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Using spreadsheets in introductory EE courses

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1 Author(s)
Svoboda, James A. ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Clarkson Univ., Potsdam, NY, USA

Ways in which spreadsheet programs can be used to introduce practical considerations in introductory electrical engineering courses are discussed. Examples are presented which show that spreadsheets can be used to predict and/or minimize the errors due to loading, the availability of only standard resistor values, and resistor tolerances. The circuits considered in these examples were selected to be as simple as possible. These examples could be used in the first semester of sophomore credits. They illustrate trade-offs, performance criteria, and nonunique solutions, and are intended to illustrate the power of spreadsheet programs. In the first example, a macro is used to implement a simple iterative optimization procedure. In the second example, minimization is done by exhaustive search using the table lookup capabilities of the spreadsheet. In the final example, the spreadsheet's random number generator is used to perform a Monte Carlo analysis

Published in:

Education, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:35 ,  Issue: 3 )

Date of Publication:

Aug 1992

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