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Education, IEEE Transactions on

Issue 2 • Date May 2001

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Displaying Results 1 - 25 of 38
  • Emphasizing formal analysis in a software engineering curriculum

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    The integration of formal method application throughout a six course software engineering curriculum is outlined. Formal analysis skills were included in order to increase the complex program solving skills of the student. The five instruction-oriented courses presented highlight how formal analysis was introduced in and applied to the corresponding subject material. The materials presented, along with an accounting of the experiment, provide a basis for other academicians to teach formal analysis at their own institutions. View full abstract»

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  • Learning microcontrollers with a CAI oriented multi-micro simulation environment

    Publication Year: 2001
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (6 KB)  

    This paper presents the application of a CAI-oriented simulation environment of the 8051, namely UVI51, to the laboratory work in an introductory course on microcontrollers. The main features of UV151 derive from its orientation to education: (i) very realistic simulation of both CPU and embedded peripherals; (ii) easy-to-use interface; (iii) graphical windows that show the state and configuration of the embedded peripherals; (iv) ability to simulate the concurrent operation of several microcontrollers; and (v) ability to simulate the interaction of the microcontrollers with external peripherals. A brief description of the environment and some exercises to be implemented by the students are presented. The results of the educational experience, in terms of both opinions and scores of the students, are also discussed. View full abstract»

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  • Teaching electromagnetic fields and FEM for undergraduate students

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (3)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (6 KB)  

    An approach to the finite element method applied to the solution of electromagnetic fields problems is presented. This methodology is suitable for teaching electrical engineering students at undergraduate level, because the problem formulation is based solely on the direct integration of Maxwell's equations and the approach is only valid for first-order elements, thereby avoiding the use of an excessively complex mathematical treatment. View full abstract»

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  • Complementary root locus revisited

    Publication Year: 2001 , Page(s): 137 - 143
    Cited by:  Papers (7)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (120 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    In this paper, a new finding related to the well-known root locus method that is covered in the introductory control systems books is presented, It is shown that some of the complementary root locus rules and properties are not valid for systems with loop transfer functions that are not strictly proper. New definitions for root locus branches have been presented which divide them into branches passing through infinity and branches ending at or starting from infinity. New formulations for calculating the number of branches passing through the infinity point of intersection of the asymptotes on the real axis, and angles of these asymptotes with the real axis have been introduced. It has been shown this type of system with the order of n will have at least one and at most n branches which will pass through infinity. The realization and stability of these systems have been investigated, and their gain plots have been presented. The new finding can be used by educators to complement their lecture materials of the root locus method. By using problems similar to examples presented in the paper, analytical understanding of the students in a classical control systems course can be tested View full abstract»

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  • Learning on demand-a hybrid synchronous/asynchronous approach

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (5)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (12 KB)  

    A variety of online courses and even degree programs have begun to appear as standard offerings from a broad spectrum of educational and training institutions. Often, these courses consist purely of web-based access to traditional textual and graphical course materials, while others have tried to provide real-time audio or video access to traditional classes using modern communications technologies. This paper describes another approach-the Lectures on Demand in Asynchronous Learning Networks (ALN) methodology-in using information technology to enhance the learning experience for conventional on-campus students, as well as for those students whose circumstances require that they be asynchronous in time or space with respect to fellow students and instructional staff. In this approach, students are able to 'attend' classes in real time via the Internet, as well as to access asynchronously digitally stored video material with hyperlinks to other online resources, such as mailing lists or chat sessions, at any time. In addition to the simple delivery of class materials, current and emerging Internet-based communication technologies permit beneficial interaction in real-time and asynchronously among students and between students and instructor, which is a key for effective learning. The paper discusses the pedagogical and technical issues involved in this approach, and describes a variety of mechanisms to provide enhanced live and archived classes View full abstract»

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  • A computer tool for helping engineering students in their learning of electrical energy basics

    Publication Year: 2001
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    This paper describes a computer tool designed to help engineering students with their work in learning basic concepts of electrical energy. The computer tool was built as a specialized package of the software Mathematica, comprising about thirty user-defined functions covering all the application area of electrical energy systems. The package was designed to back up courses using the problem-based learning paradigm. Two typical examples of usage are presented in details View full abstract»

