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Graduate Program Information
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
University of Illinois at Chicago


This page is all about Master of Science degree.
Master of Science students may elect either a thesis or a course only option. No other options are available. A student must complete (i) 36 credit hours of graduate course work and thesis research under a thesis option, or (ii) 40 credit hours of graduate course work under a course only option.
Degree Requirements - Master of Science (course only option)

  • Complete 40 credit hours of graduate course work, including a minimum of 32 hours of ECE graduate course work at 400 or 500 level.
    • Complete at least four 500 level ECE courses (minimum 16 semester hours), including no more than one 594 course and excluding seminar, individual study, project or thesis research courses (ECE 595, 596, 597 and 598).
    • Up to 8 hours of non-ECE graduate course work, completed with prior department approval, may be applied toward the M.S. degree.
    • A Computer Engineering (CE) student may substitute up to 4 hours out of the 16 hours required 500 level ECE course work with a 400-level ECE course if the student completes the same number of hours with a 500-level CS course (excluding CS 595, 596, 597, 598, 599). This course counts against the limit of non-ECE course work allowed.
      Examples.
      1. Student #1: (EE or CE). 4 ECE 500 level courses (16 hours) + 4 ECE 400 level courses + 2 other courses.
      2. Student #2: (CE). 3 ECE 500 level courses + 1 CS 500 level course + 5 ECE 400 level courses + 1 other course.
  • All students must enroll in ECE 595 at least one semester.
  • Credit earned in ECE 596 (Individual Study) may not be applied torwards M.S. degree.
  • No graduation credit will be given for credit/no credit courses.

Degree Requirements - Master of Science (thesis option)

  • Complete 28 credit hours of graduate course work, including a minimum of 24 hours of ECE graduate course work at 400 or 500 level.
    • Complete at least three 500 level ECE courses (minimum 12 semester hours), including no more than one 594 course and excluding seminar, individual study, project or thesis research courses (ECE 595, 596, 597 and 598).
    • Up to 4 hours of non-ECE graduate course work, completed with prior department approval, may be applied toward the M.S. degree.
    • A Computer Engineering (CE) student may fulfill part of the 500-level ECE course requirements by completing up to 4 hours of gradute coursework at the 500-level in CS department. CS course must be completed with prior department approval. This does not count against the limit of non-ECE course work allowed. (excluding CS 595, 596, 597, 598, 599), Examples.
      1. Student #1: (EE or CE). 3 ECE 500 level courses (12 hours) + 3 ECE 400 level courses + 1 other course.
      2. Student #2: (CE). 2 ECE 500 level courses + 1 CS 500 level course + 3 ECE 400 level courses +1 other course.
  • Complete 8 credit hours of thesis research (ECE 598). A final thesis should be completed in compliance with ECE Department and Graduate College regulations and deadlines. No more than 8 hours of ECE 598 may be applied toward the degree.
  • All students must enroll in ECE 595 at least one semester.
  • Credit earned in ECE 596 (individual study) may not be applied towards the M.S. Degree.
  • No graduation credit will be given for credit/no credit courses.


Master Thesis Guidelines

  1. Select an advisor from the ECE or affiliated department faculty. All ECE assistant, associate and full professors are eligible to serve as primary or secondary advisors. Discuss thesis proposals and expectations.

  2. Under your advisor's direction, conduct your thesis research, registering for at least 8 hours of ECE 598. If you are required to maintain a minimum number of hours of course work, you may register for more hours of ECE 598, but no more than 8 hours will be credited toward your degree. Consult the UIC graduate catalog for continuous registration regulations.

  3. Complete the Apply to Graduate/Pending Degree List (Graduation Request Form) by the published deadline. For filing for graduation you will need to go to Web for student at https://osssorawebprod2.admin.uillinois.edu/WEBFORSTUDENT/wfs3.asp   and click on the Records link.

  4. Select a thesis committee with your advisor, and obtain their approval to serve on your committee. Provide your committee members with a copy of your thesis and arrange a mutually acceptable date for your thesis defense. Submit the Committee Recommendation Form to the Student Affairs Office (Room 1020 SEO) at least three weeks prior to the scheduled thesis defense date.

  5. The Graduate College will generate an Examination Report form and two Thesis Certificates of Approval (red bordered forms), which will be given to your thesis advisor prior to the defense date. After the defense, obtain the three forms and see the Graduate Coordinator in Room 1020 SEO.

  6. Submit the defended and corrected thesis to Student Affairs Office (Room 1020 SEO) at least one week prior to the Graduate College deadline for a format approval. She/he will review the format and notify you of any needed corrections in 24 hours. Please refer to Thesis Manual of the Graduate College as a guide line for the format.

  7. File any final petitions (i.e., request for a time extension or transfer of credits) and M.S. thesis checklist (obtain the advisor's signature on this checklist) and submit it to Student Affairs Office (Room 1020 SEO).

  8. Submit the two watermarked copies of your thesis, envelopes, Examination Report, and Certificates of Approval to the Graduate College by the published deadline. Submit a duplicate copy to Room 1020 SEO (regular paper is acceptable).

  9. Return all borrowed equipment and keys to Room 1020.


Academic Performance

A student's curriculum should be planned in cooperation with his/her advisor.

All graduate students are required to maintain a 3.0/4.0 grade point average (GPA). The GPA calculation does not include seminar, independent study, and research courses (ECE 595, 596, 597, and 598).

Graduate course work must be satisfied with a C grade or higher. If a student's GPA falls below 3.0/4.0, the Graduate College will issue a letter of warning and impose academic probation for a specified period of time. Failure to comply with the terms will likely result in expulsion from the Graduate College.

A student on probation or limited standing is ineligible for department awarded financial aid, recommendation letters for F-1 practical training, or graduation.


Time Limitation

All degree requirements must be completed within five years of initial registration in the degree program. Different time allowances apply to students on time-limited visas. Students who fail to graduate within five years will be dismissed from the Graduate College for failure to progress.


Registration

M.S. students who have completed all course credit requirements, except the thesis requirement, are not required to register during regular semesters. Registration (of zero credit hours) is required if a student plans to use any university facilities.

Students on a time-limited visa must petition to register for zero hours every semester (excluding summer) until they graduate. Details are available in the Office of International Services.


Credit Hours Required by the University of Illinois at Chicago

At least 24 hours of graduate work required for the M.S. degree must be earned as a degree candidate at the University of Illinois at Chicago.


Transfer of Credit Hours

After admission to the M.S. program, students may petition to transfer a maximum of 9 semester hours earned outside the university. Transfer credit courses must be relevant to the program of study. A transcript showing the courses and grades must accompany the petition. A detailed outline of the courses, including information about the textbook and material covered, should be included. Students must also provide an official letter from the university stating the courses were not used to satisfy any prior degree requirements.

Non-degree to degree students may petition up to 12 semester hours of credit earned at UIC. Only relevant graduate level courses in which a grade of A or B was earned will be considered.


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