Course Title: Smart Embedded Systems

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Smart Embedded Systems

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


125H Electrical & Computer Engineering


Sem 1 2006,
Sem 1 2009,
Sem 1 2010,
Sem 2 2012

Course Coordinator: Dr P J Radcliffe

Course Coordinator Phone: email is preferred

Course Coordinator Email:

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

To successfully complete this course, you should have successfully completed an introductory course in Microprocessors that includes: configuring and using IO ports such as the CAN bus, USB, parallel and serial ports. You are epected to be conversant with logic gates, elecronic design concepts and have some familiarity with the C programming language.
You are also expected to have some practical experience with assembly language programming and debugging. You should be competent in writing small control programs in assembly language.
A basic knowledge of microprocessors and cross compilation is an assumed. Students are required to have successfully completed either the courses "EEET2096 Embedded System Design and Implementation"  OR: "EEET2261 Computer Architecture and Organisation"  or an equivalent course or provide evidence of equivalent capabilities. 

Course Description

This course introduces the you to the design and development of microprocessor based systems with an emphasis on embedded controllers. Practical programming of microprocessors for real world Input/Output (IO) is a major part of the course. The course will focus on a current microcontroller.

Topics covered in the course include, Input/OuYour tput sub-systems, programming under interrupts in the ‘C’ language, using debugging tools, various debugging techniques, using analysis tools, fuzzy logic systems, enhancing practical performance, cost VS feature tradeoffs and fault recovery. Interface protocols such as the CAN bus may also be included.

The emphasis is on programming and designing small embedded systems for robustness and fault recovery.

Please note that if you take this course for a bachelor honours program, your overall mark in this course will be one of the course marks that will be used to calculate the weighted average mark (WAM) that will determine your award level. (This applies to students who commence enrolment in a bachelor honours program from 1 January 2016 onwards. See the WAM information web page for more information (;ID=eyj5c0mo77631).

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes:

1.3 In-depth understanding of specialist bodies of knowledge within the engineering discipline.

2.1 Application of established engineering methods to complex engineering problem solving.

2.2 Fluent application of engineering techniques, tools and resources

On successful completion of this course, you should be able to:

  1. Design basic stand-alone microcontroller systems;
  2. Carry out debugging of assembly and C language programs running on microcontroller systems;
  3. Interface microcontrollers to the real world using appropriate Input/Output techniques.
  4. Analyse and compare the utility and effectiveness of various debugging tools and techniques;
  5. Choose appropriate programming techniques; and
  6. Assess and use information contained in manufacturers product manuals.

Overview of Learning Activities

The learning activities included in this course are:

• attendance at lectures where syllabus material will be presented and explained, and the subject will be illustrated with demonstrations and examples;
• use of RMIT’s online facilities, participation in online discussion forums for this subject.
• extensive use internet and library resources for research.
• completion of tutorial questions and laboratory projects designed to give further practice in the application of theory and procedures, and to give feedback on student progress and understanding;
• completion of written assignments consisting of numerical and other problems requiring an integrated understanding of the subject matter; and
• private study, working through the course as presented in classes and learning materials, and gaining practice at solving conceptual and numerical problems.

Overview of Learning Resources

You will be able to access course information and learning materials through RMIT’s online systems. Lists of relevant reference texts, resources in the library and freely accessible Internet sites will be provided via the online learning systems. You will also use laboratory equipment and computer software within the School during project and assignment work.

Overview of Assessment

The assessment for this course comprises written assignments based on laboratory work, not exceeding 70 pages of problem solving, computations, diagrams and written work submitted during the semester and not more than two hours of written examinations at the end of the semester. During the semester students may be asked to give one presentation of no more than 15 minutes on their assigned project work and act as a peer assessor of other students.

Written assignments and the presentation will be used to provide feedback to students on their progress in the course during the semester.