Electrical Engineering

Electrical engineering (EE) deals with the study and application of electricity, electronics, and electromagnetism, including such topics as digital computers, power engineering, telecommunications, control systems, radio-frequency engineering, signal processing, instrumentation, and microelectronics. Electrical engineers were responsible for inventing much of today’s sophisticated technology, such as the Internet, land and air transportation systems, medical devices, and many other modern features of everyday lives. Yale electrical engineer graduates are highly respected and sought after for work not only in the engineering profession, but in business, start-up ventures, management consulting, investment banking, venture finance, medicine, and intellectual property law. 

Three degree programs allow students to select the level of technical depth appropriate for their individual goals.

  1. The B.S. in Electrical Engineering is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, Inc., and is the department’s most intensive major program. Students are trained for engineering practice, and the curriculum culminates in a major team design project that incorporates engineering standards and realistic constraints. This program is appropriate for highly motivated students who have a strong interest in the engineering profession.
  2. The B.S. in Engineering Sciences (Electrical) requires a somewhat smaller number of courses than the ABET-accredited B.S. degree, in exchange for more flexibility in course selection. This program is appropriate for students who have interest in either continuing in the engineering profession, or other post graduate options such as graduate or professional school.   
  3. The B.A. in Engineering Sciences (Electrical) requires substantially fewer engineering courses. It is suitable for careers outside technology in which a student nevertheless benefits from an appreciation of electrical engineering perspectives, and it is appropriate as a second major.

Freshman interested in the Electrical Engineering major can take EENG 200, Introduction to Electronics, and EENG 201, Introduction to Computer Engineering, both excellent introductions to the major. In the sophomore year students take EENG 202, Communications, Computation, and Control, and EENG 203, Circuits and Systems Design. However, EENG 200 and EENG 201 need not be taken in the freshman year; the courses are designed such that EENG 200 and EENG 202 can be taken concurrently; and likewise, EENG 201 and EENG 203. 

It is difficult to enter the major if students do not take mathematics and physical science prerequisites during the freshman year. Students without high school calculus should take MATH 112, Calculus of Functions of One Variable I, and MATH 115, Calculus of Functions of One Variable II. Freshmen with high school calculus typically take MATH 120, Calculus of Functions of Several Variables and/or ENAS 151, Multivariable Calculus for Engineers. Potential majors are also encouraged to take PHYS 180, University Physics, and PHYS 181, University Physics, or PHYS 200, Fundamentals of Physics, and PHYS 201, Fundamentals of Physics, during their freshman year.

Meetings for freshmen interested in the major will be held during Freshman Orientation, as listed in the Calendar for the Opening Days; and the director of undergraduate studies (DUS) of Electrical Engineering welcomes consultation with students about their program opportunities at any time. For more details, see the departmental Web site.