B.S./M.S. Integrated Degree Programs (IDP)
The Electrical and Computer Engineering Graduate Program offers two B.S./M.S. integrated degree programs -- the Electrical and Computer Engineering Integrated Degree Program (IDP) for ECE undergraduates and the Joint Physics-Electrical and Computer Engineering IDP for Physics undergraduates.
The ECE IDP Program is offered to ECE and Physics undergraduate students who would like to pursue a Master's degree in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Graduate Program. Students may apply to the IDP program as an undergraduate student during their junior year. Late applications with a justification may be considered. Admitted IDP students will begin the program in their final year as an undergraduate student. Students are required to complete two graduate-level courses during their undergraduate education and apply for admissions to the graduate program for the following year.
IDP Application reopens March 2023 for Undergraduate Class of 2024
- During Junior Year
Students may apply if they are an undergraduate student who wishes to complete an M.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering through the IDP program, and if they have junior standing as of the fall quarter.
Materials for IDP admission consideration include:
♦ ECE B.S./M.S. application form
♦ Cumulative GPA of 3.5 or greater must list three references.
♦ Cumulative GPA of <3.5 must submit three letters of recommendation
♦ Transcripts required for all attended institutions
♦ Statements of Purpose or Personal History
♦ Upon admission, students will complete two graduate level courses concurrently with their undergraduate education. Once admitted to the IDP, participants are required to maintain a UC Davis cumulative GPA of 3.2 in their coursework to advance to graduate standing upon completion of the bachelor’s degree.
There will be a request to upload the following documents: transcript(s), Statement of Purpose and Personal History Statement at the end of the application. Please format the title of your documents accordingly: Lastname, Firstname_Institution's Name, Transcript (e.g., Doe, John_UCD Transcript, Doe, John_Statement of Purpose)
Statement of Purpose
Please describe your motivation, academic preparation, and aptitude for graduate study at UC Davis. You should describe your academic plans and research interests, your specialization within your academic field, your research experiences, and your career goals. Please limit your statement to 500 words maximum.
Personal History Statement
Please discuss how your personal background informs your decision to pursue a graduate degree. Please include any educational, familial, economic, or social experiences, challenges, or opportunities relevant to your academic journey; how your life experiences contribute to the social, intellectual, or cultural diversity within your chosen field; and/or how you might serve educationally underrepresented segments of society with your degree. Please limit your statement to 500 words maximum.
- Admission Requirements to Advance to Graduate Standing
Students admitted to ECE’s IDP program must additionally submit a graduate application in their final year as an undergraduate student, by the stated deadline, in order to transition into graduate standing. Application deadlines are updated yearly and are available on the ECE graduate application webpage. Applications are submitted online through the Office of Graduate Studies. Additional materials required for admission consideration include:
♦ Three letters of recommendation – required regardless of GPA;
♦ A statement of purpose – which should indicate the student is applying for the B.S./M.S. IDP and the quarter the student expects to begin graduate study in addition to their intent to do research;
♦ A personal history and diversity statement;
♦ Graduate Record Examination (GRE) – General Test, if applicable.
♦ Students with a UC Davis cumulative GPA above 3.5 and at least 3 quarters in residence will have the GRE exam requirement waived. The GRE is required, as for general applicants, for those with a UC Davis cumulative GPA below 3.5 and/or less than 3 quarters in residence.
The student is awarded a bachelor’s degree as soon as their B.S. requirements are completed. Students in the IDP program should apply to switch to graduate status in the quarter immediately following completion of their B.S. degree.
Deficiencies: Admitted students not holding a bachelor’s degree in electrical and computer engineering must complete a remedial course plan.
Students with a background other than electrical or computer engineering should meet with the ECE Graduate Advisor during their first quarter of residence to determine the required sequence of remedial courses. Students must demonstrate competency by completing the remedial course requirements, obtaining a grade of B or better, in six of the courses listed below or their equivalents. The six courses must be selected from at least three of the six areas listed.
