Postgraduate Programs 2022/23
Master of Philosophy and Doctor of Philosophy Programs in Integrative Systems and Design
Award Title

Master of Philosophy in Integrative Systems and Design
Doctor of Philosophy in Integrative Systems and Design

Program Short Name

MPhil(ISD)
PhD(ISD)

Mode of Study

Both full- and part-time

Normative Program Duration

MPhil

Full-time: 2 years
Part-time: 4 years
 

PhD

Full-time: 3 years (with a relevant research master’s degree), 4 years (without a relevant research master’s degree)
Part-time: 6 years

Program Advisor

PG Programs Coordinator:
Prof Ajay JONEJA, Professor of Division of Integrative Systems & Design

Enquiry

The Master of Philosophy (MPhil) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Integrative Systems and Design are uniquely cross-disciplinary. They lay emphasis on the confluence of functionality and form in the design of modern devices, services etc. The goal is to promote and support cutting edge research that are user-aware, with explicit emphasis on the human component (including design, ergonomics, and usability). A graduate of either of these programs is expected to have a broader exposure to multiple disciplines as well as a solid foundation in three critical aspects of design, namely user-centered design, design methodologies, and function driven design.


The MPhil program aims to train students to conduct world-class research on a cross-disciplinary topic, particularly using principles of design in solving technical problems with clear emphasis on human and societal benefits. A MPhil graduate is expected to demonstrate sufficient knowledge about the state-of-the-art in the areas related to the research problem and on the broader related topics.


The PhD program aims to train students with an ability to independently conduct and lead world-class research on a cross-disciplinary topic. Candidates will learn to use and apply principles of design in solving technical problems informed by human and societal issues. A PhD graduate is expected to lead their own research agenda, while demonstrating sufficient knowledge about the state-of-the-art in the areas related to the research problem and on the broader related topics.

ISD faculty have a very broad range of research interests as a unit. Their research areas include topics from the list below. Prospective PG students may work on these or other topics, some of which may be guided by co-supervisors from sister departments across HKUST. Research problems of interest to ISD faculty typically converge two or more aspects of topics from multiple disciplines, and are guided by an understanding and application of design methodology, and respecting the principles of function driven physical/abstract forms.

 

Disciplines

  • [Tele] Medical Design
  • Advanced Manufacturing
  • AI Hardware
  • Architectural Geometry
  • Augmented Reality
  • Beyond 5G
  • Bio-Inspired Design
  • Computational Design
  • Computer Graphics
  • Computer Vision
  • Computer-aided Design and Manufacturing (CAD / CAM)
  • Design Theory
  • Edge AI
  • Embedded Systems
  • Human-centered Design
  • Innovative Design
  • Integrative Systems Design
  • IoT
  • Low Energy System Design
  • Microelectronics
  • Pervasive and Cloud Computing
  • Product Development
  • Robotics Dynamics and Control
  • Systems Simulation and Modeling
  • User-centered System Design
  • Wearable Healthcare Devices

 

Facilities

The Division of ISD has two lab spaces that support both, UG and PG projects and teaching.


Design studio

This is an open-plan space where we hold many of our UG classes and activities. The space has flexible desks and seating, and has a small makerspace-style workshop including hand-held tools and a few 3D printers. All students of ISD have unconstrained access to the Design studio.


ISDWorks!

Our makerspace, ISDworks!, is equipped with many state-of-the-art prototyping equipment. A core part of the integrative systems design process involves prototyping and therefore our students are encouraged to gain hands-on practice in prototyping throughout the program. The makerspace also serves as a project space for inspiration, collaboration and project showcases.

 

  1. Minimum Credit Requirement

MPhil: 15 credits
PhD: 18 credits
 

  1. Required Courses

MPhil: 15 credits of approved coursework, including ISDN 5010 and at least 3 additional credits from the following ISDN courses.

 

ISDN 5010
ISDN 5060
ISDN 5210
ISDN 5300

 

PhD: 18 credits of approved coursework, including ISDN 5010 and at least 6 additional credits from the following ISDN courses.

 

ISDN 5010
ISDN 5060
ISDN 5210
ISDN 5300
ISDN 6710-6720
ISDN 6810-6830

 

  1. School Requirements on PhD Programs

In addition to the program requirements, all full-time and part-time PhD students are required to complete the school requirements, which aim to help students gain a wider exposure to multidisciplinary areas, and attain all-rounded learning by broadening their knowledge base.


PhD students are required to take at least a 3-credit course at 5000-level or above outside their programs offered by the School of Engineering. The 3 credits may be satisfied by courses from other Schools upon approval.


In some exceptional cases where students can provide sufficient justifications and obtain prior approval from their supervisors, PG Coordinators, and Heads of Department/Program Directors or designees, they are allowed to take the 3-credit course within their home departments/programs but the course must be in areas outside their specialty.


Details of the requirements are available on the website of the School of Engineering. .

 

  1. Graduate Teaching Assistant training

 

PDEV 6800

 

All full-time RPg students are required to complete PDEV 6800. The course is composed of a 10-hour training offered by the Center for Education Innovation (CEI), and session(s) of instructional delivery to be assigned by the respective departments. Upon satisfactory completion of the training conducted by CEI, MPhil students are required to give at least one 30-minute session of instructional delivery in front of a group of students for one term. PhD students are required to give at least one such session each in two different terms. The instructional delivery will be formally assessed.
 

