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Course Description

    This course contributes a capstone design experience in Computer Engineering. Typically, it requires that students build on the aggregated knowledge gained in previous years. Students will have design experience involving hardware and/or software systems to meet the desired needs within economical, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability constraints. Students will acquire skills in design tools and practices, functional teaming, oral and written technical communication.



    The course provides a capstone design experience that integrates the student’s knowledge in hardware, software and project management to: implement the design process, demonstrate teamwork and communication complete a major hardware and/or software system to meet the desired needs within realistic constraints, and develop professionalism suitable for engineering practice. Various activities are conducted to support the design experience, which include: project planning, simulation, analysis, design, testing, validation, prototyping and communicating through demonstrations, oral presentations and written reports.


    The course satisfies the computer engineering program outcomes a, b, c, d, e, f, g, h, i, j, m and k. These relationships are indicated in the course specific outcomes.  It contributes to both professional component and computer engineering program outcomes at varying degrees. The contribution degree is described below.


Contribution to the Professional Component

Contribution to Program Outcomes

0%  Math and Basic Sciences

100%  Engineering Topics
0%  General Education

Strong: (c), (e), (g), (k), (m)

Average: (a), (d), (f)

Some: (b), (i), (j), (h)


Specific Course Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to:

    1. Demonstrate the ability to design major software and/or a hardware system with alternative solutions that meets a set of design requirements [Program outcomes: a, c, e, m].
    2. Communicate their technical accomplishment both orally and in writing [Program outcome: g].
    3. Apply modern engineering tools to support their design decisions [Program outcomes: b, k, m].
    4. Write a team proposal for a major engineering design project that has a clearly-stated design criteria, which includes realistic constraints and obtain approval [Program outcomes: c, d, e, g, m].
    5. Actively participate as a member of an engineering design team and contribute to the team’s stated goals and objectives [Program outcomes: d, f].
    6. Address economical, environmental, engineering ethics, health and safety, manufacturability, liability and responsibility issues in their design [Program outcomes: h, i, j].
    7. Recognize the need for life-long learning to learn emerging technologies [Program outcome: i].


      • CpE-368 Computer Organization: Students must be familiar with the organization of computer systems.
      • CpE-356 Computer Network I: Students must be familiar with basic computer networks architecture and protocols.
      • CpE-395 Computer System Engineering: Students must be familiar with design process of computer systems.

      Required Textbooks: None

      Reference Textbooks:

      “Design for Electrical and Computer Engineers”, by Ralph M. Ford & Chris S. Coulston, McGraw Hill, 2008

      “Software Engineering”, by Kassem A. Saleh, J. Ross Publishing, 2009.

      Course Outline

          During this course student teams will work on their projects, have weekly meetings with their faculty advisor and provide a biweekly status report. Please check Capstone Design Project Description document, for more details.

      Project Deliverables and Grading

          For this project teams will deliver the artifacts listed in the following tables. The tables also include the delivery date and assigned grade:


      Table 1: Project Deliverables


      Delivery Date


      Requirements Document

      Week 2

      8%  (Report Grading Rubric)

      User Interface Prototype and  Design Presentation

      Week 4

      8% (Presentation Rubric)

      Design Document

      Week 5

      8%  (Report Grading Rubric) + (Design Assesment Rubric)

      Test Plan

      Week 6


      Final Report Draft

      Week 13

      -15% if not submitted

      Final Report

      Week 15

      15% (Report Grading Rubric)

      Final Presentation

      Week 15

      13% (Presentation Rubric)

      Project Journal Submission

      Week 15


      System Implementation

      Week 15

      25% (Project Evaluation Rubric)

      Peer Evaluation

      Week 15

      5%  (Peer Evaluation Rubric)

      Status Reports

      week 8 and week 10

      4 %


      The course grade will be reduced by 30% if the final project fails to get the approval of [50% or more of [specific #] CDC members.


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