Module Identifier CS25510  
Academic Year 2007/2008  
Co-ordinator Dr David Barnes  
Semester Semester 1  
Other staff Mr David J Smith, Dr David Barnes, Dr Adrian D Shaw  
Pre-Requisite CS10110  
Co-Requisite CS23420  
Course delivery Lecture   22 lectures  
  Practical   Up to 10 x 2 hr  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours  100%
Supplementary Exam2 Hours Will take the same form, under the terms of the Department's policy.  100%
Further details  

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module, students will be able to:

Brief description

This module introduces digital electronics in the context of studies in software development. It extends a general understanding of computer architecture.


This module introduces students to the principles of computer hardware (digital electronics), and explains how components work at the level of gates, flip-flops etc. It provides hands-on experience of computer hardware, including the use of a microcontroller to control real world hardware.


1. Digital Electronics - 3 lectures.
Digital/analogue comparison, logic levels and voltages, digital waveforms, I. C. packages and I. C. technologies.

2. Combinational logic - 5 lectures.
Revision of basic gates, I. C. data sheets, comparators, adders, encoders, multiplexers. Laws and rules of Boolean algebra. Universal gates.

3. Sequential logic - 3 lectures.
Latches, flip-flops. Applications: parallel data storage, frequency division, and counting.

4. Example microcontroller - 2 lectures.
I. C. complexity classificiation. Microcontroller on-chip peripheral functions and architecture.

5. Microcontroller programming - 3 lectures.
The fetch/execute cycle. Assembly language, directives and instructions. Basic I/O, A/D and interrupt programming.

6. Microcontoller hardware expansion - 4 lectures.
Single chip/expanded mode, memory maps, address decoding circuits. RISC versus CISC computer hardware.

7. Digital hardware exercise - 5 practicals.
NAND gate practical. Microprocessor hardware architecture exercise.

8. Microcontroller programming exercise - 5 practicals.
Binary I/O, A/D input and interrupt programming using microcontroller simulator.

Module Skills

Problem solving This is inherent to the topic.  
Research skills The students will need to search for and use relevant technical information while completing practical work.  
Communication Written skills will be needed to complete examination.  
Improving own Learning and Performance See 2 above  
Team work No.  
Information Technology The whole module concerns this area.  
Application of Number To some extent.  
Personal Development and Career planning This topic covers a new area of computing to most students. Opens up understanding of field.  
Subject Specific Skills Yes. See module title and content.  

Reading Lists

** Consult For Futher Information
Alan Clements (2000) The Principles of Computer Hardware Oxford University Press 0198564538
Peter Spasov (1999) Microcontroller Technology: The 68HC11 Prentice-Hall 0139012400
Ronald J. Tocci and Frank J. Ambrosio (2000) Micorprocessors and Microcomputers: Hardware and Software Prentice-Hall 0130104949
Thomas L. Floyd (1997) Digital Fundamentals Prentice-Hall 0135734789


This module is at CQFW Level 5