University of Hawaii

Department of Electrical Engineering

Degree Requirements prior to Fall 2014

Master's Degree

Intended candidates for the MS degree in electrical engineering must present the BS degree in electrical engineering or the equivalent. Plan A (thesis) and Plan B (non-thesis) options are offered. However Plan B is only for Intern Plus Program students.

Requirements

Plan A (thesis): This program requires 30 credit hours in approved technical courses including one graduate seminar in electrical engineering or a related field. This plan requires 9 credit hours in EE 700 Thesis Research and a minimum of 12 credit hours in 600-level courses in a major track (computers, electro-physics, or systems), 6 credit hours in 400- or higher-level courses outside of the major track (engineering, mathematics, science), and 3 credit hours of electives in 400- and higher-level courses. A maximum of 6 credit hours in 400 level courses is allowed.

Plan B (non-thesis): A minimum of 30 credit hours is required with a grade of B or better (not B-minus). Students will be required to take at least 12 credits (600 level and above) in their major track, at least 6 credits (400 level and above) outside the major track, and 6 credits (600 level and above) as university-wide electives that are related to the student's major track of study. A maximum of 6 credits will be counted towards EE 699. As part of the curriculum, attendance at 12 departmental, or college, seminars or the equivalent is required. The final exam includes a written report and a seminar presentation (based on independent reading or research).

Doctoral Degree

Intended candidates for the PhD degree in electrical engineering must present the BS degree in electrical engineering or its equivalent. Applicants are encouraged to submit the GRE General Test scores. PhD students are required to achieve a good, broad understanding of electrical engineering fundamentals and a thorough knowledge, up to its present state, in a chosen specialty. Students must perform research in their special field under the guidance of a faculty advisor and present a dissertation that is an original contribution to electrical engineering. The dissertation must be a scholarly presentation suitable for publication.

Requirements

PhD students are required to specialize in a major track (computers, electro-physics, or systems) and show competence in a minor track. In addition to the MS course credit requirements, 9 credit hours of 600-level course work in the major track and 3 credit hours of 600-level course work in a minor track are required. All PhD students must also participate in a substantial teaching project and demonstrate competence in teaching.

Qualifying Examination

Intended candidates for the PhD degree register for three credits of a directed reading course under their advisor's direction during their first semester in the PhD program. By the end of the following semester the candidate takes an oral qualifying examination that tests the candidate's research potential and knowledge of pertinent fundamentals. Three graduate faculty members form the examining committee: one member of the committee is the candidate's advisor; the graduate committee selects the final two committee members. At least one of the committee members selected by the graduate committee must be from the student's major track of specialization. At least two committee members must pass the intended candidate; else, the candidate repeats the exam by the end of his/her third semester in the program. A candidate who does not pass the qualifying exam by the end of the third semester is dropped from the PhD program.  

The candidates starting in the fall semester can petition to take the qualifying exam by the end of their first summer semester. In unusual circumstances (including an advisor change), the candidates can petition to postpone their qualifying exams up to a semester.

(The candidates are requested to complete and submit the EE PhD Qual form, which can be downloaded by clicking here, or picked up from the EE office. Candidates who enter the PhD program in a fall semester are requested to submit the form by the following March 1; while candidates who enter the PhD program in a spring semester are requested to submit the form by the following October 1.)

After passing the qualifying examination, students are advanced to candidacy and must have a doctoral committee appointed within two semesters. The committee should consist of at least five members, one of whom must be in a department other than electrical engineering. After appointment of the committee, students should work out a tentative program of courses that meets with the committee's approval.

Comprehensive Examination

When students have completed most of their course work, they must pass a comprehensive examination before research is undertaken. This consists of an oral examination given by the entire committee; it may be preceded, at the discretion of individual committee members, by an additional oral or written examination. Students who fail may repeat the examination only once, no sooner than three months after the first examination. Once students pass the comprehensive examination, they may proceed with dissertation research.

Final Examination

At the conclusion of the research, students write a dissertation that must be approved by a majority of the doctoral committee. Finally, students must pass another oral examination covering primarily the dissertation.

Seminar Policy

Students must attend at least twelve seminars from the department seminar series, thesis defenses, and/or technical conferences. A student receives a credit of three attended seminars for giving a seminar that is not his/her final public defense, or for giving a conference presentation. Students entering before Spring 1999 are also encouraged to attend seminars and conferences, and to give presentations of their work. Attendance should be taken by the track coordinator for the departmental seminars and by the student's advisor for thesis defenses. Documentation should be provided by the student's advisor for conference attendance and conference presentations. Attendance lists and documentation should be submitted to the Graduate Secretary.    

Forms

MS Plan A Check Sheet

MS Plan B Check Sheet

MS Course Schedule

PhD (holding MS) Check Sheet

PhD (holding BS) Check Sheet