Macroelectronics: Building the perfect beast

Stephen A. Dyer, John L. Schmalzel

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Conventional approaches to teaching electronics emphasize microelectronics. This paper describes an approach to electronics that emphasizes macroelectronics instead. The objectives of the electronics course now focus on giving students the tools they need to create useful electronic instruments composed of functional subsystems. To achieve this goal, a design project is given at the beginning of the course. The design projects are chosen to provide motivation and affirmation of course content. For example, we have used a power supply and a semiconductor curve tracer as example design projects in offerings at our respective universities. The experience has been positive as measured by student responses and their ability to complete useful instruments. We have also used a model corporate structure as a way to organize student efforts and to handle the support needed to ensure success. All students serve a technical role as design engineers. Depending on class size and the size of model companies desired, students vie for executive, marketing, financial, procurement, manufacturing, and technical-documentation positions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)73-78
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings - Frontiers in Education Conference
StatePublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes
EventProceedings of the 1998 28th Annual Frontiers in Education Conference, FIE. Part 3 (of 3) - Tempe, AZ, USA
Duration: Nov 4 1998Nov 7 1998

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Education
  • Computer Science Applications


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