Jul 17, 2024  
2021-2022 SDSM&T Academic Catalog 
2021-2022 SDSM&T Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Electrical Engineering, PhD

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Contact Information

Shankarachary Ragi
Assistant Professor and EE Graduate Program Coordinator
Electrical Engineering/Physics 319
Phone: (605) 394-4184
Email: Shankarachary.Ragi@sdsmt.edu

PhD in Electrical Engineering

The goal of the Electrical Engineering (EE) doctoral program is to provide students with an education in advanced electrical engineering topics and mentoring in research skills to produce experts/scholars as well as leaders for academia, government, and industry.  EE faculty research emphasis areas include autonomous systems/vehicles (e.g., AUV, UGV, UAV), robotics, computer vision, control theory, electronic materials, organic electronic devices (e.g., OLED and solar cells), wireless communications and networking, antennas, applied electromagnetics, power systems, and the smart grid.

Degree requirements

Distribution of credits

Required courses: 3 credits
Elective requirements: 33 credits
Research requirements: 36 credits
Total credits: 72

Required courses

Students must complete three credits of EE 690, or two credits of EE 690 and one credit of IENG 579.

Elective requirements

This degree requires 33 credits of electives. All electives must be approved by the student’s graduate advisory committee. EE elective courses must be taken at the 500-level or above. Up to 12 credits of elective coursework at the 400-level or higher can be taken from disciplines other than EE.

Research requirements

The completion of a doctoral dissertation, approved by the student’s graduate advisory committee and the Dean of Graduate Education, is required for this degree. All research credits taken by the PhD student must be EE 898D Dissertation.


In addition to the successful completion of the curriculum, the program of study requires passing a qualifying exam, passing a comprehensive exam, and successfully defending the dissertation.

Qualifying examination

The qualifying exam tests the student’s background knowledge and ability to pursue advanced courses and dissertation research.  All students coming into the PhD program are required to take the qualifying exam within the first 2 years.  The qualifying exam shall be a written exam, administered by the department’s graduate committee, once each year.  All students meeting the time standards for the qualifying exam will take the test at the same time.  The examination for a master’s thesis may be used as the qualifying examination, at the discretion of the student’s graduate advisory committee.

Comprehensive examination and admission to candidacy

The comprehensive examination is given to evaluate the student’s ability to formulate a research problem.  It shall consist of a research proposal defense in which students will be required to write and orally defend their research proposal to their graduate advisory committee.  Review of comprehensive examinations will be accomplished as soon as possible by all members of the committee.  Upon successful completion, the major professor and department head will recommend to the dean of graduate education that the student be admitted to PhD candidacy. 

All students coming into the PhD program with an MS degree are required to complete the comprehensive exam within two academic years (fall, spring, summer semesters).  Students coming into the program with a BS degree must complete the comprehensive exam after their coursework is substantially completed.  The comprehensive examination, and subsequent admission to PhD candidacy, must be completed at least 12 months before the dissertation is defended. 

Dissertation defense

A successful dissertation defense and a final oral examination are required for this degree.

Additional requirements

In addition to degree-specific requirements, the student must also meet the requirements and policies applied to all graduate degrees  by the Council of Graduate Education.

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