TUM MSCE Interview Questions

This is a collection of frequently asked questions in the telephonic interview for the Masters in Communications Engineering (MSCE) program at Technische Universität München (TUM)

    1. Sampling theorem.
    2. Fourier transforms of sinc function and rectangular pulse.
    3. Rician and Rayleigh Fading.
  • Modulation Techniques especially BPSK.

The interview is completely technical, it is around 30 minutes.. for me it was exactly 30 mins. The guy had organised the questions into 4 sections and each
section having a fixed number of questions. I dont remember the sections exactly but they were related to computer HW n SW, communications and general
engineering mathematics. they also ask about your english language background, why you want to join TUM. these questions must be answered very confidently.
they also ask about final year project in BSc. Software skills like MATLAB etc, He asked me names of some MATLAB toolboxes I have worked on. When I had
my interview I asked my seniors about it and one of them replied the following:

“The interview would normally be 25-30 mins long. The topics that you would be interviewed on mainly are:
-Probability theory stuff (various probability distributions
especially Gaussian curve etc)
-Basic Communication and Digital communication stuff etc
-Basics of Linear Algebra e.g., Eigenvalues, eigenvectors, Rank of a
matrix etc
Imp: Keep your cv with u and revise and go thru well whatever u have written in that, they will ask abt whtever u have mentioned in that.
Also in your application for admission, whatever you mentioned as interest and field.
Don’t panic, speak easily and properly. The interview is not that difficult,
however it is important to perform good in it.
Practice speaking English with someone for atleast 30-40 minutes.”

Another senior replied this:
“Prepare ur cv well, linear algebra(matrices, determinant, rank, eigenvalues
and eigenvectors and subspaces), probability theory(random variable, pdf of
a random variable, various pdfs and marginal pdfs etc) and basics of
communications(analog and digital modulation schemes, fdm and tdm, OSI
layers, fouriers etc)
Be confident. Interview is conducted in a very friendly manner. Also keep ur
notes open while going for the interview. It can help u”

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he asked my regarding my major projects, why i want to come to TUM? Do i have any questions? have you applied elsewhere? asked a question
regarding the research paper that i mentioned in my SOP and also regarding my interests and after that he sent me a mathematics question that
i had to solve and send him back within 24 hours.

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1) Eigenvalue definition
2) Eigenvector definition
3) The equation for finding eigenvalues  det ( A – lambda I) = 0
4) Gaussian Curve and its controlling parameters
5) Equation for Discrete time Fourier transform
6) BPSK definition
7) QPSK definition

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1. How did you hear about TUM ?

2. Have you applied somewhere else ? What will be your preference ?

3. Can we convert an bandlimited signal to digital ? How ?

4. FDM and TDM ?

5. Advantage/Disadvantage of TDM over FDM

6. About Rake receiver (My Final Project was on Rake)

7. What is the function of equalizer ?

8. Name an equalizer used for TDMA ?

9. What is an Engenvalue problem, Eigenvector and characterisitc equation ?

10. What are Error Detection/Correction codes ? Main classes of Error Detection/Correction codes ?
What basically an Error Detection/Correction code do ? Give some examples of Error Detection/Correction codes

11. Do you know C programming ?

12. What will be your area of specialization: Mobile Communications, Signal Processing, … ?

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prepare main topics of Probability theory….like u must know what is probability and types of
probabilities…..how to calculate them and their shapes are also important. Next they will ask things from the essays u wrote in ur
application form. They will ask u a little bit about ur job and then they will ask u questions from Networking…like OSI layers, Switches,
Hub etc. they might ask one or two questions from programming …like what is size of integar…..very simple questions……do prepare
digital signal processing, must know something realted to fourier and laplace. U must know a lil bit of Communication systems…… and i
think thats all…..The most Important thing they r going to notice is that how much clear and confident ur voice is…..so have good
impression on them and even if u dont answer one or 2 questions …its not a problem.

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Review the material (from your B.E.) that is related to the first semester courses here. The interview will be taken by the Professor whose
interests match your own, and the questions depend upon the professor; so I can’t say anything about these! The interview will be on phone,
the professor will email you around 1 week earlier for a time confirmation (as well as the telephone number you will be available at, remember
that these days the Munich time is 3 hours behind Pakistan’s).

You see, almost everybody in interviewed by a different Professor, so its not possible to say what kind of interview it would be, or whether
it would be difficult or easy!

