Electrical Engineering Program

If you call a friend, flip a light switch, play a video game or drive a car, you are touching the work of an electrical engineer. Electrical engineers impact almost every aspect of our lives. They make essential medical equipment, design wireless communications networks, predict earthquakes, and invent new ways to generate and conserve energy. Electrical engineers are leaders in meeting global challenges in energy, health, communication, safety, and so on.

See the video below for an introduction to our Electrical and Engineering program!

As a student in UBC’s Electrical Engineering program, you will learn essential skills in electronics, circuit analysis and electromagnetics, and can choose to focus on anything from the electronic properties of microscopic devices and newly discovered materials to the generation and distribution of power in international electric power grids.

If you are interested in the generation, transmission, distribution, and processing of electrical energy, including renewable and sustainable energy sources you can focus your studies in energy systems. Particular applications include control, protection and reliable operation of the grid, electromechanical actuators; electrical power systems of vehicles, aircraft and ships; industrial and manufacturing processes requiring electric energy, and more.

ECE also offers courses in nanotechnology and microsystems to expose electrical engineers to important scientific and technological concepts that are changing the natures of electronics, computing and sensing. If you are interested in nanotechnology and microsystems you will focus your studies on quantum mechanics, sensor theory, thermodynamics and mechanics. These concepts are applied to the understanding of devices and systems. You can also take courses on chip design, optical devices, microelectromechanical systems, transistors and biological nanotechnology.

There is a some overlap between Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering and this overlap is typically related to the design of digital circuits and systems. Electrical Engineering is more broadly concerned with electronic devices, electrical motors and machines, generation and transmission of electricity, communications, signal processing, and control of such systems.

The Electrical Engineering Program begins in the second year of undergraduate studies after completing the required first year engineering courses. Students will graduate with a Bachelor of Applied Science in Electrical Engineering. Students in Electrical Engineering can also choose to specialize in biomedical engineering by applying to the Biomedical Engineering Option at the end of their first year.

Program Curriculum

Second Year
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First TermSecond Term
CPEN 211 (5)ELEC 202 (4)
CPSC 259 (4)ELEC 211 (2)
ELEC 201 (4)ELEC 221 (4)
MATH 253 (3)ELEC 281 (3)
MATH 256 (3)ELEC 291 (6)
MATH 264 (1)

Total Credits = 39

Third Year
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First TermSecond Term
ELEC 301 (4)ELEC 311 (4)
ELEC 315 (4)ELEC 341 (4)*
ELEC 342 (4)*ELEC 391 (6)
ELEC 321 or STAT 321 (4)*
Breadth Electives (4) – To be chosen from the list of department-approved electives*
Complementary Studies Electives (6)*

Total Credits = 40

*courses can be taken in either term

Fourth Year
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ELEC 491 (10)
ELEC 481 (3)
APSC 450 (2)*
Advanced Electives (12) to be chosen from the department*
Math Elective (3)*
Science Elective (3)*
Free Electives (6)*

Total Credits = 36

*courses can be taken in either term

For information about electives outside of engineering that undergraduate students can take, please see our ECE Free Elective Policy

For official course descriptions for each of the courses listed above, please visit our ECE Course Listing

For students who began their program in previous years, please see the following course checklists:

2019 ELEC Checklist

2020 ELEC Checklist

Switching to Computer Engineering: Students that wish to switch from the Electrical Engineering Program to the Computer Engineering Program must complete the online application form