Dr. Yanjun Yan


Dr. Yan obtained her Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering and an M.S. degree in Applied Statistics from Syracuse University. She worked at a company for a few years before she joined Western Carolina University in Fall 2013.

Curriculum Vitae


  • Swarm robotics and swarm intelligence (such as Particle Swarm Optimization (PSO))
  • Prognostics and diagnostics, such as in wind energy systems
  • Statistical signal processing, applied in detection and estimation, tracking, fusion, wireless communications, and pattern recognition
  • Engineering education

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      • On scholarship
        • Fall 2021, Fulbright U.S. Scholar Award. Read the newsletter FB Newsletter Spring 2022 on the story of “Super-Duper Souvenir” on page 16-19.
        • Fall 2021, WCU Scholarly Development Award Program
        • 2016-2017, the College of Engineering and Technology (CET) Distinguished Research and Scholarly Engagement Award, one recipient per year at CET.
        • 2015-2016, WCU Hunter Scholar Award, one recipient per year at WCU. See Hunter’s Clarion Newsletter Page 6.
        • 2014-2015, the Kimmel School Outstanding Early-Career Faculty Award, one recipient per year at Kimmel School (renamed to be CET since 2016).
        • Internal research awards
          • 2020, WCU Provost Scholarship Development Award
          • 2018-2019, WCU Faculty Scholarship and Creative Activities Award, 2nd time.
          • 2016, WCU Provost’s Internal Funding Support Grant.
          • 2014-2015, WCU Faculty Scholarship and Creative Activities Award, 1st time, one of five recipients per year at WCU.
      • On teaching
      • On service
        • 2020-2021, Outstanding Faculty Participation in Community Service Projects
        • 2019-2020, Top Community Engagement Faculty at WCU
        • Spring 2018, WCU Coulter Endowment Grant on COACHE and Faculty Fit Project.

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Publications (Published and Accepted)

The copyright of each article belongs to the corresponding copyright holder.



  • Yanjun Yan. “Co-offering An Engineering Course and A Non-engineering Course During the Same Faculty-Led Trip to Promote Interdisciplinary Collaboration,” Peer-reviewed long abstracts for the 25th Annual Colloquium on International Engineering Education (ACIEE 2022): Connecting Engineering with the Humanities, virtual, RI, November 2-3, 2022.
  • Yanjun Yan, Ivo Rumenov Draganov, Hugh Jack, Tasho Tashev, and Mary Anna LaFratta. “A Project-Based Learning (PBL) Course Offered in Bulgaria in a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Project During the Pandemic,” Proceedings of the 129th ASEE (American Society of Engineering Education) Annual Conference and Exposition (ASEE2022), Minneapolis, USA, June 26-29, 2022.
  • Yanjun Yan, Ivo Rumenov Draganov, and Tasho Tashev. “A Case Study of Student-Centered Project Design and Execution,” Proceedings of the XIX-th International Conference “Challenges in Higher Education and Research in the 21st Century”, virtual, Bulgaria, May 30 – June 1, 2022. The paper will be in the archive link
  • Nelson A. Granda-Marulanda, Yanjun Yan, and Hugh Jack. “Using a Faculty-Led Course Experience to Increase Global Sustainability Competencies On-Campus,” Proceedings of the IISE Annual Conference & Expo 2022, Seattle, USA, May 21-24, 2022.









2013 and Earlier:

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Graduate Advisees:

On Thesis Committees of other Graduate Students:

Capstone Teams:

  • 2023-2024: “Development of a Small Satellite (CubSat) Experiment for Deep Space” sponsored by Destination Space
    • Brandon Spann (EE)
    • Wesley Jolly (EE)
    • Anna Batman (BSE-M)
    • Shannon Miller (BSE-M)
  • 2019-2020: “Revising the Kilobot for Large-Scale Shape Formation”, sponsored by Dr. Yanjun Yan.
    • Riley Ward (EE)
    • Ryan Kozak (ECET)
    • Colby Shope (ECET)
  • 2018-2019: “Automated Inventory Cycle Counting”, sponsored by Continental Auto.
    • Scott Herrick (ECET)
    • Ruslan Kram (EE)
    • Yang Xiong (EE)
    • Robert Hendrik (ET)
    • Tyler Mitchell (ET)
  • 2018-2019: “Shape Formation Using Kilobots”, sponsored by Dr. Yanjun Yan.
    • Sinjon Stringfellow (ECET)
    • Marshall Murphy (EE)
  • 2017-2018: “Self-Assembly and Self-Disassembly for Shape Formation Using Kilobots and AERobots”, sponsored by Dr. Yanjun Yan.
    • Lai Lee (ECET)
    • Griffin Kenneydy (EE)
  • 2016-2017: “PLI Cards Tool Punch Count System – Tagging/Reader System”, sponsored by PLI Cards, Asheville, NC.
    • Moua Lor (ECET)
    • Suliman Algfary (EE)
    • Ahmed Alghamdi (EE)
  • 2016-2017: “Collective Behavior of Swarm Robotics Using Kilobots”, sponsored by Dr. Yanjun Yan.
    • William Honeycutt (ECET)
    • Jason LaQuerre (ECET)
    • Brandon Letchworth (EE)
  • 2015-2016: “Barrett’s Map – Development of Reliable Image Mapping of the Esophagus for Pre-Cancer ID”, sponsored by Philip Stack, MD, Sylva NC
    • Jordan Joseph (EE)
    • Jonathan Powers (EE)
  • 2014-2015: “Automated Eye Drop Dispenser”, sponsored by Medical Tool and Technology, Florida.
    • Adam Huggins (ECET)
    • John Gosnell (ET)
    • Josh Wahl (ET)
  • 2013-2014: “Vacuum Leak Detection for Cancer Fixation Bags”, sponsored by Shands Hospital, Florida.
    • Ryan Smith (ECET)
    • William Kimsey (ET)
    • Paul Jagannati (EE)

