Teaching Assistant Handbook

Compiled by Prof. Gary E. Ford, September 1999
Revised by Prof. Richard R. Spencer, July, 2000

Teaching Assistant Appointment Policies

A. General Policies and Regulations

This document outlines the policies regarding the appointment of graduate students as Teaching Assistants in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. The department follows the basic regulations in the UCD Policy and Procedure Manual Section 390-24 and the Academic Personnel Manual Section 410, and has established additional policies which are described in this document.

B. Eligibility for a Teaching Assistant Appointment

  • An appointee must be a full-time registered graduate student in good academic standing during the period of appointment.

  • An appointee must have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 in previous graduate work if a continuing student, or in the last two years of upper- division work if a new graduate student.

  • An appointee must demonstrate adequate ability to comprehend, write, and speak the English language.

  • An appointee must be willing and able to work 20 hours a week (50%) or 10 hours a week (25%) during the following time periods: 7 a.m. - 11 p.m. Monday through Friday and Saturdays 8 a.m. -4 p.m.

  • An appointee must be available for work from the first day through the last day of the quarter.

  • An appointee must be willing and able to teach at least two courses from each of the priority lists from the "Teaching Assistant" application.

C. Criteria for Initial Appointment of Teaching Assistants

  • Departmental Needs.
    1. Courses requiring TA support
    2. Desire to attract outstanding student teachers

  • Academic Qualifications
    1. GPA from U.S. institutions
    2. GRE and TOEFL scores, where required for admission

  • Teaching Qualifications
    1. Prior teaching experience
    2. Communication skills
    3. Variety of courses and/or specialized courses candidate can TA

  • Other Qualifications of the Candidate
    1. Industrial experience
    2. Experience in the use of electronic instrumentation
    3. Willingness to practice and teach proper safety practices from industrial supervisors
    4. Ability to work cooperatively with faculty, staff, and students

D. Criteria for Continued Appointment of Teaching Assistants

  • Criteria given in Section C above
  • Appraisal of performance as a TA from evaluations by faculty, staff and students
  • Appraisal of progress toward completion of degree requirements
NOTE: The department reserves the right to offer support on a quarter-to-quarter basis and guaranteed support for subsequent quarters is not implied.

E. Appeal Process

Candidates who are not satisfied with appointment decisions should follow the appeal process: (a) write to the Vice Chair of the department and thereafter, if necessary, by (b) writing to the Dean of Graduate Studies.

F. Financial Need

Financial need is NOT a criterion in the selection of TAs. It is the Departmental goal to provide the best possible teaching environment/learning assistance to students in addition to providing assistance to faculty members teaching courses.

STUDENTS WITH FINANCIAL PROBLEMS SHOULD SEEK ADVICE FROM:


TEACHING ASSISTANT JOB DESCRIPTIONS

Note: To view long description form, click on title of the course)

ENG6. Engineering Problem Solving
Methodology for solving engineering problems. Engineering computing and visualization based on MATLAB. Engineering examples and applications.
4 units; Lecture 3 hours, Lab/discussion 1 hour
Fall, Winter, Spring Quarters

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Knowledge of engineering problem solving methods
  • Knowledge of programming principles
  • Familiarity and experience with Matlab

General Tasks and Responsibilities
Office hours, conduct laboratory session, pre-lab preparation, lab project grading, exam grading, attend TA/reader meetings.


ENG17. Circuits I
Basic electric circuit analysis techniques, including electrical quantities and elements, resistive circuits, transient and steady-state responses of RLC circuits, sinusoidal excitation and phasors, and complex frequency and network functions.
4 units
Fall, Winter and Spring Quarters

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Good understanding of introductory circuit analysis covered.

General Tasks and Responsibilities
Office hours, problem set solutions, exam grading, attend TA/reader meetings.


