Skip to Main Content
In 1996, Georgia Institute of Technology completely revised its undergraduate curriculum as part of a process of switching from a quarter system to a semester system. Two elements of the new, combined electrical and computer engineering curriculum were that (1) DSP replaced circuits as the initial sophomore ECE course and (2) a new "capstone design" requirement was added at the senior level. As a result of these changes, a new course, real-time signal processing using DSP microprocessors, was created to fulfill the capstone design requirement. This paper presents a detailed description of the course and a detailed analysis of the course's performance over the past eight years. The author compares and contrasts the effectiveness of this course to earlier undergraduate courses that also covered real-time DSP theory and practice. The author also discusses the evolutionary effectiveness of modern DSP development tools in terms of ease of understanding, ease of use, and effectiveness as measured by student success.