Senior Capstone Project

students discussing project student group with instructor group looking at their project group standing next to their project

Capstone Overview

During the senior year, ECE offers a year-long Senior Electrical Engineering Project course also known as the Senior "Capstone" Project. This course helps satisfy Electrical Engineering Major Degree Requirements in the Senior Elective Study Plan.

The Capstone Project gives Electrical and Computer Engineering students the opportunity to put their education into practice. Students, working in small teams, design, build, and present a challenging engineering design project. The design challenges, of which each team selects one to tackle, are proposed and supported by UCSB faculty research groups or by industry. Projects typically involve design and implementation of both hardware and software systems. The projects span a variety of topics in the field of electrical and computer engineering, including for example energy generation and conversion systems, electrochemical and biological sensors, image processing systems, control systems and circuits, and solid-state lighting systems.

Every year at the end of the Spring quarter, the final projects are shown at an industry-supported event where student groups participate in an outdoor project demonstration / poster session and publicly present their projects.

Senior Capstone Project Course

Student groups integrate the knowledge and skills acquired in earlier coursework to tackle a challenging engineering design project which is proposed and supported by a UCSB faculty research group or by an industry supporter. The project is evaluated through written reports, oral presentations, and demonstrations of performance.

Electrical and Computer Engineering 188A/B/C - Course Website

Instructor: Ilan Ben-Yaacov

188A (Fall quarter) - ECE 188A primarily focuses on the initial project design and development stage. After choosing a project, each group begins researching the critical elements of their project, developing a preliminary project plan with a set of preliminary design specifications, and gives a short preliminary presentation to the class describing their projects. Students then continue to refine their plan and begin prototyping and design testing. By the end of the quarter, each group finalizes their project plan and product design specifications, demonstrates a prototype of at least one system/element of their project, and gives a 30 minute presentation detailing (1) The Project Plan, (2) Product Design Specifications, (3) Budget, (4) Prototyping and Testing, and (5) Division of Labor (individual responsibilities).

188B (Winter quarter) - In ECE 188B, the groups continue to develop their products and refine their specifications, begin PCB design (where applicable), and at the end of the quarter demonstrate a second product prototype.

188C (Spring quarter) - In ECE 188C, the final quarter of the sequence, students finalize their designs and product specifications, and then assemble and debug their products. At the end of the quarter, each group presents and demos their product at the ECE/CS Capstone Presentation day. Final presentations include a 25-minute oral presentation, as well as a poster presentation and product demo.

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