ECEN 160 Syllabus


Designing Digital Systems, 2nd Edition by Brent E. Nelson.

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Course Description

Exploration of the fundamentals of digital systems including: number systems, truth tables, Boolean algebra, Karnaugh maps, combinational logic circuits (SSI, MSI and programmable circuits), sequential logic circuits (flip-flops, counters, and shift registers), and state machine design and analysis. Students design and build combinational and sequential logic circuits using a digital design and simulation tool. A student presentation is required.

Course Objectives


Schedules, assignments, and policies are subject to change. You will be given notification of any changes; check I-Learn and email frequently.


Homework assignments come from end-of-chapter exercises in the book and other sources. Having a study group is encouraged; however, you should work each problem individually. Get help from your classmates, tutors and mentors when you need it, but learn how to work each problem. Don't simply obtain solutions.

Homework submitted after the due date will receive 50% credit. Any documents submitted should be clearly identified with your name, the course number and the title of the assignment. Text written, circuits created and diagrams drawn for homework assignments should be done neatly with proper attention given to grammar and spelling; sloppy, or otherwise unprofessional, work will not be accepted.

Lab Assignments

The labs are a major emphasis in this course. Labs are graded on functionality, answers to questions, comments on parts of the lab and a conclusions section.

Again, having a study group is encouraged; however, you should work each problem individually. Don't simply obtain solutions.

Lab Functionality

Many of the labs will involve design, implementation and testing of digital circuits. It is critical that each circuit works correctly to the specifications given. You can't receive full credit on a circuit that does not work; however, pass off what you have for partial credit.

Lab questions, comments and conclusions

Each lab consists of many parts. Some parts of the labs ask for insights gained, what was learned and/or comments. It is your responsibility to clearly document your experience completing the labs. Each lab concludes with an I-Learn assessment that will present some questions to be answered. Proper attention to the content of your answers, as well as to spelling and grammar, should be given as you write your answers. Labs are due before 11:59 PM. Consult the published schedule for due dates.

Tools Used for Homework and Lab Assignments

Logisim and WaveDrom are software tools that will be used in the course for homework and/or lab assignments. As the course proceeds, instructions will be given on their use when we start to use them. Information about these tools are found in the "Course Resources" module (section) of the I-Learn course.

Exams and quizzes

Each reading assignment includes a self-assessment and 2-3 comprehension questions. You will receive full credit for completing the reading and partial credit for completing a portion of it.

Exams and quizzes are closed book activities.

Additionally you will take four closed-book exams and complete a final exam project.


A presentation is required. You will work in a group of two or three students to discuss and summarize a lab.


Category Percent
Reading Quizzes 4%
Homework 11%
Exams 24%
Labs 40%
Presentation 4%
Final Project/exam 17%

Grading Scale

A 93%-100% A- 90%-92.9 B+ 87%-88.9%
B 83%-86.9% B- 80%-82.9% C+ 77%-79.9%
C 73%-76.9% C- 70%-72.9% D+ 67%-69.9%
D 63%-66.9% D- 60%-62.9% F below 59.9%


Be responsible for your own education. Take responsibility to complete homework, labs and tests as assigned. Be prepared to accept the consequences if you do not.

You are encouraged to work with your classmates but all submitted work must be original when working individually. Share ideas; DO NOT SHARE HOMEWORK AND LABS! Assistance from a classmate should be on par with the help you would expect from a lab assistant. Don't copy circuits from the Internet and use them as your own. You are to design your own circuits. You may look at Internet resources to help you understand course material but thoughtless copying is not acceptable. Copying without giving credit to the original author/creator is plagiarism. The penalty for copying or plagiarism of assignments might be one or more of the following:

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Student Disability Statement

In compliance with applicable disability law, qualified students with a disability may be entitled to “reasonable accommodation.” It is the student’s responsibility to disclose to the teacher any special need she/he may have before the end of the first week of class.