MIT offers free online circuits course

Massachusetts Institute of Technology offers free online course on circuits and electronics

Stewart Mitchell
14 Feb 2012
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The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has opened enrolments for the first online course under its MITx brand.

The idea of free, web-based courses available to anyone in the world was floated last year, and the technology establishment has launched the 6.002x course based on the 6.002 Circuits and Electronics course available on campus.

Students that successfully complete the course – expected to require 10 hours a week from March to June - would receive a graded “electronic certificate of accomplishment” to show for their efforts.

“The course introduces engineering in the context of the lumped circuit abstraction,” the MIT course information says.

“Topics covered include: resistive elements and networks; independent and dependent sources; switches and MOS transistors; digital abstraction; amplifiers; energy storage elements; dynamics of first- and second-order networks; design in the time and frequency domains; and analog and digital circuits and applications.”

Students are encouraged to have the knowledge obtained from a college-level physics course in electricity and magnetism

Although there are no formal requirements for taking the course, MIT said applicants would need a university level of competence in maths and physics and abide by an honour system to prevent cheating.

“Students are encouraged to have the knowledge obtained from a college-level physics course in electricity and magnetism (or from an advanced secondary-education course in electricity and magnetism),” MIT said.

“Students must know basic calculus and linear algebra, and have some basic background in differential equations.”

The course is based on lecture videos and textbook material, with help and feedback provided via forums, and learners seeking a certificate will have weekly deadlines for homework and labs.

According to MIT, the midterm and final exam will be given within a specific range of days, but faster-paced learners can proceed multiple weeks ahead if they choose.

The course will be made available from 5 March, although enrolment is now open.

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