These requirements are effective Fall 2005.
Each student is required to take 45 units which must consist of:
Total units required for the M.S. degree = 45
Note that each graduate course satisfying the above requirements typically covers 5 units.
Thesis: Completion of a Master's Thesis is required for the Master's degree. To fulfill this requirement, the student submits a written proposal to a faculty member, usually by the third academic quarter. By accepting the proposal, the faculty member becomes the thesis advisor. In consultation with the advisor, the student forms a Master's Thesis Reading Committee with at least two additional faculty members, each of whom is provided a copy of the proposal. Upon completion of the thesis work, the student presents an expository talk on the thesis research, and the final thesis must be accepted by the review committee before the award of the Master of Science degree. MS students admitted to continue to the PhD program must pass a preliminary exam covering fundamental undergraduate course work (See below).
Each student is required to take 50 units which must consist of:
Total units required for the PhD degree = 50
* For students already holding an MSEE or equivalent degree, at most 20 units of transfer credit may be granted for equivalent course-work performed at the students' MS granting institution. Credit transfer is subject to approval by the advisor and the EE graduate director.
At the end of the first year, i.e., no later than the Fall quarter in the following year after their entry, students admitted to the PhD program must take a written exam covering basic knowledge in Electrical Engineering. This examination will cover material from the following technical areas:
The student will choose three areas from the above list in which to be examined. If the student does not pass the preliminary examination, the EE graduate committee may allow the student to repeat the preliminary examination once. If the student is to leave the PhD program, and the student wishes to obtain a Masters degree prior to departure, all requirements for the Masters degree must still be satisfied. After the student passes the preliminary examination, the student begins work on a thesis prospectus in preparation for the qualifying examination. During this period the student finds an advisor willing to supervise the student's thesis research, works with an advisor to prepare for the qualifying examination, and assembles a dissertation reading committee, consisting of the student's research supervisor (chair of the committee) and three or four appropriate faculty members in EE and other relevant departments. The committee must consist of at least two ladder-rank EE faculty members in addition to the student's supervisor.
This oral examination is a defense of the student's thesis prospectus and a test of the students knowledge in advanced technical areas of relevance to the dissertation topic. This oral examination consists of a seminar-style talk before the examining committee, where the student will describe the thesis prospectus, followed by questions by the committee on the substance of the talk and the areas of presumed expertise of the student. The exam, taken typically in the third year of PhD study, is administered by a Ph.D. qualifying exam committee consisting of at least four examiners. The composition of the committee must be approved by the graduate director and the dean of graduate studies, whereupon the student and committee are notified. If the student does not pass the Qualifying Exam, the student may be asked to complete additional coursework, or other research related work, before retaking the exam. The student may be allowed to retake the Qualifying Exam once, and the composition of the examining committee will remain the same for the second try. Students who fail the Qualifying Exam twice may be dismissed from the Ph.D. program. PhD students who have not advanced to candidacy by the end of the fourth year may be recommended for academic probation.
Advancement to candidacy requires that the student
After advancement to candidacy, work on the thesis research progresses until the dissertation is completed.
The Ph.D. dissertation must show the results of in-depth research, be an original contribution of significant knowledge to the student's field of study and include material worthy of publication. The student is strongly advised to submit research work for publication in advance of completing the thesis so that the latter requirement is clearly satisfied. The Ph.D. thesis results are presented in both oral and written forms, the oral form being a dissertation defense (see below), and the written being the Ph.D. dissertation. The student must submit his or her written Ph.D. dissertation to the dissertation reading committee at least one month before the defense.
Each Ph.D. candidate submits the completed dissertation to a Ph.D. thesis reading committee at least one month prior to the dissertation defense. The appointment of the Dissertation Reading Committee is made immediately after the qualifying exam and is necessary for advancing to candidacy. The candidate presents his or her research results in a public seminar sponsored by the dissertation supervisor. The seminar is followed by a defense of the dissertation to the reading committee (only), who will then decide whether the dissertation is acceptable or requires revision. Successful completion of the dissertation fulfills the final academic requirement for the Ph.D. degree.
For students already holding an MSEE or equivalent degree, at most 20 units of transfer credit may be granted for equivalent course-work performed at the students' MS granting institution. Credit transfer is subject to approval by the electrical engineering graduate director.
Students not already holding an MSEE degree, who are studying for the Ph.D. degree, may apply to be granted a M.S. degree when they have fulfilled all the M.S. degree requirements (including an MS thesis).
Each year, the faculty reviews the progress of every student. Students not making adequate progress toward completion of degree requirements (see Graduate Handbook for policy on satisfactory academic progress) are subject to dismissal from the program. Students with academic deficiencies may be required to take additional courses. Full-time students with no academic deficiencies are normally expected to complete the degree course requirements at the rate of at least two courses per quarter. Full-time students must complete all course requirements within two years for the M.S. and three years for the Ph.D.
Students receiving two or more grades below B- or U (fail) in the School of Engineering (SoE) courses are not making adequate progress and will be placed on academic probation for the following three quarters of registered enrollment. Withdrawing or taking a leave of abscence does not count as enrollment. Part time enrollment is counted as a half quarter of enrollment.
If an EE graduate student fails an SoE course while on probation, the Electrical Engineering Department may request the Graduate Dean to dismiss that student from the graduate program. If after being removed from probation, the student again fails an SoE course, he or she will return immediately to academic probation.
Graduate students experiencing circumstances or difficulties that impact their academic performance should contact their advisor and the graduate director immediately. Students may appeal their dismissal to the graduate committee.