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Design Of A Course In Semiconductor Device That Emphasizes Integration Of Knowledge

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2001 Annual Conference


Albuquerque, New Mexico

Publication Date

June 24, 2001

Start Date

June 24, 2001

End Date

June 27, 2001



Page Count


Page Numbers

6.335.1 - 6.335.7

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Paper Authors

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Charles Yokomoto

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Maher Rizkalla

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 93

Design of a Course in Semiconductor Device that Emphasizes Integration of Knowledge Maher E. Rizkalla and Charles F. Yokomoto Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis

Abstract- A new approach to teaching a traditionally engineering science oriented, required senior level course in semiconductor devices was used in our Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. The new approach is called Integration of Knowledge, which is also one of our campus principles of undergraduate learning. Utilizing SUPREM IV software the course also integrates contents from electromagnetics, solid-state physics, electronics, and circuit analysis into the design and analysis of three- and four-terminal semiconductor devices starting with the basic pn junction. The course was also designed with ABET EC2000 in mind. The new approach was offered in Fall 2000 semester with 22 students, and an assessment of student satisfaction with the course and with their learning is reported.

1. Introduction

This report describes the redesign of a required, senior course in semiconductor devices where students are asked to assimilate a diversity of knowledge types. That is, instead of teaching the course as a traditional engineering science course with fundamental engineering principles with problem solving, the new course asks students to integrate the following knowledge types: engineering science, solid-state physics, manufacturing, and computer-aided design. A course of this kind supports one of out campus general education principles—the Integration of Knowledge [1]. The benefits of asking students to integrate knowledge are (1) to show students that knowledge is not bounded by traditional course boundaries, (2) to promote understanding through multifaceted approach to learning, and (3) to bring in experts from different disciplines to provide students with different views and experiences that will enhance their understanding of the course materials. The integration of knowledge will be facilitated by assigning students a significant project that will require them to apply knowledge from all aspects of the diverse approaches covered by the faculty and guest lectures. This course design principle has been used successfully in the development of another senior course, an elective in the design of electronics for electric and hybrid-electric vehicles {2,3].

2.0 Types of Knowledge Being Integrated

In the old ABET nomenclature, our old course in semiconductor devises was considered to be an engineering science course. While this orientation might be perfectly suitable for a program that sends a large number of its students to graduate programs, it is not a good fit for our program. Thus, we decided to redesign the course by including a semiconductor design-oriented component that introduces the student to related aspects such as solid-state physics, fabrication, computer- aided design, simulation, and the use of SYPREM IV, a software package that is available on the PUNCH Hub at Purdue-WL through the Internet. Thus, for a unit on PN junction devices as a basic building block for optoelectonic devices, we will cover optical spectrum, light absorption, electron-hole recombination and generation, light induced current, compound semiconductors, and optical properties of compound semiconductors to explain the underlying physics of the device. In

Proceedings of the 2001American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright  2001, American Society for Engineering Education

Yokomoto, C., & Rizkalla, M. (2001, June), Design Of A Course In Semiconductor Device That Emphasizes Integration Of Knowledge Paper presented at 2001 Annual Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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