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North Idaho College • Coeur d'Alene • Mathematics, Computer Science, & Engineering • Engineering

Circuits I ENGR-240

  • Fall 2012
  • Section 1
  • 4 Credits
  • 08/27/2012 to 12/20/2012
  • Modified 10/03/2012

Contact Information

Instructor: Mike Martin

Office Location: Seiter 213

Office Hours: M 2:15-3:15pm

Phone/Fax: [deleted for web publication]

Email: [email protected]

Web: through student's MyNIC page

Final: Monday, December 12, 2:00pm

Meeting Times

Lecture: 3 hours per week, MF 1:00-2:15pm STR 202 (ENGR 240)

Lab: 2 hours per week, W 1:00-2:50pm STR 306 (ENGR 240L)


ENGR 240 presents a study of Ohm's Law, analysis methods, network theorems, Ideal Operational Amplifiers, and energy storage elements. It includes the exploration of electrical circuits using hands-on lab activities and computers. Lecture: 3 hours per week Lab: 2 hours per week


The following supplies are needed for the course:

  1. Hand Calculator capable of operating on complex numbers.

  2. NIC Email address.

  3. Lecture Notebook (solely for student’s use – will not be graded).

  4. 8½x11”, 5x5 grid, green-tint engineering pad(s) for homework assignments.

  5. USB memory stick or other portable data storage medium.

Electric Circuits

  • Author: Nillson
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall
  • Edition: 9th
  • ISBN: 0136114997

© 2011


Circuits I: allows the student to concentrate on specific learning experiences and skills development in their area of emphasis.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Read and draw basic passive electrical schematic circuit diagrams - assessed through homework assignments and lab reports.
  • Design and analyze basic resistive electrical circuits, both with manual numerical methods and computer simulation programs - assessed through homework, exams, and lab reports.
  • Use protoboards and meters to build, test, and debug basic electrical circuits - assessed through lab observations and lab reports.
  • Understand the relationship between the mathematical solutions and the physical operation of resistive electrical circuits - assessed through homework, exams, and lab reports.


Evaluation Criteria:

Tentatively, grades will be calculated on the basis of the percentage of possible points that students earn on tests, homework quizzes, and labs. The weighting of these components will vary according to the actual assignments given, but are typically homework (15%), two mid-terms (40%), final exam (25%), and lab work (20%). Letter grades are assigned according to the following table. An important implication of this grading system is that it is better for students to come take a test and get 30% of the possible points than to simply ignore the test and get zero points. An ‘F’ is not averaged in as a zero as other instructors might do. In this class, you simply accumulate points. Thirty points out of 100 possible is thirty points added to your total.

Grading scale is as follows:

 94-100% A

90-93% A-

87-89% B+

84-86% B

80-83% B-

77-79% C+

74-76% C

70-73% C-

60-69% D

<60% F

This grading scale may be adjusted for individuals or the entire class at the discretion of the instructor. However, students with a given percentage score can be assured of receiving a grade at least as good as shown. Improvement on scores toward the end of the course that indicate comprehension of material covered previously, may, at the instructor’s discretion, be used to raise a student’s grade in borderline situations.


Course Policies

Course Requirements:


Generally, one homework assignment will be given each week and shall be due one week later. Most (but not all) homework will consist of problems from the text. Students are encouraged to work together on these assignments. Most homework problems will be chosen with answers in the back of the text, so homework grading shall be based upon completion, clarity, and thoroughness of students work. Assignments will be graded by completion or randomly selecting a single problem for grading. Students are ultimately responsible to review the solutions and correct their own errors in order to learn from them. No late homework will be accepted without PRIOR approval of instructor.



Tentatively, two mid-term and one final exams will be given for the lecture portion of the class covering material from the text, homework, and lectures. Students are expected to take all tests at the scheduled time. Makeup tests will be available for special circumstances only with PRIOR approval of instructor.


In the lab, students will analyze, build, test, and debug a number of physical circuits, as well as conduct several computer simulation exercises. Attendance is required during lab sessions unless PRIOR arrangements are made with the instructor.