Undergraduate Student Researchers:

  • 2022: Nicholas Eckert
  • 2018-2021: Jesse Sarver (NSF LEARN Alum)
  • 2018-2019: James Nelson (Honors College)
  • 2018: Mariah Dunn (NSF LEARN Scholar)
  • 2015-2019: Matthew Hill (NSF SPIRIT Scholar)
  • 2015-2016: Zachary Frizzell and Jacob Spurling (NSF SPIRIT Scholars)

Honors Contracts that are successfully finished:

  • Fall 2020: ENGR 402 (System Dynamics & Control)
    • Keanu Ammons, on “Simulating the low temperature scenario of using an Arduino circuit in weather balloon applications under -80 C in a freezer”
  • Summer 2019: ENGR365 (Global Engineering and Technology):
    • Jonathan Mashburn, on “How is the 2020 Tokyo Olympics becoming more sustainable and using renewable power sources?”
  • Fall 2018: ENGR199 (Introduction to Engineering Practices and Principles I):
    • James Nelson, on “Touchboard projects”
  • Spring 2018: ENGR402 (System Dynamics & Control):
    • Matthew Hill, on “Control system parameter tuning using the fireworks algorithm”
  • Spring 2017: EE200 (Computer Utilization):
    • Oliver Adcox, on “GUI creation to calculate resistance of a resistor network”
  • Spring 2016: EE200 (Computer Utilization):
    • Dylan Shook, on “Generating control charts in Matlab/Octave”
    • Charles Detweiler, on “Visual display for triboelectric nanogenerator research”
  • Spring 2015: ECET242 (Electronic Circuits):
    • Wesley Dixon, on “DC to AC conversion using a 555 timer”
    • Moua Lor, on “Darlington pair composite transistor analysis and experiments”
  • Fall 2014, ECET231 (Circuit Analysis I):
    • Bryson Shannon, on “Light alarm built with photoresistor and Arduino board”
    • Moua Lor, on “Theoretical analysis and experimental measurements of resistor network with an LED and a potentiometer”
  • Fall 2014, EE200 (Computer Utilization):
    • Moua Lor, on “Simulating LED lighting of robots when approached by various number of objects”
  • Spring 2014, EE200 (Computer Utilization):
    • Ashley Fisher, on “integration approximation” and “naughty bunnies”
    • Bryson Shannon, on “conducting student survey with extensive analysis of the actual survey results”
    • Rachel Shinskie, on “GUI construction to solicit user input and plot 3D shapes”
    • Derrick Miller, on “resistance calculation of a resistor network”
    • Jesse Curtis, on “various unit conversion”

Teaching & Advising

Next advising day (Oct 29, 2019):

  • The most preferred way to make an appointment is to click the Advising Campaign link in the email that Dr. Yan send you.
  • Or, you can make appointments at gradesfirst.wcu.edu, or go to myWCU and select Advising/Tutoring.
  • Follow the steps on how to make an appointment.

