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1. A total of 64 or 96 hours required

  • For students who already hold a Master's degree, 64 total hours are required.
  • For "direct PhD" students, 96 hours are required.

2. A minimum of 18 (or 42) classroom hours (excludes 681, 684, 685 and 691).

  • 18 hours required for students with a previous Master's degree and 42 for direct PHD students.
  • Classroom hours must be taken from courses within the College of Engineering and College of Science.
  • At least 9 (or 24) classroom hours must be ECEN courses.

3. A maximum of 6 transfer hours allowed from another institution

  • Transfer hours must be from a "peer institution."
  • Transfer hours are subject to the approval of the Graduate Studies Committee (GSC).

4. Undergraduate hours allowed (2 courses or 8 hours)

  • Only 400-level undergraduate courses can be included on degree plan.
  • If you used 400-level hours on your Master's degree plan, then you must reduce the number of allowed undergraduate hours by that amount.

5. No more than 3 credit hours of Internship (684) are allowed.

6. No more than 2 credit hours of Directed Studies (685) are allowed.

  • Students working on a research project should enroll in Research (691) hours.

7. All PhD students are required to pass the Departmental Qualifying Examination

  • Incoming PhD students are required to take the exam within one year of starting the program.
  • Students entering the program with a previous degree outside of Electrical or Computer Engineering are allowed, with the approval of their advisor, an extra year and will be required to take the exam by the end of the second year.
  • Those students who fail the examination are given a second opportunity to retake the exam which must be taken at the next opportunity in which the exam is offered.
  • Those who fail the examination twice will be removed from the PhD program.
  • More details of the Qualifying Exam are given later in the graduate student's handbook.

8. All PhD students are required to pass a preliminary examination.

  • PhD students are required to schedule their prelim exam by the end of their 4th semester (excluding summers) or 6th semester for direct PhDs. Students who have not scheduled their prelim by the appointed time will be blocked from further registration until they do so.
  • The Office of Graduate Studies (OGS) must be officially notified of the exam schedule at least 2 weeks prior to the exam. This should be done through the graduate office.
  • Students must download the checklist and signature page from the OGS web site. The checklist must be signed by your advisor and Graduate Coordinator prior to the exam.
  • The prelim exam consists of a written and an oral examination.
  • For students who have passed the departmental Qualifying Exam, the written portion of the prelim exam can be waived, subject to the approval of the student's supervisory committee.
  • Students who fail the prelim exam will have one opportunity to retake the exam within 6 months of the original exam date.

9. Final defense of dissertation is required for all PhD students.

  • A dissertation proposal must be approved by the supervisory committee and submitted to the Graduate Office prior to the defense. Typically this proposal is submitted in conjunction with the preliminary exam, but it can be submitted afterwards.
  • Date and location of the final defense must be scheduled through the Graduate Office so that official notification can be provided to OGS.
  • Dissertation must be submitted to committee members at least two weeks before defense.

10. Composition of supervisory committee

  • At least two members from within the ECEN Department and within the student's focus area.
  • At least one member from within the ECEN Department but outside the student's focus area.
  • At least one member from outside the ECEN Department.