Nanoelectronics and Photonics

The NEP Qualifying Review (QR) will follow the requirements stated in the ECE graduate handbook for PhD students, with additional constraints added to ensure high quality within the Nanoelectronics & Photonics area. The spirit of this approach is to ensure good practices in technical assessment, analysis, and problem solving relevant to the nature of modern interdisciplinary electrical engineering. This process will also serve as a valuable tool for improving writing skills for documents that the student will face as he/she completes the PhD program and enters into a successful engineering career.


All exam guidelines are provided in the NEP QR Proposal Guidelines document.

Exam Administration

Note the following mandatory regulations for the exam:

  • Students entering with a BS degree must complete the exam between the third and fifth semesters of study (inclusive).
  • Students entering with an MS degree must complete this exam between the first and third semesters of study (inclusive).
  • Students may take the exam even if they have not found their permanent academic advisor (i.e. they are still assigned to their interim advisor).
  • Students must register for ECE 834 during the exam semester.
  • Students will be given two chances to pass this exam.
  • Students must sign up for the exam by downloading the form GRADUATE STUDENT INDIVIDUAL STUDIES from the ECE Graduate Student Portal, completing with their own information and emailing the NEP QR Committee Chair (Dr. Robert Kolbas) for his signature.
Exam Committee

The oral and written portion of the QR will not be chaired by the thesis advisor of the student candidate. A Committee will be formed consisting of at least three members of the NEP faculty (voting members) plus the thesis advisor (non-voting member). For 2014, the QR Committee consists of Profs. Bob Kolbas, KiWook Kim, and Leda Lunardi.


The NEP QR exam involves writing a full research proposal and defending it in an oral presentation. Students taking this QR exam will be required to attend roughly five face-to-face meetings distributed throughout the semester, beginning within the first two weeks of the semester.