FAQ for Prospective Graduate Applicants
We hope you find the answers to your questions here. But if not, please reach out to our graduate coordinator at: firstname.lastname@example.org
What are the application deadlines?
- Admissions are made on a rolling basis. Domestic students should apply a minimum of 2 months before the first day of the semester. International students should apply a minimum of 5 months before the first day of the semester.
- Applicants, especially international ones, who wish to be considered for research or teaching assistantships, should complete the application by January 15 for starting in Fall and by June 15 for starting in Spring.
When is my application reviewed by the department?
- The department only reviews completed applications. Your application is considered as completed when the Graduate School has received the following: application fee, three letters of recommendation, personal statement, and undergraduate transcripts (and graduate transcripts if applicable). If the application fee is not paid, the Graduate School won’t forward the application to the department to review.
Is GRE required for admission?
- GRE is not required for admission. However, for those who wish to be considered for the university or college level scholarships/fellowships, GRE is highly recommended. Some faculty in our department may use GRE scores to evaluate potential students for research assistantships.
Can my application fee be waived?
- The Graduate School waives application fees for the following populations: (1) IRT scholars, (2) McNair scholars, (3) current and former US Armed Forces members/dependents, (4) alumni and current students from a University of Maine System institution. The graduate school does not waive the application fee on an individual basis, and, unfortunately, the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering cannot waive this fee either.
Is TOEFL or IELTS required?
- Official English proficiency examination scores are required from international applicants unless the applicant has received a degree from an English-speaking institution. Either TOEFL or IELTS is acceptable.
- The Graduate School requires a minimum score of 80 on the iBT TOEFL or equivalent. To be awarded a Teaching Assistantship, applicants must have achieved a 92 on the iBT TOEFL or equivalent. Applicants with iBT TOEFL scores below 80 or equivalent will be required to take English language training.
- IELTS can also be accepted in our programs. (IELTS: Minimum 6.5 for admission and minimum 7.0 to receive a teaching assistantship.).
- Duolingo English Test Scores are also acceptable. Minimum for regular admission should be 105, and a 110 would be required if the student is awarded a graduate teaching assistantship.
Does the department offer research assistantship (RA) or teaching assistantships (TA)?
- The department offers a various number of RAs and TAs in both Fall and Spring semesters, depending on the funding opportunities. All TAs are offered by the department. RAs may be offered by the individual faculty.
- All completed applications are automatically evaluated for TA assistantships. It is not necessary for students to contact the department to apply for TA assistantships. However, prospective students are encouraged to contact the Electrical and Computer Engineering faculty to discuss their interest and RA funding opportunities when submitting an application.
Does the department offer research assistantship (RA) or teaching assistantships (TA) to master students?
- Yes, many of our master’s students received TA and RA.
Do I need permission from a faculty member and/or to identify an advisor before applying to the MA or Ph.D. programs?
- No, you do not need permission to apply to our graduate programs, nor do you need to identify an advisor with whom you will work.
- However, we strongly encourage our Ph.D. applicants to reach out to a faculty member you think would be a good fit with your research interests. It’s very helpful for us as a faculty to understand prospective students’ interests (in terms of research, career aspirations, or both), as we consider how you might fit into our program.
What are the admission requirements?
- M.S. in Computer Engineering Admission Requirements: For students to become a candidate for a Master of Science degree in Computer Engineering, they must either have completed a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Engineering or at least demonstrated its equivalent, with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better (on a 4.0 scale). If students do not hold a B.S. degree in Computer Engineering, they must complete or demonstrate the equivalent to at least three of the following five prerequisite courses: Introduction to Unix Systems Administration (ECE 331), Embedded Systems (ECE 471), Computer Architecture and Organization (ECE 473), Digital Signal Processing (ECE 486), and Neural Networks (ECE 490). A student may be provisionally admitted to the program pending the completion of prerequisite course(s) with a grade of B or better.
- M.S. in Electrical Engineering Admission Requirements: For students to become a candidate for a Master of Science degree in Electrical Engineering, they must either have completed a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering or at least demonstrated its equivalent, with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or better (on a 4.0 scale). If students do not hold a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering, they must complete or demonstrate the equivalent to at least three of the following five prerequisite courses: Electronics I (ECE 342), Fields and Waves (ECE 351), Feedback Control Systems (ECE 414), Electric Power Systems (ECE 427), and Digital Signal Processing (ECE 486). A student may be provisionally admitted to the program pending the completion of prerequisite course(s) with a grade of B or better.
- Ph.D. Admission Requirements: For students with an M.S. degree in Electrical Engineering or Computer Engineering, the graduate GPA must be 3.2 or better (on a 4.0 scale). For students without an M.S. degree in Electrical engineering or Computer Engineering, the students must have a GPA of 3.2 or better (on a 4.0 scale) and meet our M.S. admission requirements.
Can I apply to the Ph.D. program straight from my undergrad degree?
- Yes, if your undergraduate degree is in Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, or a closely related field. In addition, your GPA must be higher than 3.2 (on a 4.0 scale).
What is the minimum GPA for admission?
- The department does not set up the minimum GPAs for admission. However, GPA is often one of evaluation criteria for fellowships and scholarships.
Are official transcripts required as part of my application?
- No, we accept unofficial transcripts and/or test scores. Official copies will be required upon admission.
How to start an application?
- You can create an application by following this link: https://umaine.edu/graduate/apply/
When can I expect a decision regarding my application?
- The admission decisions are made by the Graduate School. For master students, we make our recommendation to the Graduate School within two weeks once the application is completed. However, it will take longer for Ph.D. applications.
How much does it cost to attend UMaine?
- You can find the latest cost estimate here: https://umaine.edu/stuaid/estimating-costs-to-attend-graduate-students/
How long does it take to complete the program full time?
- Typically it takes up to two years to complete our M.S. programs. Our M.S. programs require a total of 30 credit hours, and a graduate student typically takes 15 credit hours per year. It is difficult to estimate the time required for our Ph.D. program because it highly depends on the research progress. Typically our students obtain their Ph.D. degree within 3 to 5 years.
The following FAQ provided by the Graduate School may be helpful to you: