Test
Thesis Required


Acceptance Rate



Application Fee - Domestic
applications accepted?

Application Deadlines

Type Domestic International Priority date
Fall deadline December 8th December 8th Yes
Spring deadline October 15th Not reported No

Entrance Requirements

Master's Degree Exam GRE General Test
Doctoral Degree Exam GRE General Test
International Students Exam Details
TOEFL: Required TOEFL IBT score: 90
IELTS: Required IELTS Paper score: 7

Tuition & Fees

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Financial Support

Application deadlines for financial awards December 8

Student Body

Total Graduate Students
Not Reported
International Breakout (representing other countries)
Out-of-state students


Hispanic/Latino 2.56%
Black or African American 0.37%
White or Caucasian 17%
American Indian or Alaska Native Not Reported
Asian 3.3%
Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander Not Reported
Two or more races Not Reported
Unknown 1.1%


Male (75%)
Female (24%)


Focus of faculty research: Architecture and networking; biological applications circuits and systems; nanosystems, devices and materials; quantum computing and photonics; sensing and signals visualization; waves and metamaterials
Externally sponsored research expenditures last year: 0

Location & Contact

Address Box 90291
Durham, NC  27708
United States
Contact Dr. Drew Hilton
PhD Program
Email: dgs@ee.duke.edu
Phone: 919-684-8111