Oct 21, 2020  
2013-2014 Graduate Catalog 

Master of Science in Electrical Engineering

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The Department of Electrical Engineering offers graduate studies leading to the M.S. in electrical engineering. The program is designed to stimulate creativity, to provide an in-depth understanding of the basic physical phenomena involved in electrical systems, and to provide the student with the ability to use modern techniques in the analysis and design of electrical components and systems. Bulletins describing graduate studies in electrical engineering are available from the departmental office.

Upon completion of their studies, graduates of the M.S. program will be able to:

1. Demonstrate the ability to formulate, analyze and solve advanced electrical engineering problems.
2. Demonstrate the ability to apply advanced design processes to engineering.
3. Demonstrate the ability to conduct research and development to investigate or create new systems, components, or processes.
4. Demonstrate the ability to communicate effectively.

Admission to the graduate program in electrical engineering requires a baccalaureate degree in electrical engineering or a related area such as physics, mathematical sciences, chemistry, computer science, or other science and engineering disciplines. Undergraduate students in electrical engineering can, however, enroll in the integrated B.S./M.S. sequence after finishing 90 semester hours with a GPA of at least 3.00.

Check departmental information for any additional requirements.

Requirements for Graduates with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering

By the end of first semester, students must declare an option under which they want to study. Students desiring to change their option may petition the department graduate committee with their request.

Thesis Option

Option 1

This option is designed to prepare students for graduate work at the doctoral level or work in jobs that require original research or product innovation. The degree concentrates on original research techniques that lead to the development of publishable work or patentable products. Because of the interdisciplinary nature of research topics in this option, the student shall be advised by an adviser and one or more co-advisers. The advising committee shall be created by the department’s chair after the student is accepted. The 30-semester-hour graduate program of courses must include at least 12 semester hours of ELE 699A, Master’s Thesis, 3-6 semester hours of ELE 690, Research Proposal, and a minimum of 12 semester hours of 600-level courses from the Department of Electrical Engineering at NIU, excluding ELE 690, ELE 699A, and ELE 699B. Before the student starts the course work, the student’s graduate committee shall approve the course work and may recommend other courses, including courses at the 500 level or from other departments. The thesis must be satisfactorily defended at an oral examination in front of a committee composed of the advising committee and a minimum of two other members from the graduate faculty or industry.

Option 2

This option is the traditional M.S. option where more course work and less research than Option-1 are required. Students must complete 31 semester hours of graduate course work with a minimum of 12 semester hours at the 600 level from the Department of Electrical Engineering, excluding ELE 699A, ELE 699B, and ELE 690. In addition, at least 1 semester hour of ELE 690 and 6 semester hours of ELE 699A, Master’s Thesis, on a topic approved by the student’s graduate committee must be taken. The thesis must be original research and satisfactorily defended at an oral examination.

Non-Thesis Option

Students pursuing a M.S. degree under this option must earn a minimum of 30 semester hours of graduate credit including 3 semester hours of ELE 699B, Master’s Project, which must lead to significant original work and must be defended at an oral examination and submission of a written report.

The student, with the support of his or her faculty adviser, must submit to the department a program of graduate study approved by the student’s graduate committee. Students are encouraged to take all course work at the 600 level. However, with the prior written approval of the adviser, a maximum of 12 semester hours can be taken at the 500 level.

Requirements for Graduates with a B.S. in an Area other than Electrical Engineering

Students with a B.S. degree in an area other than electrical engineering are required to take at least three courses from the following: ELE 210, ELE 250, ELE 315, ELE 330, ELE 335, ELE 340, ELE 350, ELE 356, ELE 360, ELE 370, and ELE 380. A grade of B or better is required for each of these courses. The thesis adviser must approve the set of courses to be taken. The student is also required to fulfill all the requirements in the previous section.

Requirements for Integrated B.S./M.S. Sequence

This integrated sequence leads to both the B.S. and M.S. degrees in electrical engineering and is open to all undergraduate electrical engineering majors who finished at least 90 semester hours of undergraduate work with a minimum GPA of 3.00. A minimum GPA of 3.00 must be maintained during the course of study. Failure to meet the requirements of the integrated sequence may lead to a B.S. degree only, but only after all the requirements for that degree have been met.

All students enrolled in this sequence must have their schedule approved by their faculty adviser each semester. Any deviation from an approved course schedule may delay graduation.

Students seeking to qualify for the integrated B.S. and M.S. sequence in electrical engineering must satisfy the following departmental requirements.

A minimum of 120 semester hours of course work must be taken including all undergraduate required courses. In addition, 30 semester hours that satisfy the chosen option must be taken for graduate credit.

Requirements for Graduates with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering listed above must be completed. Students’ course work must be approved by their student advisers before they take any graduate courses.

Specialization in Applied Radio Frequency (RF) Engineering (Thesis Option Only) (30)

Students pursuing this specialization must also fulfill relevant Requirements for Graduates with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering or Requirements for Graduates with a B.S. in an Area other than Electrical Engineering or Requirements for Integrated B.S./M.S. Sequence.

Other Requirements

Independent study courses may not be used to fulfill the M.S. degree requirements. Approved courses taken from other engineering or science departments or transferred from other institutions cannot be counted for the required 600-level courses from the Department of Electrical Engineering at NIU. Portions of the research or the project work required by ELE 699A or ELE 699B may be performed at off-campus facilities if approved by the student’s graduate committee. No more than 9 semester hours of transfer work plus credit earned as a student at large may be applied to the master’s degree.

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