General Student Information

Advisor Changes

M.S. students who are interested in changing their advisor may do so by submitting an Change of Advisor form to the ECE Office of Graduate Student Affairs. The form will require the signatures of the student’s current and proposed advisor.

Ph.D. students who are considering a change of advisor are encouraged to meet with the ECE Office of Graduate Student Affairs before proceeding, as doing so could alter the status of their funding.

Area Changes

Students who would like to change their ECE Department area may do so by submitting a Change of Advisor form, with an advisor from another area as their proposed advisor.  If their advisor is active in more than one ECE area, the student may have them sign under both the “Current” and “Proposed” advisor sections, with their current and proposed areas listed under the appropriate sections of the form.  Upon this change, students will be responsible for meeting the course requirements of their new area.

Filing Fee

The Filing Fee allows M.S. Project, M.S. Thesis, or Ph.D. students to pay a reduced fee so that they may file their dissertation during a given quarter without the need to register and enroll.  While in Filing Fee status, students may lose access to certain services available to registered students.  Students who intend to use the Filing Fee during the academic year, must submit a Filing Fee application by end of Week 7 of the quarter prior to the intended quarter of usage. Additionally, the student must have advanced to candidacy by the quarter prior to the term that they expect to be in Filing-Fee status.

M.S. students will also need to submit a draft of their project or thesis, and a timeline of their work, from the initial stages to their proposed date of completion. (Ph.D. students are not required to submit these documents).  The draft must be approved by the student’s academic advisor with a physical signature or by an email from the advisor’s email address. M.S. Students who intend to apply for the Filing Fee will need to submit a draft of their project or thesis that is nearly complete and requires only minor stylistic or typographical changes. M.S. students should outline the intended revisions during the Filing Fee quarter as an attachment to their timeline.

Summary of Required Documents

Filing Fee ApplicationRequiredRequired
Draft of Project or ThesisRequiredNot Required
TimelineRequiredNot Required
DeadlineM.S. Project StudentsM.S. Thesis StudentsPh.D. Students
Final day of Week 9 during Quarter of GraduationDeadline to submit ECE 299 Project and slidesN/AN/A
Last day of the quarter, at 5:00 p.m.N/ADeadline to submit thesis and receive approval from all committee membersDeadline to defend, submit dissertation, and receive approval from all committee members

Students on the Capstone – Courses option, or M.S. students who intend to continue directly into the Ph.D. Program are not eligible to use the Filing Fee.

Individual-Studies Units

With their advisor’s permission, graduate students who need to enroll in additional units may enroll in 2 to 12 or 2 to 16 units of their advisor’s section of the appropriate EC ENGR 590-Level seminar below:

Course NumberCourse TitleNumber of UnitsVariable Units for:
ECE 597APreparation for M.S. Comprehensive Examination2 – 12M.S. Students on the Project or Courses Option
ECE 597BPreparation for Ph.D. Preliminary Examinations2 – 16Ph.D. Students who have completed their M.S. Degree, but have not passed the Ph.D. Preliminary Examination
ECE 597CPreparation for Ph.D. Oral Qualifying Examination2 – 16Ph.D. Students who have passed the Ph.D. Preliminary Examination, but that have not passed their Oral Qualifying Examination
ECE 598Research for and Preparation of M.S. Thesis2 – 12M.S. Thesis Students
ECE 599Research for and Preparation of Ph.D. Dissertation2 – 16Ph.D. Students who have passed their Oral Qualifying Examination

It is highly recommended that students determine their advisor’s expectations for enrollment in their individual-studies section. Failure to do so may result in an unsatisfactory grade.

It is important to note that none of the 590-level seminar courses, with the exception of ECE 598, may count toward the course requirements of any degree program. These seminars are only for students who must meet a unit minimum for purposes such as maintaining a full-time enrollment or a Graduate Student Researcher (GSR), Reader, or Teaching Assistant (TA) position.

ECE 598 is strictly for students completing an M.S. thesis. In addition to the 8-unit minimum required for their degree requirements, M.S. thesis students are allowed to enroll in more than that amount during any given quarter for additional units. For MS thesis students, ECE 598 and ECE 597A are mutually exclusive.

In the event that a student’s current advisor does not approve of their enrollment in an individual-studies section the student may wish to consider changing advisors.

Tenth-Week Deadlines

Graduate students are responsible for knowing the date of the tenth week deadline each quarter. It is by Friday of Week 10, at 5:00 p.m. that students must finalize any course enrollments, course drops, or unit changes for a variable-units course.  After this date, all study lists are effectively permanent and will appear on a student’s transcript.