    You can plan your next semester’s schedule by exploring the list of classes at:

    You can find a suggested eight-semester plan by clicking on the appropriate link for your major:

    You also need to satisfy liberal studies requirement (Core and Perspective):

    You could substitute some introductory engineering courses and liberal arts courses:

    Other helpful information:

    The courses that I have taught or am teaching:

    • Undergraduate Courses:
      • ECET 211 Digital Integrated Circuit Lab
      • ECET 231 Circuit Analysis I
      • ECET 242 Electronic Circuits
      • ECET 321 Circuit Analysis II
      • ECET 464 Instrumentation
      • EE 200 Computer Utilization
      • EE 221 Instrumentation and Networks Laboratory
      • ENGR 199 Introduction to Engineering Practices and Principles I.  Fall 2018 Rube Goldberg Machines, Fall 2020 Save Halloween!
      • ENGR 365 Global Engineering and Technology
      • ENGR 402 System Dynamics and Control
      • ENGR 493 Special topics on Arduino Programming.  Spring 2019 TouchBoard Projects
    • Graduate Courses:
      • ET 593 Special topics on Digital Image Processing
      • ET 593 Special topics on Technical Problem Solving
      • ET 593 Special topics on Data Acquisition and LabVIEW Programming
      • ET 644 Advanced Digital Signal Processing
      • ET 645 Random Variables, Signals and Waveforms

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    Serving in Technical Program Committees

    • International Conference on Information Fusion 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, and 2010
    • SSIAI (IEEE Southwest Symposium on Image Analysis and Interpretation), 2018, 2016
    • SDPC (International Conference on Sensing, Diagnostics, Prognostics, and Control) 2018, 2017
    • IEEE ICPHM (IEEE International Conference on Prognostics and Health Management) 2018, 2017, 2016
    • ANTS (International Conference on Swarm Intelligence) 2016, 2014
    • ICCAIS 2015 (The International Conference on Control, Automation and Information Sciences)
    • I4CT 2015 (International Conference on Computer, Communications, and Control Technology)
    • VTC 2014-Spring (Vehicular Technology Conference) and VTC 2012-Spring
    • ICMCE 2014 (International Conference on Mechanics and Control Engineering)
    • BDM (Biological inspired techniques for data mining) workshop in PAKDD, 2013, 2011
    • On Multi-media Communications Networks in the Session of Sensor Networks & Distributed Computation in the Complex Adaptive Systems Conference, 2011
    • WAC 2008 (IADIS International Conference on Wireless Applications and Computing 2008)

    Reviewer for Journals

    • IEEE Transactions on Reliability (TR)
    • IEEE Transactions on Image Processing (TIP)
    • Journal of Electronic Imaging by IS&T and SPIE (JEI)
    • Soft Computing Journal
    • Swarm Intelligence Journal
    • International Journal of Prognostics and Health Management (IJPHM)
    • IEEE Transactions on Pattern Recognition and Machine Intelligence (TPAMI)
    • IEEE Sensors Journal
    • Machine Vision and Applications Journal
    • IEEE Transactions on Signal Processing (TSP)
    • IEEE Transactions on Information Forensics & Security (TIFS)
    • IEEE Transactions on Aerospace and Electronic Systems (TAES)
    • IEEE Transactions on Smart Grid
    • IEEE Communications Letters
    • Optical Engineering
    • International Journal of Intelligent Computing and Cybernetics
    • International Journal of Signal and Imaging Systems Engineering
    • International Journal of Image and Graphics
    • International Journal of Distributed Sensor Networks

    Reviewer Manager or Reviewer for Other Conferences

    • North American Power Symposium (NAPS) 2017
    • Asia Pacific Conference of the Prognostics and Health Management Society 2017
    • IEEE SouthEastCon 2017
    • PHM Conference (International Conference on Prognostics and Health Management) 2015, 2011, 2010, 2009
    • European Conference of the Prognostics and Health Management Society 2014
    • ACC (American Control Conference) 2014
    • IEEE WCNIS2010-Communication Theory and Signal Processing 2010
    • GC’09-WNS (IEEE GlobeCom Conference 2009 Wireless Networking Symposium)
    • SIS 2008 (IEEE Swarm Intelligence Symposium Conference) 2008

    WCU Campus Service

    • WCU Faculty-led Committee, 2016-2019
    • WCU Council on Inclusive Excellence, 2018-2019
    • WCU Liberal Studies Committee, 2016-2019
    • WCU Graduate Council, 2017-2022
    • WCU Institutional Review Board, 2018-2021
    • WCU International Faculty and Staff Council, 2017-2019
    • WCU Math Tutoring Center’s Assessment Team, 2017
    • University Budget Committee, 2016-2017
    • University NSB Planning: Pedagogy Committee, 2016-2017
    • WCU CET Strategic Direction Taskforce, 2016-2017
    • Department Scholarship Coordinator, 2014-2019
    • WCU First Year Experience (FYE) Cabinet, 2015-2017
    • WCU One Book Selection Committee, 2014-2016
    • Department Peer Review of Teaching Materials committee, 2013-2016
    • Department Collegial Review Document Committee, 2015-2016
    • Provost Office’s Student Community Ethics Committee, 2013-2016
    • Kimmel School Dean’s Advisory Committee, 2015-2017
    • Kimmel School Technology Advisory Committee, 2014-2016
    • University Scholarship Committee, 2013-2014, 2017-2018

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