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Oklahoma State University

Doctor of Philosophy Degree Program

The Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Electrical Engineering is an academic, research-based degree for students who wish to advance the state-of-the-art in engineering science and technology through fundamental research. The Ph.D. degree prepares students for careers in academic, government, and industrial research.

Students who have filed notice with the Graduate College of intention to become a candidate for the Ph.D. Degree in Electrical Engineering will need an advisory committee. This committee will be chaired by a member of the Faculty of the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering and will include at least two additional ECE faculty, and should have representation of at least one other department in which the student contemplates taking course(s).

If a student already enrolled as a candidate for the MSEE degree wishes to file notice to become a candidate for the Ph.D. degree, he/she should petition the Graduate College to designate his/her advisor for the Master’s program as his/her temporary Ph.D. advisor in order to preserve continuity in his/her program.

The minimum requirement for the Doctoral Degree is 90 credit-hours beyond a Bachelor’s Degree, or approximately 60 hours beyond the Master’s Degree. This includes credit for the dissertation. This requirement may, however, be increased at the discretion of the student’s advisory committee. Dissertation credit is determined by the student’s major professor or advisory committee (a maximum of 36 semester credit hours is allowed). A typical Plan of Study (beyond the B.S. degree) must have a minimum of 45 coursework hours, a maximum of nine (9) 5000-level research hours, and a maximum of 36 dissertation hours.

The contents of an approved Plan of Study will be determined by the student and his advisory committee. Normally, the student will take all of the courses offered in at least the sequence of specialized graduate work embracing the field of interest in which he proposes to conduct research. A maximum of three (3) 4000-level ECEN courses approved for graduate credit may be included toward the Ph.D. 90 credit hour requirement (including any courses that were included on a MSEE Plan of Study). The list of approved courses is included at the end of this memorandum.

A sufficient concentration of subjects offered by one of the other departments of the Graduate College may be accepted as a minor if the faculty of the department involved is represented on the student’s advisory committee.

The School of Electrical and Computer Engineering waives the foreign-language requirement for the Ph.D. Degree.

A student may apply for candidacy for the Ph.D. degree upon completing 30 credit-hours beyond the MSEE degree or 60 credit-hours beyond the BSEE degree.

Initial Assessment Examination (ECEN 6050): ECEN 6050, Preliminary Research and Recommendation, will be used to evaluate the student’s ability to perform independent research on an advanced topic. Note that the research should be independent, but it is not necessarily original research. The student will provide his/her Ph.D. committee with a document that details his/her research (two weeks before the presentation). In the presentation, the student will summarize his/her research in an oral presentation to the advisory committee and make a recommendation on how the current state-of-the-art might be extended through novel research. Students will receive minimal guidance from the advisor during the preparation of the 6050 document. The submitted document and oral presentation must primarily reflect the student’s own work. Enrollment in ECEN 6050 in the first semester after admission to the Ph.D. program is required. The oral examination must be taken prior to beginning the second semester after enrollment. The advisory committee has the option of assigning an incomplete grade in ECEN 6050 to students who do not successfully pass the examination on the initial attempt. In this case, the student must repeat and pass the examination prior to the completion of the second semester of study. Students who are admitted directly into the Ph.D. program upon completion of the BS degree will be considered to have entered the Ph.D. program upon completion of 30 hours of graduate credit and must complete the Initial Assessment Examination within two semesters of that time.

Plan of Study: An initial Plan of Study must be submitted to the Graduate College prior the completion of the third semester of enrollment. The procedure for submitting the Plan of Study is outlined at

Candidacy for Degree: A student should apply for candidacy for the Ph.D. degree per OSU Graduate College requirements upon completing 30 credit-hours after the MSEE Degree or 60 credit-hours after the Bachelor’s degree. The School of Electrical and Computer Engineering requirements for candidacy consist of an initial dissertation proposal in the form of a written outline that has been approved by the Doctoral Committee.

Final Dissertation Proposal Defense: The School of Electrical and Computer Engineering requires that a final written dissertation proposal be submitted to the student’s advisory committee and defended orally before the committee. It will be evaluated by the advisory committee to judge the candidate’s progress toward the dissertation degree requirement and to assess the student’s ability to present and defend the results of original research. The proposal and defense will not be used to explore the candidate’s comprehension of course work not related to his or her research investigation. The Ph.D. candidate is expected to participate in published scholarship. At the time of the proposal defense the student must have (at least) submitted a paper on his/her research for publication in a peer-reviewed conference or journal. Any deficiencies that may have been uncovered in this report MUST have been rectified before a candidate can be permitted to defend the final dissertation. The Final Dissertation Proposal Defense must be successfully completed at least six months prior to the final dissertation defense.

Dissertation Defense: The final thesis examination will be conducted to judge the candidate’s ability to present and defend the results of original research. Although referred to in the Graduate Catalog as the “final” examination, this examination will not be used to explore the candidate’s comprehension of course work not related to his research investigation. At the time of this final examination, the student must have (at least) submitted a journal paper on his/her research. Any deficiencies that may have been uncovered in previous examinations MUST have been rectified before a candidate can be permitted to take his/her thesis examination.

ECEN 4133 Power Electronics
ECEN 4153 Power System Analysis and Design
ECEN 4213 Computer-Based System Design
ECEN 4233 High Speed Computer Arithmetic
ECEN 4243 Computer Architecture
ECEN 4303 Digital Electronics Circuit Design
ECEN 4413 Automatic Control Systems
ECEN 4523 Communication Theory
ECEN 4533 Data Communications
ECEN 4613 Microwave Engineering
ECEN 4763 Introduction to Digital Signal Processing
ECEN 4773 Real Time Digital Signal Processing
ECEN 4823 Design of Optical Systems
ECEN 4843 Design of Lasers and Systems