• Syllabus

    Course Description:

    Digital Electronics is the study of electronic circuits that are used to process and control digital signals. Digital electronics is the foundation of all modern electronic devices such as cellular phones, MP3 players, laptop computers, digital cameras, high definition televisions, etc. The major focus of the DE course is to expose students to the use of combinational and sequential logic design, teamwork, communication methods, engineering standards, and technical documentation. Utilizing the activity-project-problem-based (APPB) teaching and learning pedagogy, students will analyze, design and build digital electronic circuits. While implementing these designs students will continually hone their interpersonal skills, creative abilities and understanding of the design process.


    The course of study includes:
    Foundations of Digital Electronics

    Ø Electronic Component Identification, Basic Soldering and PCB Construction

    Ø Electron Theory & Circuit Theory Laws, Circuit Simulation

    Ø Breadboard Prototyping, Component Datasheets & Troubleshooting
    Combinational Logic Analysis and Design

    ØBinary, Octal and Hexadecimal Number Systems, Binary Adders and Two’s Complement Arithmetic, Boolean Algebra and DeMorgan’s Theorems

    ØAOI, NAND, and NOR Logic Design, Combinational Logic Design

    Sequential Logic Analysis and Design

    ØFlip-Flops, Latches and their applications.

    ØAsynchronous and Synchronous Counter Design with Integrated Circuits.

    ØSequential Logic Design with Field Programmable Gate Arrays, State Machines

    Introduction to Microcontrollers

    ØSoftware Development for a Introductory Microcontroller

    ØReal-World Interface: Introduction to Hardware Controls

    ØProcess Control with a Microcontroller


    Course Objectives:

    By the time the students completes this course of study, the student will know or be able to:

    - Demonstrate a high degree of problem-solving skills

    - Apply their knowledge of research and design to create solutions to various challenges

    - Be proficient in circuit design software and breadboarding applications

    - Understand binary number systems, Boolean Algebra and DeMorgan’s Theorems

    - Document their work and communicate their solutions to their peers and members of the

       professional community

    - Learn to work cooperatively as part of a design team

    - Build working prototypes of their projects




    CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.9-10.3 Follow precisely a complex multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks, attending to special cases or exceptions defined in the text.

     CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.9-10.6 Analyze the author’s purpose in providing an explanation, describing a procedure, or discussing an experiment in a text, defining the question the author seeks to address.

     CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.9-10.7 Translate quantitative or technical information expressed in words in a text into visual form (e.g., a table or chart) and translate information expressed visually or mathematically (e.g., in an equation) into words

     Classroom Rules and Consequences:

    Students are expect to show respect, act responsibly, work to the best of their ability, and complete all assignments.  Students shall follow all school and classroom rules, use appropriate language, listen to and follow instructions, be on task and on time to class every day.  Students are expected to exhibit high levels of academic honesty, plagiarism and cheating will not be tolerated.  Violations will be dealt with as outlined in the electronic student handbook. Food and drinks are not allowed in the classroom at any time.  Cell phones and other personal electronic devices are not allowed in class at any time. Students found using these devices during class will have them confiscated and turned in to the conduct office.

    Students may work in a prototyping lab with tools and machines to complete assignments.  Strict safety procedures will be taught and enforced.  Students choosing not to follow these procedures will be dealt with appropriate to the severity of the infraction.


    Grading scale: A  100-90%     B  89-80%     C  79-70%     D  69-60%     F  Below 60%

    Students will be graded on the following:

    Engineering Notebook, Design Projects, Presentations, Design Portfolio and Reports, Homework, Activities, Quizzes and Finals.

    Design Project and Report grading is based on published rubrics for each assignment.  The projects are intense, involved, and can require considerable time both inside and outside of the classroom.

    Typically there will not be homework, however, class work not finished in class will need to be completed at home and turned in at the beginning of class the next day.

    Breakdown of grading:

    Projects, Presentations, Portfolios, Reports, Activities, Quizzes       80%

    Finals                                                                                             20%

    There will be no extra credit work in this class. Class work is due on the due date. Late work will be reduced at a rate of 10% per day to 50% of maximum score. 

    Report Cards

    In an effort to conserve resources and harness the capacity of our electronic grade reporting program (PowerSchool) district schools will no longer print hard copies of report cards unless requested by individual parents. To request a hard copy of your student’s report card, please contact the front office at 623-376-3000.  To receive your PowerSchool login, please stop into the office with a valid photo ID.

     Power School Online Access:

    Grades and attendance may be accessed 24 hours a day online with your Power School access code.  Access codes are available in the Administration Office Monday – Friday, 7:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.  You must provide picture ID to be issued a code. For any Mountain Ridge parent/guardian without home computer access, a computer with guest log-in capability is available in the Counseling conference room.

