PhD Defense of Raza Ul Mustafa

On 15 December 2022, I successfully defended my Ph.D. thesis at the Department of Computer Engineering and Industrial Automation (DCA) at the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering (FEEC).  I have investigated DASH video Quality of Experience (QoE) KPIs in 5G networks, followed by various Machine Learning (ML) techniques to predict end-user video Objective QoE from Quality of Service (QoS) KPIs.

My Ph.D. thesis title is “Machine Learning Assisted DASH Video QoE Inference Through Network QoS Features in 4G and 5G scenarios.”

For those who may be unfamiliar, the thesis defense is the major milestone in our Ph.D. program. First, you must pass the coursework required for a Ph.D. degree. Next, you must pass the qualification exam (typically taken in your third year). Finally, your thesis defense (typically taken in your fifth year). The thesis defense is probably the most well-known of the three because there’s a public seminar (two hours long research talk) and also because it’s viewed as the culmination of the program, so there’s an extra sense of importance attached to it.

Highlighted contribution of my research work includes two DASH QoS to QoE evaluation frameworks for both encrypted and unencrypted video traffic, real 4G and 5G dataset collection over a period of six months which includes YouTube QoE and Channel Level Metrics with 1-second granularity. Ph.D. defense presentation – [Presentation_PhD]

  1. Per-segment DASH QoE evaluation framework – [Github –]
  2. EFFECTOR: a reproducible framework to run real 4G and 5G video streaming sessions in a DASH environment – [Github –]

  1. Real 4G and 5G datasets with Channel, Context and QoE of YouTube with 1-second granularity – [IEEEDataPort –]

The day of defense:

Regardless of how nervous or stressed I was, the day of the defense arrived all the same. Then my committee chair asked my advisor to introduce me, after which I gave my talk for about 50+ minutes. Then, my committee members, whom I will call (A, B, C, D), started questioning for at least 1.5 hours.

After we finished the discussion, I was asked to leave the room for a few minutes. When I returned, the chair and the rest of the committee congratulated me on my successful defense. And that was it! I was done with my thesis defense!

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