EE Undergraduate Programs FAQs

As you decide how to use your ECE, technical and unrestricted electives, we recommend that you meet with your faculty advisor to discuss how to combine application areas and courses to meet your personal and professional goals. All electrical engineering students begin with a unifying foundation that is combined with technical and unrestricted electives focused on different application areas such as digital systems, communications, microelectronics, art and drama, and environment and sustainability.


What courses can be used as HSS electives?

The dean's office publishes a list of courses that can and cannot be used to meet this requirement. A printout of this list is available in Thornton A-122.

Is there anything else that we need to be aware of in choosing an HSS elective?

Students cannot take language courses in their native language for HSS electives. Native language was designated on their application to UVA.

Are unrestricted electives completely unrestricted?

Not really. By definition, an unrestricted elective may be any graded course in the University except mathematics courses below MATH 1310 (or APMA 1090) and any other courses that substantially duplicate courses offered for the degree.

I have to take APMA 1090. Can I use it for something?

Yes. You can use it as an unrestricted elective (three credits).

What are the choices for the science elective? 

There are 6 choices: BIOL 2010, BIOL 2020, CHEM 1620, ENGR 2500, MSE 2090 and PHYS 2620.

What courses are counted as Tech Electives?

A technical elective is defined as a course in engineering (may be ECE), mathematics, or science (intended for science majors) at the 3000 level or above.  Any course appearing on the approved list of HSS electives may not be used as a technical elective..

Can I take COMM classes as Tech electives?

COMM classes may be used as unrestriced electives, not as technical electives.

Can I take ASTR 3420 as a Technical Elective?

No.  ASTR 3420 is not intended for science majors.

Are we required to sign up for the ECE 4991 MDE course?

You are required to satisfy the MDE requirement, which is met by ECE 4991. You may also take ECE 4332 or ECE 4440 to satisfy the MDE requirement.

What requirements can ECE 2066 be used to fulfill?

ECE 2066 can be used as a science elective or an unrestricted elective. It is not an ECE elective or a tech elective.

I heard that some physics and MSE courses can be used to satisfy the ECE electives requirement. Is that true?

Yes. The ECE Department has developed an ECE class that is cross-isted with MSE 6167, Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Properties of Material. In addition, MSE 3670, Materials for Electronic, Magnetic and Optical Applications may be used as an ECE elective.

Can I deviate from the curriculum a little bit?

Deviation from the curriculum requires the approval of the Undergraduate Curriculum Committee. You must petition to the Undergraduate Curriculum Committee for any deviation. Petition should be discussed with your adviser and should be sent by e-mail to Professor Harry Powell (HCP7AD@VIRGINIA.EDU).

Can I use ENGR 4010 and ENGR 4020 as ECE electives?

If you want to use ENGR 4010/4020 to fulfill the MDE requirement, you may petition to use ENGR 4010 as an ECE elective.  The Undergraduate Curriculum Committee will approve the petition based on the actual Electrical Engineering contents of your project. ENGR 4020 cannot be used as an ECE elective.

I have placed out of a required course, but I did not receive credit.  What should I take in place of this course?

Students that have placed out of a required course but not received credit may replace that course with an unrestricted elective. This substitution must be approved by the student’s academic advisor and recorded in SIS.