Automotive Systems and Mobility

The Doctor of Engineering (D.Eng.) in Automotive Systems and Mobility (ASM), centers on engineering practice and application, problem-solving skills, and innovation to prepare graduates for technical leadership roles in the automotive and mobility industry. 

The D.Eng. encourages doctoral students to conduct cutting edge research using emerging technologies in the broad areas of automotive engineering and mobility. It is a multidisciplinary program with core research areas in Automotive Cybersecurity; Advanced Simulation; Human Factors & Transportation Systems Safety; Connected and Autonomous Vehicles; Dynamics, Control & Vehicle Safety; Electrified Vehicles; Materials, Manufacturing, & Design; Shared Mobility; Thermal-Fluid & Combustion; and Data Analytics in Automotive & Mobility. 

Program Details

The D.Eng. degree requirements require a minimum of 36 credits hours including 6 credit hours of coursework, 6 credit hours of directed study and pre-candidate research courses, and 24 credit hours of dissertation research.

Program Policies

In addition to the UM-Dearborn Graduate School policies for doctoral students, as a doctoral student in ASM program, you need to know the requirements, timeline, and processes for Pre-candidacy, Candidacy, Proposal Exam, and eventually your Dissertation Defense. 

Also, an Annual Progress Report completed by you and your faculty advisor must be submitted for review to the ASM Doctoral Committee in May of each year. 

The ASM Doctoral Committee and your Faculty Advisor are the main resources for information and guidance throughout your program.

Curriculum Requirements

A student must complete a minimum of 36 credit hours including:

  • 6 credit hours of coursework
  • 6 credit hours of directed study and pre-candidate research courses
  • 24 credit hours of dissertation research.

Pre-Candidacy Coursework Requirement 

The program requires completion of: 

  • Two curricular qualifying courses with a combined GPA of 3.5/4.0 and 3.3/4.0 or better in each course
    • The two graduate courses must be related to the student's chosen core research area and recommended by the advisor.   
  • ASM 791  Doctoral Directed Study
  • ASM 980 Pre-Candidate Dissertation Research

Core Research Areas and Approved Courses

Automotive Cybersecurity

CIS 540Foundation of Information Security3
CIS 544Computer and Network Security3
CIS 545Data Security and Privacy3
CIS 546Security and Privacy in Wireless Networks3
CIS 548Security and Privacy in Cloud Computing3
CIS 549Software Security3
CIS 584Advanced Computer and Network Security3
CIS 624Research Advances in Computer and Network Security3
ECE 527Multimedia Secur & Forensics3
ECE 528Cloud Computing3
ECE 554Embedded Systems3

Advanced Simulation, Human Factors and Transportation Systems Safety

CIS 552Information Visualization and Virtualization3
CIS 652Advanced Information Visualization and Virtualization3
HCDE 510Foundation of HCDE3
HCDE 520Research Methods in HCDE3
HCDE 530Information Visualization3
IMSE 501Human Factors & Ergonomics3
IMSE 514Multivariate Statistics3
IMSE 545Vehicle Ergonomics I3
IMSE 546Safety Engineering3
IMSE 569Sys Simulation in Auto Engin3
IMSE 577Human-Computer Interaction3
IMSE 593Vehicle Package Engineering3
IMSE 659Advanced System Simulation3

Connected and Autonomous Vehicles

CIS 527Computer Networks3
CIS 535Wireless Technologies and Pervasive Computing3
CIS 537Advanced Networking and Distributed Systems3
CIS 579Artificial Intelligence3
CIS 585Advanced Artificial Intelligence3
CIS 647Research Advances in Networking and Distributed Systems3
CIS 685Research Advances in Artificial Intelligence3
ECE 527Multimedia Secur & Forensics3
ECE 531Intelligent Vehicle Systems3
ECE 536All Weather Automotive Vision3
ECE 543Kinem, Dynam Control Robots3
ECE 544Mobile Robots3
ECE 560Modern Control Theory3
ECE 5702High-Speed and Adv Networks3
ECE 577Engineering in Virtual World3
ECE 586Digital Image Processing3
ECE 612Wireless Sensor Networks3
ECE 642Robotic Embed Sys3
ECE 644Advanced Robotics3
ECE 645Coop Robots3
ECE 650Info Theory in Elec Comm3
ECE 661Sys Ident and Adaptive Control3
ECE 679Adv Intelligent Sys3

Dynamics, Control and Vehicle Safety

AENG 502Modeling of Automotive Systems3
AENG 547Automotive Powertrains I3
AENG 555Vehicle Stability & Control3
ECE 515Vehicle Electronics II3
ECE 532Auto Sensors and Actuators3
ECE 552Fuzzy Systems3
ECE 560Modern Control Theory3
ECE 565Digital Control Systems3
ECE 567Nonlinear Control Systems3
ME 540Mechanical Vibrations3
ME 542Advanced Dynamics3
ME 543Vehicle Dynamics3
ME 548Automotive Powertrains II3