ENG100. Electronic Circuits and Systems Introduction to theory and applications of analog and digital circuits and systems.
3 units
Winter, Spring Quarters

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Solid knowledge and some hands-on experience of basic analog and digital electronics
  • Working knowledge of electronic lab equipment (oscilloscopes and function generators)
  • Working knowledge of SPICE circuit simulation software
  • Good language and communications skills (particularly important in a lab course)

General Tasks and Responsibilities
Laboratory teaching and notebook grading, office hours, exam grading, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC70. Computer Structure and Assembly Language
Introduction to computer architecture; machine language; assembly language; macros and conditional macros; subroutine/ parameter passing; input/output programming, interrupt and trap; direct-memory access; absolute and relocatable code; re-entrant code; program development in an operating system.
4 units; Lecture 3 hours, Workshop 3 hours
Fall, Winter Quarters

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Knowledge of basic computer architecture
  • Ability to program in an assembly language
  • The course currently uses the SPIMSAL simulator for the MIPS RISC architecture. Past experience with SPIMSAL or MIPS is useful, but not required.

General Tasks and Responsibilities


EEC73. Applications of Object-Oriented Programming
Introduction to the modern programming paradigms of data abstraction and object-oriented programming for engineering applications such as robotics, image processing. Introduction to object-oriented programming in Java language. The technique of partitionin g an application into pieces by defining new types that match the concept of the application.
4 units; Lecture 3 hours, Discussion 1 hour
Spring Quarter

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Knowledge of Object Oriented Programming and Java Programming Language.
  • Students who have taken EEC 275 are preferred.

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Laboratory teaching, pre-class or pre-lab preparation, project grading, exam grading, office hours, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC100. Circuits II

Introduction to the theory and application of analog circuits. Students who have completed Engineering 100 may receive only 3.5 units of credit.
5 units; Lecture 3 hours, Laboratory 3 hours, Discussion 1 hour
Fall, Winter Quarters

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Required
    1. E17 and EEC100 (or equivalent)
    2. Analog electronic laboratory skills (working knowledge of oscilloscopes and function generators).
    3. Familiarity with SPICE
    4. Familiarity with UNIX

  • Recommended:
    1. EEC110 A,B
    2. Familiarity with HSPICE

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Laboratory teaching, laboratory notebook grading, exam grading, office hours, pre-class or pre-lab preparation, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC106. Introduction to Image Processing and Computer Vision

Imaging geometry; transforms and sampling; enhancement, restoration, and conversion; image compression; time-varying image analysis; elementary pattern recognition; segmentation; multi-resolution analysis.
4 units; Lecture, 3 hours; Laboratory, 3 hours
Spring Quarter

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Coursework background in image processing (preferably EEC106).
  • Familiarity with Unix.
  • Experience with image processing software (knowledge of Khoros preferred).

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Office hours, laboratory teaching, laboratory notebook grading, pre-class or pre-lab preparation, exam grading, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC110A. Electronic Circuits I

Applications of operational amplifiers, modeling of active devices, design of small-signal linear amplifiers, design of basic logic gates.
4 units; Lecture, 3 hours; Discussion, 1 hour
Winter Quarter

EEC110B. Electronic Circuits II

Analysis and design of amplifier output stages, analysis of frequency response of amplifiers, analysis and design of multistage and feedback amplifiers, stability and compensation of feedback systems, oscillators, introduction to analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog converters.
4 units; Lecture, 3 hours; Discussion, 1 hour
Spring Quarter

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Use of SPICE on the department's computers
  • Familiarity with Unix, editors, windowing system
  • Knowledge of ECE CAD tools
  • Preference is given to students who have taken the following course - or their equivalent: EEC112, EEC 114, EEC 118 - and received a grade of B+ or better.

