Electrical Engineering Program

From Undergraduate Engineering Handbook

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The mission of the Department of Electrical Engineering is to offer an EE undergraduate program that augments the liberal education expected of all Stanford undergraduates and imparts a basic understanding of electrical engineering built on a foundation of physical science, mathematics, computing, and technology.

Graduates of the undergraduate program should possess knowledge of electrical engineering fundamentals and at least one specialty area. They are expected to have the basic experimental, design, and communication skills to be prepared for continued study at the graduate level or entry level positions that require basic knowledge of electrical engineering, science, and technology.


Objectives and Outcomes for Electrical Engineering

1. Technical Knowledge: Provide a basic knowledge of electrical engineering principles along with the required supporting knowledge of mathematics, science, computing, and engineering fundamentals. The program must include depth in at least one specialty area, currently including Bioelectronics and Bioimaging, Circuits and Devices, Computer Hardware, Computer Software, Controls, Fields and Waves, Signal Processing and Communication,, and Solid State and Photonic Devices.
2. Laboratory and Design Skills: Develop the basic skills needed to perform and design experimental projects. Develop the ability to formulate problems and projects and to plan a process for solutions taking advantage of diverse technical knowledge and skills.
3. Communications Skills: Develop the ability to organize and present information, and to write and speak effective English.
4. Preparation for Further Study: Provide sufficient breadth and depth for successful subsequent graduate study, post-graduate study, or lifelong learning programs.
5. Preparation for the Profession: Provide an appreciation for the broad spectrum of issues arising in professional practice, including teamwork, leadership, safety, ethics, service, economics, and professional organizations.

(a) An ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering
(b) An ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data
(c) An ability to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs
(d) An ability to function on multi-disciplinary teams
(e) An ability to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems
(f) An understanding of professional and ethical responsibility
(g) An ability to communicate effectively
(h) The broad education necessary to understand he impact of engineering solutions in a global and societal context
(i) A recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in, life-long learning
(j) A knowledge of contemporary issues
(k) An ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice
(l) Background for admission to engineering or other professional graduate programs

To place the requirements in context, sample programs of study are given which satisfy all requirements for the BS degree in EE. Students with advanced placement will have greater freedom in course selection than is shown in the program examples. Those considering studying at one of the foreign centers should consult the Overseas Study Office as soon as possible, for this will add constraints in program planning. All students are expected to consult their faculty advisor, are encouraged to consult the Electrical Engineering Student Advisor in Packard 110; phone: (650) 725-3799, email: undergradta@ee.stanford.edu, and may find it useful to consult other students when designing their program.
For updated information, visit the EE website at: http://ee.stanford.edu/

Research Experience for Undergraduates

The Electrical Engineering Department at Stanford University invites undergraduates majoring in EE to participate in its REU Summer Program from June to August. The program is designed to give undergraduates an opportunity to work with members of the EE Faculty and their research groups on advanced research topics.

Program Structure
The program is designed to give both an in-depth research experience on a particular topic, as well as a broad hands-on exposure to various areas within EE.

Bi-weekly seminars are offered to cover a wide range of topics. The seminar series lecturers are comprised of EE faculty and guests. Discussions will include topics such as graduate education, internships and career opportunities.

The last week of the summer program will be devoted to writing a final report and creating a poster on the research project. The students will present their projects at a poster fair, to which the EE community will be invited.

Each student receives a summer stipend. Students are required to reside in undergraduate housing with the Summer Research College. A meal plan is also provided.

Application Procedure: For information about our application process, please go to ee.stanford.edu/reu.
1. The application has two steps. You can re-submit both steps at any point up to the deadline. The deadline for students to apply is in early February, with exact date to be announced.
2. If you have any questions about the application, email gradta@stanford.edu
If you have any questions about the logistics of the REU program, email reumentor@ee.stanford.edu.

REU Requirements
Students must declare EE as their undergraduate major. With the exception of co-terms, in order to be eligible students may not be seniors when they apply. In the event the number of applicants exceeds the number of spaces available, preference is given to first time participants. If you have any questions regarding this information, please email reumentor@ee.stanford.edu.

Stanford University/Ecole Centrale Paris Junior Year Abroad Program

Although not formally part of the Overseas Studies Program, Stanford Electrical Engineering undergraduates can receive credit for study abroad at École Centrale Paris. École Centrale Paris is one of the best known science and engineering schools in France and Europe. Stanford students are enrolled in engineering program classes with French and international students. Instruction is mostly in French. For more information, see the “Overseas Studies” section of this handbook and the website http://www.ecp.fr/study-program/stanford, or contact Prof. Robert M. Gray, Packard 261.


