Demand is soaring for systems engineers, as organizations across many industries are recognizing that complex engineering initiatives must be holistically designed and managed. From developing and directing logistics, schedules, risks, and opportunities, to leading teams and coordinating operations, systems engineers bring clarity and structure to these processes. WPI’s Online MS in Systems Engineering program draws on our strengths in engineering, science, and management to prepare leaders who can integrate the technical and human-centered processes of this multifaceted discipline. engineering processes, legal relations, and the organization and use of resources.

Our part-time program will give you the knowledge, skills, and decision-making abilities to design, manage, and lead complex systems engineering projects.  After completing the MS program, graduates will be prepared to:

  • Work with customers and other stakeholders to determine what they want their systems to accomplish in their operational environments.

  • Analyze requirements for systems, explore alternatives for implementations and design and engineer systems in a way that minimizes technical risks.

  • Develop integration, verification and validation strategies for systems to determine they were built correctly and they meet users’ needs.

  • Describe, design and develop complex hardware and/or software architectures that enable the functionality of complex systems and systems-of-systems.

  • Work with program managers to plan, document and control the design and development of systems in a way that minimizes budget and schedule risks.

Systems engineering helped me understand how the complexity of a major engineering effort can be controlled and guided so that what the customer wants the customer gets.
Mike Bonin
Senior Engineer
General Dynamics Electric Boat
Each of the classes gave me a better perspective on what I did at work. They gave me new or improved methods to approach a problem & tools apply on projects. There was hardly a week where I didn't get something that I could take back and use at my job.
Anne Glavan
Supervisor D355
ORP Engineering Planning & Contract Change Eval, GDEB


Other online graduate program in Systems Engineering: 


Degree requirements: 30 semester hours of credit are required, and specific courses are determined in conjunction with an academic advisor. All courses are three credits each unless otherwise specified. A thesis is not required but all students must complete a capstone experience.

Core Requirement (9 credits)
SYS 501. Concepts of Systems Engineering
SYS 510. Systems Architecture and Design
SYS 511. Systems Integration, Verification and Validation

Management Requirement (6 credits)
Complete one of the following two courses:
MIS 576. Project Management
OIE 541. Operations Risk Management

Complete one additional course from the following:
MIS 576. Project Management
MIS 582. Information Security Management
OIE 541. Operations Risk Management
OIE 554. Global Operations Strategy
SD 550. System Dynamics Foundation: Managing Complexity

Depth Requirement (6 credits)
Complete two additional courses from the following. Other courses may become available on a semester-by-semester basis.
SYS 502. Business Practices for Systems Engineers
SYS 520. System Optimization
SYS 521. Model-Based Systems Engineering
SYS 540. Introduction to Systems Thinking
SYS 579C. Complex Decision Making
SYS 579D. Engineering Dependable and Secure Systems
SYS 512. Requirements Engineering
SYS 579S. System of Systems Engineering

Elective Courses (6 credits)
Six credit hours of elective graduate courses can be selected to meet the specific needs of students. All elective courses must be approved by the student’s faculty advisor and can be selected from courses offered by the following departments and programs: Computer Science, Systems Dynamics, any WPI engineering department or program, the School of Business, and Mathematics.

Capstone Experience (3 Credits Minimum)
SYS 585. Systems Engineering Capstone Experience
One of the central priorities in WPI’s educational philosophy is the application of academic skills and knowledge to real-world problems. With an advisor's guidance, students choose a systems engineering project that offers substantive evaluation and application of the coursework covered in the program.

Learn more about the Capstone Experience here.


The online MS in systems engineering requires a BS in engineering from an ABET-accredited university with a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Office Hours for Online Graduate Programs

Join us for any of our upcoming office hours to learn about our online graduate programs!
Check the Schedule

After Graduation

Many of our graduates advance in their current organizations or apply their enhanced skills to new opportunities. Organizations employing WPI systems engineering alumni include BAE Systems, General Dynamics Electric Boat, Raytheon, Textron, U.S Army Natick Soldier Research, Development, and Engineering Center, and many more.

Virtual Open House - On Demand

Download our Virtual Open House today to learn more about our program.