Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering
A degree in electrical engineering prepares students to develop solutions to urgent problems in areas such as power, communications, computing and networking.
Electrical engineers work with electromagnetic fields and electricity for use in communications, biotechnology applications and electronic circuits. The core of electrical engineering is the ability to work with sensors, acquire data, communicate electronically, process signals and information, model complex systems, and integrate various sources of energy in distributed systems.
Areas of emphasis
You have the option of choosing to pursue your electrical engineering degree with an emphasis in one of three areas. There is also a general emphasis for students who prefer not to specialize:
- Biomedical engineering: Students pursuing this emphasis are required to take three additional introductory courses in biology and chemistry, but they have fewer technical elective requirements, which must include coursework in biochemistry and biomedical engineering.
- Robotics, autonomous/aerial vehicles, and embedded systems: In this emphasis, students choose at least one technical elective from each of the categories of robotics, communications and control, and embedded systems.
- Renewable energy: Students pursuing this emphasis take the same required courses as all other electrical engineering majors, but they focus on energy-related topics for their senior year technical electives.
What will I learn in an electrical engineering degree program?
The bachelor's degree program focuses on giving students depth of knowledge, breadth of knowledge and professionalism.
Our graduates are able to apply specialized knowledge in the practice or advanced study of electrical engineering, including scientific principles, rigorous analysis and creative design.
Additionally, graduates develop a broad range of knowledge, including information on the most important current issues in electrical engineering, for productive careers in the public or private sector or for the pursuit of graduate education.
Finally, our graduates are able to communicate clearly and work ethically in teams in a complex modern environment. Graduates will engage in life-long learning to adapt to changes in the requirements of their profession.
For more information on our program objectives, please visit the ABET accreditation section on the department website.
Requirements for the B.S. in electrical engineering
In addition to core curriculum requirements, electrical engineering student take courses in engineering communication, math and science, and engineering science and design.
Students also complete technical elective requirements, typically during the senior year. Visit the course catalog or discuss specific elective requirements with your advisor.
As seniors, all electrical engineering majors take two capstone classes where they apply knowledge gained during their degree program toward the design and creation of an industry-relevant electrical engineering project.
Credit for internships
Up to three units of internship credit may also be applied toward the degree.
Fundamentals of Engineering Exam
Students must also take the Fundamentals of Engineering Examination administered by the Nevada Board of Professional Engineers. The FE exam is generally taken during the spring of your senior year. Register for ENGR 490 in order to have the exam recorded on your transcript.
You can view the recommended sequence of courses for your emphasis on the course catalog. Please note that requirements and course offerings may change, and you should consult your advisor to ensure your course schedule meets your individual needs.
Careers in electrical engineering
Electrical engineers wear many hats today, thanks to the wide range of fields that call on their expertise. With communications, computers, networking and systems playing key roles in the operations of virtually all businesses, electrical engineers are critical to maintaining and developing the systems that support our society.
Career opportunities for electrical engineers include jobs such as the following:
- Communications equipment design
- Electric power generation and distribution
- Image and signal processing systems
- Instrumentation design
- Design and development of renewable energy sources
- Optical and laser system design
- Robotics design
- Sensor design
Additionally, electrical engineers are generally well compensated. Electrical engineering majors had a median starting salary of $69,881, according to a 2018 salary survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers, making them one of the top-earning majors for bachelor's degree holders.