The Departmental Requirements for a BS degree in Electrical Engineering include a core set of courses required of every major and a set of specialty areas from which one sequence must be chosen. Each program of study is also expected to include physics as part of science, and calculus, linear algebra, and ordinary differential equations as part of mathematics. The math requirement also includes a course in basic probability and statistics. Specific math and science requirements for EEs are listed below. Other program requirements detailed below include Technology in Society (one course) and one and one half years of Engineering Topics (68 minimum required), which include Engineering Fundamentals and Depth, which in turn includes a selection of electrical engineering core courses, a specialty sequence, electrical engineering electives, and a design course from an approved list. To be considered electrical engineering courses, courses must either be listed in the Stanford Bulletin as EE courses or as "EE related courses” (courses considered by the Department of EE to be programmatically equivalent to EE courses).The design course is intended to culminate the substantial design experience distributed throughout the curriculum. Students are required to pass a writing-intensive course (WIM) within their major (those who double-major will have to take two WIM courses). The WIM course for the Electrical Engineering Major is either EE 100X or EE 108A taken concurrently with ENGR 102E. Students are required to have a program planning sheet approved by their advisor and the department prior to the end of the quarter following the quarter they declare their major and at least one year prior to graduation. Programs may be changed at anytime except during the final quarter before graduation by submitting and having approved a new program sheet. Program sheets for the general EE requirements and for each of the EE specialty sequences may be found on the Program Sheets page of this site.

Math and Science Requirements:

Minimum 45 units of mathematics and science combined
Math (required courses)

  • MATH 41, 42 or 10 units AP Calculus, 10 units
  • MATH 51 & 52 OR CME 100 & CME 104, 10 units
  • MATH 53 or CME 102, 5 units
  • EE178 [preferred] or STATS 116 or MATH 151 or CME 10, 4-5 units

Science (minimum 12 units required)

  • PHYSICS 41 or 61. Mechanics, 4 units
  • PHYSICS 43 or 63. Electricity and Magnetism, 4 units
  • PHYSICS 45 or 65. Heat & Light, 4 units (Strongly recommended for Fields & Waves or Solid State & Photonic Devices specialties)

Technology in Society
See the Approved Courses page for courses that fulfill the TiS requirement.

Engineering Topics(Fundamentals+Core+Specialty Sequence+EE Electives)

A minimum of 68 units (approximately 1.5 years) of Engineering Topics are required by ABET and by the Department. Engineering Topics include both Engineering Fundamentals and Engineering Depth. Engineering Fundamentals consist of three courses chosen from the School list of approved courses, one of which must be E70B or X (same as CS 106B or X), and one of which must be outside of EE and CS. Note that CS 106A does not count as an Engineering Fundamental course. Electrical Engineering Depth comprises Core courses, a Specialty Sequence, and EE Electives. Note that EE 100 and ENGR 102E, both required courses, do not count toward the 68-unit minimum of Engineering Topics required for ABET. In addition to courses taught within the EE department, extra-departmental courses designated as  “EE-related courses” are considered to be equivalent to EE courses with respect to all of the degree requirements. A list of approved EE cognate courses for undergraduates is given in a table. Information regarding graduate courses can be found in the EE Graduate Handbook at http://ee.stanford.edu/gradhandbook/. Any extra-departmental course included in the EE core or a specialty sequence may be assumed to be an EE cognate course.

Engineering Fundamentals (three courses required)

  • CS 106B or X (same as ENGR 70B or X). Programming Abstractions (or Accerlerated version); required, 5 units
  • ENGR 40 or 40N or 40P recommended, 5 units
  • Fundamentals Elective (from Approved List; CS 106A or second E40-series course not allowed), 3-5 units

EE Core

  • Circuits EE 101A,B
  • Signal Processing and Linear Systems EE 102A,B
  • Digital Systems EE 108A,B
  • Technical Writing ENGR 102E, offered Autumn Quarter, usually taken concurrently with EE 100X or EE 108A
  • Physics in Electrical Engineering EE 41* (same as ENGR 40P) or EE 141
  • The Electrical Engineering Profession EE 100 or 100X
  • Note: EE 41(same as ENGR 40P) can meet the Physics in EE core requirement only if it is not used to fulfill the Engineering Fundamentals requirement.

Specialty Areas (three courses required from one area listed below):

  • Bioelectronics & Bioimaging EE 122B, EE 124, EE 134, EE 168, EE 169, EE 202, EE 225
  • Circuits and Devices EE 114, EE 116, EE 122A, EE 133, EE 212, EE 214B, EE 216, EE 271
  • Computer Hardware EE 109, CS 107, EE 271, EE 273, EE 282
  • Computer Software CS 107, CS 108, CS 140, CS 143, CS 145, CS 148, CS 194, (EE 284 or CS 144)
  • Controls ENGR 105, ENGR 205 ENGR 206, ENGR 207A, B, ENGR 209A, B, EE 263
  • Fields and Waves EE 134, EE 141, EE 242, EE 247, EE 252, EE 256
  • Signal Processing and Communications EE 124, EE 133, EE 168, EE 169, EE 179, EE 261, EE 263, (EE 264 or EE 265), EE 276, EE 278, EE 279
  • Solid State and Photonic Devices EE 116, EE 134, EE 136, EE 141, EE 216, EE 222, EE 223, EE 228, EE 235, EE268

Note: EE 141 can be included in a specialty sequence only if it is not used to fulfill the Physics in EE core requirement.
Design Course: At least one of the following design projects must be included in each program:
EE 109, EE 133, EE 134, EE 168, CS 194, ENGR 206, EE 262, EE 265.