Active and Passive Circuits:
♦ EEC110A Electronic Circuits I
♦ EEC110B Electronic Circuits II
♦ EEC130A Introductory Electromagnetics I
♦ EEC130B Introductory Electromagnetics II
♦ EEC140A Principles of Device Physics I
♦ EEC140B Principles of Device Physics II
Signals and Systems:
♦ EEC150 Introduction to Signals and Systems
♦ EEC151 Digital Signals and Systems
♦ ECS36A Introduction to Programming and Problem Solving
♦ ECS36B Introduction to Software Development
♦ EEC170 Introduction to Computer Architecture
♦ EEC18 Digital Systems I
♦ EEC180 Digital Systems II
None of these courses can be counted toward an ECE graduate degree and cannot be taken on an “S/U” basis. Remedial courses may be taken concurrently with courses used to satisfy graduate degree requirements and must be completed prior to advancing to candidacy.
IDP M.S. Degree - Master’s Plan I (Thesis) and Plan II (Exam)
Students should decide, in consultation with their major professor, which plan best suits their individual goals. Plan I gives the student an opportunity to perform in-depth research and thesis writing, whereas Plan II provides more learning from coursework.
- IDP M.S. Plan I
- This plan requires a minimum of 30 units of graduate and upper division courses (the 100 and 200 series only), of which at least 12 units must be graduate engineering courses (200 series) in the major field. No more than 3 units of graduate seminar and 9 research units can be used to satisfy the 30-unit requirement. In addition, a thesis is required. The thesis serves as the capstone requirement. All courses listed on the Program of Study must be passed with a “B-“ or higher. A course in which a student receives a “C+” or lower cannot be used to satisfy the unit requirement for the M.S. degree, but will count in determining the grade point average.
Thirty (30) units of upper-division and graduate course work, a thesis, and a minimum of three quarters of academic residence are required.
At least 12 of the 30 units must be ECE graduate courses (excluding 29X seminar series and 299), at most 9 units can be research (299), at most 3 units can be seminar (290-297, excluding 290C) in ECE or other approved program, and the remaining units required to total 30 units must either be upper division technical or graduate courses. A student should register for the number of 299 research and independent study units that reflects the actual effort and time devoted to thesis work, although no more than nine units can be counted.
Courses required for the ECE undergraduate degree, or the following courses: EEC100, EEC110A/B, EEC130A/B, EEC140A/B, EEC150, EEC151, EEC161, EEC170, EEC172, and EEC180, may not be used to satisfy the requirements of the ECE M.S. degree.
Full-time students must enroll for 12 units per quarter including research, academic and seminar units. Courses that fulfill any of the program course requirements may not be taken S/U unless the course is normally graded S/U. Once course requirements are completed, students can take additional classes as needed, although the 12 units per quarter are generally fulfilled with a research class (299) and perhaps seminars. Per UC regulations, students cannot enroll in more than 12 units of graduate level courses (200) or more than 16 units of combined undergraduate and graduate level (100, 200, 300) courses per quarter.
All graduate students are required to take EEC290, Seminar in Electrical and Computer Engineering, each Fall quarter. An S grade in EEC390, the Teaching of Electrical and Computer Engineering, is required to be eligible to hold a Teaching Assistantship in ECE, but may not be used to satisfy graduate coursework requirements.
- IDP M.S. Plan II
- This plan requires a minimum of 36 units of graduate and upper division courses (the 100 and 200 series only). At least 18 units must be graduate courses (200 series), excluding seminar and research units, of which at least 15 units must be in graduate electrical and computer engineering courses. Not more than 3 units of graduate seminar and 6 units of research (299 or equivalent) may be used to satisfy the 36-unit requirement. A comprehensive final examination in the major subject is required of each candidate. No thesis is required. The capstone requirement is fulfilled by a capstone written report, and oral examination, on an appropriately comprehensive topic after the student has advanced to candidacy.
36 units of upper-division and graduate coursework, satisfactory performance on a comprehensive final examination, and a minimum of three quarters of academic residence are required.
At least 18 of the 36 units must be graduate engineering courses of which 15 units must be ECE graduate courses. Furthermore, at most 6 units can be research (299), at most 3 units can be seminar (290-297, excluding 290C) in ECE or other approved program, and the remaining units required to total 36 units must either be upper division technical or graduate courses. A student who elects Plan II can register for 299, research and independent study, and should do so while preparing for the Comprehensive Examination. The number of 299 units taken should reflect the amount of time and effort devoted to the preparation. However, only 6 units of 299 can be applied toward the 36-unit requirement.
