Introduction to Electrical and Computer Engineering


In this curricular unit the students will have a broad perspective of the disciplinary areas of electrical and computer engineering (ECE), understanding the application possibilities to devise solutions to societal, industrial, and scientific challenges. Simultaneously, the students will have a real-world experience of design and implementation of hardware and software solutions that, combining as disciplinary areas of the ECE, can offer solutions to a concrete problem.

To this end, the intended learning outcomes for this curricular unit are the following:
OA1. Analyze complex engineering problems and apply fundamental principles of abstraction and modularity;
OA2. Know the different disciplinary areas of the ECE;
OA3. Understand the fundamental concepts and application possibilities of each disciplinary area;
OA4. Devise basic ECE solutions combining components from different disciplinary areas.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Bruno João Nogueira Guerreiro


Weekly - 2

Total - 35

Teaching language





- TP classes presentation slides, Bruno Guerreiro, 2021.
- P classes presentation slides and notes, UC teachers, 2021.
- NASA Systems Engineering Handbook, Rev2, 2020. (

- Introduction to Engineering: Modeling and Problem Solving, Jay B. Brockman 2009 John Wiley
- Introduction to Computing Systems: From bits & gates to C & beyond, Patt & Patel, 2003, McGraw Hill, 2nd Ed.
- Feedback Systems: An Introduction for Scientists and Engineers, K. Åström and R. Murray, 2018, Princeton, 2nd Ed.
- Computer Networks, A. Tanenbaum & D. Wetherall, 5ª ed, 2010, Prentice-Hall.

Teaching method

The fundamental concepts of Module 1 are addressed in the theoretical-practical (TP) classes, possibly using a flipped-classroom teaching methodology, where students should study the concepts before the class, leaving time in class to addressed application and intuition details. This approach might also be a part of a broader methodology based on cases or problems, where the students have a concrete and realistic ECE case, and will be driven to identify theoretical knowledge gaps, that will then be addressed in these classes. In the practical-laboratory (PL) classes concrete problems in ECE will be the starting point to obtain a total or partial solution to a problem, guided by the teachers, comprising specifications, necessary hardware and software, involving the topics in Module 2. A project design will be also be conducted in groups which will have to prepare a public presentation of the results, thus promoting teamwork, project management and leadership, as well as communication skills in EEC.

Evaluation method

The final grade (F) is defined as: F = 0.12*OL + 0.28*PG + 0.6*PI
- Online tools (OL): the theoretical-practical component will be evaluated within the B-Learning model, through individual short-quizzes, discussion forums or other online assessment tools;
- Project in groups (PG): students will be asked to design an engineering project that involve at least 3 scientific areas in ECE, including a report and a public presentation
- Practical individual assessment (PI): individual evaluation regarding the classes of each scientific area.

This curricular unit depends on the attendance of a minimum of 80% of theoretical-practical classes (>5 classes) and also of practical classes (>10 classes). The curricular unit will not be assessed by exam, except in exceptional cases and duly justified, for which an alternative assessment will be given.

Regarding the group project (PG), the goal is that students can integrate the general knowledge acquired in TP classes with the applied knowledge of PL classes, designing the execution of a complex engineering project, eventually involving other areas of engineering. The evaluation of this project will be done with the presentation of a final report (22% of the final grade) due until 03/01/2022, as well as a pitch of the results (6% of the final grade), in the final TP class, on 05/01/2022.

Subject matter

Module 1:
M1.1 Fundamental principles of abstraction and modularity
M1.2 Introduction to systems engineering
M1.3 Management and evaluation of engineering projects
M1.4 Team work and leadership
M1.5 Writing technical documents and presentations
M1.6 Ethics in ECE

Module 2:
M2.1 Introduction to robotics an integrated manufacture
M2.2 Introduction to electronics
M2.3 Introduction to digital and perceptional systems
M2.4 Introduction to telecommunications and networks
M2.5 Introduction to eletrical energy networks
M2.6 Introduction to dynamic systems and control


Programs where the course is taught: