General Program Requirements:
Number of Credits Required Beyond the Baccalaureate: 30
Students choose between three tracks:
- Thesis Track, which is intended for full-time students who have a financial aid award and includes 24 s.h. of didactic coursework and 6 s.h. of thesis (ECE 9996).
- Project Track, which is intended for full-time students who are self-supporting and includes 27 s.h. of didactic coursework and 3 s.h. of project (ECE 9995).
- Coursework Track, which is intended for self-supporting part-time students and entails 30 s.h. of didactic coursework.
In the first term, the student and ECE Graduate Program Director jointly establish which track the student will follow; in doing this, they initiate the "M.S.E.E. Plan of Study." The Plan of Study form lists all required courses and suggests an M.S.E.E. program-requirement execution sequence for the student to follow. This form is used to track the student's progress, and is updated and annotated at least once a year as the student completes the various benchmarks in the M.S.E.E. program.
If a student's circumstances change, s/he can change tracks by revising the Plan of Study form and obtaining the requisite approval signatures. However, when considering whether to change one's track, the student should note that:
- "Thesis" credits (ECE 9996) can only be applied toward the Thesis M.S.E.E. degree program and cannot be applied to either the Project or Coursework Tracks.
- "Project" credits (ECE 9995) can only be applied toward the Project M.S.E.E. degree program and cannot be used for either the Coursework or Thesis Tracks.
In all three options, the didactic coursework may include up to, but no more than, 3 s.h. of ENGR 9182 Independent Study I or 3 s.h. of ECE 9991 Directed Research. Furthermore, students who wish to take graduate coursework in Temple University schools/colleges other than the College of Engineering will need to obtain the appropriate written approvals on their Plan of Study form.
Culminating Events: Depends on the student's choice of track: Thesis, Project, or Coursework.
The master's thesis is the culminating event in the Thesis Track and is typically undertaken during the last two successive terms of study. Successful completion requires the following:
- Thesis Proposal — ECE 9996 Thesis I (3 s.h.)
The student assembles a committee of three or more faculty members, including her/his advisor, who is typically a full-time ECE faculty member. The student's Plan of Study should be updated, if necessary, to indicate the advisor's name.
Under the guidance of the advisor and committee, the student prepares a research proposal and presents her/his proposal in an open College-wide seminar. The student is responsible for scheduling the proposal and posting an announcement at least 10 business days in advance of this seminar. Ordinarily, the proposal seminar is immediately followed by a meeting of the student's advisory committee in which the student is closely questioned about the details and strategy of the proposed research. The proposal is then accepted by the committee, accepted by the committee with revisions, or rejected by the committee.
The student's advisory committee also jointly determines the letter grade (A-F) for Thesis I at the end of the term. The student must pass Thesis I before registering for Thesis II. If the student fails Thesis I, s/he may either re-register for Thesis I in the next regular term and repeat the entire proposal process (noting that a second failure will result in automatic dismissal from the University) or consider switching to the Project or Coursework Track, with the relevant updating of the Plan of Study form.
- Thesis Defense — ECE 9996 Thesis II (3 s.h.)
The student should register for Thesis II in the term that s/he is prepared to defend the thesis. The thesis document should be prepared in a format compliant with University standards. (See Graduate School Policy 02.26.12.02.) The student should provide her/his committee with a copy of the completed thesis at least two weeks before the date of the thesis defense.
The thesis is scheduled during a regular academic term, including summer terms. It should not be scheduled during study days, final exams, or the breaks between terms. The student should arrange for, and post an announcement of, the thesis defense at least 10 business days in advance of the defense. Furthermore, if the student is to graduate in the same term that s/he defends the thesis, the defense should be scheduled no later than 30 days prior to the end of the term to allow for document revisions in keeping with Graduate School deadlines, as specified at http://www.temple.edu/grad/documents/Dissertation-and-Thesis-Handbook.pdf.
The thesis defense is an open College seminar in which the student presents the concepts and results of her/his research. Normally, this presentation is immediately followed by a meeting of the thesis committee, which closely examines the student's research. The committee can accept the thesis as provided, accept the thesis with revisions, or not accept the thesis. If the thesis is accepted, the committee jointly decides on a letter grade for Thesis II. If the thesis is not accepted, but the committee decides to not fail the student:
- an "R" grade is assigned to Thesis II;
- the student registers in each subsequent term for one credit of ENGR 9991 Directed Research until s/he is again prepared to attempt the defense; and
- the entire open-seminar defense procedure described above is carried out in the term that the student is prepared to defend the thesis.
The project is the culminating event in the Project Track. It is normally carried out in the student's last term of study. The student selects an advisor (usually a full-time faculty member in the ECE Department), registers for ECE 9995 Project, and conducts a one-term research activity under the supervision of the advisor. Near the end of the term, the student prepares a report of her/his findings and presents the study in an open departmental seminar. Both the seminar and the written report are used to determine the student's grade for ECE 9995. The grade is jointly determined by the advisor and a second grader selected by the ECE Graduate Program Director, as recorded in the Plan of Study.
No culminating event is warranted for the Coursework Track.