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The interviewer (a PhD student) asked few general questions about my project and the motivation to study MSCE at TUM. Then in technical questions, he asked:
1. Difference b/w CMOS and Bipolar technologies.
2. Power dissipation in CMOS.
3. Some uP and memories questions…
4. How can throughput of a uP be increased?
5. Few Fourier questions.
6. Few RV models.

Important!!! Usually the interviewer only asks questions from his area of research. You should find the homepage of your interviewer to have an idea what will be asked. Hope this will help you in your interview preparation.

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In the technical part, they will ask you about basic concepts of linear algebra, eigen values, orthogonal matrices etc, probabilty theory, guassian pdf etc.

Also, from computer programming about data structures and general questions on programming.

They might ask you from general communication theory, sth like modulation, QPSK, BPSK.

But you only need to know what it is, i.e. the basics and thats it…

For CE, i don’t know but my guess is that they ask questions more on electronics and VLSI.

Apart from that as a general advice make sure you know linear algebra and probability theory before you come here as otherwise life seem somewhat difficult, especially Linear algebra if you are in CS.

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Probability theory stuff (various probability distributions especially Gaussian curve etc)
Basic Communication and Digital communication stuff etc
Basics of Linear Algebra e.g., Eigenvalues, eigenvectors, Rank of a matrix etc
Imp: Keep your cv with u and revise and go thru well whatever u have written in that, they will ask abt whtever u have mentioned in that.
Also in your application for admission, whatever you mentioned as interest and field.

the following are some of the questions which a current MSCE student gave me

1. What are random variables? Their distribution, particularly

gaussian and binomial distribution. What is pdf?

2. What is law of large numbers?

3. Types of transforms studied, like fourier, laplace etc

4. eigen values, what is characteristic equation?

5. probablity: what is conditional probablity, bayes theorem?

plus

6. what are your interests?

7. why have you applied here

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1. How did you hear about TUM?

2. Have you applied somewhere else ? What will be your preference ?

3. Can we convert an bandlimited signal to digital ? How ?

4. FDM and TDM ?

5. Advantage/Disadvantage of TDM over FDM

6. About Rake receiver (My Final Project was on Rake)

7. What is the function of equalizer ?

8. Name an equalizer used for TDMA ?

9. What is an Eigenvalue problem, Eigenvector and characteristic equation ?

10. What are Error Detection/Correction codes? Main classes of Error Detection/Correction codes? What basically an Error Detection/Correction code do? Give some examples of Error Detection/Correction codes

11. Do you know C programming?

12. What will be your area of specialization: Mobile Communications, Signal Processing,..?

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about the interview; it seemed nothing like what I had expected. I was interviewed by Mr. Tony Poitschke of the Man-Machine Communication group. There were no questions from communications at all! The interview was completely from his field (he is a PhD student).

He asked me 1st about how humans gather information. I told him abt the 5 senses. then he asked which sense is most important. I said all are important but sight is most important. then he asked me about the structure of the eye and i told him! (from what i remembered from class 9 biology).

he asked some questions abt speech as well.

Then i asked him if he would like to ask some questions from communications. he said it is not my field! so no questions from that.

and also, the interview started abt questions like why u want to study at TUM and why u want to study in Germany etc. so be prepared for such questions.

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TUM interview would be general and interviewer won’t go deep into a particular topic. A general set of questions for both Communication System and Electronics potential candidates could be:

1. About University/Program…
a. Why have you applied here
b. Where else have you applied
c. Your key interest in a particular field of Communication Systems or Electronics
d. About your job if you are doing now after you have completed your BS
e. Anything similar that you have written in your CV or SOP

2. Basics of Linear Algebra
a. How to solve system of linear equations.
b. What are under-determined, over-determined systems
c. Eigen Values and Eigen Vectors
d. Basis and Subspaces
e. Anything similar that you can think of

3. Basics of Probability
a. pdf, cdf, pmf …..
b. He may ask to name some discrete or continuous distributions.

4. Basics of Communication
a. Difference b/w FM and AM.
b. Different digital shift keying or modulation schemes
c. Difference b/w TDM and FDM
d. Name some Error detection or Correction codes. Difference b/w them.
e. Anything simpler like above that covers communication

5. Basics of Electronics
a. No. of Transistor used in constructing AND, OR gates using CMOS
b. Power dissipation in BJT and CMOS. Which one in better?
c. Some similar stuff that you can come across while reading my reply. ;)

6. Basics of Signal Processing
a. Use of Fourier, Laplace and Z Transforms
b. Difference between DFT and DTFT.
c. Band-limited and Time-limited Signals

7. Your future plans
a. Job or Ph. D

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Author: Farish Huned Kagalwala

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