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Experiences In The Integration Of Digital Signal & Image Processing Research Into The Undergraduate Electrical Engineering Curriculum

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1999 Annual Conference


Charlotte, North Carolina

Publication Date

June 20, 1999

Start Date

June 20, 1999

End Date

June 23, 1999



Page Count


Page Numbers

4.253.1 - 4.253.13

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Richard R. Schultz

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

Session 2632

Experiences in the Integration of Digital Signal and Image Processing Research into the Undergraduate Electrical Engineering Curriculum*

Richard R. Schultz University of North Dakota


Through the integration of research into the undergraduate electrical and computer engineering curriculum, students are invited to think abstractly and to stimulate their innate creativity. This paper discusses some of the successes and challenges involved in introducing undergraduate students to the joys and frustrations of signal and image processing research. Experiences are described from work supported in part by National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) grant number MIP-9624849, entitled “A Career Plan for the Integration of Image Processing Education and Research.” Research-based projects were included in several required and elective courses taught by the principal investigator, including Computer Aided Measurement and Controls; Communications Engineering; Digital Image Processing; Discrete Real-Time Filtering; Capstone Senior Design; and Independent Study. Some of the projects attempted by the students included a hybrid Discrete Cosine/Wavelet Transform for still image coding; the super-resolution enhancement of image sequence frames and multiple camera images; multispectral image segmentation via vector quantization; the subband decomposition of digital audio; the automated recognition of musical notes captured by a microphone connected to a sound card; the development of a desktop videoconferencing system for distance learning; and the design of a telerobotic rover controlled via the World Wide Web. All design and research-related projects required considerable supervision by the instructor, and obviously some projects were more successful than others. Regardless, the students enjoyed studying problems that were not necessarily well-defined, and in all cases they learned a great deal about the process of research and development. Brief descriptions of the projects are provided, along with comments from student evaluations. The instructor provides a reflection on these experiences, both favorable and unfavorable.

1. Introduction

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has been active in motivating successful researchers to return to the classroom so that they may share their experiences with undergraduates. The Presidential Young Investigator (PYI) Program, which awarded grants based solely on research prowess, has recently evolved into the Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program, which supports junior-level faculty members seeking to integrate their education and research activities at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Proposing original ideas in education and research integration is relatively simple; actually implementing these concepts in the classroom can be extremely challenging and highly time consuming, while at the same time professionally and personally rewarding. This paper discusses experiences, both favorable and unfavorable, in the integration of education and research activities at the

* This work was supported in part by the National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program, grant number MIP-9624849. In addition, this material is based upon work supported in part by the U.S. Army Research Office under contract number DAAH04-96-1-0449.

Schultz, R. R. (1999, June), Experiences In The Integration Of Digital Signal & Image Processing Research Into The Undergraduate Electrical Engineering Curriculum Paper presented at 1999 Annual Conference, Charlotte, North Carolina.

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