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  • An educational genetic algorithms learning tool

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (7)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    During the last thirty years, there has been a rapidly growing interest in a field called genetic algorithms (GAs). The field is at a stage of tremendous growth as evidenced by the increasing number of conferences, workshops and papers concerning it, as well as the emergence of a central journal for the field. With their great robustness, genetic algorithms have proven to be a promising technique for many optimization, design, control, and machine learning applications. Students who take a GAs course study and implement a wide range of difference techniques of GAs. And practical implementation experience plays a very important role in learning computer relative courses. Herein, an educational genetic algorithm learning tool (EGALT) has been developed to help students facilitate GAs course. With the readily available tool students can reduce the mechanical programming aspect of learning and concentrate on principles alone. A friendly graphic user interface was established to help students operate and control not only the structural identification but also the parametric identification of GAs. It outlines how to implemented genetic algorithms, how to set parameters of different kinds of problems, and recommends a set of genetic algorithms, which were suggested in previous studies View full abstract»

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  • Minimum return difference as a compensator design tool

    Publication Year: 2001 , Page(s): 120 - 128
    Cited by:  Papers (5)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (264 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Minimum return difference (RDmin) is a single robustness measure that, when large, guarantees that both gain margin (GM) and phase margin (PM) are large. In this paper, a lag and lead compensator design procedure based on RD is proposed, derived, and compared with the commonly used Bode PM-based design methods that undergraduates are taught in the first course on controls and that continue to appear in new textbooks. To introduce students to modern compensator design concepts while avoiding the complexities of optimal control theory, a cost function is minimized over a search focused on compensators that potentially may yield a large RDmin. An approximate relation between RDmin and {M, PM} suggests a lower bound on RDmin for robust system stability. An efficient procedure for exact calculation of RDmin is presented and is a valuable component of the compensator design algorithm. The compensator parameter search is conducted over a domain that approximately enforces/exceeds the lower bound requirement on RD min. All designs violating the requirement are rejected. The settling time and overshoot of the step response are usually both reduced relative to the traditional design methods, sometimes substantially, and the RD method often succeeds when the traditional methods fail. The undergraduate instructor is thus given a fresh, modern, and successful alternative for teaching first-order compensation synthesis without getting into advanced graduate-level techniques. The procedure also helps students understand system robustness and provides an easy transition to optimization methods, linking them with familiar concepts View full abstract»

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  • An evaluation model for Web-based instruction

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    Recently Web-based instruction (WBI) has been adopted for many educational systems in order to support distance education. WBI has become popular in that it overcomes time and space limitation in traditional educational systems. But due to lack of face-to-face communication, it is crucial that WBI provide interactivity and motivation for students. This paper introduces a formal model that evaluates interactivity and motivation for courses based on WBI. The model is comprehensive and objective so that it can be used to evaluate any course. Based on the model, the paper selects some WBI courses and compares them for their interactivity and motivation. Finally, the paper concludes with a discussion of further research issues View full abstract»

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  • Internet-based learning by doing

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (7)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    This paper presents the current trends in Internet-based training by experimental work. The authors show how to apply the “learning by doing” paradigm in Internet-based distance learning, both for academic educational environments and life-long training systems, taking into account available computer and network resources. Firstly, the different phases in the learning process are introduced. The aim of this introduction is to show to the readers the importance of the learning by doing paradigm, which is not implemented in many Internet-based educational environments. Then, they identify the most important trends in this field which can be classified into two main groups. The first one consists of accessing the real equipment through an Internet interface. The second is based on simulation, very often, Java-based simulation. Both approaches are discussed, including brief descriptions of currently available systems that implement them. Finally, these approaches are compared from different points of view. They point out the most significant variables to bear in mind and, as the readers may find a tradeoff between some of them, they also provide a graphical guide to help them in their choice View full abstract»

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  • Technology education challenges and solutions in Latin America

    Publication Year: 2001
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (12 KB)  