Electrified Vehicles

AENG 598Energy Sys for Auto Vehicles3
ECE 515Vehicle Electronics II3
ECE 517Adv Pwr Electrncs&Motor Drvs3
ECE 519Adv Topics in EMC3
ECE 532Auto Sensors and Actuators3
ECE 5462Elec Aspects of Hybrid Vehicle3
ECE 5791Vehicle Power Management3
ECE 646Adv Elec Drive Transportation3
ESE 502Energy Storage Systems3

Materials, Manufacturing, and Design

AENG 545Vehicle Ergonomics I3
AENG 550Design of Automotive Chassis3
AENG 586Design & Mfg: Ltwt Auto Mat3
AENG 589Auto Assembly Systems3
AENG 650Anyls&Des for Veh Crshwrthnss3
ECE 539Production of Elec Prods3
IMSE 502Computer-Integrated Mfg3
IMSE 504Metal Forming Processes3
IMSE 519Quan Meth in Quality Engin3
IMSE 538Intelligent Manufacturing3
IMSE 561Tot Qual Mgmt and Six Sigma3
IMSE 5655Supply Chain Management3
IMSE 567Reliability Analysis3
IMSE 580Prod & Oper Engineering I3
IMSE 581Prod & Oper Engineering II3
IMSE 593Vehicle Package Engineering3
ME 514Advanced Mechanics of Materials3
ME 558Fracture and Fatigue Considerations in Design3
ME 582Injection Molding3
ME 583Mechanical Behavior of Materials3
ME 584Mechanical Behavior of Polymer3
ME 587Automotive Composites3
ME 589Composite Materials3

Shared Mobility

IMSE 500Models of Oper Research3
IMSE 505Optimization3
IMSE 514Multivariate Statistics3
IMSE 559System Simulation3
IMSE 5655Supply Chain Management3
IMSE 567Reliability Analysis3
IMSE 584Logistical Systems3
IMSE 605Advanced Optimization3
IMSE 606Advanced Stochastic Processes3

Thermal-Fluid Combustion

ME 522Advanced Fluid Mechanics3
ME 525Computational Fluid Mechanics and Heat Transfer3
ME 528Fund of Boiling and Condensatn3
ME 532Combustion Processes3
ME 535Advanced Thermodynamics3
ME 537Automotive Air Conditioning3
ME 538Vehicle Thermal Management3
ME 545Acoustics and Noise Control3
ME 571Conduction Heat Transfer3
ME 572Convection Heat Transfer3
ME 596Internal Combustion Engines I3
ME 597Internal Combustion Engines II3
ME 598Engine Emissions3
ME 622Advanced Topics in Fluid Mechanics3

Data Analytics in Automotive Mobility

CIS 511Introduction to Natural Language Processing3
CIS 536Text Mining and Information Retrieval3
CIS 556Database Systems3
CIS 5570Introduction to Big Data3
CIS 568Data Mining3
CIS 5700Advanced Data Mining3
CIS 571Web Services3
CIS 580Data Analytics in Software Engineering3
CIS 586Advanced Data Management3
ECE 537Data Mining3
ECE 576Information Engineering3
IMSE 586Big Data Aanal & Visuliztn3
ECE 579Intelligent Systems3

Early Start Requirements

The students are expected to engage in research work from the first year of the program. To facilitate that, each student should have a faculty research advisor at the beginning of the first semester and develop the dissertation research topic with the faculty advisor by the end of the second semester in the program. There is an additional requirement that at least 6 credit hours of faculty-guided research (ASM 791 or ASM 980) be completed within the first year of enrollment in the program. In the first semester, all students need to take the ASM 791 (Doctoral Direct Study) and the second semester the ASM 980 (Pre-candidate Dissertation Research).

Research Maintenance Requirements

  • ASM 990 (Dissertation for candidates) can be taken only after a student achieves candidacy. A minimum of 24 credit hours in ASM 990 is required.
  • During the candidacy, a student enrolls in ASM 990 every semester.  The outcomes of ASM 990 include a written dissertation research progress report, a presentation of research results to the dissertation committee. A “S” or “U” grade will be given by the adviser based on the student’s performances in research. Any “U” grade will be reviewed by the committee and a written plan will be provided to the student about what is needed to improve dissertation research. The metric to measure a student’s progress includes, but not limited to, regular meetings with the adviser, good quality research progress reports, publications, patent applications, prototype system demos, and well-recognized open-source programs. The faculty advisor notifies ASM committee about the student’s progress in each semester.
  • A Student must register to ASM 791, ASM 980 or ASM 990 must arrange meetings with the faculty advisors at least twice per month for mentoring by the advisor.

