Graduate

The Department of Electrical Engineering (EE) at the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC), offers M.S. and Ph.D. degree programs and conducts research in:

  • Photonics and Electronics focusing on VLSI, electronic and optoelectronic materials, devices, circuits and systems for information transmission, storage, processing, and display, especially for optical fiber communications and lower power, high performance systems, biomedical device instrumentation and MEMS;
  • Signal Processing and Communications, including wireless and optical communications, coding, digital signal processing, image and video processing;
  • Remote Sensing including wave propagation and scattering radar oceanography, and microwave remote sensing;
  • Nanotechnology including applications to bio-medicine, integrated optics for biomedical imaging, opto-thermo-electric energy conversion, near-field scanning optical microscopy, nano-magneto-optics, micro-mechanics and micro-fluidics.

Electrical Engineering enjoys a close relationship with the Departments of Applied Mathematics and Statistics, Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Biomolecular Engineering, Chemistry, Physics, Astronomy, and Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology faculty. The Electrical Engineering faculty are affiliated with: 1) several federally funded and nationally recognized centers such as the Center for Biomimetic MicroElectronic Systems, the Center for Adaptive Optics, and the Center for Biomolecular Science and Engineering; 2) state-funded centers such as the Institute for Quantitative Biology (QB3), the Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society (CITRIS), and the Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM); and 3) many EE faculty participate in the University Affiliated Research Center (UARC) at NASA-Ames, which is managed by UCSC. The department also has ties to nearby industry, employing electrical engineering professionals as visiting and adjunct faculty and arranging for students to gain practical research experience through work in industrial labs. Indeed, the department strongly encourages students of all nationalities to seek practical training as part of their graduate education.

Students begin the program with the completion of courses in a core area of interest and then proceed to do research in their area of specialization. The M.S. degree can be completed in two years. M.S. students must complete a master's thesis or pass the comprehensive exam. A Ph.D. degree is usually completed in four to six years. Ph.D. students are required to take a preliminary exam within their first two years of study. After completing the course requirements, students must pass an oral qualifying exam and write a dissertation. Part-time study is possible for students working in industry while going to school.