While a record of class attendance may be kept for administrative purposes, lecture attendance will not directly affect students’ grades. However, students will be responsible for material covered during lectures, even if they do not attend. Some questions on the exams will cover material presented only during lectures and which is not present in the text. Also, unannounced quizzes covering reading, lecture, or lab material may be given during lecture periods. No makeup quizzes will be given except under special circumstances and with PRIOR approval of instructor. In the event that a lecture must be missed, students should obtain notes from their classmates and assignments from the instructor. Students should make alternative arrangements to turn in any homework due at the time of a missed lecture. (See also lab attendance policy, above.)



Students should refer to the NIC Catalog for polices and deadlines concerning drops, withdrawals, and incompletes. If a student wishes to leave the class, or finds that they are “getting hopelessly behind”, they should contact the instructor and/or an advisor as soon as possible to discuss the best course of action. Dropping and Withdrawing have strict deadlines which must be met, while Incompletes have a whole set of guidelines and cannot be used late in the class simply to avoid an ‘F’ grade. A student who just stops coming to class will end up with an ‘F’ grade on their permanent transcripts unless they follow the correct drop/withdrawal procedure.


Study Tips

To get the most out of the class, students should read the assigned text prior to each lecture, bring questions and problems to discuss during lectures, collaborate with other students on the homework problems, and prepare as much of the lab reports BEFORE each lab as possible.


Tentative Course Schedule:

Week          Chap    Lecture Topic                                        Lab

8/27            1          Circuit Variables                                    Proto Brd

9/3              2          Circuit Elements                                    SPICE I

9/10            2          Kirchhoff’s Laws/Dep. Sources              Ohm’s Law

9/17            3          Series/Parallel Resistors                        Kirchhoff’s Laws

9/24            3          Dividers/Bridges/Test 1                         Bridges

10/1            4          Node Voltage                                        SPICE II

10/8            4          Mesh Current                                         Node-Volt/Mesh-Curr

10/15          4          Thevenin/Norton/Superposition              Thevenin/Norton

10/22          5          Ideal Op Amps                                      Superposition

10/29          5          Amplifier Circuits/Test 2                         Op Amp I – Math Functions

11/5            6          Inductance/Capacitance                         SPICE III

11/12          6          L and C Circuits/Mutual Induct.               Oscilloscopes

11/19          7          RL/RC Circuits                                       No Lab 11/23 – Thanksgiving

11/26          7          Sequential Switching/Integrators             RL/RC Circuits

12/3            8          Parallel RLC Circuits                              Final Project

12/10          8          RLC Step Response/Series RLC            Final Project (continued)

12/17                      Finals Week – Test 3

Additional Items

Division Policies

Math Study Center

The Math Study Center is a table located in the College Skills Center in LKH. Full-time math faculty staff the table to provide “drop-in” help. It is generally staffed from 8 - 3, beginning the second week of the semester. You can get your questions answered by the math faculty member scheduled at the time. Click on the link below to access the current semester's schedule which is updated each semester by the beginning of school:

Peer Tutoring Program

The Peer Tutoring Program offers free tutoring to NIC students.  Students may sign up for 2 hours of tutoring each week for each enrolled NIC course.  You can sign up for tutoring in the College Skills Center in LEE-Kildow Hall, Room 118, starting on the first Thursday of the semester and continuing throughout the semester.  Contact the College Skills Center at 769-3206 or visit the Peet Tutoring Center website below for additional information.

Class Preparation

Class preparation is essential for learning.  All students should be prepared daily for class, seek help when needed, and take a positive role in the learning opportunities available.  Any behavior that interferes with other's rights to learn or an ability to teach will not be tolerated, and you will be asked to stop or to leave.  To avoid disrupting class, please turn all ringers on cell phones or pagers off.  Please also note that College Policy does not allow children in the classroom.  See the Student Handbook for additional information regarding appropriate classroom behavior.

