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School of Electronic and Electrical Engineering

Teaching and assessment

Student with solar panels

Teaching

The field of electronic and electrical engineering is exceptionally dynamic and technological change is rapid. As a student in the UK’s No. 1 ranked School for Electronic Engineering research, you will be taught by academics who have extensive first-hand knowledge of the subject area, many of whom are international experts in their own field.

Our groundbreaking research is an important feature of our courses and feeds directly into teaching. You will be taught by academics at the forefront of their subject in an environment where knowledge is created. Through our research and the funding it attracts, we are able to invest in world-class facilities and staff who will enthuse and inspire you. You will have access to specialist facilities and laboratories that are equipped with the latest technology.

Members of staff maintain close links with industry to ensure that our courses are up-to-date and in-line with employer needs. Our connections with industry also mean that you will benefit from industrial input into design projects at a variety of levels, from defining projects through to more direct involvement in discussions and consultancy and arranging plant visits.

All new students are given a welcome pack to support their academic studies and project work. This study support package includes tools, development kits, student versions of a range of industry-standard commercial software, electronic components and access to hundreds of e-books.

You will benefit from our integrated style of learning and teaching. Practical laboratory classes and project work allow you to gain hands-on experience investigating and applying topics from your lectures and tutorials to real-life engineering situations. You will also have access to specialist facilities and laboratories which are equipped with the latest technology.

Projects

Our current students regularly say that project work is one of the most satisfying and challenging aspects of their course. Projects involve “learning through doing”, and consequently are a very effective way of learning in depth, and understanding how different aspects of electronics work together. Projects also provide excellent opportunities to develop key transferable skills such as problem solving, communication skills and teamwork, which are all vital to help you succeed in your chosen career.

In your first year you will be involved in working in a team to design, build and test an autonomous robot or radio-controlled vehicle to steer around a track. The project ends in a competition to see which team has the fastest, longest running or most fun design.

Your second year includes two projects: the Embedded Systems Project, which involves designing and building a microcontroller-based electronic system; and the Mobile Applications Project, in which you develop your own iPhone app. A typical embedded systems project might be to design a microcontroller-based music synthesiser, a hand held game, or a microprocessor controlled robotic arm.

A significant proportion of your third year is devoted entirely to project work.
Third year MEng students carry out a group design project, whilst students who choose to graduate after three years with a BEng carry out an individual project.

Warning: This video contains some flashing images.


A Spherical Persistence of Vision Display - third year group project

View more video's of third year projects.

In your fourth year (MEng), you will carry out a substantial research-type project. These projects are normally based in one of the School’s research groups. Available topics will typically include: embedded systems, power electronics, electronic control systems, communications systems, signal processing, microwave electronics, semiconductor electronics, optoelectronics, quantum electronics and nanotechnology.

Examples of some recent projects include:

• Autonomous search-and-rescue robot
• 4G mobile system simulation
• Aviation flight tracking receiver
• Quadrocopter surveillance drone
• Smart-phone-controlled vivarium for exotic animals • Digital image processing • Power electronics for renewable energy systems • Wearable health monitoring (wireless enabled 'e-health') • Underground radio propagation

Assessment

In the School of Electronic and Electrical Engineering, we use a wide range of assessment methods to ensure fairness and accuracy of grading.  In the first two years of your course, you will have written exams at the end of each academic year, along with shorter, mid-year tests in January.  Most of our modules also include laboratory work and/or coursework. 

Practical laboratory work generally involves designing, building and testing an electronic circuit or system, or a software application, or both.  You are normally required to keep a regular log of your work, either as a hardcopy or on-line, and to write a final report on your practical achievements and results.  In some cases you will also be required to give a “poster presentation”, which involves preparing a large poster that describes your work, and giving a short explanation of the poster to your tutor and colleagues. 

In your 2nd  year, there are two modules – the Embedded Systems Project and the Mobile Applications Project – which consist entirely of project work. There is no written exam for these modules, and the assessment involves a regular log, final report, and a presentation and demonstration of your finished project.

A substantial part of your 3rd year is devoted to project work. As well as the assessment methods described above, the project assessment includes an oral exam (a “viva”) during which you will be asked to describe your project and your results to your project supervisor and a second academic assessor. The vivas, which generally last about 45 minutes, are informal, but nonetheless challenging. There is also a project exhibition day, at which you will exhibit your project work to a wider audience. Usually, this includes a working demonstration of the project itself. BEng students undertake projects individually for the 3rd (and final) year of study, whereas MEng students participate in group design projects.

MEng students (all programmes except for Music, Multimedia and Electronics) will carry out an individual, research-type project in the 4th year, with a similar range of assessments as above.

BSc Music, Multimedia and Electronics students carry out a group project in their 3rd year. This is an ambitious piece of work which draws together all your acquired expertise in both the music and electronics disciplines. The Music, Multimedia and Electronics course also includes a range of creative electronic/technical composition activities, for which you are assessed directly on the quality, creative and technical merits of your composition.

The MEng, BEng Mechatronics and Robotics course also includes practical mechatronics design projects in both the 1st and 2nd year, and substantial projects in each of the 3rd and 4th years

Student support

We have an excellent student support team, located close to where you will work and study, who will help you with anything, from academic advice and guidance, online module enrolment and registration, timetabling, results and progression requirements to coursework or project submission enquiries.

Our personal tutorial system will provide additional academic and pastoral support. You will have a designated personal tutor throughout your studies at Leeds. He or she will be an academic member of staff: you will have weekly academic tutorials with your tutor throughout your first year, in your tutor group (of typically 5 students), as well as one-to-one meetings twice per semester.

The web-based student portal will enable you to access the University’s student services and information and the University’s virtual learning environment (VLE) allows you access to your personal timetables, academic and social groups, and much more.