Foundations of Electronics I

The details
Computer Science and Electronic Engineering (School of)
Colchester Campus
Undergraduate: Level 4
Thursday 03 October 2024
Friday 13 December 2024
14 March 2023


Requisites for this module


CE216, CE266

Key module for

BENGH610 Electronic Engineering,
BENGH611 Electronic Engineering (Including Year Abroad),
BENGH61P Electronic Engineering (Including Foundation Year),
BENGHP10 Electronic Engineering (Including Placement Year),
MENGH613 Electronic Engineering,
MENGH614 Electronic Engineering (Integrated Masters, Including Placement Year),
BSC G1F3 Mathematics with Physics,
BSC G1F4 Mathematics with Physics (Including Placement Year),
BSC G1F5 Mathematics with Physics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC GCF3 Mathematics with Physics (Including Year Abroad),
BENGH641 Communications Engineering,
BENGHP41 Communications Engineering (Including Foundation Year),
BENGHPK1 Communications Engineering (Including Placement Year),
BENGHQ41 Communications Engineering (Including Year Abroad),
BENGH615 Robotic Engineering,
BENGH616 Robotic Engineering (Including Year Abroad),
BENGH617 Robotic Engineering (Including Placement Year),
BENGH618 Robotic Engineering (Including Foundation Year),
BSC H631 Electronics,
BSC H632 Electronics (Including Year Abroad),
BSC H633 Electronics (Including Placement Year),
BENGH730 Mechatronic Systems,
BENGH731 Mechatronic Systems (Including Year Abroad),
BENGH732 Mechatronic Systems (Including Placement Year),
BENGH733 Mechatronic Systems (Including Foundation Year),
BENGH169 Neural Engineering with Psychology,
BENGH170 Neural Engineering with Psychology (including Placement Year),
BENGH171 Neural Engineering with Psychology (including Year Abroad),
BENGH172 Neural Engineering with Psychology (Including Foundation Year),
BSC H737 Mechatronics,
BSC H738 Mechatronics (including Placement Year),
BSC H739 Mechatronics (including Year Abroad),
BSC H167 Neural Technology with Psychology,
BSC H168 Neural Technology with Psychology (including Year Abroad),
BSC H176 Neural Technology with Psychology (including Placement Year),
BSC H717 Robotics,
BSC H718 Robotics (including Placement Year),
BSC H719 Robotics (including Year Abroad)

Module description

This module is one of two concerned with scientific and engineering foundations on which electronics is based. From basic ideas, the main principles of electronics are built up so that they can be used in the wider study of electronics to solve problems.

Module aims

The aim of this module is:

  • To introduce electrical and electronic components based on physical principles that relate voltage, current flow and the storage or loss of energy. The theory we need to learn about how circuits behave is based on the fact that electric charge cannot be created or destroyed. From basic ideas such as these, the main principles of electronics are built up so that they can be used to solve problems, primarily focused on resistive networks, whilst also introducing important components such as capacitors and diodes.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module, students will be expected to be able to:

  1. Apply dimensional analysis to electrical units and formulae

  2. Apply analysis of electric fields to explain capacitance

  3. Explain the basic properties of conductors, insulators and semiconductors

  4. Apply concepts such as Thévenin and Norton sources to resistor networks

  5. Apply a systematic method such as mesh or nodal analysis

Module information

Outline Syllabus

  • Series and parallel circuit paths;

  • Charge mobility in materials, electrical current as collective charge motion. Concept of resistance, and Ohms law for linear materials; conductance; series and parallel combinations. Basic electrical measurements;

  • Introduction to semiconductor devices: diodes.

Learning and teaching methods

Lectures and Laboratories


The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course.
The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students.
Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   Progress Test (In person, MCQ Moodle Test, Closed Book)    30% 
Coursework   Report + Calculations 1    30% 
Coursework   Report + Calculations 2    40% 
Exam  Main exam: In-Person, Open Book (Restricted), 120 minutes during January 
Exam  Reassessment Main exam: In-Person, Open Book (Restricted), 120 minutes during September (Reassessment Period) 

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
50% 50%


Coursework Exam
50% 50%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Prof Francisco Sepulveda, email: f.sepulveda@essex.ac.uk.
Professor Francisco Sepulveda
School Office, email: csee-schooloffice (non-Essex users should add @essex.ac.uk to create full e-mail address), Telephone 01206 872770



External examiner

No external examiner information available for this module.
Available via Moodle
Of 49 hours, 18 (36.7%) hours available to students:
31 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information

* Please note: due to differing publication schedules, items marked with an asterisk (*) base their information upon the previous academic year.

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