EE 211 Circuit I

Spring 2015




This course has an external class page at

All the course contents will be posted onto the internal Blackboard (Bb) site


Professor: Dr. Sen-ching Cheung (sccheung at



Room 217 Marksbury Bldg (218-0299)

Make an appointment online

Teaching Assistant: Po-Chang Su ( at



2nd floor common area at Marksbury Building

Monday 2-4pm



Class Schedule


Lecture:          TTh     2:00 – 3:15pm (RMB 323)

Recitation:      F          2:00 – 3:50pm (FPAT 257)

Final:              5/7, Thursday, 1:00 – 3:00pm (RMB 323)


Course Description


Welcome to your first course in the ECE department! This course will cover the fundamental laws, principles and analysis techniques for circuit analysis. This skill allows us to understand and design any circuits. Circuit analysis and simulation tools are extremely important to the success of microchip manufacturers like Intel and Texas Instruments. Initial circuit analysis involves only sources and resistors.  Linear systems of equations are used to solve problems during the second phase.  Energy storage elements (capacitors and inductors) are introduced next. Transient analysis of circuits follows and the course ends with sinusoidal steady state problems and complex phasor analysis.


The key to doing well in the course is consistent hard work. Plan on at least 9-12 hours of work outside of class to study course material, work on homework problems and prepare pre-lab assignments. The material builds from fundamental concepts to more advanced analysis techniques. It is critical that students master the fundamentals in order to do well throughout the semester and in the future ECE courses


Tentative Syllabus


Week 1  (Ch. 1)

Introduction; SI Units; Current and Voltage; Passive Sign Convention; Power Conservation; Basic Circuit Components; Circuit Topology

Week 2  (Ch. 2)

Ohm’s Law; Kirchoff’s Laws; Equivalent Resistance

Week 3 (Ch. 3)

Nodal Analysis

Week 4 (Ch .3)

Mesh Analysis

Week 5

Review & Exam 1

Week 6 (Ch. 4)

Operational Amplifier

Week 7 (Ch. 5)

Linear System; Superposition; Source Transformation

Week 8 (Ch. 5)

Thevenin & Norton Theorems; Maximum Power Transfer

Week 9 (Ch. 6)

Capacitor & Inductor

Week 10

Review & Exam 2

Week 11 (Ch. 7)

Dynamic Systems; Forced and Natural Responses; Differential Equation; First-order Systems

Week 12 (Ch. 7)

Second-order Systems

Week 13 (Ch. 8)

Complex Number; Complex Sinusoids; Phasor Representation; AC Steady State Analysis

Week 14 (Ch. 8)

Impedance and Admittance; General Nodal & Mesh Analysis; General Equivalent Circuits

Week 15

Review & Final Exam


Expected outcomes of student learning

A student who has successfully completed this course should be able to:

1.     Analyze simple resistive circuits including those containing operational amplifiers and controlled sources with loop and nodal analysis.

2.     Compute Thévenin and Norton equivalent circuits.

3.     Analyze direct current circuits containing switches, independent sources, dependent sources, resistors, capacitors, inductors, and operational amplifiers for transient response using loop and nodal analysis

4.     Analyze alternate current circuits with sinusoidal excitation sources for steady-state response using loop and nodal analysis.

5.     Use circuit simulator to compute voltages, currents, transient responses, and sinusoidal steady-state responses.

6.     Build and analyze basic circuits with multi-meter, oscilloscope, and signal generator.


Your grade will be based on:


Online lecture quiz




Lab assignments


Exam 1


Exam 2


Final Examination





The numerical score is computed using the above weighting system.  The A's will be in the 90's, B's in the 80's, etc., unless, in my opinion, the difficulty of the material/tests justifies curving the grades.  Numerical scores will not be adjusted for external circumstances.  Any requests for reviewing homework/quiz/test grades must be made by the second class period after the homework/quiz/test is returned to you.  Attach a note outlining the grading concern.

Course Policy       

1.      Word load (organized week-by-week under Course Content in the Bb course shell)

·       Reading assignment   – Must be completed before the lecture

·       Pre-lecture video        – Quick intro of material to be covered in the lecture.

·       Lecture quiz                – Online quiz on Bb – I will try to allocate class time for you to work on it and ask questions, but it must be submitted by the end of the lecture day.

·       Homework                  – Weekly homework on Wiley Plus

– Selected problems would require submitting a full write-up.

·       Lab Assignment          – Pre-lab assignment and circuit need to be completed BEFORE

  Recitation and ready for demonstration.

·       Examinations              – Two midterms and a final will be given in class.


2.      No late work, makeup lab-demo and exams will be given unless the instructor is notified before due time and is provided with a written explanation with support documents. With notification and explanation, late work will be graded for any non-excused absences with the maximum points reduced by 50 points per every 24 hours passed due date.  


3.      Blackboard:

Blackboard will be used for class announcements (via Bb’s email system), lecture quiz, homework assignments, and discussions. It is the responsibility of every student in this class to keep track of changes in the Blackboard system. All announcements made in Blackboard are considered official after 24 hours. Unaware of official announcement is not an excuse for anything, including doing the wrong homework problem, late homework, missing quizzes, etc.


4.      Circuit Simulation:

We will use PSPICE on Windows which is freely available for download. Other circuit simulation programs are acceptable, provided that you can use them to complete the same simulation problems with the same level of details as PSPICE.


5.      Honor code:

Each student must complete all quizzes, midterms and final exams by her or his own efforts. You may discuss homework with your fellow students at the conceptual level, but must complete all calculations and write-up, from scrap to final form, on your own. Any form of cheating and/or plagiarism on graded material will not be tolerated. Offenses will be prosecuted according to STUDENT RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES ( 

Required Material

Every student must have the following material (no sharing please):



Laptop/Tablet to be used in class

Windows 7 or up. For Mac User, you will need to setup a virtual machine running windows 7 or up based on this instruction.


Circuits 10e Editor’s Choice Edition with WileyPLUS for Blackboard by Irwin (price: $126.50 with hard-copy text, $92.50 without). This book will also be used in EE221.

Scientific calculator w/o network

Must have capability for solving system of linear equations and complex number manipulation. I like TI 36X-Pro. It cannot have any networking capability to be used during the exams. 

Lab Kit

Digilent Analog Discovery + Analog Parts kit needed for laboratory assignment (student price: $148.99). This kit will be used in EE221, EE222, and many other analog electronics courses all the way to capstone design.

Digital Multimeter

I personally use this, which includes alligator clips (very handy) and a temperature probe (price: ~$40)



MA 114                                   Solving system of linear equations

Trigonometric, Exponential and Logarithm functions

Basic differentiation and integration

Polar coordinates and basic complex numbers

Okay to be taken in concurrent


PHY 232, 242             Electricity, Magnetism and Light


Sen-ching Samson Cheung

Last modified: 1/10/2015