The University of Southampton

ELEC1029 TT Electronic Labs Yr1

Module Overview

This module is the lab programme for all first-year students enrolled on an ELEC degree programme. It aims to give students the opportunity to apply the theory that they learn in their other modules, and to provide them with transferrable and subject-based skills that they will need for their degree and career.

The module is structured into a series of lectures (‘L’ sessions), skills labs (‘X’ sessions) and assignments (‘A’ sessions). All students enrolled on this module will be expected to attempt all of these sessions.

For clarity to students, the lab programme is designed to encapsulate all lab-based work in the first-year in a single location, timetable etc. Therefore, this also includes technical labs (‘T’, ‘C’, ‘P,’ and ‘M’ sessions) and design exercises (‘D’ sessions). A student will not undertake every technical session listed; this will depend on the degree programme and hence other modules that they are enrolled on (for example, Electronic Engineering students do not do ‘M’ sessions, while Electrical Engineering students do not do ‘P’ sessions).

This syllabus covers only the ‘skills’ lab material (i.e. all L, X, A sessions). The ‘technical’ labs (i.e. all T, C, P, M sessions) and ‘design exercises’ (i.e. D sessions) are incorporated into the relevant module syllabus.

There are no pre-requisites.

Aims & Objectives


Subject Specific Intellectual

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to:

  • understand error, accuracy and uncertainty, and analyse your results appropriately using engineering statistics

Transferable and Generic

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to:

  • appreciate how an engineer is expected to conduct work ethically and professionally
  • effectively plan and monitor your time and project work using recognised methods
  • work individually or as part of a team, by profiling abilities, allocating roles, and overcoming problems issues
  • keep an appropriate record of your work using a log-book
  • find relevant technical literature in books and journals, complying with regulations on academic integrity and copyright
  • communicate your work effectively, both orally and via written reports

Subject Specific Practical

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to:

  • design and conduct rigorous scientific experiments, appreciating the need for assessing risks and complying with legislation
  • design, assemble and test circuits using protoboard or PCBs
  • use a range of electronic components and laboratory tools/instrumentation, appreciating their capabilities and limitations
  • use a range of industry-standard CAD tools to design, analyse and synthesise electronic circuits


Introduction to Part 1 Labs

Designing and Building Electronic Circuits

  • Introduction to Circuit Construction and Testing
  • Programmable Logic Devices
  • Mixed Signal Circuit Simulation
  • PCB Layout
  • PCB Assembly and Test

Designing and Conducting Effective Experiments

  • Introduction to Lab Equipment
  • Time, Project and Team Management       
  • Logbooks and Keeping Records
  • Fundamentals of Measurement
  • Error and Uncertainty
  • Engineering Statistics
  • Experimental Design and Practice
  • Effective Design, Analysis and Interpretation
  • Analysis and Interpretation Lab
  • Hardware Debugging and Fault Finding

Effective Communications

  • Communication Skills
  • Giving Effective Oral Presentations           
  • Finding Information Lab
  • Technical Writing

Professional Conduct and your Future Career

  • What is a Professional Engineer?
  • Your Future Employers: Do Labs Matter?
  • Professional Ethics
  • Academic Integrity
  • Health, Safety and Environmental Legislation
  • Being an entrepreneur

Learning & Teaching

Learning & teaching methods

Physical Lectures: traditional delivery in a lecture theatre, delivered to the entire cohort during single lecture slots.

Lab Sessions: teaching is delivered through specially constructed lab notes designed to make students observe particular phenomena, and through directed self-study in the lab preparation. Lab sessions typically last 3 hours; the number of sessions depends on the degree programme that the student is enrolled on. 


Assessment methods

This module is a zero credit module. Marks from the lab programme are distributed to other modules. Typically, one of these modules may have a contribution from ‘technical labs’, ‘skills labs’ and ‘design exercises’ (specified on their module syllabus).

Technical Labs: Every technical lab (T, C, P, M sessions) is associated with a particular module. The mark from the lab goes to the relevant module.

Design Exercises: Every design exercise (D session) is associated with a particular module. The mark from the design exercise goes to the relevant module. Where a design exercise is associated with more than one module, the mark is shared between them.

Skills Labs: This incorporates both skills labs (X sessions) and assignments (A sessions). At the end of each semester, marks for these are summed, and then spread across the relevant modules.

Referral is not required, as marks from assessments go towards other modules (which have their own referal policies)

MethodHoursPercentage contribution
Labs (X, T, C, P, M)-%
Design Exercises (D)-%
Assignments (A)-%

Referral Method: See notes below

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