Please note: there may be some adjustments to the teaching arrangements published in the course catalogue for 2020-21. Given current circumstances related to the Covid-19 pandemic it is anticipated that some usual arrangements for teaching on campus will be modified to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff on campus; further adjustments may also be necessary, or beneficial, during the course of the academic year as national requirements relating to management of the pandemic are revised.

Microelectronic Systems UESTC1008

  • Academic Session: 2022-23
  • School: School of Engineering
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 1 (SCQF level 7)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No
  • Available to Erasmus Students: No

Short Description

This course introduces the basic concepts of digital microelectronic systems.  Both theoretical and practical aspects of the design of digital systems are covered.  Based around programming a modern microcontroller, and interfacing it with peripheral components, the course also introduces the concepts of embedded systems including digital and analogue input and output.


This course will be timetabled in blocks, typically one week in four.

Requirements of Entry

Mandatory Entry Requirements


Recommended Entry Requirements


Excluded Courses





75% Written Exam: Final Exam

15% Laboratory Exercises, 10% Laboratory Project

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? No

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 


Due to the nature of the coursework and sequencing of courses, it is not possible to reassess the coursework laboratory.

The initial grade on coursework laboratories will be used when calculating the resit grade.

Course Aims

The aims of this course are to:

■ give theoretical and practical experience of designing, building and testing microelectronic systems with a development kit for a simple microcontroller interfaced with discrete components and external peripherals;

■ develop skills in systematic design and documentation.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ describe and identify the basic architecture of a microcontroller, including memory systems and external interfaces;

■ explain and implement various input/output formats and device connections;

■ describe and use input/output interfaces and communication protocols;

■ design, program and test a microcontroller system involving interface to external sensors/components, controls and electronic systems.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must attend the degree examination and attend all the timetabled laboratory classes

Students must submit work for assessment for the course laboratory exercises and project report.


Any student who misses an assessment or a significant number of classes because of illness or other good cause should report this by completing a MyCampus absence report.