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Electrical Engineering

FAQs

How large are the classes?

We're small enough that you won't get lost in the crowd. By the time you finish your first semester, most of your electrical engineering faculty and classmates will know you. Courses and lab sections tend to have 10 to 15 students.

What percentage of classes do professors teach?

Professors teach all classes. Unlike large universities, we do not use teaching assistants (TAs) in our classes – ever! The professors teach 100% of the classes and labs, create and grade exams and assignments, and have generous office hours for extra help.

Is the electrical engineering program accredited?

Yes, we have been accredited since 1970 by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). This is the standard by which all EE programs are compared. More about ABET can be found on the web at: http://www.abet.org/.

I work during the day and can’t attend day classes. Can I pursue the same degree in the late afternoon and evening?

Yes, the same degree is offered in the late afternoon and evening. All courses are taught by the same professors who teach during the day.

What is electrical engineering?

Electrical engineering — sometimes referred to as electrical and electronic engineering — is a field that deals with the study and application of electricity, electronics and electromagnetism. The field now covers a range of sub-studies including power, electronics, control systems, signal processing and telecommunications. Our alumni are employed at both well-known corporations and startups.

What is the difference between electrical engineers and computer engineers?

Employment prospects are excellent in these areas. New graduates seeking employment are 100% successful, with starting salaries in the $55,000/year range. We encourage you to pursue your interests. Here is what professionals in each discipline do.

  • Electrical engineers design, develop, test, and supervise the manufacture of electrical equipment. Some of this equipment includes electric motors; machinery controls, lighting, and wiring in buildings; automobiles; aircraft; radar and navigation systems; and power generation, control, and transmission devices used by electric utilities. Although the terms electrical and electronics engineering often are used interchangeably in academia and industry, electrical engineers have traditionally focused on the generation and supply of power, whereas electronics engineers have worked on applications of electricity to control systems or signal processing.
  • Electrical engineers specialize in areas such as power systems engineering or electrical equipment manufacturing. Education requirements range from a two-year degree to a graduate degree. Employment is expected to increase much faster than the average as organizations continue to adopt increasingly sophisticated technologies. Job prospects are favorable.
  • Computer engineers research, design, develop, and test computer hardware and supervise its manufacture and installation. Hardware refers to computer chips, circuit boards, computer systems, and related equipment such as keyboards, modems, and printers. Computer software engineers design and develop the software systems that control computers. Education requirements range from a two-year degree to a graduate degree. Employment is expected to increase much faster than the average as organizations continue to adopt increasingly sophisticated technologies. Job prospects are favorable.

Can I get some practical “real world” experience while earning my degree?

Many students take advantage of our co-op program before they graduate. This experience enables students to encounter actual work situations. Usually, students go out on co-op during the summer and fall or spring semester. Our co-op students typically graduate after five years with one-year of practical experience and some spending money. Co-op students typically make $16-$18 per hour, and often get job offers from their respective company.

What courses will I take?

The curriculum is described in detail at: Major Requirements. Electives are described below.

What electives do students have to complete in order to major?

Students choose at least three electives to graduate in computer science. We regularly offer a selection of advanced elective courses, (3 or 4 per year) including:

  • Computer Architecture
  • Power Engineering
  • Optical Electronics
  • Data Communications
  • Data Networking

In addition, and with permission of the instructor of your choosing, you may also do a “Directed Study” in an electrical or computer engineering field of your choice.

What minors or concentrations are also available to me as an electrical engineering major?

You can choose to minor or concentrate in other fields related to electrical engineering -- the most popular is Mathematics.  Students only need to take one additional mathematics class beyond those required by the EE major in order to fulfil the requirements for the Mathematics minor.  The college also offers many other minors. Please talk with your advisor for more details.

What are the college's computing resources?

Our department works closely with the college’s computer center to provide state-of-the-art computing facilities for our students. All computing facilities on campus have access to the Internet, and students are provided with e-mail accounts. EE students have many computing resources available to them. There is an 802.11 wireless network that covers all of our classrooms, labs, and study areas. Students are also given an account on a server allowing them to store their files in a central location that is accessible from anywhere on campus.

I have taken electrical engineering or other courses at another school. Can I get transfer credits for them?

Most likely! To get transfer credits for a course, please work with your admissions transfer coordinator.

I finished an associate's degree in EE from a community college. What core courses must I complete at Merrimack?

That depends on which concentration you want to pursue and what courses you have completed. We have had many students do well with your background in our program. For your specific situation, please see your advisor or contact the EE department chair.