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An online master's in computer engineering builds on the basic computer science principles learned in a four-year degree and incorporates more advanced electrical engineering coursework. This program prepares graduates for managerial positions in IT departments.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that employment in computer and information technology careers will grow by 11% between 2019 and 2029, a rate much faster than the national average for all occupations.

On this page, readers can compare the top-ranked master's in computer engineering programs and learn more about common courses, potential career options, and salary outlook. Learn more about an online master's in computer engineering here.

What Are the Best Online Master's in Computer Engineering Programs of 2020? Here Are Our Top 10:

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Rank School Location
1 University of Florida Gainesville, FL
2 Johns Hopkins University Baltimore, MD
3 University of Southern California Los Angeles, CA
4 Georgia Institute of Technology Atlanta, GA
5 North Carolina State University Raleigh, NC
6 Texas A&M University College Station, TX
7 Villanova University Villanova, PA
8 Stevens Institute of Technology Hoboken, NJ
9 Florida International University Miami, FL
10 Worcester Polytechnic Institute Worcester, MA
How We Rank Schools

At BestColleges, we believe a college education is one of the most important investments you will make. We want to help you navigate the college selection process by offering school rankings that are transparent, inclusive, and relevant for online students.

Our rankings are grounded in a few guiding principles and use the latest statistical data available from trusted sources. Read our Ranking Methodology. We hope our approach helps you find the school that is best for you.

2020 Best Accredited Online Master's in Computer Engineering Programs

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Rank School Location Cost Graduation Rate Description Toggle
1

University of Florida

Gainesville, FL Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 90%

UF offers more than 200 programs through UF Online. Students can complete an online master's degree in computer engineering through the university's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. The MS in electrical and computer engineering (ECE) features a customizable major and non-ECE elective courses.

Other program features include full-time or part-time enrollment, hybrid course options, and thesis and non-thesis tracks. More than 60% of ECE students secure internships with top employers after graduation. Learners can pursue coursework in several unique ECE interest areas, including cybersecurity, biomedical engineering, and artificial intelligence.

Applicants must submit GRE scores and transcripts. UF supports distance learners through advising, tutoring, library, and career services. UF admits most graduate ECE students in the fall semester, with some exceptions for current undergraduate ECE students.

2

Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, MD Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 93%

Students at Johns Hopkins may choose from 19 online graduate programs in engineering. The university's MS in electrical and computer engineering comprises 10 courses. All learners complete a concentration in either communications and networking or photonics.

Distance learners complete coursework asynchronously through the Blackboard platform. The online master's in computer engineering is a part-time degree for working professionals. The program charges the same tuition rate to all learners regardless of residency.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree in electrical and/or computer engineering from a school accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Prerequisite courses include mathematics, calculus-based physics, signals and systems, and linear and non-linear circuits. Students may enroll in the fall, spring, or summer semesters.

3

University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 92%

The Viterbi School of Engineering was one of the first academic colleges established at USC. USC's students may choose from more than 40 online graduate programs, including Viterbi's online master's degree in computer engineering.

The MS in computer engineering requires 28 credits in three major areas: architecture, VLSI, and networks. USC offers both live and on-demand course content in the virtual classroom. Possible courses include interconnection networks, internet and cloud computing, and computer systems organization.

Applicants must submit GRE scores. Incoming students may begin the computer engineering degree online in the fall or spring semester. USC offers new student orientation events and a graduate mentorship program.

4

Georgia Institute of Technology

Atlanta, GA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 87%

A leader in distance learning, Georgia Tech offers 13 online graduate degrees in engineering, computer science, and STEM disciplines, including an online master of science in electrical and computer engineering.

Georgia Tech's master's in computer engineering program emphasizes career development for a variety of tech-industry professionals. Coursework explores solving technical problems, adhering to project deadlines, and fostering creativity and ingenuity. Students may begin the online program in the fall or spring semester.

Learners complete coursework asynchronously by viewing recorded lectures and on-campus sessions. Full-time students typically complete two courses per semester. Georgia Tech charges all learners the same tuition rate regardless of residency. The university serves more than 12,000 students through its professional education programs.

5

North Carolina State University

Raleigh, NC Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 81%

NC State offers more than 100 degrees and certificates through distance learning, including an online master's in computer engineering. The program includes coursework in VLSI systems, networking, and computer architecture and systems. The 30-credit program does not require a thesis. Full-time students take nine credits per semester, while part-time learners take 3-6 credits. Students may begin the program in the fall or spring semesters.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree in electrical or computer engineering with a GPA of at least 3.25. The program also requires GRE scores and letters of recommendation. Prospective students with a 3.0 GPA may receive provisional admission into the program.

6

Texas A&M University

College Station, TX Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 82%

The College of Engineering is the largest school at Texas A&M and among the largest engineering schools in the United States. Engineering students represent 68% of National Merit Scholars at Texas A&M.

The university's master of engineering in computer engineering requires 30 credits. The curriculum does not require a thesis or final examination; however, distance learners must complete an internship to satisfy graduation requirements. Students complete most coursework asynchronously.

Applicants must submit unofficial transcripts, GRE scores, and letters of recommendation for admission. Students may begin Texas A&M's online master's in computer engineering in the fall, spring, or summer semesters.

7

Villanova University

Villanova, PA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 91%

Villanova's College of Engineering offers 10 online graduate programs in unique engineering areas. Engineering students at Villanova enjoy personalized attention, as the school maintains a student-to-faculty ratio of 19-to-1. Roughly 88% of master's-level engineering students graduate within three years.

Villanova's master of science in computer engineering requires 30 credits, or 10 courses. Students may choose a thesis or non-thesis option. Villanova offers hybrid and fully online coursework and enables students to complete assignments both synchronously and asynchronously. The program includes core courses in computer communication networks, embedded systems architecture, and Unix and C programming.

Program applicants must submit official transcripts, a resume, a statement of purpose, and GRE scores. Students may begin the online program in the fall, spring, or summer semesters. All learners in the program pay the same tuition rate regardless of residency.

8

Stevens Institute of Technology

Hoboken, NJ Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 87%

Stevens offers more than 200 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs across four colleges, including the Schaefer School of Engineering and Science.

Stevens' computer engineering master's program offers a master of science or a master or engineering track, emphasizing interdisciplinary coursework in both cases. Students may choose a concentration in embedded systems, software and data engineering, networks and security, or artificial intelligence. Stevens also offers optional MBA/MS or MBA/master of engineering dual degrees.

Stevens accepts applications on a rolling basis and offers multiple start dates for both full- and part-time graduate students. Applicants must submit official transcripts and letters of recommendation. The program usually — but not always — requires GRE scores for admission.

9

Florida International University

Miami, FL Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 58%

FIU is one of the largest online education providers in the U.S., serving more than 42,000 students in online programs each year. FIU offers more than 100 programs and thousands of courses online.

FIU's master's in computer engineering features an emphasis in network security. Students can complete the accelerated, 30-credit program in 10 months. Graduates can pursue professional certifications like security+, network+, and certified ethical hacker.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree in electrical or computer engineering or a related STEM field with a minimum 3.0 GPA during their final 60 credits. Students may qualify for FIU's Online Academic Merit Scholarships.

10

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Worcester, MA Cost: $$$$$ Graduation Rate: 87%

WPI offers dozens of online graduate programs in arts and sciences, business, and engineering. WPI's master of science in electrical and computer engineering offers specializations in areas like computer engineering, networks, and analog/RF design. The program's curriculum comprises 30 credits and does not require a thesis. WPI also offers an online master of engineering and a graduate certificate in electrical and computer engineering. Students complete most coursework asynchronously.

Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree in electrical and computer engineering from a school accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Prospective students must also hold a minimum 3.0 major GPA. Learners may enroll full time or part time.

What Can I Expect From an Online Master's in Computer Engineering Program?

Students enrolled in these programs need a keen interest in information technology, professional experience in computer science, and the ability to understand highly technical and theoretical aspects of computer engineering.

An online master's in computer engineering requires about 30 credits and takes 18-24 months to complete. Part-time students may need another year or two to graduate. Applicants may also search for accelerated learning programs that allow students to earn their degree more quickly.

Students enrolled in these programs need a keen interest in information technology, professional experience in computer science, and the ability to understand highly technical and theoretical aspects of computer engineering.

Some common concentrations for a master's in computer engineering include signal processing and control systems, solid-state devices and integrated circuits, electromagnetic fields, and digital systems.

Most master's programs in computer engineering require students to complete a capstone or thesis project before graduation. Capstone projects typically include conducting original research under the guidance of a professor. Students present an oral and/or written report to the faculty as the culmination of their project.

An online master's in computer engineering may also require an internship or practicum, during which students gain field experience working in computer engineering. Students should note that not all colleges provide internship placements. Prospective students can learn more about individual program requirements by visiting school websites.

Admission Requirements for Online Master's in Computer Engineering Programs

Most master's in computer engineering programs require applicants to hold a bachelor's in computer engineering or a similar field, such as computer science. Many top programs require a minimum 3.0 GPA, as well. Applicants should also consider completing work experience before applying to an online master's in computer engineering, as some programs look for previous expertise.

Learn more about graduate admissions here.

