Magnetoelectric (ME) composite structures have a wide range of applications in various industries due to the presence of ME coupling behavior. In the present work, ME coupling behavior is accounted for by considering mechanically bonded ferroelectric and magnetostrictive phases. Firstly, the rate dependent behaviors of ferroic phases are observed by performing experimental investigations at room temperature. To depict the response of ferroic materials, thermodynamically consistent model is proposed. In order to account for the rate dependent behavior, a penalty function is introduced. Simulation studies have been performed by obtaining model parameters from the experimental studies and results are presented. Simulated results are in good agreement with the experimental data. This work is further extended to capture the response of ME composites by employing a simple homogenization technique. Mechanical, electrical and ME coupling behavior of ME composites are characterized in terms of effect of the volume fraction of the ferroic phases. © 2017 Elsevier B.V.