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Computer Engineering Qualifying Exam Information


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Deadlines and Instructions for the August Qualifying Exam

Exam Dates: August 19 & 20, 2015

July 19, 2015 -- Declare intent to take the Qualifying Exam and state your selections of primary and secondary areas. (Please submit by email to Natalie Edwards.)

August 5, 2015 -- Student will submit a 3-page written report on the Type-1 paper to Prof. Dugan by email.

Day of the Exam -- Provide the Director of CpE with a partially complete PhD Examination Report and Program Specific Qualifying Exam Report form at the time of the exam. These forms will be completed by the committee and submitted to the CpE office after the exam.

The areas identified in Computer Engineering Graduate Handbook for the qualifiers are as follows:

  1. Computer Architecture
  2. VLSI, Switching Theory
  3. Operating Systems, Real-Time and Embedded Systems
  4. Compilers, Software Systems and Software Engineering
  5. Fault-tolerant Computing and Reliability Engineering
  6. Networks, Distributed Systems and Security


NOTE: Please read the handbook carefully and note the committee’s expectations. The committee will both “assess the student’s potential to begin doctoral-level research,” as well as examine fundamental understanding by asking questions on “related topics.” Therefore, students should not only understand the problem and solution presented in the paper (and demonstrate the “abilities” listed in the handbook), but also be responsible for background material (which is *not* limited to references in the paper) for the question-answer session.



List of Papers for the 2015 August Exam Offering


Computer Architecture

J. Meza, Q. Wu, S. Kumar and O. Mutlu,"A Large-Scale Study of Flash Memory Failures in the Field," in SIGMETRICS'15, June 15-19, 2015, Portland, OR, pp. 1-14.

VLSI, Switching Theory

D. Bol, J.D. Vos, C. Hacquet, F. Botman, F. Durvaux, S. Boyd, D. Flandre, J.D. Legat, "SleepWalker: A 25-MHz 0.4-V Sub-mm 7- W/MHz Microcontroller in 65-nm LP/GP CMOS for Low-Carbon Wireless Sensor Nodes," IEEE Journal of Solic-State Circuits, Vol 48, NO. 1, January 2013, p. 20-32.

Operating Systems, Real-Time and Embedded Systems

E. Boutin, J. Ekanayake, W. Lin, B. Shi, J. Zhou, Z. Qian, M. Wu, and L. Zhou, "Apollo: Scalable and Coordinated Scheduling for Cloud-Scale Computing," 11th USENIX Symposium on Operating Systems Design and Implementation (OSDI ’14) pp. 285-300.

Compilers, Software Systems and Software Engineering

G. Gay, M. Staats, M. Whalen, and M.P.E. Heimdahl, "The Risks of Coverage-Directed Test Case Generation," DOI 10.1109/TSE.2015.2421011, IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, pp.1-17.

Fault-tolerant Computing and Reliability Engineering

T.A. Johansen, "Toward Dependable Embedded Model Predictive Control," IEEE Systems Journal, 1932-8187, 2014, pp. 1-12.

Networks, Distributed Systems & Security

C. Shi, K. Joshi, R.K. Panta, M.H. Ammar, E. W. Zegura, "CoAST: Collaborative Application-Aware Scheduling Last-Mile Cellular Traffic," MobiSys’14, June 16–19, 2014, Bretton Woods, New Hampshire, pp. 245-258.




The Computer Engineering Committee Members

  • Joanne Bechta Dugan, Chair
  • Benton Calhoun
  • Marty Humphrey
  • Kamin Whitehouse


Past Qualifying Exams in Computer Engineering (to return to current page, use back button)

August 2014 Qualifying Exam Information

May 2014 Qualifying Exam Information

January 2014 Qualifying Exam Information

August 2013 Qualifying Exam Information

January 2013 Qualifying Exam Information

August 2012 Qualifying Exam Information

January 2012 -- Qualifying Exam Information

Previous Qualifying Exam Information