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What Courses Will I Take in an Online Master's in Computer Engineering Program?

An online master's in computer engineering program mostly includes courses in computer science, electrical engineering, and computer programming. Students build on skills gained in their bachelor's program and delve deeper into the technical and theoretical aspects of computer engineering. Students may also learn leadership skills for future management positions.

Computer Architecture

This course examines the underlying principles and design structures that impact computer performance. Students learn about design methods for control, memory, and processing. Learners also gain practical skills in system organization and parallel processing. This course often features a mix of lectures and group or individual projects.

Theory of Computer Hardware Testing

Students learn methods for testing the functionality of computer hardware and diagnosing common problems. This course explores testing methodologies for computer memory and microprocessing on a theoretical and practical level. Learners also discover build models of self-testing and self-diagnosis within a computer system.

Wireless Communications

This course balances theory and practice, teaching learners how to design and analyze receivers for wireless communication. Students learn about multiple input multiple output systems, spread spectrum modulation, and orthogonal frequency division multiple access. This class often requires both group and individual projects.

Computer Communication Networks

Students explore common issues in the design and operation of computer and telecommunication networks. This course focuses on the basics of network design before pivoting to evolving computer networks and emerging communications technologies. Degree-seekers discover workable solutions to computer communication problems that directly apply to future careers in IT.

Randomized Network Algorithms

Randomized algorithms use small pieces of randomness to guide behavior and achieve peak performance. In this course, students learn about the importance of randomization in theoretical computer science. This class typically covers the minimax principle, graph sparsification, streaming algorithms, and parallel algorithms.

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What Can I Do With an Online Master's in Computer Engineering Degree?

While many careers in computer engineering only require a bachelor's degree, a master's in computer engineering can open the door to higher salaries and managerial positions. Professionals with a master's degree earn higher average salaries than their counterparts with only a bachelor's degree.

According to the BLS, computer and information technology professionals earn a median annual salary of $88,240. Managers earn considerably more.

Learn more about computer science careers here.

Computer and Information Research Scientist

Computer and information research scientists develop new technology and find innovative ways to use existing technology. These scientists attempt to solve complex computing issues in many fields, including medicine, business, and engineering. Research scientists need a keen interest in computer theory and excellent skills in computer programming and software design.

Computer Network Architect

Computer network architects design and implement systems for data communications networks. These professionals must consider information security, accessibility, usage of hardware and software, and the needs of their organization. Computer network architects typically work in an office setting as part of an IT department or as independent consultants.

Computer Systems Analyst

Computer systems analysts, also known as systems architects, design computer systems that can effectively and efficiently process data for a business or organization. These professionals must research current and emerging technologies and decide what hardware and software best suit the needs of their company. Computer systems analysts work both in the private and public sectors.

Database Administrator

Database administrators oversee existing computer systems and ensure data remains secure and easily accessible. These professionals often use problem-solving skills to fix internal issues. Database administrators also oversee the transfer of data from older, more outdated systems to newer, more user-friendly systems when the need arises.

Network and Computer Systems Administrator

Network and computer systems administrators take charge of day-to-day operations within an IT department. These professionals install and maintain computer systems, research and input upgrades to the system, and oversee training for IT and non-IT employees alike. Systems administrators typically work in an office setting, either individually or as part of a team.

Computer Engineering Not for You? Check Out These Related Careers.

Frequently Asked Questions About Master's in Computer Engineering Programs

Is a master's in computer engineering worth it?

Many entry-level careers in computer engineering only require a bachelor's degree. However, professionals with a master's degree in computer engineering typically earn more than their counterparts with only an associate or bachelor's. Additionally, a master's in computer engineering prepares graduates for more technical positions and managerial roles in IT departments.

What can I do with a master's in computer engineering?

An online master's in computer engineering opens the door to careers like computer and information research scientist and computer network architect. Graduates can also find work as database administrators, network and computer systems administrators, and computer systems analysts. Professionals with this degree might also manage IT departments or become chief technology officers.

Is computer engineering a good career?

Yes. The BLS projects that computer and information technology careers will experience 11% job growth between 2019 and 2029, a rate that far surpasses the national average. These professionals earn a median annual salary of $88,240.

How much money can I make with a master's in computer engineering?

Salary outlook for computer and information technology careers differs depending on job title, experience, and job location. The BLS found that median annual salaries for these professionals range from $83,510 for network and computer systems administrators to $122,840 for computer and information research scientists.

What are the highest paying jobs with a master's in computer engineering?

The BLS found that computer and information research scientists earn a median annual salary of $122,840. Computer network architects make a median annual salary of $112,690, while database administrators earn $93,750 per year.