    The world has become dependent on information, technology, and telecommunications, better known as information technology and telecommunications (IT&T), a term that encompasses the fields of electrical and computer engineering, and computer science. Increasingly, IT&T is an effective indicator of the difference between developed and developing nations. The competitiveness of a nation is directly related to its incorporation of IT&T which requires a substantial restructuring of the forms and procedures in attempting to generate a base for development of science and technology. To achieve this, it is important to revise the education of human technical and scientific resources. This paper summarizes the experience of the Ibero-American Science and Technology Education (ISTEC) consortium in IT education in Latin America View full abstract»

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  • Web based peer assessment: attitude and achievement

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    The specific features of the Web-based peer assessment are to utilize Internet resources to facilitate contacts between individuals and information, to assist in brainstorming among individuals, and to generate more meaningful learning at the higher education level. In this research, authors focus predominantly on attitudes of computer science students toward Web-based peer assessment using NetPeas as the interactive channel and management center. NetPeas is a Web-based peer assessment system implemented for two-way anonymous peer assessment. In an evaluation held in spring 1999, this study recruited a sample of fifty-eight computer science undergraduate students enrolled in an operating systems class in a research university of Taiwan. Attitudes toward Web-based peer assessment were measured by a post-test questionnaire, including several affective components, for example, “satisfied” or “unsatisfied” about the Web-based peer assessment. The result demonstrated that; (1) significantly more students favored this new learning strategy; and (2) students with positive attitude outperformed those with negative attitude. No matter positive attitude toward Web-based peer assessment brings about higher achievement or higher achievement promotes positive attitude, teachers must take care of students' subjective feelings in enhancing effective Web-based peer assessment View full abstract»

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  • Discovering the effects of feedback on control systems: informative and interesting numerical exercises

    Publication Year: 2001 , Page(s): 104 - 108
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (88 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    A numerical approach to feedback investigations allows students to discover easily and quickly the basic effects of feedback, both desirable and undesirable, on automatic control systems. Students can quickly learn the intuitive aspects of feedback early in their study of control systems before they enter, and perhaps become lost in, the world of intense mathematical analysis and design applied to feedback. The illustrative example presented in this paper, which is designed to match the preferred learning style of most engineering students, can be used to form coordinated numerical and analytical exercises in lecture, recitation, or laboratory portions of the course. Our students say that they enjoy and benefit from the many learning aspects of these discovery exercises View full abstract»

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  • Java applets for microelectronics education

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    This work describes a library of online courseware utilizing Java applets developed for microelectronics education. The objective is to provide an online learning environment that supplements resident instruction. Java applets are utilized to interactively demonstrate principles, provide design tools, and allow students to test their knowledge via online quizzes. The course material and Java applets are included on the CD-ROM View full abstract»

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  • Enhancing state-space control teaching with a computer-based assignment

    Publication Year: 2001 , Page(s): 129 - 136
    Cited by:  Papers (3)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (124 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper describes an assignment study that is undertaken at Heriot-Watt University by students who have elected to study the digital/state-space control module as part of their Masters program in Digital Systems Engineering. The assignment is based around the inverted pendulum system and uses the computer package MATLAB/SIMLINK. The assignment allows exploration of topics that are difficult through conventional tutorial examples and is structured in a manner that enhances the traditional classroom teaching approach. The topics covered are pole-placement design and both deterministic and stochastic state estimation. The given design performance specifications result in nonunique state-feedback and observer gain matrices. This has the dual advantages of reflecting a common practical control situation and also helps eliminate the potential for plagiarism among the students View full abstract»

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  • I-V maps [educational circuit simulation]

    Publication Year: 2001
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    A graphical circuit mapping technique is introduced for purposes of visualization and instruction. The technique is oriented toward mainly planar circuits which operate from fixed power supply rail voltages, and which are typical of most integrated circuit designs. The I-V map allows a simultaneous representation of all voltages, currents and power dissipations, and can be constructed to scale, which then gives accurate magnitude information. The I-V map proves valuable to recognizing current and voltage distributions, elements of high power dissipation, and as a classroom instructional tool for Kirchhoff's laws View full abstract»

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  • Root loci design using Dickson's technique

