Department of Electrical Communication Engineering

The Ph.D programme leads the student to gain advanced knowledge and research experience in a particular field of study. The principal component of the programme is a dissertation based on original research.


Candidates possessing a minimum of the second class in one of the following degrees are eligible to apply:

  • B. E./B. Tech. or equivalent degree in Electrical /Electronics Communication, Telecommunication, Instrumentation, Biomedical Engineering, Computer Science/Engineering, Electrical Engineering
  • M. Sc. in Physics, Mathematics, Electronics, Statistics, Computer Science
  • Master’s in Computer Applications.

In addition, candidates must qualify for the Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE) or one of the other applicable tests.Qualifying in these tests is not mandatory but desirable for candidates who possess a Master’s degree in Engineering/Technology or MSc (Engg) and applying for a PhD.

The requirement of GATE or any other qualifying exam is waived for students with a Bachelor’s degree from a centrally funded technical institution (CFTIs ) with a CGPA of 8.0 or above.

How to Apply

Application and Selection Process

      • Offers will be made on the Common Offer Admissions Portal (COAP).

Important dates

Please refer to the institute Important Dates webpage for details.

Fees and Scholarships

Please refer to the institute Fees and Scholarships webpage for details.


Students are required to complete as part of the Research Training Programme (RTP), a specified number of courses, in consultation with their advisors. Following the RTP, the student is expected to clear a comprehensive examination (comprising a seminar and oral questions on the RTP). In addition to acquiring knowledge in a broad area, students in the Ph.D programme, through coursework, reading peer-reviewed research articles, and seminars, develop an advanced understanding in a field of study, and perform original research, which generally leads to peer-reviewed publications, patents, and technologies for social impact. Other opportunites include:

  • Collaboration and visits to other universities.
  • Internship and placement through OCCAP.
  • Financial support for attending international conferences.
  • Support for entrepreneurial efforts.

Click here for more information on admission to research programmes

The number of credits of coursework to be registered for as part of the Research Training Programme is based on the qualification of the student as follows.

ME/MTech/MTech (Res) equivalent qualification 12 credits
BE/B Tech/M.Sc or equivalent qualification 24 credits
Transfer from MTech to PhD(within two terms) 24 credits
Transfer from MTech (Res) to PhD (within two terms) (MTech (Res) 12 credits, additional 12 credits) 24 credits
Continuation after submitting MTech (Research) thesis 12 credits
Continuation M Tech to PhD after the award of degree 12 credits


The Department of ECE (in collaboration with various Sponsors and Departments) also offers fellowships to bright students. A PhD candidate can apply for these after being admitted to the PhD programme. The prominent ones include:

  • PMRF
  • Cisco CNI PhD Fellowship
  • Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship
  • Intel India Research Fellowship

Please visit our Degree programmes page to read more on courses offered.


 Frequently Asked Questions :PhD, Department of ECE, IISc Bangalore

  1. How do I get admitted to PhD in the ECE Dept?

In order to get admitted to PhD you must have

  1. appeared in the GATE (e.g., in ECE, EE, or CS) within the last three years or other similar qualifying examinations or
  2. secured a Master’s degree in Engineering.
  3. Students with a Bachelor’s degree from a centrally funded technical institution (CFTI) with a CGPA of 8.0 or above are also eligible.

If you satisfy the eligibility criteria, you should apply for the PhD programs in theIISc portaland choose the ECE Department. The Department shortlists candidates for a technical interview based on their cumulative academic performance, considering marks scored in X class onwards, as reported in the application. Shortlisted applicants will be called for an online technical video interview. You may be offered admission based on the interview performance on the areas of research indicated in the application. 


  1. How do I prepare for the technical interview for PhD (ECE)?

The specifics of the interview and procedures will be intimated via email to the shortlisted students.


  1. How do I know which faculty members in ECE will be taking students in the current session?

 The number of students admitted by a faculty member depends on various factors, including graduation of senior students. The interview letter from the department will mention the research areas / faculty members willing to admit students in the admission cycle. 


  1. What are the active research areas under ECE?

 The faculty in the ECE department broadly work in the areas of communication and networks, signal processing, machine learning, microelectronics, photonics, RF and microwave engineering and cyber-physical systems. Please look up individualfaculty pagesfor a more current view of topics they work on. 