Academic Honesty

It is expected that students will do their own academic work.  The principle of intellectual honesty, responsibility, and integrity is central to any educational community.  Academic dishonesty is a serious infringement of personal integrity and erodes the basis for academic credibility.  Academic dishonesty includes cheating and plagiarism.  Plagiarism is literally an artistic theft and misrepresentation, and it is illegal.  Examples of cheating include copying the work of others or allowing others to copy your work,  the submitting of the same work for credit to more than one course, and the collaboration among students on assignments without prior approval of the insturctor.  Academic dishonesty will be dealt with in a manner consistent with the procedure laid out in the Student Handbook.  For a complete explanation of the North Idaho College Statement on Academic Honesty & Academic Integrity please refer to the Student Handbook.

Flowchart for Mathematics Coursework

Flowchart for Computer Science Coursework

Flowchart for Engineering Coursework 

Institutional Policies

Student Code of Conduct

The Student Code of Conduct applies to any student enrolled at North Idaho College.  This includes, but is not limited to, face-to-face classes and Internet classes.

Student Responsibilities

As students undertake to fulfill the obligations and duties outlined in this document, the college community of which they are a part undertakes to respect the basic freedoms of students. In recognition of students’ rights and dignity as members of the college, North Idaho College is committed to the principles found in the NIC Student Handbook.

Center for Educational Access/Disability Support Services

In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504/508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, North Idaho College provides accommodations to eligible students who experience barriers in the educational setting due to learning, emotional / mental, physical, visual, or hearing disabilities.  Instructors will provide accommodations to students only after having received a Letter of Accommodation from the Center for Educational Access. 

If a student would like to request accommodations, he or she must contact the Center for Educational Access so that a Letter of Accommodation may be sent to the instructor.  Students requesting accommodations must contact the Center for Educational Access at the beginning of each semester.


By registering at North Idaho College, you agree to provide payment by the due dates. You also understand that collection costs and legal fees will be added if the services of a collection agency are utilized.

If you are registered for a class and do not attend, you will still be liable for the tuition unless you drop the class.


Last day for students to withdraw from semester-length classes:

Instructor-Initiated Withdrawal: Instructors have the right to withdraw students for academic reasons up until the same date; in doing so, instructors must notify students through NIC e-mail within 48 hours of submitting documentation to the Registrar's office, and students have the right to appeal the instructor's decision. For more information, see the NIC Procedure:

Financial Aid Satisfactory Progress Policy: All withdrawals, whether for individual classes, total withdrawal from school, or instructor-initiated are not considered to be satisfactory progress for financial aid.  See the Financial Aid Satisfactory Progress Policy:

Additional withdrawal information:


An incomplete is assigned only if the student has been in attendance and has done satisfactory work to within three weeks of the end of the semester (or proportional length of time for a course of less than a semester in length).  Incompletes are issued only in cases of extenuating circumstances, such as severe illness or injury.  Incompletes are not issued in cases in which the student is simply unable to complete his/her work within the specified semester or session.  If a final grade of "I" is recorded, the instructor will indicate in writing to the Registrar what the student must do to make up the deficiency.  The instructor will indicate in the written statement what permanent grade should be entered if the Incomplete is not removed by the deadline.

All incomplete grades must be removed within six weeks after the first class day of the following term, excluding the summer session.  If the Incomplete is not removed by that date, the grade reverts to the grade indicated by the instructor's written statement authorizing the incomplete.

Discrimination and Harassment

North Idaho College has a zero tolerance policy for any acts of discrimination or harassment of any kind.  For more information, please see the NIC Student Handbook, Code of Conduct Article III and Article VIII. Compliance efforts with respect to these laws and regulations are the responsibility of each member of the campus community and are under the direction of the Dean of Students Office for Student Issues (2nd floor, Edminster Student Union Building, (208) 676-7156) and the Human Resources Office (Sherman Administration Building, (208) 769-3304) for employee issues.

Institutional Statement

DROP FOR NON-PAYMENT:  By registering at North Idaho College, you agree to provide payment by the due dates. You will be dropped from classes if payment is not received by  5 p.m. Pacific Time on the third day of the semester. Students on the waitlist will be given the option to register for classes after students are dropped for non-payment.

REMOVAL FROM CLASS FOR NON-ATTENDANCE:  Attendance is based on your participation in this class. Failure to attend may result in your being removed from this class and may result in your financial aid award being reduced. You are responsible for confirming the accuracy of your attendance record.