     Academic Assistance:

    In addition to the Academic Prep times built into our schedule each week, additional assistance/tutoring is provided on a weekly basis both by MRHS and individually by instructors. Those dates and times will be posted in the classroom and/or on my website at the start of each week.  I also encourage your student to write down my availability each week in their electronic Mountain Ridge planner so that you too are aware of my weekly availability.

     Make up and Long-Term Project Policies: 

    Excused and Unexcused Absences: Afteran excused absence, a student has one school day for each day missedto make up work/tests, regardless of the number of days absent. If many days were missed, please schedule an appointment with me to formulate a plan for the completion of make-up work. Make-up work for extended absences (over 3 days) may be requested through the Counseling Office and picked up there.  

    Class work missed as a result of an unexcused absence will result in a zero for that day. This includes quizzes, tests, labs, projects, participation points, etc. that were completed that day. 

    School supplies required: Students should come prepared every day for class with paper, pencils, pens, and a calculator, scientific style preferred.

    Daily Device Use (iPads)

    Students should come to school with their iPads charged and ready to use in each class every day.  Students may use their device independently to take notes, complete assignments, conduct research, communicate with the teacher, check grades, and other appropriate educational uses of the device.  Students should not access inappropriate content or cause disruption in this environment.

    Devices may not be used to record or take photos of other people without their consent.  Consequences for classroom disruptions and misuse of devices will follow a progressive discipline model, beginning with a phone call home and progressing to office referrals for repeated or more serious offenses. See the Student Rights and Responsibilities consequence chart in the handbook for more specific descriptions of infractions and consequences.

    Calculator Policy: Calculators may be used on h/w, tests, final exam

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  • Digital Electronics Detailed Outline


     Digital electronics is the study of electronic circuits that are used to process and control digital signals. In contrast to analog electronics, where information is represented by a continuously varying voltage, digital signals are represented by two discrete voltages or logic levels. This distinction allows for greater signal speed and storage capabilities and has revolutionized the world of electronics.

    The major focus of the DE course is to expose students to the design process of combinational and sequential logic design, teamwork, communication methods, engineering standards, and technical documentation.
    Utilizing the activity-project-problem-based (APB) teaching and learning pedagogy, students will analyze, design, and build digital electronic circuits. While implementing these designs, students will continually hone their professional skills, creative abilities, and understanding of the circuit design process. Digital Electronics (DE) is a high school level course that is appropriate for 10th or 11th grade students interested in exploring electronics. 

    The following is a summary of the units of study that are included in the course. Activities, projects, and problems are provided to the teacher through the PLTW Learning Management System in the form of student-ready handouts, teacher notes/lesson planning resources, and supplementary materials, including simulations, instructional videos, and online resources as appropriate.

    While many students may have been exposed to basic circuits and electricity in a science course, Digital Electronics is typically a unique experience for students because of its focus on understanding and implementing circuit design skills. The course is planned for a rigorous pace, and it is likely to contain more material than a skilled teacher new to the course will be able to complete in the first iteration. Building enthusiasm for rigorous exploration of electronics and circuit design for students is a primary goal of the course.

    Unit 1: Foundations in Electronics
    In Unit 1 Foundations in Electronics, students will explore the fundamental components, concepts, equipment, and skill sets associated with circuit design. They will learn an engineering design process that can be used to guide the creation of circuits based on a set of design requirements. Throughout the course students will learn about.

    Unit 2: Combinational Logic
    How do you design a circuit to “do what you want it to do”? The goal of Unit 2 is for students to gain in-depth understanding of the combinational logic circuit design. Student will explore creation of circuits with discrete components and how to simplify these circuits to implement more efficient designs.

    Unit 3: Sequential Logic
    How do you get a circuit to do what you want it to do, when you want it to do it? Sequential logic introduces students to event detection and memory. Sequential logic has two characteristics that distinguish it from combinational logic. First, sequential logic must have a signal that controls the sequencing of events. Second, sequential logic must have the ability to remember past events.
    A keypad on a garage door opener is a classic example of an everyday device that utilizes sequential logic. On the keypad, the sequencing signal controls when a key can be pressed. The need to enter the passcode in a specific order necessitates memory of past events.
    These characteristics are made possible by a simple device called a flip-flop. The flip-flop is a logic device that is capable of storing a logic level and allowing this stored value to change only at a specific time. For this reason the flip-flop is the fundamental building block for all sequential logic designs.

    Unit 4: Controlling Real World Systems
    In Unit 4 students make the final transition from the transistor, to logic gates, to integrated circuits, to PLDs, to the microcontrollers and computers used widely today. State machines and embedded controllers allow student to integrate sensors and motors. This allows us to create circuits that exist in the world around us.



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