Space Systems Engineering

The Space Systems Engineering program at Johns Hopkins Engineering for Professionals will equip you with the tools you need to become a technical leader within the aerospace industry.

Program Pages Content

Degrees & Pathways

Focus Areas/Tracks
Leadership/Management Technical Systems/Subsystems


The curriculum for the Space Systems Engineering program at Johns Hopkins Engineering for Professionals features systems engineering courses as well as hand-on exercises that prepare students to lead space systems development projects. Participants gain a deep understanding of systems quality assurance and implementation as they design and develop an actual spacecraft prototype. With access to state-of-the-art facilities, students work alongside some of the top experts in the field including world-renowned faculty from the Johns Hopkins University Department of Physics and Astronomy.

Upon completing the degree program, students will:

  1. Demonstrate the ability to develop and design a bench-top spacecraft including solar panel charging system, GPS, and Precision Navigation subsystems.
  2. Design the structural and electrical subsystems of a spacecraft, thermal control, power systems, and communication systems.
  3. Demonstrate proficiency in the analysis of direct broadcast satellites, VSAT links, and Earth-orbiting and deep space missions.


Master's Degree

Admission Requirements

  • You must meet the general admission requirements that pertain to all master's degree candidates.
  • Your prior education must include an undergraduate degree in a technical discipline.
  • When reviewing an application, the candidate's academic and professional background will be considered.
  • As part of the admission process, the chair or the program coordinators may interview students in order to clarify points on their résumés or on previous courses taken. This is to better understand what experience they have had in preparing projects or team assignments.
  • Exceptions to these requirements, based on experience, can be made by the program chair.

Degree Requirements

  • A total of ten courses (at least three at the 700-level) must be completed within five years.
  • The curriculum consists of five core courses and five others chosen by the student in consultation with their advisor.
  • Only one grade of C may count toward the master's degree.
  • All courses in the Space Systems Engineering program may be completed remotely (online or via virtual-live), except for the program capstone (675.710), which includes a requirement that students attend a specified residency weekend at the APL campus to complete the laboratory component.
  • All course selections are subject to advisor approval.


Please refer to the course schedule published each term for exact dates, times, locations, fees, and instructors.


Non-core SSE courses can be divided into two focus areas. The first focus area is Technical Systems/Subsystems, which emphasizes rigorous understanding of systems and subsystems in terms of fundamental engineering disciplines. The second focus area is Leadership/Management, which prepares students for project/program management roles or leading technical teams and organizations. Courses from the two focus areas can be chosen according to the student’s interests and needs. For electives, a minimum of two must be chosen from designated SSE program offerings. Focus areas are a collection of courses, not formal requirements. Students may take any elective in either focus area with advisor approval. Students must take a minimum of two (*) courses from either focus area to complete the SSE program.


Technical Systems/Subsystems students may want to consider Fundamentals of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) classes: 525.201 Circuits, Devices, and Fields and 525.202 Signals and Systems to review basic ECE principles.

Program News

High Rankings for JHU Online Engineering Programs
January 10, 2018

The online programs at the Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering are ranked highly according to the latest report from U.S. News & World Report released January 9, 2018.

Patrick Binning Selected as Space Systems Engineering Chair
December 21, 2017

Patrick Binning has been named chair of the Space Systems Engineering program at Johns Hopkins University.

Top Instructors Receive 2017 Faculty Awards
April 18, 2017

During the 2017 spring faculty meeting held at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Johns Hopkins Engineering honored ten outstanding online and part-time instructors for their dedication in the classroom this past year.