Systems Engineering Graduate Programs

The Department of Systems and Information Engineering (SIE) offers several graduate degree options for advanced study in systems engineering. Professionals with advanced degrees in systems engineering from the University of Virginia, one of the world's most respected universities for research and education, are in especially high demand.

Systems engineers apply their expertise to a wide variety of challenges in a large number of sectors. UVA systems engineers, for example, are working on:

  • Improving humans’ ability to work effectively in complex technical systems.
  • Machine learning and adaptive decision support systems for approaches to system-of-systems design for improving defense systems and manufacturing operations.

Thanks to UVA Engineering's extensive alumni network and connections with corporations, government agencies, other universities, and consortia such as the Commonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing, our graduate students have access to multiple pathways to develop their careers.

Employment opportunities abound in many sectors. Our graduates become professors at universities and colleges, researchers at institutes and laboratories, analysts at corporations, consulting firms and government agencies; and some become entrepreneurs — starting research, consulting, or service companies.

GRE and application fees are waived for 2024 admissions to all UVA Engineering Graduate Programs

  • Degrees & Courses

    Degrees Offered

    • Master of Engineering (M.E.) in Systems Engineering
      The M.E. is an intensive, non-thesis program that can be achieved on-grounds, through the highly successful distance learning program, VIRGINIA ENGINEERING ONLINE (VEO), or through our popular weekend-based ACCELERATED MASTER'S PROGRAM (AMP).
    • Master of Science (M.S.) in Systems Engineering
      Master of Science (M.S.) is a graduate degree for those who desire not only to acquire fundamental knowledge but also to contribute to the advancement of knowledge through independent, original research. It is a research-based degree, with a culminating thesis.
    • Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Systems Engineering
      The Ph.D. is an advanced graduate degree for students wishing to contribute to knowledge creation through independent, original, cutting-edge research. The Ph.D. in Systems Engineering provides a springboard for careers as an academician, as a researcher, as a consultant or in management/leadership within a university, institute, industry or government setting.


    Course Descriptions

    Course descriptions are available in the University Registrar's Graduate Record. To view the course descriptions of systems engineering (SYS) graduate courses, click on the course name in the listings available here.

  • Information for Prospective Students

    On behalf of the Systems and Information Engineering Department at the University of Virginia, we are thrilled that you are considering joining our graduate program and becoming a part of our vibrant academic community.

    First and foremost, we would like to thank you for expressing your interest in our program. We are dedicated to fostering innovative research, multidisciplinary collaboration, and providing an outstanding educational experience to our students. We believe that our program offers a unique and exciting opportunity for those looking to make a significant societal impact. Our esteemed faculty members are experts in various facets of systems engineering and are eager to work with you on your research interests.

    Your decision to pursue a graduate degree is an important one, and we understand the commitment and dedication that it entails. Rest assured, we are committed to providing you with the guidance, resources, and support needed to thrive in your academic and research endeavors. The University of Virginia offers a rich academic and social environment, and we believe that you will find our grounds to be a welcoming and inspiring place to learn and grow. Charlottesville, Virginia, offers a picturesque setting with a diverse community and ample opportunities for extracurricular activities.

    Information about the application process and deadlines can be found on the UVA Engineering's Future Grads' Graduate Admissions web page and please do not hesitate to reach out to us at if you still have questions.

    Before applying, we encourage prospects to review the information about the degree plan of interests (i.e. M.E., M.S., and Ph.D.) on our department website or the SIE GRADUATE HANDBOOK. Additionally, prospects interested in our M.S. and Ph.D. program should identify their research areas and faculty of interests before applying.

    We look forward to reviewing your application and getting to know you better during this exciting journey. Thank you for considering the University of Virginia for your graduate studies in Systems Engineering.

    Helpful Application Information

    • Fall 2024 application deadlines: M.S. & Ph.D. - January 5, 2024; M.E. - April 1, 2024 (International Applicants) and August 1, 2024 (U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents).
    • Graduate Records Exam (GRE) is optional, but recommended for international student applicants especially those without an MS degree.
    • While there is no minimum GPA, most of our applicants have an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.5/4.0.
    • TOEFL or IELTS scores are required for applicants whose native language is not English. If you are a Permanent Resident of the U.S. or if you have a bachelor degree entirely at an institution where English is the primary language of instruction, you do NOT need to provide these scores.
    • Duolingo English proficiency test scores can be submitted as supplemental information but they are not accepted in place of TOEFL or IELTS scores.
    • TOEFL iBT Home Edition test scores are accepted.
    • Graduate student funding is available on a competitive basis.  Ph.D. students are usually admitted with a financial aid package in the form of a fellowship, Graduate Research Assistantship or Graduate Teach Assistantship.  Most students join a research group immediately upon entering the Ph.D. program.  However, some students explore research with various faculty members and find their best match. It is expected that students join a research group by the culmination of their first year and then be supported as a Research Assistant (RA).
    • We do not typically admit students requesting assistantships in the Spring semester unless it is at the recommendation of an individual faculty member.

Licensure Disclosure

As a member of the State Authorizations Reciprocity Agreement, the University of Virginia (UVA) is authorized to provide curriculum in a distance learning environment to students located in all states in the United States except for California. (34 CFR 668.43(a)(6)& 34 CFR 668.72(n)).

Upon completion of an engineering degree program which prepares graduates for licensure or certification, graduates may be eligible for initial professional licensure in another U.S. state by applying to the licensing board or agency in that state. Please visit the University’s state authorization web pages to make an informed decision regarding which states’ educational requirements for initial licensure are met by this program. (668.43(a)(5) (v)(A) - (C))

Enrolled students who change their current (or mailing) address to a state other than Virginia should update this information immediately in the Student Information System as it may impact their ability to complete internship, practicum, or clinical hours, use Title IV funds, or meet licensure or certification requirements in the new state. (34 CFR 668.402).