    Publication Year: 2001 , Page(s): 176 - 184
    Cited by:  Papers (3)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (200 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Traditional techniques for determining the root loci were developed by Evans. Given the characteristic equation {1+G(s)H(s)=0}, Evans root locus method requires the magnitude of G(s)H(s) to be equal to minus one and is well established for determining the pole locations as the system gains are changed. In this paper, nontraditional techniques for developing the root loci of control systems are introduced. Illustrations are developed by using a method for plotting the root loci that involves setting the real and the imaginary portions of the characteristic equation equal to zero. Setting the real and imaginary parts of the characteristic equation equal to zero arises from work in the theory of equations by Dickson. Application of this technique allows adjustment of the gain, to establish the system requirements, and introduces collateral equations subject to unique geometric interpretation View full abstract»

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  • Improving laboratory training for automation and process control courses with a specifically designed testing software application

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (12 KB)  

    A common problem in automation and process control courses, often arises at the practical stage. Students have to implement and test their control programs using specialized control devices (such as microcontrollers or PLCs) and, in many cases, the use of scale models or real process components is not possible, having to deal with a large number of switches, LEDs, etc., which not only may be confusing, but also drastically reduces their motivation. To mitigate this problem, other tools that could somewhat help by simulating the general behavior of the process (such as SCADA applications), are used. However, they are not intended for that purpose, so in most cases they are found inadequate. PROSIMAX, an easy-to-use Windows based tool for testing control programs implemented on different control devices, is presented. Using PROSIMAX, a virtually infinite number of real processes are easily cloned into virtual processes which, once attached to the control device, will behave as the real ones. It is intended to minimize the main drawbacks of classical tools used for test in educational environments. However, PROSIMAX is intended to be used as an auxiliary tool, being known the fact that the use of real components or scale models is the best way to achieve a satisfactory educational result View full abstract»

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  • A simple device and a project for the nonlinear control systems laboratory

    Publication Year: 2001 , Page(s): 144 - 150
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (176 KB)  

    This paper describes a new inverted pendulum system that is useful to illustrate important aspects of nonlinear control systems theory. The stabilization of the pendulum is to be achieved by the on-off action of two electromagnets; therefore, an adequate switching policy has to be applied. The pendulum can be controlled by a computer, using simple electronic interface circuits. This paper considers first an example from literature that suggests some design principles about the new system. Second, there is a detailed description of the pendulum. Finally, the use of the system in a student's project is presented. The experimental device is easy to build, inexpensive, and has good pedagogical impact View full abstract»

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  • Using MathCad in understanding the induction motor characteristics

    Publication Year: 2001 , Page(s): 165 - 169
    Cited by:  Papers (13)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (324 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Computer-aided multimedia education is increasingly popular within the classroom and laboratory. The applications of market-ready mathematical and database programming software for teaching engineering course outline is well appreciated. This article shows how MathCad can be used to introduce electrical machine characteristics simulated at different possible control modes. The undergraduate students require minimum knowledge of a programming language. The examples presented in the article show how MathCad software can be used to simplify some of the characteristics of the three-phase and one-phase induction machine. The result of introducing math software as a teaching tool at the third- and fourth-year level have been accepted and are now used as part of the practical sessions for the electrical machine and other credited courses at Birzeit University, West Bank and Gaza in the Palestine View full abstract»

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  • Integrating the teaching of computer organization and architecture with digital hardware design early in undergraduate courses

    Publication Year: 2001 , Page(s): 109 - 119
    Cited by:  Papers (18)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (420 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper describes a new way to teach computer organization and architecture concepts with extensive hands-on hardware design experience very early in computer science curricula. While describing the approach, it addresses relevant questions about teaching computer organization, computer architecture and hardware design to students in computer science and related fields. The justification to concomitantly teach two often separately addressed subjects is twofold. First, to provide a better insight into the practical aspects of computer organization and architecture. Second, to allow addressing only highly abstract design levels yet achieving reasonably performing implementations, to make the integrated teaching approach feasible. The approach exposes students to many of the essential issues incurred in the analysis, simulation, design and effective implementation of processors. Although the former separation of such connected disciplines has certainly brought academic benefits in the past, some modern technologies allow capitalizing on their integration. The practical implementation of the teaching approach comprises lecture as well as laboratory courses, starting in the third semester of an undergraduate computer science curriculum. In four editions of the first two courses, most students have obtained successful processor implementations. In some cases, considerably complex applications, such as bubble sort and quick sort procedures were programmed in assembly and or machine code and run at the hardware description language simulation level in the designed processors View full abstract»

