You are here

PhD Program Admissions


The first doctorate degree in electrical engineering was awarded in 1928 at The Ohio State University.

Since that time, the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering graduate program at Ohio State has earned an elite academic and research reputation, not only among peer programs, but from industry and government research facilities alike.

The PhD graduate program prepares students for technical leadership roles in industry, academia and government. The training provides students with a fundamental understanding of engineering sciences so that graduates can develop creative and innovative approaches to solve important engineering problems of interest to mankind.

Our graduates are recruited by major companies, including IBM, Texas Instruments, Microsoft, AT&T, Intel, Hewlett Packard, Ford, and GM. Many of our PhD graduates hold faculty positions at other universities in the United States and overseas.

PhD Program at OSU

The purpose of the PhD program in electrical and computer engineering is to produce graduates who can think independently and solve engineering problems based on first-principle scientific and mathematical concepts. The training to produce such a graduate involves the in-depth study of a challenging research problem that has not been previously solved or has not been solved to a desired level of effectiveness.

It is expected that the overwhelming majority of the student's time in the PhD program will be devoted to solving the research problem. The student is expected to work closely with a faculty advisor on the research problem resulting in a dissertation. Because of the emphasis of the ECE graduate program on research, a greater share of financial aid is reserved for those students pursuing the PhD degree. Most of the PhD students are on either a fellowship (from the University or other external sources) or a Graduate Assistantship from the University.

There are two tracks to pursue the PhD: BS to PhD, or MS to PhD. Please refer to the ECE Graduate Handbook for additional details.

Admissions Considerations

  • A bachelor of science degree in electrical or computer engineering or related fields is required for admission.
  • The GPA from all completed undergraduate and graduate work are considered in the admission review.
  • The quality of the schools where the applicant has studied, grades in technical courses and the applicant’s recommendation letters are considered.
  • GRE scores are required for:

          * All students seeking a University Fellowship. Note that GRE Writing scores are required for fellowship consideration.
          * International students who do not have a degree from a U.S. institution.
          * PhD domestic applicants with cumulative GPA below 3.2.

  • If GRE and/or TOEFL scores are required, they must be received directly from ETS prior to the Graduate Studies Committee review. Self reported GRE and TOEFL scores are not accepted. The TOEFL score in English comprehension is required for applicants who graduate from schools outside the U.S. Internet based test (IBT) preferred score is 92, computer based test (CBT) preferred score is 237 and paper based test (PBT) preferred score is 580. For information about English Proficiency requirements, please visit OSU Graduate and Professional Admissions.

Further Information

Learn more at our ECE Frequestly Asked Questions page. 


Patricia Toothman, Graduate Program Coordinator, PH: 614-292-7623

Tricia assists the graduate studies chairperson with the admissions process for graduate applicants, and assists ECE graduate students with course scheduling, etc.