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Master of Science in Engineering
The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering offers an outstanding program for graduate study. Facilities are available for graduate work in almost all subspecialties of electrical engineering, from the experimental, theoretical, or computational perspective. Graduate activities of the department are housed principally in the Engineering-Science Building, with ready access to several special purpose facilities located elsewhere.
The McKinney Engineering Library and the Kuehne Physics-Mathematics-
Graduate courses and research are offered with varying degrees of specialization in the following general areas. Topics of specialization within each area depend on the interests of the faculty.
Electromagnetics and acoustics. This area includes the study of wave propagation ranging from ultralow frequencies to microwaves. It involves investigations of radio astronomy, geomagnetic micropulsations and geophysics, properties of the ionosphere and magnetosphere, microwave spectroscopy, meteorology and air science, inhomogeneous and anisotropic media, antennas and scattering, radar target identification, wireless communications, microwave and millimeter-wave integrated circuits, and guided wave devices and systems. The activities in acoustics involve research in transducers, atmospheric and underwater acoustics, and noise and vibration control.
Telecommunications and information systems engineering. This area involves research in the analysis and synthesis of systems and in the processing of information for the purposes of identification, communication, and control. Investigations include information and communication theory, stochastic processes and applied probability, control theory, optimization, nonlinear systems, estimation, and signal processing.
Energy systems. This area involves research in the production, distribution, and use of electric energy. Present investigations are concerned with electromechanical devices for pulsed power applications, advanced electrical machines, power system-related analyses, simulation of power systems, energy system economics and optimization, open-access transmission, energy efficiency and demand-side management, power system harmonics, power quality, and power electronics.
Plasma, quantum electronics, and optics. This area involves research in controlled fusion, plasma dynamics, optics, and plasma processing of semiconductors. A tokamak facility is used to study plasma transport, turbulence, and heating. Investigations also include the design of advanced tokamak-stellarator hybrids, the design of high-field, low-cost fusion ignition systems, high-order spectral analysis of plasma waves, plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition, and plasma diagnostics. Research in quantum electronics includes dynamic instabilities in optical systems, nonlinear Raman scattering, optical signal processing, optoelectronic devices, and lightwave systems. Investigations include quantum transport studies of double barrier heterostructures, components for very-high-speed communications, and processes that produce laser damage in materials.
Solid-state electronics. This area emphasizes the electronic and magnetic properties of materials and new electronic devices. Present investigations are concerned with the applications of superconductors, master slice integrated circuit design, metal-oxide semiconductor materials and devices, thermodynamic properties of materials, infrared devices and systems, semiconductor interfaces, and integrated optics.
Biomedical engineering. The biomedical engineering program is interdisciplinary, with a faculty that includes members of the Department of Kinesiology and Health Education, the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, and several departments in the College of Engineering, as well as practicing physicians. The current research of this faculty includes bioinstrumentation, modeling and control of biological systems, biomedical computer and information technology, biomechanics, thermal processes, acquisition of physiological data by noninvasive means, engineering in the cardiovascular and pulmonary systems, biomaterials and artificial organs, effects of laser radiation on biological material, laser applications in medicine, biorheology, visual system instrumentation, computer vision, production and purification of genetically engineered proteins, acquisition and processing of neurological signals, neuroprostheses, applications of finite element modeling in medicine, acoustics and ultrasound, blood-protein coated surface interactions, image processing, thermography, and hyperthermia.
Computer engineering. This area involves research and study in computer architecture, computer systems and networks, theory and design of digital systems, and software engineering. Investigations include architecture design systems, parallel processing, microprocessor-based systems, fault-tolerant computing, test generation, computer-aided design, computer vision, VLSI systems design, and local area networks.
Manufacturing systems engineering. This area emphasizes the application of computers, information sciences, and information systems to the development of equipment and software systems for manufacturing. Students take the required core courses, Electrical Engineering 380N (Topic 7: Computer Control of Manufacturing Systems), 380N (Topic 9: Fundamentals of Robotics), and 390C, and additional courses in a specialized option. These specialization options include integrated circuit manufacturing, electronic packaging manufacturing, and manufacturing automation and assembly.
To enter the graduate program in electrical and computer engineering, a student should normally have an undergraduate degree in this field. A student with a degree in another field may enter if his or her background is appropriate for the chosen area of specialization; however, deficiencies in undergraduate preparation must be made up at the discretion of the Graduate Studies Committee. Standards for entrance into the program generally exceed the minimum standards established by the University; a departmental admissions committee recommends admission or nonadmission of individual applicants.
Graduate students in electrical and computer engineering are expected to be proficient in English. Any student who does not meet the proficiency standards of the University or the department may be required to complete a three-semester-hour technical communications and English course. The course is counted toward the student's course load for the semester but is not counted toward the fulfillment of course requirements for the graduate degree.
Entering students are urged to seek a compatible supervising professor. Students may work toward a Master of Science in Engineering degree or, with the approval of the Graduate Studies Committee, may proceed directly to the Doctor of Philosophy degree. More information about course loads, course selection, degree requirements, financial aid, and related matters is available from the office of the graduate adviser.
Master of Science in Engineering
There are three options for obtaining the master's degree. The thesis option requires thirty semester hours of coursework, of which six hours are given for the thesis course. The report option requires thirty-three semester hours of coursework, of which three hours are given for the report course. The master's degree without thesis or report requires thirty-six semester hours of coursework. All coursework for the master's degree should be taken for a letter grade.
Up to six semester hours of Electrical Engineering 397K (Topic 1: Conference Course) may be counted toward the master's degree. Normally, Electrical Engineering 197C-997C, 197G-997G, and 398T are not counted toward fulfillment of minimum semester hour requirements. All coursework in and outside electrical engineering must be logically related, and the student's entire program must be approved by the supervising committee, the graduate adviser, and the graduate dean. Specific regulations regarding the master's degree program are available from the graduate adviser.
Nontraditional program in software engineering. A nontraditional program is available in software engineering, in addition to the course of study offered in the standard program within the department. This master's degree program is designed for engineers and computer professionals who are employed full-time. Classes are scheduled on selected Fridays and Saturdays throughout the year; at least two calendar years of study are needed to complete the program. Students must prepare a master's report as part of their course requirements.
Doctor of Philosophy
Early in the doctoral degree program, the prospective candidate should select a supervising professor, after discussion with and consent of the faculty member so chosen. As early as possible thereafter, the candidate should prepare a tentative Program of Work, with the advice and approval of the supervising professor.
Formal entry into the doctoral program is achieved when the student is admitted to candidacy for the Doctor of Philosophy degree. The Graduate Studies Committee considers the student's admission to candidacy, upon completion of at least one full semester in residence, after a thorough review of the student's overall academic record and performance on a doctoral qualifying examination. A detailed description of the procedure for admission to candidacy is available from the graduate adviser. The doctoral program typically requires two to four years of work after the master's degree.
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Mailing address: Graduate Program, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas 78712-1084