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Digital Signal Processing In The Undergraduate Curriculum

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

New Trends in ECE Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.431.1 - 7.431.14



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Paper Authors

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Thomas Hemminger

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Ralph Ford

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

Main Menu Session 1432

Digital Signal Processing in the Undergraduate Curriculum

Thomas L. Hemminger, Ralph M. Ford

Electrical and Computer Engineering School of Engineering and Engineering Technology The Pennsylvania State University at Erie, The Behrend College Erie, PA


The use of high-speed data acquisition and digital signal processing (DSP) technology has become the cornerstone of many areas of electrical engineering. This is particularly true in the fields of communications, controls, intelligent systems, signal and image processing. One of the driving forces behind DSP is the overwhelming interest in real-time processing as, for example, in high definition television, spread spectrum communications, and speech recognition systems. It is clear that DSP is instrumental in conveying the principles of many topics covered in electrical engineering particularly with respect to modeling and simulation. The objective of this paper is to describe a multi-course sequence which employs DSP at many levels of the undergraduate curriculum for the purpose of enabling students to visualize, test, and implement concepts introduced in the classroom. This is accomplished through the completion of special projects and laboratory exercises in multiple courses with the goal of developing a solid foundation in engineering principles by the time of graduation. All students are required to take a core set of courses, which introduce DSP concepts, including applications where DSP is not typically employed. The level of complexity is increased as students progress through the curriculum, culminating in technical electives that extend their knowledge in a particular area of interest. The objectives of the sequence are realized through the employment of simulation tools and real-time hardware. This project is part of a plan to blend state-of-the-art technology with real world applications for the purpose of enhancing the undergraduate experience.


For many years there has been a move to include discrete-time as well as continuous-time systems in electrical engineering curricula. This change has been driven largely by the availability of fast and inexpensive hardware. Therefore, colleges and universities have attempted to integrate digital signal processing (DSP) into many their courses. Our goal has been to introduce DSP in the 5th semester and to continue to build on this material each semester until graduation so that by the senior year students are well versed in filtering, modulation techniques, multirate sampling, and many other DSP topics. When possible we require students to work with discrete-time systems for controls, signals and systems, electronics, and ____________________________ * A National Science Foundation ILI Grant #9850521 supported this work. Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Hemminger, T., & Ford, R. (2002, June), Digital Signal Processing In The Undergraduate Curriculum Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--11289

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