Courses required for the ECE undergraduate degree, or the following courses: EEC100, EEC110A/B, EEC130A/B, EEC140A/B, EEC150, 151, EEC161, EEC170, EEC172, and EEC180, may not be used to satisfy the requirements of the ECE M.S. degree.
Full-time students must enroll for 12 units per quarter including research, academic and seminar units. Courses that fulfill any of the program course requirements may not be taken S/U unless the course is normally graded S/U. Once course requirements are completed, students can take additional classes as needed, although the 12 units per quarter are generally fulfilled with a research class (299) and perhaps seminars. Per UC regulation, students cannot enroll in more than 12 units of graduate level courses (200) or more than 16 units of combined undergraduate and graduate level (100, 200, 300) courses per quarter.
All graduate students are required to take EEC290, Seminar in Electrical and Computer Engineering, each Fall quarter. An S grade in EEC390, the Teaching of Electrical and Computer Engineering, is required to be eligible to hold a Teaching Assistantship in ECE but may not be used to satisfy graduate coursework requirements.
- Summary of IDP Coursework Requirements
- IDP Admission Committee
- Completed applications submitted to the Undergraduate Program Coordinator by the application deadline will be submitted to the IDP Admission Committee for consideration. At minimum, this committee consists of ECE’s Vice Chair for Undergraduate Studies and ECE’s Vice Chair for Graduate Studies. Notification of admission decisions will be sent prior to registration for the fall quarter in order for admitted applicants to select which two graduate courses to take while in senior status.
- Graduate Admission Committee
- Once the completed application, all supporting materials, and the application fee have been received, the application will be submitted to the Admissions Committee. The Admissions Committee consists of the faculty members of ECE’s Graduate Study Committee (GSC) and the GSC Admissions Chair. Applicants who apply by the Space Available Deadline (but after the General Deadline) are not guaranteed to have their application reviewed by the graduate program. Their application will be reviewed only if the graduate program determines that they have additional space available. Based on a review of the entire application, a recommendation is made to accept or decline an applicant’s request for admission. The recommendation to accept or decline an applicant’s request for admission is forwarded to the Dean of Graduate Studies for final approval of admission. Notification of admissions decisions will be sent by Graduate Studies. Applications are accepted from the date the admission system opens (typically in September) through the space available deadline for the next fall-entering class.
- Course Guidance or Advising Committee
- The major professor and the ECE Graduate Advisor will assist the student in developing a Program of Study. See the section below on “Advising and Mentoring." By the third quarter of enrollment, the student must file a Program of Study that must be routed through the ECE Graduate Program Coordinator for the ECE Graduate Advisor’s approval.
- Thesis Committee for IDP M.S. Plan I
- At advancement to candidacy, the student will declare an M.S. thesis committee. The ECE Graduate Advisor will nominate the committee based on consultations with the student and the major professor. This committee is chaired by the major professor and made up of at least two other members. The majority of this committee must be members of the ECE graduate program. The responsibility of this committee is to assist in the guidance of the student and to read and approve the thesis. The thesis must be prepared in accordance with Graduate Studies guidelines.
- Comprehensive Examination Committee for IDP M.S. Plan II
- At advancement to candidacy, the student will declare an M.S. Comprehensive Examination committee. The ECE Graduate Advisor will nominate the committee based on consultations with the student and the major professor. This committee is chaired by the major professor and made up of at least two other members. The majority of this committee must be members of the ECE graduate program. The responsibility of this committee is to assist in the guidance of the student and to give the comprehensive exam and approve the final report.
Advising Structure and Mentoring
- Major Professor
- The major professor is the primary mentor during the student’s career at UC Davis and will assist with developing the student’s Program of Study. The major professor serves as the chair of the Thesis Committee (for Plan I) or Comprehensive Exam Committee (for Plan II). The student must select a major professor from the members of the ECE Graduate Program as soon as possible, but no later than the beginning of the third quarter of enrollment. In the case of a change of major professor, signatures of the previous and new major professor are required acknowledging the change. The ECE Vice Chair for Graduate Studies, also referred to as the Graduate Program Chair, will serve as the interim advisor to new students during the process of selecting a major professor.
- Graduate Advisor
- The Graduate Advisor, who is nominated by the department chair and appointed by the Dean of Graduate Studies, is a resource for information on academic requirements, policies and procedures, and registration information until a major professor is selected. The ECE Graduate Advisor is responsible for reviewing programs of study for each student and acting on student petitions.
