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Outside-ECE Technical Electives

in this section

Requirements: 9 credits minimum, among which at least 3 credits must come from lecture course work at 3000-level or above. Courses must be taken for a letter grade unless offered S/U-only.

Rules governing traditional lecture courses

Courses allowed in this category must be technical courses whose technical scope lies outside the course offerings of the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Almost any non-ECE math, science, or engineering course at the 2000-level or above will do. A student may count a 1000-level course as an Outside-ECE Technical Elective only if the course lists an explicit university-level prerequisite that the student has completed successfully either at Cornell or through AP or transfer credit. For example, CS 1302 is acceptable since it has an explicit engineering prerequisite, but none of the ENGRIs is acceptable since none of them has any prerequisities. Non-technical courses such as ENGRC and pure business courses are also not acceptable. ECE majors may, however, count ECE 5830 --- Introduction to Technical Management --- as an Outside-ECE Technical Elective.

For an engineering course in a non-ECE major to pass muster as an Outside-ECE Technical Elective, the major offering the course must allow its own students to use the course to fulfill a technical course requirement. For example, CEE 3230 and ORIE 3150 are acceptable because they include engineering applications of the business topics they cover, and the offering majors consider them technical courses for their students. When in doubt about the suitability of any course, a student should obtain evidence that students in the major offering the course can use the course in question as a "technical course" and submit associated documentation to 223 Phillips Hall.

One additional option exists for ECE students. A student may, with advisor approval, count one advanced ECE course as an Outside-ECE Technical Elective provided that the course's subject matter lies outside the student's major disciplinary area as determined by the focus of the student's upper-level ECE course work.

Rules governing project work and independent study

Students may count in the Outside-ECE Technical Electives category up to 3 credits of work that results from either (but not both)

  1. work on a student project team. For comprehensive information about student project teams, see Student Project Teams.
  2. enrollment in an independent-study course at the 3000-level or above (i.e. ECE 4999) satisfying the following requirements:
    • If the independent-study course is a reading course, its subject must be unavailable in existing ECE courses. A student wishing to count the credits from such a course as Outside-ECE Technical Elective credits must obtain prior approval from the ECE Curriculum and Standards Committee by writing a proposal documenting his or her objectives and rationale for taking the course and must at the end of the semester submit to the supervising faculty member a written report on which the faculty member will base the student's grade.
    • If the independent-study course entails participation on a research project and the student wishes to count its credits as Outside-ECE Technical Elective credits, the student must obtain prior approval from the ECE Curriculum and Standards Committee by writing a proposal documenting his or her objectives and rationale for taking the course and must at the end of the semester submit to the supervising faculty member a written report on which the faculty member will base the student's grade.