  1. Professional Development Course Requirement

PDEV 6770


Students are required to complete PDEV 6770. The 1 credit earned from PDEV 6770 cannot be counted toward the credit requirements.

 

PhD students who are HKUST MPhil graduates and have completed PDEV 6770 or other professional development courses offered by the University before may be exempted from taking PDEV 6770, subject to prior approval of the School.

 

ENGG 6780


Students are required to complete ENGG 6780. The 1 credit earned from ENGG 6780 cannot be counted toward the credit requirements.

 

PhD students who are HKUST MPhil graduates and have completed ENGG 6780 before may be exempted from taking ENGG 6780, subject to prior approval of the School.

 

  1. English Language Requirement

LANG 5000


Full-time RPg students are required to take an English Language Proficiency Assessment (ELPA) Speaking Test administered by the Center for Language Education before the start of their first term of study. Students whose ELPA Speaking Test score is below Level 4, or who failed to take the test in their first term of study, are required to take LANG 5000 until they pass the course by attaining at least Level 4 in the ELPA Speaking Test before graduation. The 1 credit earned from LANG 5000 cannot be counted toward the credit requirements. .

 

LANG 5001


Students are required to complete LANG 5001. Students can be exempted from taking LANG 5001 with the agreement of the Department Head and PG Coordinator. The 1 credit earned from LANG 5001 cannot be counted toward the credit requirements.

 

  1. Postgraduate Seminars

ISDN 6660


MPhil:

Students are required to complete ISDN 6660 for at least two terms.


PhD:

Students are required to complete ISDN 6660 for at least four terms.

 

  1. PhD Qualifying Examination

All PhD students must pass an oral qualifying examination that is composed of two parts:

Part 1. A presentation on the literature review of topics relevant to the thesis research topic.

Part 2. An oral preliminary defense presenting details of the thesis research, including (a) preliminary results that have been submitted for publication or presented in international conference(s), and (b) plan to research subsequent to the oral examination and prior to the final defense. 

 

The two parts of the qualifying examination can be done separately or together. Part 1 must be completed no later than 24 months (for full-time) or 36 months (for part-time) after the student joins the program. Part 2 must be completed at least 6 months prior to the final defense.  

 

  1. Thesis Research

ISDN 6990
ISDN 7990


MPhil

  1. Registration in ISDN 6990; and 
  2. Presentation and oral defense of the MPhil thesis. 

PhD

  1. Registration in ISDN 7990; and
  2. Presentation and oral defense of the PhD thesis.

 

Last update: 9 June 2021

On successful completion of the MPhil program, graduates will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate the ability to conduct world-class research on a cross-disciplinary topic;
  2. Demonstrate sufficient knowledge about the state-of-the-art in the areas related to the research problem and on the broader related topics; and
  3. Demonstrate the ability to use principles of design in solving technical problems with clear emphasis on human and societal benefits.

 

On successful completion of the PhD program, graduates will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate the ability to independently conduct and lead world-class research on a cross-disciplinary topic;
  2. Demonstrate sufficient knowledge about the state-of-the-art in the areas related to the research problem and on the broader related topics; and
  3. Demonstrate the ability to use principles of design in solving technical problems with clear emphasis on human and societal benefits.

To qualify for admission, applicants must meet all of the following requirements. Admission is selective and meeting these minimum requirements does not guarantee admission.

 

1. General Admission Requirements of the University
  • Applicants seeking admission to a master's degree program should have obtained a bachelor’s degree from a recognized institution, or an approved equivalent qualification;

  • Applicants seeking admission to a doctoral degree program should have obtained a bachelor’s degree with a proven record of outstanding performance from a recognized institution; or presented evidence of satisfactory work at the postgraduate level on a full-time basis for at least one year, or on a part-time basis for at least two years.

2. English Language Admission Requirements

Applicants have to fulfill English Language requirements with one of the following proficiency attainments:

  • TOEFL-iBT: 80*

  • TOEFL-pBT: 550

  • TOEFL-Revised paper-delivered test: 60 (total scores for Reading, Listening and Writing sections)

  • IELTS (Academic Module): Overall score: 6.5 and All sub-score: 5.5

* refers to the total score in one single attempt


Applicants are not required to present TOEFL or IELTS score if

  • their first language is English, or

  • they obtained the bachelor's degree (or equivalent) from an institution where the medium of instruction was English.

Apply online before the application deadlines.

 

Application Fee

HK$180

Application Deadlines

For Hong Kong PhD Fellowship (HKPFS) Application (for PhD studies only):

Step 1 deadline at RGC (to obtain an HKPFS reference no. from RGC):
1 Dec 2021 (12noon, GMT+8)
Step 2 deadline at HKUST:
1 Dec 2021 (11:59pm, GMT+8)

Details please refer to http://pg.ust.hk/hkpfs
 

For 2022/23 Fall Term Intake (commencing in Sep 2022):

Non-local Applicants*
Full-time:  1 Jun 2022
 

Local Applicants
Full-time:  15 Jul 2022
Part-time:  15 Jul 2022


 * Applicants are considered as non-local students if they hold (i) student visa/ entry permit; or (ii) visa under the Immigration Arrangements for Non-local Graduates (IANG); or (iii) dependent visa/entry permit who were 18 years old or above when they were issued with such visa/ entry permit by the Director of Immigration. For details on student visa/ entry permit requirements, please click here.