  1. Suppose I have a job after Bachelors or Master in ECE domain, what does the PhD programme at ECE add to my career profile? What are some advantages?

 A PhD degree provides rigorous training to innovate in advanced areas. A bachelor’s degree often does not provide enough training to contribute to cutting edge work in these areas. While a master’s degree provides a stronger foundation training such that one is able to seamless move across areas easily during the course of professional career growth, PhD training helps one to analyse the state of the art to come up with novel solutions useful for the society. A PhD degree is required for academic positions and help one achieve greater career goals in industrial research. 


  1. After admission, how is the advisor/ guide for PhD allocated?

 The advisor-advisee assignment for the PhD students is done soon after joining, considering the area of interest of the student (as expressed during the admission process), interactions between students and faculty and mutual consent of the faculty and the student. Once you have been accepted, the Chair of the department or interested faculties will contact you personally regarding this matter. 


  1. How is the research topic decided for the PhD?

 The advisor and advisees jointly finalize a topic of mutual interest. 


  1. Is there course work for PhD?

 Yes. PhD students in IISc need to complete 12-24 course credits depending on their previous degree. These courses are determined separately for each student, depending on their background, and area of research. These courses must be completed within first 2-3 semesters. 


  1. Is it possible to do a PhD in ECE Department directly after completing BTech degree?


Yes, it is possible. A direct PhD student (with only a bachelor’s degree) will be required to take 24 credits to complete the course requirements when compared to a student who already has a master’s degree who is only required to complete 12 credits. 


  1. What is the prospect of a IISc – foreign university joint PhD degree in ECE?

 IISc has announced the first joint PhD program with Melbourne University, very recently. In most other collaborations where the student is jointly supervised, and the degree is awarded by IISc. Many such collaborative research projects are pursued in the Institute. Currently, Thales funded fellowships are available to students of ECE for collaborative research on select topics with French Universities identified by Thales. 


  1. What is the process of PMRF for PhD (ECE)?

 The selection process for PMRF is still evolving. Currently, only lateral entry for students who have completed specified course credits and research requirements is allowed. In 2023, six PhD students of ECE were awarded the PMRF. 


  1. Is it possible for an employee in industry to pursue a part-time PhD?

 Employees in industry can pursue a PhD through the external research program (ERP). They must contact a prospective guide well before submitting the application. The selection process and degree requirements are similar to regular students. 



  1. Where can I find more information on PhD programmes in IISc?

 StudentInformation HandbookandScheme of Instructionscan give you more details 


  1. What are the journal/conference requirements for submitting thesis?

 The thesis requirements vary from area to area and group to group and can be very diverse. Your advisor will be in the best position to advise you on this. 


  1. What is the duration of regular PhD program in the ECE department?

 The typical duration of the PhD program in ECE varies from 4-6 years. Every student and research problem is unique and the duration depends on the nature of research. 


  1. Is academic internship allowed during PhD program?

 Yes, students may be allowed to travel and intern in other universities to collaborate with leading researchers in the world. This may happen based on the suggestion and advise of the research advisor. 


  1. What are the exact requirements of a program from a particular lab. For example, for the same research program, what does lab X require for completion of the program that is different from lab Y?

 These requirements vary from lab to lab and area to area. Students may reach out with specific questions to relevant faculty. 


  1. Are placement interviews arranged for students in research programs?

 Yes, theOffice of Career Counselling and Placementassists all students of IISc for campus placements. 


  1. Can I take courses from other departments? Is a course common for students from Masters and PhD?

 The PhD program has a course requirement of 12-24 credits which can be taken from within or outside the Department in consultation with the faculty advisor. It is common for courses to be taken by both Masters and PhD students. 


  1. What kind of a student life can I expect at IISc?

 IISc will offer you a memorable student experience during your stay here. You can take a look atthis pagefor some excerpts on student perspectives. 


  1. Are there any entrepreneurship opportunities that one can pursue at IISc?

Society for Innovation and Development (SID) and AI and Robotics Technology Park (ARTPARK) at IISc offer several opportunities to translate ideas to technical products.