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From Theory to Implementation: Meeting Industry Needs through University and Community College Collaboration in Digital Logic Design

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

NSF Grantees' Poster Session

Tagged Topic

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.658.1 - 25.658.8



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Paper Authors


Nasser Alaraje Michigan Technological University

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Nasser Alaraje is currently the Electrical Engineering Technology Program Chair, as well as a faculty member at Michigan Technological University. He taught and developed courses in the computer engineering technology area at the University of Cincinnati and Michigan Technological University. Alaraje’s research interests focus on processor architecture, System-on-Chip design methodology, Field-Programmable Logic Array (FPGA) architecture and design methodology, engineering technology education, and hardware description language modeling. Alaraje is a Fulbright scholar. He is a member of American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), a member of ASEE's Electrical and Computer Engineering Division, a member of ASEE's Engineering Technology Division, a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), and a member of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology Department Heads Association (ECETDHA).

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Aleksandr Sergeyev Michigan Technological University

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Aleksandr Sergeyev is currently an Assistant Professor in the Electrical Engineering Technology program in the School of Technology at Michigan Technological University. Sergeyev earned his bachelor degree in electrical engineering at Moscow University of Electronics and Automation in 1995. He obtained the master degree in physics from Michigan Technological University in 2004 and the Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from Michigan Technological University in 2007. Sergeyev's research interests include high energy lasers propagation through the turbulent atmosphere, developing advanced control algorithms for wavefront sensing and mitigating effects of the turbulent atmosphere, digital inline holography, digital signal processing, and laser spectroscopy. He is also involved in developing new eye-tracking experimental techniques for extracting 3-D shapes of objects from the movement of human eyes. Sergeyev is a member of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) and actively involved in promoting engineering education.

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Fred Scheu College of Lake County

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Fred Scheu is Department Chair of the Electrical Engineering Technology program at the College of Lake County in Illinois. He has a B.S.E.E. from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and a M.S.E.E. from San Jose State University, Ca. Industry experience: H-P, Tektronix Inc., Fairchild Semiconductor.

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From Theory to Implementation: Meeting Industry Needs through University & Community College Collaboration in Digital Logic DesignAbstractHardware Description Language and Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) haverevolutionized the way Digital Logic Design is taught and implemented. Traditional ways ofteaching logic design using discrete components (TTL: Transistor-Transistor Logic and CMOS:Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductors) have been replaced by Programmable LogicDevices (CPLD: Complex Programmable Logic Devices and FPGA). Today, a more standarddevelopment process is widely used in industry. The process uses Hardware DescriptionLanguages as a design entry to describe the digital systems. The two most widely used HardwareDescription Languages in industry are VHDL (Very High Speed Integrated Circuit HardwareDescription Language) and Verilog (Verifying Logic). Although most traditional electrical andcomputer engineering programs have updated their curriculum to include topics in hardwaredescription language and programmable logic design (FPGA/CPLD), two-year and four-yearelectrical engineering technology programs have fallen behind and are moving slowly inupdating their curriculum. A survey of 107 two-year electrical engineering technology programsand 52 four-year electrical engineering technology programs showed that only 16.5% of two-year and only 19.5 % of four-year programs in electrical and computer engineering technology atUS academic institutions currently have a curriculum component in hardware descriptionlanguage and programmable logic design [1]. Clearly, electrical engineering technologyprograms are far behind in teaching the skills that represent current and future industry needs. Asa result, the School of Technology at The University in partnership with the Community Collegeare stepping up to this challenge by developing and introducing curriculum in hardwaredescription languages and programmable logic design. This paper will discuss the curriculumdevelopment at The University Electrical Engineering Technology Program by incorporating thetwo courses in logic design and hardware modeling using VHDL and Field Programmable GateArray (FPGA) Logic Design. The paper will also present the year project activities including theEmployer Survey to assess the project needs, the industry-led faculty training and the impact onthe Electrical Engineering Technology digital logic design curriculum development, theestablishment of two hands-on re-configurable computing labs both at The University and Thecommunity college, and finally, the undergraduate research experience at The University.[1] R. Furtner and N. Widmer, “Technology Education and the new frontier of digital electronics,” ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition (ASEE 2006), June 2006

Alaraje, N., & Sergeyev, A., & Scheu, F. (2012, June), From Theory to Implementation: Meeting Industry Needs through University and Community College Collaboration in Digital Logic Design Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21415

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