MSc in Electrical Engineering - Space Systems Engineering


Program Description

Program Overview

The University of New Mexico is pleased to offer a fully online master's program in Space Systems Engineering, leading to a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (MSEE). This program is one of the first master's level space systems engineering programs in the country.  The Space Systems Engineering concentration was developed with input from the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) Space Vehicles Directorate to provide graduates with the advanced skills to further their careers in the aerospace industry.  

UNM is classified as a Carnegie Research 1 University (for highest level of research activity).

All courses for the Space Systems Engineering Accelerated Online Program are offered in an 8-week format.  For individuals interested in pursuing a doctoral degree, the Space Systems Engineering program provides a great foundation for application to UNM’s Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering program.

All applicants are expected to have college-level proficiency in English (reading and writing), programming, and mathematics.  Applicants should hold a bachelor's degree in an engineering-related field from an accredited university.  

Possible Careers

Students who successfully complete the curriculum will be prepared for master's level engineering positions at the Department of Defense, NASA, and private sector aerospace companies. Students will be prepared for space systems program career paths such as mission planning, project management, and spacecraft integration activities.

UNM's Space Systems Engineering program was recently recognized at the top of the Most Affordable Online Master's in Aerospace Engineering, Systems Engineering, and Electrical Engineering by


MS EE in Space Systems rankings for 2020:

  • #2  for 2020 Most  Affordable Online Master’s in Electrical Engineering
  • #1 for 2020 Most Affordable Online Master’s in Aerospace Engineering
  • #1 for 2020 Most Affordable Online Master’s in Systems Engineering

Program Details

The Space Systems Engineering Managed Online Program, leading to an MS in Electrical Engineering, is an exciting new program offered at UNM.  Prospective students need to have an undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Computer Science, or a related field. All applicants are expected to have college-level proficiency in English (reading and writing), programming, and mathematics.

All courses are offered in an 8-week format, with terms starting 5 times per year.  A sequence of courses has been developed to optimize a student’s progression through the curriculum.  Most courses can be taken in any order to complete the degree.

Seven courses are required for the Space Systems Engineering concentration.  An additional 15 credit hours of course work are required to complete the MSEE degree. 

Space Systems Engineering Concentration Courses:

  • Satellite Communications
  • Introduction to Space Situational Awareness
  • Orbital Mechanics
  • Spacecraft Attitude Dynamics and Controls
  • Small Spacecraft Design I
  • Graduate Seminar

Additional Electrical Engineering Courses:

Select from courses the list, in consultation with an advisor.

  • Machine Learning
  • Hardware/Software Codesign with FPGAs
  • Hardware-Oriented Security and Trust
  • Introduction to Cybersecurity
  • Introduction to Cloud Computing
  • Introduction to the Internet of Things
  • Advanced Networking
  • Problems in Machine Learning
  • ST: Stochastic Processes
  • ST: Optimal Estimation and Filtering


Degree Requirements

  • A minimum of 31 hours of coursework (including ECE 590), with a minimum of 18 hours in ECE.
  • At least 12 credit hours must be ECE core courses of which 9 hours are required by the emphasis area as 3 major core courses. The other 3 hours can be selected from core courses of another emphasis area as a minor core course.
  • A maximum of 6 hours of 400-level ECE courses, and no more than 6 hours of 400-level Non-ECE courses (400-level courses must be approved for graduate credit.  ECE 495 cannot be used for graduate credit).
  • A maximum of 6 hours in "problems" courses (ECE 551 or ECE 651).
  • At least 50% of the required coursework must be completed after admission to the graduate program unless further limited by the graduate program.
  •  At least one credit hour, but not more than two credit hours, of graduate seminar (ECE 590).
  • No more than half of the minimum required coursework hours may be taken with a single faculty member.
  • No more than 6 credit hours of coursework can have a grade of C (2.0), C+ (2.33), or CR (grading option selected by student). ECE 590 is excluded from this limitation.
  • The CR grading option is not allowed for ECE Core or minor courses.
  • A student's cumulative GPA cannot be below 3.0. In addition, the GPA for courses presented in his/her program of studies cannot be below 3.0.

Admissions Requirements

  • Grade Point Average (GPA): An undergraduate baccalaureate degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0 (or equivalent) for courses in the major field of study over the last two undergraduate years.
  • Minimum GRE Verbal Scores (old/new): 400/146
  • Minimum GRE Quantitative Scores (old/new): 650/151
  • Language Skills for International Students: International students must meet all UNM Graduate Admissions Requirements including tests for English proficiency. For more information regarding international students, please see International Students and Online Education. For international students, the minimum Graduate TOEFL Scores (Paper/Computer) are 550/213, minimum Graduate IELTS Score: 6.5. Official test results must be sent directly from ETS to the University of New Mexico (code #4845).  

Last updated Oct 2020

About the School

At UNM ECE we want you to succeed. We will help you find a good job. We will help you get your degree. We will give you all the tools and the confidence that you need to achieve your dreams.

At UNM ECE we want you to succeed. We will help you find a good job. We will help you get your degree. We will give you all the tools and the confidence that you need to achieve your dreams. Read less