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Pre-class or pre-lab preparation, exam grading, office hours, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC112. Communication Electronics

Electronic circuits for analog and digital communications, including oscillators, mixers, tuned amplifiers, modulators, demodulators, and phase-locked loops. Circuits for amplitude modulation (AM) and frequency modulation (FM) are emphasized.
4 units; Lecture 3 hours, Laboratory 3 hours
Winter

EEC114. Analog Integrated Circuits
Analysis and design of analog integrated circuits. Emphasis is on bipolar transistor circuits. Single-stage amplifiers, cascaded amplifier stages, current sources, differential pair, frequency response, and feedback amplifiers.
3 units; Lecture 2 hours, Laboratory 3 hours
Fall

EEC118. Digital Integrated Circuits
Analysis and design of digital integrated circuits. Emphasis is on MOS logic circuit families. Logic gate construction, voltage transfer characteristics, and propagation delay. Regenerative circuits, RAMs, ROMs, and PLAs.
3 units; Lecture 2 hours, Laboratory 3 hours
Spring

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • 114
    • Use of oscilloscopes
    • Understanding of bipolar-transistor circuits at the level of the first half of Gray and Meyer's text, "Analysis and Design of Analog Integrated Circuits", especially differential pairs and current mirrors
  • 118
    • Experience with Bipolar & MOS transistors.
    • Experience with **LOGIC** circuits.
    • Experience with test equipment (scope, signal gen., etc.).
    • Experience with SPICE.
    • ** Experience with IC layout (as taught in 218A). **

**needed for only one TA per quarter

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Laboratory teaching, laboratory notebook grading, attend TA/reader meetings, pre-class or pre-lab preparation, office hours, exam grading.


EEC130A. Introductory Electromagnetics I
Basics of static electric and magnetic fields and fields in materials. Work and scalar potential. Maxwell's equations in integral and differential form. Plane waves in lossless media. Lossless transmission lines.
4 units; Lecture 3 hours, Discussion 1 hour
Fall, Winter

EEC130B. Introductory Electromagnetics II
Plane wave propagation in lossy media, reflections, guided waves, simple modulated waves and dispersion, and basic antennas.
4 units; Lecture 3 hours, Discussion 1 hour
Spring

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Advanced undergraduate background in electromagnetics.

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Pre-class or pre-lab preparation, office hours, exam grading, attend TA/reader meetings, conduct problem session.


EEC136. Opto-Electronics and Fiber-Optics Laboratory
Characteristics and applications of state-of-the-art optoelectronic components (semiconductor lasers, semiconductor detectors, optical modulators and optical fibers), and fiber-optic communication systems.
3 units; Lecture 3 hours, Laboratory 3 hours
Spring

Required Knowledge

  • Laboratory background and experience with optoelectronic components (EEC136 preferred).

General Tasks and Responsibilities
Pre-lab preparation, laboratory teaching and report grading, exam grading, office hours.


EEC132A. High-Frequency Systems, Circuits and Devices
Application of electromagnetic theory to analysis and design of practical devices, circuits and systems operating at radio frequencies. Energy transfer at high frequencies, transmission lines, microwave integrated circuits, circuit analysis of electromagn etic energy transfer systems, the scattering parameters.
5 units; Lecture 3 hours, Laboratory 3 hours; Discussion 1 hour
Fall

EEC132B. High-Frequency Systems, Circuits and Devices
Passive high frequency device analysis, design. Microwave circuit and filter design. Introduction to analysis and design of microwave transistor and tunnel diode amplifiers.
5 units; Lecture 3 hours, Laboratory 3 hours, Discussion 1 hour
Winter

EEC132C. RF Amplifiers, Oscillators, Mixers and Antennas
Microwave amplifier theory and design, including transistor circuit models, stability considerations, noise models and low noise design. Theory and design of microwave transistor oscillators and mixers. Analysis and design of linear, loop, waveguide and horn radiators.
5 units; Lecture 3 hours, Laboratory 3 hours, Discussion 1 hour
Spring

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Coursework background in microwaves and high-frequency systems (EEC132A-C strongly preferred).
  • Extensive background and experience in microwave hardware and instrumentation.
  • Analog electronics background at the advanced undergraduate level.

General Tasks and Responsibilities


EEC140A. Principles of Device Physics I
Semiconductor device fundamentals, equilibrium and non-equilibrium statistical mechanics, conductivity, diffusion, density of states, electrons and holes, p-n junctions, Schottky junctions, and junction field effect transistors.
4 units; Lecture 3 hours, Discussion 1 hour
Fall, Winter

EEC140B. Principles of Device Physics II
Electrical properties, design, and models for Bipolar and MOS devices.

