Course Title: EE 171: Signals and Systems
Class Information: Fall 2015
Class time: 1200-1250 MWF
Location: Votey 361
Recitation/Lab time: W 1420-1510
Location: Perkins 101
Instructor Information: Dr. Jeff Frolik
357 Votey
Phone: (802) 656-0732
Office Hours: Open door policy,email for appointment otherwise.
Prerequisite: EE 4: Linear Circuit Analysis II
Course Description: Discrete and continuous-time signals and systems. Input/output descriptions and analysis. Convolution, Fourier analysis and Laplace transforms, sampling and z-transforms. Application to electrical engineering design problems.
Text: A. Oppenheim & A. Willsky, Signals and Systems, Second Edition, Prentice Hall, 1997.

Grading: Exam I: 20%
Exam II: 25%
Exam III: 30%
Quizzes: 15%
Labs: 10%
Grade Scale: A [90, 100]
B [80, 90)
C [70, 80)
D [60, 70)
F [0, 60)

Topics and Tentative Schedule: Introduction to Signals and Systems (CH 1 & Instructor notes - 3 classes)
Linear Time-Invariant Systems (CH 2 - 4 classes)
Fourier Series (CH 3 - 7 classes)
Fourier Transform (CH 4 - 4 classes)
Discrete-Time Fourier Transform (CH 5 - 4 classes )
Time/Frequency Characterization (CH 6 - 1 classes)
Sampling Theorem (CH 7 - 2 classes)
Laplace and Z-transform (CH 9 & 10 - 2 classes)
General: The instructor posts all assignments, solutions, and additional material at the Blackboard (Bb) site for this class. This can be found at:

The noon MWF classes will be used to cover the material noted above. The recitation session will be used to address questions over the homework assignments and to discuss complementary material that will be needed to complete the lab assignments. Approximately five lab assignments (utilizing MATLAB) will be completed during the course. It is recommended that students bring their laptops the days when the lab assignments are being discussed. Homework problems will either be assigned from the text or provided by the instructor. Homework will not be graded but the solutions will be available on Blackboard before the quizzes and exams covering the related material. Once a week there will be a short quiz covering the previous week's materials. Students are encourage to work the homework in preparation for these quizzes.

Expect exams to be given around the beginning of October and November. At least one weeks notice will be given. The last exam will be given during finals week. All exams will have a comprehensive component and will be taken in class. One sheet of notes (two-sided) may be used on all quizzes and exams.

Throughout the semester, the instructor will give students feedback on how they are progressing the course.
Calculators: There is no restriction on the type of calculator one may use. That being said, cell phones/laptops/tablets may not be used as calculators during quizzes and exams. Note, also that the instructor will emphasize concepts and techniques on the exams. Therefore, just having the correct answer will not guarantee you full credit if no work has been shown. Calculators may not be allowed on some quizzes or exams (advanced notice will be given).
Attendance: Class attendance will not be checked; however, attendance is expected and students will be responsible for all assignments and materials covered in class.

University Policy on Religious Holidays: Students have the right to practice the religion of their choice. Each semester students should submit in writing to their instructors by the end of the second full week of classes their documented religious holiday schedule for the semester. Faculty must permit students who miss work for the purpose of religious observance to make up this work.

Academic Integrity: Any students found giving and/or receiving assistance on Exams or Quizzes will receive a zero score on that assignment. That being said, students are encouraged to work together and to exchange ideas when working on their labs. Students must be sure to reference their work properly, including all web sources. UVM's policy on academic integrity is clearly defined and can be found at
ADA: Students with disabilities should contact the instructor as soon as possible regarding necessary accommodations.
ABET Matrix:

0 - little or no contribution
1 - moderate contribution
2 - high level of contribution

  • Outcome (a): an ability to apply knowledge of mathmematics, science, and engineering to the analysis of electrical engineering problems.
    Contribution: 2
  • Outcome (b): an ability to design and conduct scientific and engineering experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data.
    Contribution: 1
  • Outcome (c): an ability to plan, specify, design, implement, and operate a system, component, or process to meet desired needs.
    Contribution: 0
  • Outcome (d): an ability to function on multidisciplinary teams.
    Contribution: 0
  • Outcome (e): an ability to identify, formulate, and solve electrical engineering problems.
    Contribution: 1
  • Outcome (f): an understanding of professional, legal, and ethical responsibility.
    Contribution: 0
  • Outcome (g): an ability to communicate effectively (orally and written).
    Contribution: 0
  • Outcome (h): the broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental, and societal context.
    Contribution: 0
  • Outcome (i): a recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in life-long learning.
    Contribution: 0
  • Outcome (j): a knowledge of contemporary issues.
    Contribution: 0
  • Outcome (k): an ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice.
    Contribution: 1