A summary of the course objectives, content, policies, and schedule.

Instructor: Dr. Durell Bouchard
Office Hours: MWF: 2:20-3:20, TTH: 2:40-3:40, also by appointment or open door
Office: Trexler 365-C
Phone: 375-4901

Course Objectives

This course focuses on the design and development of embedded systems for robotics. Students will use the Arduino microcontroller to create a mobile, sensing robot. Topics include electronics, circuits, embedded systems, 3D printing, physical computing, and real-time computing.

Intended Learning Outcomes: At the end of the course the successful student will be able to

  1. read, design, and implement circuit schematics.

  2. write programs for the Arduino microcontroller.

  3. model and print 3D parts.

  4. create a mobile robot capable of sensing and responding to its environment.

Course Content

Prerequisite: CPSC170

Hardware: Vilros Arduino Uno Rev 3 Ultimate Starer Kit & other hardware components as needed for projects.

Activities: Activities are designed to give students a structured experience in embedded systems design, implementation, and testing, and to increase the student’s ability to use and understand the tools available.

Assignments: In addition to reading, tutorials, and activities, there will be embedded systems design and implementation assignments. These assignments are designed to give the student the opportunity to put into practice the problem solving, circuit design, and programming skills they have learned.

Projects:: In addition to the smaller assignments there will three large projects. The projects will require designs that use hardware not purchased at the beginning of the semester. You are encouraged to start on them immediately when assigned to allow for delivery of hardware components.

Tests and Exam: One midterm and one comprehensive final exam will be given.

Exam Dates: Midterm Exam Thursday, February 26
Final Exam Thursday, April 23 (8:30AM-11:30AM)

Co-curricular: The Department of Mathematics, Computer Science, and Physics is offering a series of lectures designed to engage the campus community in discussions of ongoing research, novel applications, and other issues that face these disciplines. You are invited to attend all of the events but participating in at least three is mandatory. Within one week of attending an event you must submit a one page, single-spaced, paper (to Inquire) reflecting on the discussion. If you do not turn the paper in within the one week time frame you may not count that event as one you attended.

Grading: Course grades are assigned based on the following weights and scale:

Grade Weights: midterm exam……..10% final exam……….10% activities………..10%
assignments……….17% projects………….50% co-curricular……3%

Grade Scale: 93-100 A        83-86 B        73-76 C        63-66 D
90-92 A-        80-82 B-        70-72 C-        60-62 D-
87-89 B+        77-79 C+        67-69 D+        below 60 F

Course Policies

Attendance Policy: Class attendance is vital to your success in this course; material covered during missed sessions is the responsibility of the student. Conversations held in class illuminate the published class materials and are subject to evaluation on subsequent tests. Moreover in-class assignments are not available for make-up.

Late Assignment Policy: Unless otherwise specified, assignments are to be turned in before the start of class on the due date. If you anticipate being unable to meet a deadline, talk to me at least 24 hours before the deadline. In extenuating circumstances we may be able to make special arrangements. Please note that this must be discussed – just sending an email does not automatically grant you extra time. If you have not been granted extra time ten percent per calendar day (24 hours) will be deducted for late work (including weekends and holidays); work more than 2 days late will receive no credit. Electronic “glitches” do not waive your responsibility to submit your work in a timely manner.

Make-up Policy: Everyone is expected to take tests, quizzes, and the exam at the scheduled time. Make-ups will be given only for legitimate, documented absences that the instructor has been notified of ahead of time. Make-up tests, if given, may be oral.

Academic Integrity: It is accepted that you have read and understood the standards for academic integrity at Roanoke College. All tests, exams, and assignments are to be the work of the individual student. You are encouraged to get help from the instructor if you need help with any aspect of the course including programs and assignments. Student assistants, tutors, and classmates may help you understand course concepts but may not show you how to do any particular aspect of an assignment. Copying someone else’s work or turning in someone else’s work is NEVER allowed. Using someone else’s work or ideas as your own is plagiarism and an academic integrity offense. Examples of academic integrity violations include copying a program or part of a program (even one line) from someone else, writing code for someone else, telling someone else how to solve a problem or having someone tell you how to solve a problem. Discussion among students about programming projects should be limited to general concepts, not specific aspects of how to complete the work.

Computer Use Policies: All students must abide by the Computer Use policies of Roanoke College. Failure to do so will result in involuntary withdrawal from the course.

Electronic Devices: The use of any electronic device during a test or quiz is prohibited. This includes cell phones, personal media players, personal digital assistants, and laptops. Any use of such a device during a test or quiz will be considered a breach of academic integrity.


Dates Topic Project
Jan 13 – Feb 19 Electronics & Circuits Instructable
Feb 24 – Mar 26 Motors & 3D Printing Maze
Mar31 – Apr 16 Real-time Computing Battle Bots