Dissertation Committee

The dissertation committee is formed when a student takes ASM 980. As a rule, the dissertation committee continues overseeing the student’s work to the stage of the final dissertation defense.

  • The faculty advisor serves as the chair of the Dissertation Committee.
  • The dissertation committee will consist of a minimum of three members in addition to the committee chair. The committee members will include two faculty members (at least one member from the CECS) and one industry member.
  • The composition of the dissertation committee must be approved by the D. Eng. program committee. The industry member's curriculum vitae must be submitted to the Program Committee for approval.
  • Depending on the dissertation topic, a faculty member outside the CECS may be included in the dissertation committee.
  • A committee may have a sole chair or two co-chairs. Persons who may serve as co-chair, but not the sole chair, include:
    • tenure or tenure-track members of the University’s instructional faculty;
    • research faculty;
    • instructors and lecturers;
    • similarly qualified University faculty or staff, or person from outside the University; and
    • former University faculty members who have moved to a faculty position at another university

Candidacy Requirements

Achieving candidacy for the D. Eng. in ASM requires:

  • Completion of two curricular qualification courses and maintain a combined GPA of 3.5/4.0 and 3.3/4.0 or better for each course
  • Completion of all the required outcomes of ASM 980
  • Submission of the candidacy application form
  • Approved Doctoral Dissertation Committee


After passing ASM 980, the student may proceed with the dissertation research and the writing of the dissertation. The dissertation should document the original contributions made by the candidate as a result of independent research. This research work should be of archival quality. In advance of graduation, all members of the student's dissertation committee must approve the dissertation. To obtain this approval a student must submit a written copy of the dissertation to the dissertation committee and defend the research work at a final oral examination open to other faculty, students, and the interested public. Students defending the dissertation must be registered in ASM 990.

Upon completion of the dissertation work, the student initiates the last step toward the degree—the dissertation defense process. The process follows the official guidelines and consists of the following main stages:

  • Preparation of a written dissertation formatted in accordance with the guidelines,
  • Pre-Defense meetings with the members of the program committee,
  • Written evaluations of the dissertation by the dissertation committee members
  • The Oral Defense of the dissertation consisting of two parts:
    • Public seminar and open question session held by the student
    • Private deliberations by the committee,
  • Final oral examination report and certificate of approval prepared by the dissertation committee
  • Post-Defense meeting with the CECS Graduate Education Office

Timeline Requirements

The D. Eng. ASM program has a time limit of 3 years for completion. Students are expected to complete the degree within 2 years after achieving candidacy, but no more than 3 years from the date of the first enrollment in the program. 

All D. Eng. ASM students are required to register for either the program’s coursework or dissertation credits every fall and winter semester unless they are on an approved leave of absence.  Students may request a leave of absence when certain life events prevent continued active participation in their degree program.  Students may request a leave of absence as early as six months prior to the term the leave is to start. A leave will be granted to students for illness (either physical or mental) or injury, to enable them to provide care or assistance for family or dependents, to allow them to meet military service obligations, or for other personal reasons.  The student’s request for a leave of absence will need the approval by the CECS Doctoral Program Committee.

A student is considered to have completed the D. Eng. ASM program only if the student has completed the two required courses with satisfactory grades and the required research credit hours, passed the dissertation defense and got a satisfactory grade on the written dissertation. A petition for an extension of study time may be submitted by the student with the endorsement of student’s dissertation advisor to the committee of D. Eng. in ASM for approval. The time extension will be no more than 2 years. Table 2.2 is an example of curriculum.

ASM 791     Doctoral Directed Study     1 to 6 Credit Hours

Independent study and research work on the material related to the doctoral research project under the guidance of the faculty advisor. A report and an oral presentation are required. Required outcomes include well-defined research topic/objective/technical approach and in-depth literature review. (F, S, W).

Can enroll if Level is Doctorate
Can enroll if College is Engineering and Computer Science
Can enroll if Major is

ASM 980     Pre-Candidate Dissertation Research     1 to 9 Credit Hours

Dissertation work by a pre-candidate student in the Automotive Systems and Mobility program conducted under guidance of the faculty advisor. (F, S, W).

Can enroll if Level is Doctorate
Can enroll if College is Engineering and Computer Science
Can enroll if Major is

ASM 990     Doctoral Dissertation     1 to 12 Credit Hours

Dissertation work by a student of the D.Eng. program in Automotive Systems and Mobility conducted under guidance of the faculty advisor. The student must be admitted to D.Eng. candidacy status. (F, S, W).

Can enroll if Level is Doctorate
Can enroll if College is Engineering and Computer Science
Can enroll if Major is