- Graduate Program Coordinator
The Graduate Program Coordinator should be the first person consulted on all actions regarding graduate affairs. The Graduate Program Coordinator may advise the student to contact the ECE Graduate Advisor or the Office of Graduate Studies to address particular issues.
Advancement to Candidacy
- Candidacy Requirements
- Every student must file an official application for Candidacy for the Degree of Master of Science and pay the candidacy fee after completing one-half of their course requirements and at least one quarter before completing all degree requirements; this is typically the third quarter. The Candidacy for the Degree of Master of Science form can be found online at http://www.gradstudies.ucdavis.edu/forms/. A completed form includes a list of courses the student will take to complete degree requirements. If changes must be made to the student’s course plan after they have advanced to candidacy, the Graduate Advisor must recommend these changes to Graduate Studies. Students must have the ECE Graduate Advisor and committee Chair, if applicable, sign the candidacy form before it can be submitted to Graduate Studies. If the candidacy is approved, the Office of Graduate Studies will send a copy to: the appropriate Graduate Program Coordinator and the student; the Thesis Committee Chair will also receive a copy, if applicable. If the Office of Graduate Studies determines that a student is not eligible for advancement, the program and the student will be told the reasons for the application’s deferral. Some reasons for deferring an application include: grade point average below 3.0, outstanding “I” grades in required courses, or insufficient units.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- Can I apply to IDP if I'm obtaining my undergraduate degree in 3 years?
- Yes! Apply to IDP the year before you graduate.
- Can I apply to IDP if I'm obtaining my undergraduate degree in 5+ years?
- Yes! Apply to IDP the year before you graduate.
- If I'm graduating during Fall Quarter or Winter Quarter, when should I apply to IDP?
- If you're graduating during Fall/Winter Quarter, apply to IDP the calendar year before you graduate, and file an early admissions graduate application your final year.
- Does being accepted into IDP mean I'm automatically accepted into the M.S. ECE program?
- No. Acceptance into IDP does not mean acceptance into the M.S. program. You must formally apply and be admitted to the graduate program. IDP allows you to count 2 graduate courses towards your undergraduate degree and, if accepted, your graduate degree.
The requirements to advance to graduate standing after being accepted into IDP are:
1. Taking two graduate level courses concurrently with your undergraduate education
2. Maintaining a UC Davis cumulative GPA of 3.2 in your coursework
3. Submitting a Graduate Application, which includes: Three letters of recommendation – required regardless of GPA, a statement of purpose, a personal history and diversity statement, and the GRE if applicable
- Do I have to take the GRE?
- IDP Application: The GRE is not required to apply to IDP.
Graduate Application: If you have a UC Davis cumulative GPA above 3.5 and at least 3 quarters in residence you do not need to take the GRE for the graduate application. If you have a UC Davis cumulative GPA below 3.5 and/or less than 3 quarters in residence, the GRE is required.
- If I submitted 3 letters of recommendation with my IDP application, do I have to resubmit 3 letters of recommendation to the graduate program?
- Yes. You have to resubmit 3 letters of recommendation when you apply to the graduate program if you submitted 3 letters of recommendation with your IDP application.
- If I'm doing IDP Plan I: Thesis Option, when should I start doing research?
- It's recommended you start research as early as possible. If you start doing research your junior or senior year, by the time you complete your year in the master's program, you'll have results. It is possible to start research when you start your master's degree and finish within a year, but it's much harder. Typically, students spend an extra 1-2 quarters if they start research during their master's program.
- Is funding available to IDP students?
- IDP students are eligible to obtain a Teaching Assistant (TA) position; however, PhD students get priority. TA's are paid by tuition and a stipend. To TA a class, you must take the campus TA training and EEC 390 before you TA a course. More information about TA appointments can be found here.
Most faculty members will not pay for your research for your master's degree since funding is typically reserved for PhD students.
Scholarships specifically for IDP students are coming soon.
- If I decide not to do IDP, can I still take graduate courses as an undergrad?
- Yes, you can still take graduate courses as an undergrad even if you're not in IDP. Any graduate courses you take as an undergrad will still count towards your upper division elective requirement. However, if you do decide to do your master's in ECE at UC Davis and you're not a part of IDP, you won't be able to use the graduate courses taken for your undergraduate degree towards your master's degree.