Integrated Circuits and Systems group, IIT Madras

Prospective Students

There are many avenues for studying Analog, Mixed-signal, or Digital VLSI design at IIT Madras. You can join our MS/PhD programs and carry out research. If you are in our course based programs, you can specialize in Analog, Mixed-signal, or Digital VLSI design by taking the elective courses and doing your final year projects with our faculty.

If you are applying the PhD/MS/MTech program with the intention of specializing in Integrated Circuits and Systems, choose EE6 as your stream.


Research Programs

It is most important to keep in mind that PhD and MS are not “routine” degrees in that a great deal of independent thought and work is expected from the student. In course based programs, the syllabus defines the limits of the subject to be studied and the content is presented in lectures as cleanly defined packages. The contents of a course are well known and the problems dealt with are thoroughly worked out. The solution to a research problem on the other hand is by definition not yet worked out. A research student is expected to play a big role in charting the course of his/her study; there is no fixed syllabus; during the course of research there will be several journeys down blind alleys which, while contributing to overall learning, may not end up in the final report. For success in a research program, the student must be willing to take the initiative, go along a path not yet clearly defined, and work independently. At the end of an MS/PhD, the student is expected to know a lot more than the advisor about his/her research problem.


Admission process

Admission to our MS/PhD programs are through interviews held twice a year-roughly in May and November. The interview will be preceded by a screening test. Details of the programs, the entrance test, and procedures and requirements for application can be found at the links below:

Students seeking MS/PhD positions are encouraged to talk to faculty in their areas of specialization and become familiar with their areas of research. Each research student will be conducting research under the supervision of a faculty advisor. Faculty advisors are assigned to students based on the students' preferences, faculty members' preferences, and availability of positions.


PhD

If you want to pursue research, advanced product development, or teaching at the highest level, PhD is the first step. It involves in depth examination of a problem in your chosen area and publication of resulting original research. A PhD candidate is expected to have a firm grasp of the basics in analog/digital circuit design. The candidate is also expected to have thought about the sub field of VLSI in which s/he wants to conduct research. It is not necessary to have formulated the research problem beforehand. In addition to knowledge of the basics, motivation and ability to conduct research independently are essential. A masters degree in electrical engineering is the expected prerequisite. At IIT Madras, a PhD student is required to credit four courses with average grade of at least a B and pass a comprehensive examination dealing with basics of several areas of electrical engineering. The duration of PhD is typically 3-4 years after finishing the course work and comprehensive examination.

Students with masters or bachelors degree can apply. Bachelors students applying for direct PhD need a GATE score to be shortlisted. GATE score requirement is waived for direct PhD applicants from IITs and CFTIs with CGPA ≥ 8.0.

MS

IIT Madras offers two types of masters degrees. The MS program has greater emphasis on research and fewer courses to be credited. Research work resulting in an original thesis and journal publications is expected from MS students. The MS program is recommended for students aspiring to a career in cutting edge VLSI industry or those who wish to get a taste of research before committing to a doctoral program. The flexibility in selecting courses and the time available for research means that the student can gain thorough knowledge of the area of specialization before starting a career in the industry. MS students who show promise in research can convert their registration to PhD. At IIT Madras, an MS student is required to credit five courses with an average grade of at least a B. The duration of an MS is typically 1.5-2.5 years after finishing the course work.

A frequently asked question about our MS program is how is it different from the MTech degree and why one would want to do an MS instead of an MTech. In the area of analog/mixed signal integrated circuit design, the short answer is: MS! Click here to find out why.

We now have a research associateship programme with Texas Instruments leading to an MS degree from IIT Madras. The features of this program include opportunities for internship at Texas Instruments, higher monthly stipends, and a non-binding offer of employment by Texas Instruments upon completion of the programme. Follow this link for more details.

GATE score is required for shortlisting. GATE score requirement is waived for applicants from IITs with CGPA ≥ 8.0 and for applicants from companies opting for “External registration”.


Project positions

We have a number of sponsored projects and we are looking for research students to carry out these projects. If you wish to apply, contact the faculty member in whose area you are interested. After working as a project associate for some period, you could apply to MS or PhD.


Course based programs

MTech

The MTech program has a larger number of courses than the MS program and covers wider ground. A final project lasting a year is part of the MTech curriculum. During this time, students interested in VLSI can work with one of our faculty and design a part of an integrated circuit, or analyze some aspect of integrated circuits and systems. The practical knowledge so obtained will complement the courses taken during the MTech program. Selection to the MTech program is through GATE. To specialize in integrated circuits and systems, you have to apply to the EE6 stream.

Dual Degree

The last two years of a dual degree program constitute an MTech degree. For their final year project, students interested in VLSI can work with one of our faculty and design a part of an integrated circuit, or analyze some aspect of VLSI design. The practical knowledge so obtained will complement the courses taken during the Dual Degree program.

BTech

A bachelors student is not expected to specialize in any particular area, but gain general knowledge of all parts of of electrical engineering. Students wishing to pursue higher studies or employment opportunities in integrated circuits and systems may take some of the courses offered by our group and undertake the final semester project with one of the faculty. Students interested in advanced study in in this area can convert to the Dual Degree program.


Other programs

Summer Internships

The institute has a summer fellowship programme open to BTech students from other colleges in the summer after their third year. Details of the application process is posted on this site, usually in the last week of January before the summer. Interns in the EE department are selected from among the fellowship applicants. Due to the volume of email, it is not possible to individually respond to queries about summer internships.