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Migration From The Mc68 Hc11 To The Mc68 Hc12 Within An Electrical & Computer Engineering 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

Real-Time and Embedded Systems Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.863.1 - 7.863.9



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Paper Authors

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Daniel Pack

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Barry Mullins

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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 1420

Migration from the MC68HC11 to the MC68HC12 within an Electrical & Computer Engineering Curriculum

Barry E. Mullins, Daniel J. Pack

Department of Electrical Engineering United States Air Force Academy, CO


For many educators, microcontrollers are becoming the pedagogical tool of choice for teaching fundamentals of microprocessor and microcontroller architectures and programming. The choice is mainly due to a variety of built-in functional components and easy input/output capabilities of microcontrollers. For several years, microcontrollers have been an integral part of the electrical and computer engineering curriculum at the U.S. Air Force Academy. In fact, fifty percent of our junior/senior level computer systems courses have used Motorola’s 68HC11 exclusively either in conjunction with an evaluation board or as a single, stand-alone controller. We are currently in the process of migrating from the 68HC11 to the 68HC12 within our computer systems courses. This paper describes the rationale for the transition, the preparation steps required, the implementation issues we faced, the results of the transition as viewed by faculty members and cadets, and lessons learned from the experience.


After the advent of the Motorola 68HC11 microcontroller in 1986, a large number of engineering educators in universities eagerly embraced and used the controller in digital systems courses. The chief reason behind the enthusiastic acceptance and the continuing use of the controller is due to a variety of built-in functional units such as I/O ports, timer units, and an analog-to-digital converter that allow the educators to easily teach students the fundamental knowledge on how a computer works while readily incorporating those units in homework and laboratory exercises to enhance student learning 2. Thus, the use of built-in units (as opposed to building and assembling individual components) made it possible for educators to concentrate on central issues rather than solving problems associated with assembling functional parts. Reflecting the importance of teaching the fundamental computer knowledge, engineering accreditation organization ABET currently requires all accredited electrical and computer engineering programs to include a microcontroller/microprocessor course.

The two most popular microcontroller modules used in universities are the 68HC11EVB and the 68HC11EVBU. The first one is designed to work along with external memory components and additional ports (expanded mode) while the latter one was developed for embedded applications where a microcontroller contains all necessary resources within the controller (single chip mode). At the Air Force Academy, we have used the 68HC11EVB in two microcontroller/

Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright ©2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Pack, D., & Mullins, B. (2002, June), Migration From The Mc68 Hc11 To The Mc68 Hc12 Within An Electrical & Computer Engineering Curriculum Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--11367

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