Paul Penfield, Jr.
Real Author of Report
Jesús del Alamo
Real Assistance -- Undergraduate Academic Affairs Office:
Real Assistance -- EECS:
Note: The small lettering on this figure may be hard to read. The vertical axis is "# Degrees" from 0 to 350; the horizontal axis is "Academic Year" from 1990 to 1997; the three labels inside the graph, from top to bottom, are "Masters total", "SM", and "MEng".
Key motivation for MEng:
"(...) education through the master's level is required
for practicing engineers." [J. Moses, Motion to MIT Faculty, 1992]
Key design feature:
integrated, seamless five-year program that avoids
"inefficiencies that come from hitching together two
separate programs" [Penfield et al., Faculty Newsletter, 1992]
MEng modeled largely on 6-A program (80 year old SB/SM combo)
| freshman | sophomore | junior | senior | 5th year | |------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------|------| ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ | | | | | declaration of MEng application | declaration | EECS major (1 page) | of graduate | | status | | graduation with MEng admission MEng and SB degrees
Is it an undergraduate or graduate program?
Fifth year has classroom structure plus research thesis
But no undergraduate-style financial aid or housing
Is it a professional or research program?
Professional perspective is needed by doctoral students
M.Eng. is required part of the doctoral program
Research experience is needed by practicing engineers
Same thesis as S.M. program
Treat students as individuals; don't stereotype by program
MIT administrative procedures
Separate graduate, undergraduate GPA
Registrar's two buckets
Separate degree requirements
Separate oversight committees (CUP, CGSP)
Oct. 97: visit to CUP by Prof. del Alamo.
Fall 97/Spring 98: data mining and analysis.
Apr. 98: PEPC review of data.
Summer/Fall 98: writing of Report.
Oct. 98: PEPC approval of report, recommendations.
Oct. 98: presentation to EECS faculty.
Nov. 98: presentation to Engineering Council.
Dec. 98: presentation to CUP.
Dec. 98: presentation to CGSP.
75% of EECS undergraduates qualify after junior year
Average undergraduate GPA 4.5; graduate GPA 4.7
Very few CAP actions on M.Eng. students
Only 3 revocations of admission in 5 years
Effects on General Education
M.Eng. students have high rates of participation in
subjects outside EECS
No aberrations in student behavior
Pattern of enrollment in 6.001 -- 6.004 unchanged
82% of students declare graduate status in fifth year
Average time to M.Eng. degree = 5.1 years
No evidence of undue pressure
Significant increase in enrollment
Especially in computer science
Faculty are concerned about maintaining advanced level
Students say in exit interviews that they are happy
5-year Master's degree
working closely with faculty on thesis
taking graduate subjects
some aspects of thesis -- short, not enough research
Popularity of EECS major
Model discussed in 1980s = 290 per class
This year sophomores = 363
Many possible reasons
Plenty of jobs
Personal computing pervasive in society
Popularity of the Web
M.Eng. program attractive
Shift in interest into CS from EE and other areas
Students show great degree of achievement.
MEng has not compromised general educational
goals of MIT undergraduate education.
No aberrations in students' behavior detected.
Students are happy.
EECS suffering from undergraduate enrollment crisis
(high number of students, unevenly distributed).
There are lots of MEng students in EECS graduate
There is a shortage of teaching resources,
particularly in graduate and upper level UG subjects.