Today’s electrical engineers must be able to find solutions to new complex technical problems.
They must have strong communication skills and be able to integrate technical concepts with practical applications.
Electrical and Computer Engineering students in the College of Engineering at Boise State University receive a broad Electrical Engineering education, resulting in a strong foundation that will serve them well throughout their careers. This basis includes circuit analysis, design, and testing, signals & transforms, semiconductor devices, microelectronic circuit design, digital system design, microprocessors, electromagnetic fields, electromechanical systems, communications, and controls.
In addition, up to six advanced elective courses, as well as a two-semester senior design project, provide each student with the opportunity to specialize in a particular field of electrical engineering such as communications, computer engineering, microelectronics, or power engineering.
The information provided below is not a substitute for personal advisement, but is a first step in getting registered for classes for students that cannot attend an on-campus advisement session. Students with questions after reading the material on this page are encouraged to email their questions to ECE Department at firstname.lastname@example.org; telephone 208 426-5788.
The Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET),http://www.abet.org/
The first question is to determine the appropriate level of Mathematics course to register. This is the most important factor, as, for example, Math 147 is a pre-requisite for Chem 111 and ENGR 120. The following information, taken from the Fall 2006 Schedule of Classes, can be used in conjunction with your Math ACT or SAT scores to determine the appropriate math course to take the first semester. If you do not have an ACT or SAT score, the COMPASS exam is available to make the placement decision.
- Students that score between between 18 and 22 for ACT, or between 430 and 530 for the SAT, should sign up for Math 108 (Intermediate Algebra).
- Students that score between 23 and 28 on the ACT, or between 540 and 640 for the SAT, should sign up for Math 147 (Advanced Algebra and Trigonometry, or pre-Calculus)
- Students that score 29 or higher on the ACT, or 650 or higher on the SAT should sign up for Math 170 (Calculus I).
- Students that receive an AP placement score of 3, 4 or 5 on the Calculus AB Advanced Placement exam, qualify to take Calculus II, Math 175. We strongly recommend that students with the score of 4 or 5 not repeat Math 170 but take Math 175. The score of 3 on the exam is more of a personal choice for the student to make in terms of whether they should retake Calculus I (Math 170) or take the next level course, Calculus II (Math 175). Either decision is fine.
- Students that receive an AP placement scores of 3, 4 or 5 on the Calculus BC exam, qualify to take Math 275 (Multivariable and Vector Calculus), and should do so. There is little to no benefit for these students to repeat Calculus I or II.
If you feel that the ACT or SAT exam score does not accurately reflect your ability in Math, or did not take recently take the ACT or SAT, then we recommend you take the COMPASS placement examination to determine the appropriate mathematics course. Your highest placement score is used (whether SAT, ACT or COMPASS). Boise State University has a testing center where the Math COMPASS exam can be taken for $10.00. To take the COMPASS placement exam, bring photo ID and cash to cover the testing fee. Call 208 426 2762 to obtain information about when the testing center is open. You are allowed to take the exam twice each semester or during the summer, if you desire. It is worthwhile reviewing some math before taking the exam!
The preparatory mathematics course sequence in engineering, beginning from the lowest, and moving up to the highest, is as follows: Math 15, Math 25, Math 108, Math 147, Math 170. The Compass Exam results may suggest other math courses you are qualified to take, but you should restrict yourself to the ones on the list, taking the one that you qualify to take as a result of the Compass exam.
- A score lower than a 40 on the Algebra portion of the Math Compass exam the student should take MATH 025
- A 40 or higher on the Algebra portion of the Math Compass is needed to enter MATH 108
- A 61 or higher on the Algebra portion of the Math Compass is needed to enter MATH 147, MATH 143 or COMPSCI 120 (COMPSCI 197 for S07)
- A 51 or higher on the College Algebra portion of the Math Compass is needed to enter MATH 144
- A 51 or higher on the Trigonometry portion of the Math Compass is needed to enter MATH 170 and COMPSCI 125
An excellent online mathematics program to learn math on your own, or to just review math during the summer, can be found at http://www.aleks.com/ If you work this online tutorial for an hour a day during the summer, you may find that you learn enough algebra to move your COMPASS scores up to the next level math course. This will save you a semester in college and also the tuition fees.
- A score of 0 to 17 on the ACT English, or 200 to 440 on the SAT Critical Reading qualifies you to take ENGL 90.
- A score of 18 to 24 on the ACT English, or 450 to 560 on the SAT Critical Reading qualifies you to take ENGL 101.
- A score of 25 to 30 on the ACT English or 570 to 690 SAT Critical Reading qualifies you to take ENGL 102.
- A score of 3 or 4 on the AP English Composition exam qualifies you to take ENGL 102.
- A score of 5 on the AP English Composition exam means you do not have either of the freshman English courses (ENGL 101 or ENGL 102). Of course, you may want to take an advanced English course, but that is up to you. You have tested out of Freshman English!
