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Background Requirements for Graduate Students

Background Requirements for Graduate Students

Certain basic principles must be thoroughly understood by every graduate student in order to make reasonable progress in the ECE Graduate Program. Accordingly, it is expected that students entering the program will have adequate background at the undergraduate level of the following material:

  1. Electromagnetic fields and waves:
    Static and dynamic fields, wave phenomena, forces and motion of charged particles in fields, transmission lines, and propagation of electromagnetic disturbances.
  2. Electronic circuits and physical electronics:
    Basic physical electronics of devices, equivalent circuits (small-signal and large-signal models) for such devices, and the application of circuit analysis to the study of electronic circuits.
  3. Networks and systems:
    Fundamental principles of network analysis, signal analysis using Fourier series and Fourier integrals, Laplace transforms, and stability of linear systems.
  4. Computers:
    Computer programming in an assembly language and in a high level language, design of combinational and sequential logic circuits, and fundamentals of computer organization and design.
  5. Energy conversion:
    Application of the principle of conservation of energy and virtual work to the study of forces, torques, and voltage production in energy conversion devices and systems, and the fundamentals of magnetic circuits. Detailed knowledge of the operation of rotating machines is not required.
  6. Probabilistic methods in engineering:
    Fundamentals of the theory of probability including random variables, expectation and limit theorems.

A student whose background is deficient in any of the above areas is required to acquire the necessary knowledge. This may be done by enrolling in selected undergraduate courses for hours credit; or by auditing courses or by independent study, following which the student takes a proficiency examination. In some instances, the Department may require a student to enroll in one or more undergraduate courses for hours credit. A grade of B or better must be achieved in all courses taken to remedy background deficiencies.

Courses covering the fundamentals in areas (1)-(6) above are not approved for graduate credit in the ECE Graduate Program and must be taken for hours credit. Other 400-level courses that cover material primarily intended for undergraduates also cannot be taken for graduate credit. The 400-level courses not approved for graduate credit are

ECE 311413415330340342343345, and 350

PHYS 404, 405, 435, and 436

STAT 400