4 units; Lecture 3 hours, Discussion 1 hour
Spring

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • MUST have had at least EEC 140A AND EEC 140B, or EEC 240 or equivalent within 3 years.
  • Prefer students whose emphasis is in solid state (including circuits or optics).
  • No programming skills are required, but should feel comfortable with internet and maintaining websites.

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Pre-class or pre-lab preparation, office hours, exam grading, conduct problem session, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC146A. Integrated Circuits Fabrication
Basic fabrication processes for metal oxide semiconductor (MOS) integrated circuits. Laboratory assignments covering oxidation, photolithography, impurity diffusion, metallization, wet chemical etching, and characterization work together in producing meta l-gate PMOS test chips which will undergo parametric and functional testing.
3 units; Lecture 2 hours, Laboratory 3 hours
Fall

EEC146B. Advanced Integrated Circuits Fabrication
Fabrication processes for CMOS VLSI. Lab projects examine deposition of thin films, ion implantation, process simulation, anisotropic plasma etching, sputter metallization, and C-V analysis. Topics include isolation, projection alignment, epilayer growth, thin gate oxidation, and rapid thermal annealing.
3 units; Lecture 2 hours, Laboratory 3 hours
Winter

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Experience with CMOS microfabrication (EEC146A-B strongly preferred).

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Pre-class or pre-lab preparation, laboratory teaching and report grading, office hours, exam grading, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC150A. Introduction to Signals and Systems I
Characterization and analysis of continuous-time linear systems. Fourier series and transforms with applications. Introduction to communication systems. Transfer functions and block diagrams. Elements of feedback systems. Stability of linear systems.
4 units; Lecture 4 hours
Winter, Spring

EEC150B. Introduction to Signals and Systems II
Characterization and analysis of discrete time systems. Difference equation models. Z-transform analysis methods. Discrete and fast Fourier transforms. Introduction to digital filter design.
4 units; Lecture 3 hours, Discussion 1 hour
Fall

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • 150A
    • Thorough knowledge of convolution, Laplace transform, and Fourier series and transform, with application to continuous time system analysis.
    • Ability to prepare problem set solutions, consult with students, and grade examinations on this material.

  • 150B
    • Knowledge of Discrete-Time Systems -- must have taken EEC150B or an equivalent course, and obtained a grade of B or better.
    • Working knowledge of MATLAB as applied to signal processing.

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Exam grading, office hours, pre-class or pre-lab preparation, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC157A. Control Systems
Analysis and design of feedback control systems. Examples are drawn from electrical and mechanical systems as well as other engineering fields. Mathematical modeling of systems, stability criteria, root-locus and frequency domain design methods.
4 units; Lecture 3 hours, Laboratory 3 hours
Fall

EEC157B. Control Systems
Control system optimization and compensation techniques, digital control theory. Laboratory includes Servo system experiments and computer simulation studies.
3 units; Lecture 3 hours, Laboratory 2 hours
Winter

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Knowledge of
    • Classical control system design
    • Computer-aided control system design (using MATLAB)
General Tasks and Responsibilities

Exam grading, laboratory teaching, office hours, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC170. Introduction to Computer Architecture
Introduces basic aspects of computer architecture, including computer performance measurement, instruction set design, computer arithmetic, pipelined/non-pipelined implementation, and memory hierarchies (cache and virtual memory). Presents a simplified Re duced Instruction Set Computer using logic design methods from the prerequisite course.
4 units; Lecture 3 hours, Discussion 1 hour
Fall

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Office hours, problem set preparation, exam grading, pre-class or pre-lab preparation, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC172. Microcomputer-Based System Design
Study of microprocessor architecture and its software conventions. I/O interface design with emphasis on devices such as transceivers, A-D/D-A converters and timers. Peripheral polling and interrupt-driven system design will be studied and contrasted. The course will involve programming in both assembly and high-level languages.

