The extensive developments in microelectronics over recent decades have triggered a digital revolution where computers take center stage. While we still think of a computer as a desktop or a laptop, digital computing and digital signal processing have become vital for many of the products in our everyday life such as cars, mobile phones, tablets, cameras, household appliances, and more. The Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) program focuses on the areas of communications and digital signal processing, including the enabling digital processing elements and their programming. Those enabling technologies are mostly subsumed under the headline of embedded systems.
Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) - The Program
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Fall Intake 2022:
Apply by June 1 (global) and July 20 (for applicants who do not need a visa)
3 years full-time
€ 20,000 per academic year (two semesters)
All students are considered for an academic achievement scholarship based on their school grade point average (GPA).
Each admitted candidate will receive an individual financial package.
The three-year undergraduate program involves six semesters of study with a total of 180 ECTS credit points (CP). The curricular structure follows an innovative and student-centered modularization scheme - the 3C-Model - that groups the disciplinary content of the three study years according to overarching themes:
Study program structure
The ﬁrst study year is characterized by a broad offer in disciplinary education that builds on and extends the students’ entrance qualification. ECE Students select introductory modules with a total of 45 CP from the CHOICE area.
Students can still change to another major at the beginning of the second year of studies if they have taken the corresponding modules of the study program in the first year of studies.
ECE students take the following CHOICE modules (37.5 CP):
- CHOICE Module: General Electrical Engineering I (7.5 CP)
- CHOICE Module: General Electrical Engineering II (7.5 CP)
- CHOICE Module: Module: Programming in C and C++ (7.5 CP)
- CHOICE Module: Classical Physics (7.5 CP)
- CHOICE: Programming in C and C++
- CHOICE: Introduction to Computer Science
Further, they can choose between the modules:
- CHOICE Module: Introduction to Robotics and Intelligent Systems (7.5 CP)
- CHOICE Module: Applied Mathematics (7.5 CP)
In their second year, students take modules with a total of 45 CP from in-depth, discipline-speciﬁc CORE modules. These modules aim to extend the students’ critical understanding of the key theories, principles, and methods in their major at the current state of knowledge and best practice.
ECE students take 45 CP from the following CORE modules:
- CORE Module: Signals and Systems (7.5 CP)
- CORE Module: Digital Signal Processing (7.5 CP)
- CORE Module: Communications Basics (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Electromagnetics (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Electronics (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Wireless Communication (5 CP)
- CORE Module: Information Theory (5 CP)
- CORE Module: PCB design and measurement automation (5 CP)
The first two years of the ECE program offer a rigorous theoretic foundation together with lab experiments that illustrate the principles practically and already show the programming of digital signal processors, printed circuit board design, and advanced measurement tools and procedures. The theoretical education with corresponding labs covers analog and digital circuitry, deterministic and random signal processing, probability and information theory, and communication. Signals covered start from DC and single sinusoids and move over to general deterministic or random functions and also specific ones like audio, speech, and video, enabling students to treat them with the corresponding mathematical and algorithmic tools. Different transmission media are characterized, be it wireline or wireless, and the suitable transmission methods and algorithms are covered together with them. The education in the first two years provides a solid foundation enabling students to do internships in research environments and professionally contribute to industrial projects.
During their third year, students prepare and make decisions for their career after graduation. To explore available choices fitting individual interests, and to gain professional experience, students take a mandatory summer internship.
The 5th semester opens also a mobility window for ample study abroad options. Finally, the 6th semester is dedicated to fostering the research experience of students by involving them in an extended Bachelor thesis project.
ECE students take 15 CP of major-specific and major-related Specialization modules to consolidate their knowledge at the current state of research in areas of their choice.
ECE students choose 15 CP from the following Specialization Modules:
- Specialization: Wireless Communication II (5 CP)
- Specialization: Coding Theory (5 CP)
- Specialization: Digital Design (5 CP)
- Specialization: Radio-Frequency (RF) Design (5 CP)
The third year exposes students to advanced topics giving also the chance to already pick graduate level modules, such as protocol aspects and coding theory, also rounds up the knowledge with radio frequency engineering aspects and the programming of FPGAs (Field Programmable Gate Arrays).
As a core element of Jacobs University’s employability approach students are required to engage in a mandatory two-month internship of 15 CP that will usually be completed during the summer between the second and third year of study. This gives students the opportunity to gain first-hand practical experience in a professional environment, apply their knowledge and understanding to a professional context, reflect on the relevance of their major in employment and society, reflect on their own role in employment and society, and find professional orientation. As an alternative to the full-time internship, students interested in setting up their own company can apply for a start-up option to focus on the development of their business plan.
The Jacobs Track, an important feature of Jacobs University’s educational concept, runs parallel to the disciplinary modules across all study years and is an integral part of the study program. It reﬂects a university-wide commitment to an in-depth training in scientific methods, fosters an interdisciplinary approach, raises awareness of global challenges and societal responsibility, enhances employability, and equips students with extra skills desirable in the general ﬁeld of study. Additionally, it integrates (German) language and culture modules.
Methods and Skills modules
Methods and skills such as mathematics, statistics, programming, data handling, presentation skills, academic writing, and scientific and experimental skills are offered to all students as part of modules within the Methods and Skills area. Students are required to take 20 CP in the Methods/Skills area.
ECE students take the following Methods modules:
- Methods: Calculus and Linear Algebra I (5 CP)
- Methods: Calculus and Linear Algebra II (5 CP)
- Methods: Probability and Random Processes (5 CP)
- Methods: Numerical Methods (5CP)
Jacobs University supports its students in acquiring and improving these skills by offering a variety of language modules at all proﬁciency levels. Emphasis is put on fostering German language skills of international students as they are an important prerequisite for non-native speaking students to learn about, explore, and eventually integrate into their host country and its professional environment.
All students take four language courses in the first and second year.
Career paths after graduation are very diverse. Jacobs ECE alumni work in the aerospace industry, telecommunications, the automotive and energy sector, and in the field of information technology, in academia, at research centers, in management and in consultancy, even in finance.
Smaller classes and the interactive teaching style keep students focused throughout the lecture.
Nazia Sarwat Islam
I came here for structure. And I got it. But I also got other experiences e.g. interdisciplinary courses from completely unrelated fields that opened my mind. Today I am able to look at a problem from a whole new set of angles which helped me a lot in my career.