Frequently Asked Questions

I am interested in applying to MECPS. What are the next steps?
Submit your application by January 15th, through UCI’s Graduate Division http://www.grad.uci.edu/

 Can I apply for a Ph.D. after the MECPS?
This is your choice to make. MECPS does not prohibit you from applying to the Ph.D. program after completion of MECPS. Please note that the primary focus of MECPS is preparation for a professional career. If you decide to continue in a research oriented career, then a traditional Master of Science (e.g. with a thesis option) may be more suitable.

Once I’m in the MECPS program, can I switch to the Ph.D. track?
This is a one-year professional program that culminates in a Master of Embedded and Cyber Physical Systems degree. If, partway into the program, you decide to pursue a different degree instead, you will need to submit a fresh application to that program. Depending on the program, you may be able to apply credits earned in the MECPS program toward the other degree.

I’ve been working in industry. Do I still need to take the GRE or other entrance exams?
Yes, you’ll need to supply current GRE scores and (if applicable) TOEFL scores.

What are the requirements for admission to the MECPS program?
In addition to satisfying the GPA, GRE, and English proficiency requirements, qualified students for the MECPS program should have an undergraduate degree in electrical or computer engineering (or similar experience), as well as computer programming knowledge in C/C++.

What are the costs that are not included?
Health insurance and Living expenses.

  • Graduate student health insurance is estimated at $3,000 – $4,000 per year
  • Room, board, travel, meals, and other subsistence costs are estimated at     $18,000 per year.

What type of Visa do I need?
Your visa will be processed by the International Center, in the same way it would be processed for the regular Master program.  More information available at https://ic.uci.edu/Students/New/NewStudents.php. If admitted, more details will be provided to you about requesting a visa document.

Is this program OPT/STEM eligible?
Yes. Students completing the MECPS program are eligible for 12 months of Optional Practical Training (OPT) and an additional 18 months for STEM.

Will I be eligible for scholarships and Teaching and Research assistantships if I take up this course ?
No. There will be no scholarships, TAships, or GSRs for the inaugural year of the MECPS program. These options may be available in the future.

Is this a one year program and if so, will it impact the Visa?
Yes, it is a one year program and No, it will not impact your Visa. Your visa will be processed by the International Center, in the same way it would be processed for the regular Master program.  More information available at https://ic.uci.edu/Students/New/NewStudents.php. If admitted, more details will be provided to you about requesting a visa document.

What are the total number of credits for this program ?
36. To earn the degree, students must complete 36 units including a capstone project.

Since this is an interdisciplinary program between ICS and EECS, can we choose courses from both departments?
No. The courses are specific to the MECPS program and are not taken from either ICS or EECS. They are taught by faculty from both departments. There are nine courses as described on our website: http://www.mecps.uci.edu/

Does this program have a thesis option ?
No, it does not. The primary focus of MECPS is preparation for a professional career. If you decide to continue in a research oriented career, then a traditional Master of Science (e.g. with a thesis option) may be more suitable.

Will the employment opportunities be the same as that for the normal two year course?
Employment opportunities depend on the employer. There has been great demand for students with Embedded and Cyber-physical  skills.

Do you have hiring agreements with private industry for MECPS graduates?
While we do not have specific agreements with Industry regarding hiring our MECPS graduates, we will organize a number of events that allow students and industry to interact. For example,  students will present their projects in a forum that has Industry partners invited hence giving you exposure to potential hiring personnel.

Is there any information about the types of jobs and companies of alumni of this program? I’m a little worried about finding an internship/job after graduation.
Since we are currently in the first year of this program, we have no alumni yet. We are anticipating a good demand for our graduates based on our demographic studies which were conducted before offering the program. This program also qualifies for 12 months of OPT, followed by an additional 18 months for STEM. We employ a career counselor and offer students participation in multiple job fairs and networking events.

What are the differences between the MECPS Program and MS Computer Engineering with specialization in Embedded Systems ? How will a student benefit from the MECPS Program?
MECPS is geared towards preparing students for a professional career in CPS. If you are interested in pursuing an academic career then the regular MS Computer Engineering program is better suited.

Will I be eligible to pursue my Ph.D upon successful completion of this course?
This is your choice to make. MECPS does not prohibit you from applying to the Ph.D. program after completion of MECPS. We recommend that you check with schools you are targeting for the PhD. In general, if you are planning for a PhD then a traditional thesis oriented MS may be better suited.

Can I take up an internship during this course?
The program is only 9 months and hence cannot accommodate an internship during the academic year but you are welcome to pursue an internship during the Summer after the completion of the program.

 

MECPS email: mecps@uci.edu

MECPS mailing address
CENTER FOR EMBEDDED AND CYBER-PHYSICAL SYSTEMS
3211 Engineering Hall
University of California, Irvine
Irvine, CA 92697-2620