4 units; Lecture 2 hours, Laboratory 6 hours
Fall, Winter

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Experience interfacing hardware components to a microprocessor.
  • Experience in hardware design and debugging (trouble-shooting).
  • Proficiency in C language.
  • Familiarity with typical microprocessor support chips such as the Intel 8254 timer, UARTS, analog-to-digital converters, digital-to-analog converters, latches and buffers.
  • Familiarity with assembly language and the MIPS R3000 assembly language.
  • Familiarity with the MIPS R3000 family architecture.
  • Familiarity with MIPS exception handling.

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Laboratory teaching and notebook grading, office hours, exam grading.


EEC180A. Digital Systems I
Introduction to digital system design including combinational logic design, sequential and asynchronous circuits, computer arithmetic, memory systems and algorithmic state machine design; computer-aided design (CAD) methodologies and tools.
5 units; Lecture 3 hours, Laboratory 6 hours
Fall, Winter, Spring

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Experience with Transient or time/pulse responses of R-C circuits, R-L circuits, and R-L-C circuits.
  • Experience with digital logic, i.e., TTL, CMOS, LSI, MSI, and system design issues.
  • Experience with DRAM, SRAM, ROM subsystem design with multiple IC chips.
  • Experience with design tools such as Design Works, Power View, VHDL or others.
  • Experience with simulation.
  • Experience with sequential machine design.
  • Experience with sequential machine design using FPGA, E-FPGA or PAL/PLA/ROM, and computer-aided design tools such as Xilinx, Synopsys.

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Laboratory teaching, laboratory notebook grading, pre-class or pre-lab preparation, exam grading, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC180B. Digital Systems II
Prerequisite: courses 110A and 180A. Multi-input/output sequential digital systems; timing/pulse circuits: TTL, CMOS, ECL logic elements; analog switch; sample/hold; A-D-A converter design; system noise: grounding, shielding, cross-talk; reflection; memory systems; CAD with PLD/PAL; CAD with Xilinx FPGA.
5 units; Lecture 3 hours, Laboratory 6 hours
Fall, Spring

Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Experience in the following areas is necessary:
    1. digital logic design: combinational logic, PLAs, flip-flops adders, finite-state machine design, ROM, RAM
    2. CAD Tools: Powerview (Viewsim, Viewdraw) Xilinx (XACT)
  • Experience in the following areas is desirable.
    1. Computer Architecture
    2. Field-Programmable Gate Arrays
    3. Hardware description languages such as Verilog or VHDL.

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Laboratory teaching, pre-class or pre-lab preparation, exam grading, office hours, conduct problem session, attend TA/reader meetings.


EEC194A-C. Micromouse/Mirosot Design Project
Design lab for teams of students to design and produce miniature robots for competition in the Micromouse and Mirosot competitions. Micromouse teams design and produce new robots for the annual Region 6 competition. The Mirosot team improves on the existing design and manufacture robots for the Mirosot national competition.

Required Knowledge/Skills

  • Must have completed the following courses: EEC70, EEC100, EEC110A, EEC170/ECS154A, EEC172, EEC180A
  • Optional but desired courses: ECS110, ECS122A, ECS150, ECS151A
  • Additional desired expertise
    • Metal working (experience with mills and lathes)
    • Experience with PCB design using Protel

General Tasks and Responsibilities

Laboratory teaching, design consultation, project evaluation


Matlab TA - Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Coursework background in signal processing (EEC150A-B, EEC201 preferred).
  • Experience in the use of Matlab for signal processing analysis and design.
  • Experience in the use of HP-UX operating system.


Computer Aided Design (CAD) (FWS) - Required Knowledge / Skills

  • Experience with HSPICE.
  • Taken EEC100 or equivalent.
  • Experience with the HP-UX operating system.

Computer Aided Design (CAD) (F only)

  • Experience with hspice, MAGIC, PowerView, WORKVIEW (or other schematic capture programs), IC layout programs, Logic simulators like VIEWSIM, Synopsis, Cadence, or others Block diagram level simulators like SIMULAB and MATLAB.
  • Experience with the HP-UX operating system.
  • Taken EEC218A

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