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  • Helicoidal single-layer cylindrical coil self-inductance evaluation: a didactic method

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    This paper presents a didactic mathematical method to evaluate the self-inductance of a nonmagnetic core single-layer helicoidal coil presenting voids between turns. This type of calculation, using Biot-Savart Law, is not usually presented in the traditional electromagnetic text books, but constitutes an excellent tool to show to the students how to apply the very important Biot-Savart Law, using vectorial calculus, in a special electromagnetic device. It also shows them that the results are more accurate than that gotten when using the traditional methods presented in the most adopted books, that don't consider the helicoidal shape and the voids between turns and usually make strong restrictive conditions to permit the self-inductance calculation View full abstract»

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  • Simulators over the network

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (6)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    In this paper we present SimulNet, our contribution to the improvement of high-quality learning at home using new technologies. SimulNet provides students with a teleteaching environment where the “learning-by-doing” paradigm is possible. Unlike other distance teaching systems whose aim is to achieve a virtual classroom, SimulNet provides a virtual laboratory to put theoretical knowledge into practice. Because SimulNet is a 100% pure Java system, our labware can be run on any computer and operating system. Our approach is based on the simulation of the actual laboratory tools that are delivered through the Internet (Java applets) or by CD-ROM technology (Java applications). Although SimulNet can be used in a remote access way, Java allows us to provide always the highest level of interactivity, which is an essential feature in any distance education system. In addition, SimulNet also provides a set of communication and tutoring tools for learners and instructors, providing a full cooperative learning atmosphere. We believe distance education should not mean to study alone and, therefore, we made an extra effort to provide an environment where students and teachers feel as is they were in a virtual lecture room View full abstract»

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  • Developing educational software for mechatronics simulation

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (1)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    The need for a mechatronics simulation software is pointed out with special reference to engineering education, after which the authors present a convenient approach. Their basic algorithm computes the electromechanical behavior of electric motors combined with mechanical components like inertial/frictional/torsional loads, including such transmission elements as gears or lead screw/nuts. The simplicity and utility of their mathematical treatment are discussed in terms of its educational merits. The major theory is developed using a brush-type permanent DC motor, but brushless DC and stepping motors are discussed as well. They present three sample software packages. One is a simple program which demonstrates the computational principles for the electric current in an LRC circuit or the velocity of a suspended mass. The other two simulate the dynamic behavior of a slide table powered by a DC motor via gears and a lead screw. One is written in Microsoft Visual Basic code reflecting the physical meaning of mechanical components and the other is a Visual C++ version using the class library concept. The merits and demerits of these two approaches are discussed from the vantage point of undergraduate education and the retraining of technical instructors and working engineers View full abstract»

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  • A PC with sound card as an audio waveform generator, a two-channel digital oscilloscope and a spectrum analyzer

    Publication Year: 2001
    Cited by:  Papers (3)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (8 KB)  

    The availability of inexpensive PC sound cards that can simultaneously play and record stereo digital audio files permits a single PC to function as both a signal generator and as a dual-channel recording digital oscilloscope. When the input and output of a linear analog circuit are recorded, for example, free or inexpensive software permits display of the input and output waveforms and spectra, as well as calculation of the magnitude and phase of the transfer function. Thus, students can perform measurements and calculations on simple signal processing circuits with their own PCs. The result is expanded utility of hardware homework, which before, despite popularity among students, was severely limited in applications beyond DC circuits View full abstract»

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Aims & Scope

Educational research, methods, materials, programs, and technology in electrical engineering, computer engineering, and fields within the scope of interest of IEEE.

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Meet Our Editors

Editor-in-Chief
Jeffrey E. Froyd
Texas A&M University