Fall 2019 Information

Fall 2019 Database and Information Systems Qualifying Examination – Time to be decided

This page is under construction. The information you see below reflects the old format. The DAIS faculty are in the process of finalize a new format. Once we finalize it, we will update this page. Please check again after Sept 9, 2019.


The DAIS written qual will last for 3 hours. Each student will be required to answer five questions out of 9. If an examinee answers more than five questions, the committee will randomly select five to grade.

The distribution of the questions by areas is as follows.

  1. Database Systems: 3 questions
  2. Data Mining: 3 questions
  3. Information Retrieval: 3 questions

For each question, there will be three subquestions. The first is intended to test the basic knowledge related to a topic, the second is intended to test current research related to the topic, and the third is intended to test the examinee’s research capability.

In addition to the five questions of the examinee’s choice, each examinee must also answer one required question. The required question will test the examinee’s understanding of the basic concepts from the three subareas of the exam, and the examinee must answer all 9 of subparts of this question.

In addition to the DAIS written qual, each examinee will have a 15-minute one-on-one meeting with all DAIS faculty members, except their advisor. Examinees are instructed to prepare a total of three slides for this meeting: two on the examinee’s current research progress and papers (published, submitted, or in preparation), and one slide on the student’s future research goals. Each of these meetings will be a conversation on the examinee’s research progress and research plan, and will assess (1) the examinee’s ability to communicate and defend the technical aspects of and motivation for their research (2) the examinee’s academic preparation and ability to perform independent research.