Jul 25, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Calendar 
2023-2024 Graduate Calendar [ARCHIVED CALENDAR]

Electrical and Computer Engineering, PhD

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General information

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) program in Electrical and Computer Engineering allows a student to study in all major areas associated with electrical, computer and software systems engineering. These areas include electronics, intelligent systems, communications, control, biomedical, power electronics, power generation, software engineering, mobile systems and embedded software systems. These disciplines are expected to be in high demand by employers.

In addition, students in the PhD program can specialize in one of the following four fields:

  • Communications and Signal Processing

  • Control Systems

  • Power Systems and Power Electronics

  • Software Systems

Alternatively, a student can choose to cover many facets of the broad discipline of electrical, computer and software engineering. Topics can vary widely and may include communications, networking, intelligent control systems, robotics, computer vision, health informatics, mobile systems, power systems and smart power grids.

A current list of graduate faculty is available on the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science’s website.

Admisson requirements

In addition to the general admission requirements for graduate studies , applicants must meet the following program-specific requirements.

The minimum admission requirement for the PhD program is completion of a MASc-level degree in engineering at a Canadian university or its equivalent.

Under exceptional circumstances, MASc students may transfer directly to the PhD program after completing one academic year in the MASc program if the following conditions are met:

  1. They complete a full master’s program of course work (five graduate courses worth a total of 15 credits) with at least an A average.
  2. They show strong evidence of research ability.
  3. The research supervisor(s) and supervisory committee approve the direct transfer. The transfer must also be approved by the graduate program director and the Dean of Graduate Studies. Normally, the faculty will require up to 12 additional credits of course work in the PhD program.

See the university’s policy on transferring from a thesis-based master’s to a PhD program  for additional information.

Part-time studies

To facilitate access to all potential students, part-time studies are permitted. Engineers in local industries and government agencies, for example, may wish to access the MEng program through part-time studies.

Degree requirements

Students in the PhD program must complete four courses worth a total of 12 credits, the PhD Candidacy Exam (ENGR 6001G ), Seminar (ENGR 6007G ), Workshops (ENGR 6006G ) and a dissertation worth 40 credits (ENGR 6002G ).

A student who transfers directly into the PhD program after one full year in the MASc program must complete nine courses worth a total of 27 credits, Seminar (ENGR 6007G ), Workshops (ENGR 6006G ) and a dissertation worth 40 credits (ENGR 6002G ).

Within 18 months of entry into the PhD program, PhD students must prepare a written research proposal and pass the oral PhD candidacy exam (ENGR 6001G ). PhD students must successfully defend their dissertation (ENGR 6002G ) in front of an examining committee.

Note: PhD students may not take any undergraduate-level courses in lieu of their graduate course requirements.

Courses outside of the program

Students may take up to two courses in other graduate programs at the university, provided that students have not taken similar courses during their undergraduate or master’s degrees, and the courses are approved by the graduate program director. Students who wish to take courses outside of their program must gain approval from the graduate program director. Students who are uncertain about the academic background needed for a graduate course should consult the course instructor before registering for the course.

Course listing

Graduate courses offered are listed below. Courses related to communications and signal processing are numbered as ENGR 56xxG. Courses related to software and computer systems are numbered as ENGR 57xxG. Courses related to electronics and mechatronics are numbered as ENGR 58xxG. Courses related to control systems and power systems are numbered as ENGR 59xxG.

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