Fall 2014 -- ECEN 3030 Circuits for Non-Majors


Course Overview

This course is predominantly meant for Architectural and Civil Engineering students.

Among others, it is a pre-requisite for AREN 4570 Building Electrical Systems Design.

It covers the fundamental electrical circuits and related concepts without the use of Laplace Transforms.

The topics covered are also typical FE exam topics.




Appm 2360


Topics covered

1. Concepts of charge, forces between charges, electrical power and energy, conductors and insulators.

2. Circuit analysis using Kirchhoffs laws, node /loop analysis, superposition, Thevenin/Norton Theorems.

3. 1st and 2nd order transient analysis of dynamic circuits using resistors, capacitors and inductors.

4. Complex numbers.


5. AC steady state analysis using phasors.


6. Steady State Power Analysis, complex power, average power, apparent power, power factor correction.

7. Magnetic Coupled circuits, mutual inductance, transformers.

8. Electrical network frequency characteristics, filters, resonant circuits.

9. Ideal Op-Amps, analog computation.

10. Terminal characteristics of diodes, rectification circuits.

11. Electrical motors: DC, AC Poly-phase Induction and Synchronous machines.




What you should already know

Basic mathematics.


Trigonometric identities, Logarithms.


Integration by substitution and by parts, evaluation of definite integrals, differentiation.

Differential equations

Solution of 1st and 2nd order linear differential equations with initial values and/or forcing functions.



Required Textbook

Essentials of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Kerns, Irwin, Pearson - Prentice Hall.



 Course Vitals

      Instructor: Harry Hilgers

hhhilgers@mesanetworks.net Office: OT 352

Regular office hours: M/W/F 2:00 3:30 PM

I will not be on campus on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

For those days see the TA office hours schedule.

      Teaching Assistant

  Devin Kaschinske Devin.Kaschinske@Colorado.EDU

  Office: OT352

  Office Hours: Tu/Th 1:00 2:00 PM

      Lecture material

  There is only enough class time to lecture just the core points.

  So it stands to reason that you read ALL material before coming to lecture and study it thoroughly afterwards.

  However, except as indicated otherwise during lecture, you are REQUIRED to read/study/understand ALL text book material.

  I will predominantly (but not always) lecture from the text book.

  I therefore urge you to bring your text book to the lectures so you can make notes in it as needed.

      During Lectures

  The only dumb question is the one not asked.

  If a question is not enough on point or the answer becomes too time-consuming, I may suggest holding off until office hours.

  During lectures, please only one discussion at a time.

      Homework Assignments

  One HW assignment per week.

  You will scan your HW and drop it into the drop box on D2L prior to the due date/time.

  Late HW receives zero credit. NO EXCEPTIONS.


  Three 50 minute mid-term exams

  A 2.5 hr. final exam

  Make sure you do ALL HW problems and read/study/understand ALL of the text material.

  All of this is fair game for exams.

      The Final grade is computed as follows:

  Each of three midterm exams: 20%

  Final exam: 25%

  HW: 15%


  This will be on CULearn.

  It will be used for HW assignments, announcements, calendar, exam dates, etc.

      Some final comments

  I recognize that the amount of material is very large.

  Therefore by necessity some material will only be covered on the surface.

  It is impossible for you to become an expert at it in a short semester.

  So it is my goal to introduce the material to a level so that later, when you need to apply it, you will have enough background and will not be afraid to open a book and study the different aspects in detail.

      Last but for sure not least

  If you qualify for accommodations because of a disability, please submit to me a letter from Disability Services in a timely manner so that your needs may be addressed.

  Disability Services determines accommodations based on documented disabilities. (303-492-8671, Willard 322)

  Every effort will be made to reasonably and fairly deal with students who have serious religious observances that conflict with scheduled exams, assignments, etc.

  Please notify me well in advance, so that there is time to make adequate arrangements.

  The Boulder campus policy can be read at http://www.colorado.edu/policies/fac_relig.html

  All students will be expected to comply with the Boulder campus honor code.

  This honor code can be viewed at http://www.colorado.edu/academics/honorcode/

  Students and faculty each have responsibility for maintaining an appropriate learning environment.

  Those who fail to adhere to such behavioral standards may be subject to discipline.

  Professional courtesy and sensitivity are especially important with respect to individuals and topics dealing with differences of race, culture, religion, politics, sexual orientation, gender, gender variance, and nationalities.

  The campus policy can be read at http://www.colorado.edu/policies/classbehavior.html