What will I learn?

Medical communications

The hospital room of the future will create one of the most challenging wireless environments--with dozens of wireless devices of different standards operating over many different bands. We are tackling this problem on many fronts, including building the Cognitive Medical Wireless Testbed System (COMWITS). COMWITS will provide researchers the ability to test innovative cognitive wireless communications, sensor networks, and biomedical applications under real-world conditions.

Spectrum Sharing

Spectrum is a critical catalyst for economic growth, and commercial mobile broadband needs to support more users and faster data rates. The U.S. government has proposed sharing a number of federal frequency bands opportunistically with commercial systems such as 4G LTE. Spectrum sharing presents challenging issues, including interference, rogue operators, privacy, security, heterogeneous networks, propagation, and enforcement, among others.


Security and privacy are critical challenges, particularly when defense systems coexist with non-government systems in the same spectrum bands. In one project, we are developing mechanisms and techniques for an obfuscated geolocation database that can enable the coexistence of primary and secondary users while preserving the operational privacy of the incumbent users.

Speaker identification

Identifying and verifying speakers from speech collected in a noisy environment gets more challenging as speech-to-noise power decreases. An ECE team reduced the error rate based on the hypothesis that discrimination power resides in the transients into and out of the vowel regions in speech. Since vowels contain relatively more energy, the transient regions can be identified. The team extracted features from both the vowel and transient regions and showed that speaker identity verification in a cocktail noise environment at 0 dB (same power in speech as in noise) led to an improvement in equal error rate.

Testbeds & Frameworks

We are building testbeds and frameworks to combat the threat of low-performing radios and networks developed and deployed with only ad-hoc performance testing and minimal regulatory compliance.

Which department am I in?

College of Engineering

Study options

Full Time (90 credit hours)

Tuition fees
US$14,207.50 per year
USD $14,207.50 for 9 or more credit hours (Fall and Spring Semesters).

*Price shown is for indicative purposes, please check with institution

Application deadline

Expected September 2022

Start date

Expected January, August 2022


Virginia Tech

925 Prices Fork Road,



24061, United States

Entry requirements

For students from United States

Regular Admission to a graduate degree is open to an applicant whose grade point average (GPA) meets or exceeds the 3.00 required by the Graduate School for the last half of the credits earned for the undergraduate (bachelors) degree, and whose academic background meets the requirements of the admitting academic unit. A graduate degree, or at least 12 credits of graduate coursework taken post-baccalaureate, while in graduate status, will supersede the undergraduate record in evaluating credentials for admission.

For international students

Applicants applying for these degrees program must have an earned Master's degree in CPE, EE or related field.

Minimum GPA: 3.5

A minimum TOEFL score of 550 on the paper-based test (PBT) or 90 on the internet-based test (iBT) is required for consideration of the application. On the iBT, sub-scores of at least 20 on each subtest (Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing) are required for admission. A minimum IELTS score of 6.5 is required for admission.

The deadlines are January 15 for fall admission and September 1 for spring admission.

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.


About Virginia Tech

The AdvantageVT program offers the ideal gateway for students who want to combine English language studies with course credits.

  • Ranked in the top 5% universities globally
  • Excellent pathway programs for international students
  • Over 110 undergraduate and 170 postgraduate programs
  • Education driven by innovative technology and research

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