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EEE2013 : Digital Electronics

  • Offered for Year: 2021/22
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Fei Xia
  • Owning School: Engineering
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


To enable students to understand the essential principles of digital logic systems as used for control, communications and information processing.
To enable the student to design such systems.
To study the operation and performance of computer arithmetic circuits, synchronous and asynchronous sequential logic circuits.

Outline Of Syllabus

1. Logic Design and VHDL
Review of techniques for logic design, from discrete logic gates to ASICs; The VHDL language as a tool for digital design; FPGA and PLA architectures.

2. Arithmetic Circuits
Combinational logic circuits for the parallel adder; carry propagation; carry look-ahead; subtraction; logic functions; the ALU; multiplication and shifting; serial multipliers: parallel and carry save methods.

3. Sequential Logic

Synchronous systems
Finite state machines; state assignment; synthesis of synchronous FSMs; implementation methods; memory and combinational logic; examples of implementation of controllers and algorithms.

Asynchronous systems
Fundamental mode; implementation of a primitive flow table; races; metastability and synchronisation failure.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture221:0022:002x1hr lectures per week over 11 weeks
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion15:005:00Writing of summatively assessed lab report.
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion11:001:00Formatively assessed online NUMBAS test in middle of semester
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion15:005:00Revision for online NUMBAS test
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion12:002:00Final Exam in Assessment Period
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion151:0015:00Revision for final exam
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical13:003:00One three-hour practical lab session on using VHDL for FPGA programming.
Structured Guided LearningStructured research and reading activities111:0011:00Reading activity to supplement knowledge of material taught in each week.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops71:007:00One online synchronous tutorial per week from second week, covering tutorial sheets.
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study261:0026:00Reviewing lecture notes; general reading
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesScheduled on-line contact time31:003:00One online synchronous review session per week, reviewing lecture material.
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures provides the core material and synchronous review sessions give students the opportunity to query material taught in that week. Face-to-face lectures can be replaced with online synchronous sessions support by non-synchronous videos if the public health situation requires it.

Problem solving is introduced and practiced through synchronous tutorial sessions.

Laboratory sessions provide an opportunity to gain practical experience and validate the theory introduced in lectures. These sessions can be immediately replaced with a simulation-based experiment, supported by synchronous drop-in sessions if the public health situation requires it.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination1202A85Closed-Book Exam
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Practical/lab report2M15Lab Report with a maximum of 1000 words.
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Computer assessment2MIn case of pandemic emergency preventing the lab sessions on campus, this element may be assessed at 15% in place of lab report.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The examination allows students to demonstrate their ability to solve engineering problems focused digital electronics, based on the knowledge and methodology presented in the course material. The laboratory report assesses technical writing skills and provides the opportunity for the students to demonstrate the hardware programming skills taught in the course material. The formative computer-based assessment will assess the students’ current level of understanding of the material taught up to the middle of the semester and provide useful feedback on strengths and weaknesses.

In case where on campus labs are not possible, this component will not be assessed at 15%, to be replaced by the NUMBAS assessment below.

Reading Lists