COMPSCI 125 is the first general computer science course required for Electrical Engineering and Compute Science students. COMPSCI 125 does require a math placement of MATH 147 or equivalent but does not require any other programming course as a prerequisite and there is no Computer Science placement test.
We want our students to be successful when they take their first computer course so choice of a starting computer course depends most on your self evaluation of your computer skills. If your experience using a computer consists only of email, web browsing, MS Office, etc., you may not have the preparation to be successful in COMPSCI 125.
The Computer Science department has created a new course, COMPSCI 120 Intro to Computer Science (offered in the spring 2007 as COMPSCI 197). This course introduces computer science concepts and construct and prepares students specifically to be more successful in COMPSCI 125. COMPSCI 120 will not teach you about a programming language. This is also not a general introduction to the field course. It has a prerequisite of MATH 108 or equivalent COMPASS math placement test scores. Student could also consider COMPSCI 119 Intro to Java if they have had some programming experience in another language long ago and want to just enter COMPSCI 125 knowing the JAVA syntax.
The following section is broken out by Math placement level.
If you place into Math 15 or Math 25
- Math 15 or Math 25 (3)
- English (3)
- COMM 101 and/or another Area I or II class (3 or 6)
- University 101 (3)
- Total Credits: (12 or 15)
- Math 108 (4)
- English (3)
- COMM 101 or another Area I or II class (3)
- Another Area I or II class (3)
- Total Credits: (13)
Note 1: Math 15 and Math 25 do not give college credit because they contain knowledge that students are expected to remember from high school. Math 108 is a 4-credit course. If you are enrolled in Math 15 or Math 25, you will need one more class to have a full-time load (which you may need for financial aid or for a scholarship). In this case, take a second 3-credit Area I or II class.
- Math 147 (5)
- English (3)
- ENGR 110 (4) [Fall offering only].
- COMPSCI 120 or COMPSCI 125 or COMM 101 or another area I / II class (2 or 3)
- Total Credits: (14 or 15)
ENGR 110, Introducing Engineering is not a required course in the College of Engineering. It is designed to be a supplemental course for engineering students, and contains supplemental math tutoring for Math 147 as well as instruction in engineering software (Solidworks) and other engineering topics.
- Math 170 (4)
- English (3) or Chem 111 (4)
- ENGR 120 (3)
- COMPSCI 120, or COMPSCI 125 or COMM 101 (2 or 4)
- Total Credits: 12 to 15
- Math 175 (4)
- English (3)
- Chem 111 (4) [or, Phys 211 and PHYS 211L if you placed out of Chem 111]
- ENGR 120 (3)
- Optional: COMPSCI 120 or COMPSCI 125 or COMM 101 or another Area I / II class (2 or 3)
- Total Credits: 14 to 17
If you are planning to work 10 to 20 hours/week, don’t take more than 13 to 15 credits!!! Remember, your progress in mathematics is important, and it is better to take fewer credits the first semester than to overload it and have to repeat classes. So keep it low, and work harder at the ones you have with your time.
Do math homework every night! Do not save it up for the weekend. This is the most important thing to keep in mind. If you do at least 2 hours of math homework a day, you will be a successful engineering student. Here is some advice from 15 different freshman students from fall 2005 who took ENGR 110, to you, an incoming student:
- Spend time on your homework, learn what you’re doing!
- Don’t give up 1/4 or 1/2 way through! Find a small group of people to bounce ideas off.
- Don’t drop out!
- Don’t bring your math homework on a date and have your girl help you study.
- Don’t get behind in the homework, it’s hard to catch up but worth the effort if you do get behind.
- Do 2 hours of homework a night (this student got an A in Math)
- Do your homework as soon as possible after the class.
- Do all the homework assigned and do the practice problems the teacher assigns
- Do all your homework, and if you don’t understand something, ask someone immediately
- Always finish your homework!
- Do your homework and much much more math than you’d like.
- All I can say is, you need to understand it, whether it takes tutoring or whatever, you need to understand.
- Review a teacher’s stats before signing up.
- Go to all your classes and do your homework.
For additional information on the Electrical and Computer Engineering Degree at Boise State University, please refer to the program website
For more course recommendations check the catalogs.
Academic and career advising are integrated for engineering students because there is a strong relationship between the student’s educational and career goals. Based on each student’s individual circumstances, personal development and skills, advisors provide advice on:
- Degree planning, academic requirements, policies and procedures
- Career exploration, information and preparation
- Exploration of necessary skills, and
- Referral to campus resources
The College of Engineering strongly encourages all students to see an advisor once each semester. All new engineering students will be assigned a permanent advisor in their first semester at BSU. The name of your permanent advisor will be listed in your Bronco Web account. In the meantime, to make an appointment or to request additional department information, you can contact us at:
Students should receive a response to advising inquiries submitted within 48 hours of their originally scheduled online orientation appointment. Please include your name, student ID number, catalog year, telephone number and email address when submitting questions.