EE Electives:
A total of 68 units from any graded EE or EE cognate courses, any CS 193 courses, or a maximum of two additional Engineering Fundamentals are required. Freshman and Sophomore seminars, EE 100, EE 100X, ENGR 102E, and CS 106A do not count toward the 68 units. Up to 10 units of EE 191 (Special Studies with Reports) can count toward the 68 Engineering Topics units (check with the instructor to determine the number of Topics units that can be applied. Freshman seminars do not in general count towards the 68 units. A partial list of EE-related courses is given below (those likely relevant to undergraduate majors). For a complete EE-related course list, go to the MS degree page in the EE Graduate Handbook.

Related Courses to Count Toward EE Depth

AA 272C Global Positioning Systems
AA 278 Optimal Control and Hybrid Systems
APPPHYS 207 Laboratory Electronics
APPPHYS 208 Laboratory Electronics
APPPHYS 226 Physics of Quantum Information
APPPHYS 227 Applications of Quantum Information
APPPHYS 272 Solid State Physics I
APPPHYS 273 Solid State Physics II
CS 107 Computer Organization and Systems
CS 108 Object-Oriented Systems Design
CS 110 Principles of Computer Systems
CS 140 Operating Systems and Systems Programming
CS 143 Compilers
CS 144 Introduction to Computer Networking
CS 145 Introduction to Databases
CS 148 Introductory Computer Graphics and Imaging
CS 194 Software Project
CS 205A Mathematical Methods for Robotics, Vision, and Graphics
CS 221 Artificial Intelligence: Principles and Techniques
CS 223B Introduction to Computer Vision
CS 228 Structured Probabilistic Models: Principles and Techniques
CS 229 Machine Learning
CS 240 Advanced Topics in Operating Systems
CS 242 Programming Languages
CS 248 Introduction to Computer Graphics
CS 255 Introduction to Cryptography
ENGR 105 Feedback Control Design
ENGR 205 Introduction to Control Design Techniques
ENGR 206 Control System Design
ENGR 207A Modern Control Design I
ENGR 207B Modern Control Design II
ENGR 209A Analysis and Control of Nonlinear Systems
ENGR 209B Advanced Nonlinear Control
ENGR 210B Advanced Topics in Computation for Control
ENGR 240 Introduction to Micro- and Nanofabrication Technologies
GEOPHYS 140 Introduction to Remote Sensing
MATSCI 199/209 Electronic and Optical Properties of Solids
MATSCI 323 Thin Film and Interface Microanalysis
MATSCI 347 Introduction to Magnetism and Magnetic Nanostructures
ME 358 Heat Transfer in Microdevices
MS&E 237 Progress in Worldwide Telecommunications
MS&E 246 Game Theory with Engineering Applications
MS&E 251 Stochastic Decision Models

Declaring EE as a Major

1. Declare a major in EE on Axess. Do not declare Honors on Axess until an application has been filled out with signatures from your thesis adviser and a second reader, one of whom must be a member of the EE faculty, and the application has been submitted to the department along with the thesis proposal.
2. Fill out a copy of the Undergraduate Sign-Up Sheet. The "Area of Specialization" is particularly important to assist in the choice of a faculty advisor. It can always be changed.
3. Meet with the Vice Chair in Packard 172. You can check on office hours by sending email to vicechair@eemail.stanford.edu. In the Vice Chair's absence, see the Director of Student and Academic Services in Packard 170. Make sure to bring your Undergraduate Sign-up Sheet, unofficial transcript, and academic file (if available from your previous advisor) to the meeting. The purpose of the meeting is to go over the basics in getting a BS in EE, and to assign an EE faculty adviser to be your major advisor.
4. After the meeting, leave your academic file and Undergraduate Sign-up Sheet with the EE Degree Progress Officer in Packard 177, who will certify your Axess declaration within a working day. This completes the formal declaration.
5. Subscribe to both the EE undergrad mailing list and the general EE student mailing list. To do this, go to the http://mailman.stanford.edu Website and follow the instructions for subscribing to the lists ee-students and ee-undergrad. These lists are used for announcements about seminars, research opportunities, and other events.

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