Get hands-on, innovative training with a focus on design and analysis of computing systems, mixing computer science and electrical engineering topics.

College of Arts & Sciences

Department of Computer Science and Engineering

Engineering (Computer)

Questions?

Undergraduate Admissions

(630) 637-5800

admissions@noctrl.edu

Why pursue a computer engineering degree at North Central College?

The focus for our engineering programs is on automation and robotics. Our themes are sustainability, access and enhancing the quality of life for all. Technology has the potential to address many societal issues. Engineers influence how new technology is created and applied. Computer engineering students get hands-on learning with a focus on design and analysis of computing systems. Computer engineering coursework consists of a mix of computer science and electrical engineering topics, where you’ll learn about both the software and hardware that drive modern systems. You’ll also be practicing the same skills that you’ll use in your career: solving problems, working in teams, writing reports and making presentations. Activities include intercollegiate competitions, undergraduate research projects, community engagement or independent studies.

You can also:

  • Complete internships at nearby research labs such as Argonne National Laboratory or Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory.
  • Study in the Dr. Myron Wentz Science Center, a state-of-the-art facility equipped to accommodate the most sophisticated hardware, software and other sustainable technology.
  • Pursue your research interests anywhere in the world by applying for a Richter Grant.
  • Travel, study and work internationally through our study abroad program.
  • Present your original research findings at local, regional and national conferences, such as the National Conferences on Undergraduate Research or North Central’s own Rall Symposium for Undergraduate Research.

Learn more on The 21st Century Engineer blog

Coursework in this area includes:

  • Ethics 
  • Technical writing 
  • Calculus 
  • Differential equations & linear algebra 
  • Statistics and probability 
  • Engineering design 
  • Intro to electrical engineering 
  • Microcontrollers 
  • Digital logic 
  • Circuit analysis 
  • FPGA design 
  • Intro to computer science 
  • Discrete structures 
  • Computer organization and systems concepts 
  • Computer architecture 
  • Data structures and algorithms 
  • Object oriented software design 
  • Operating systems 
  • Networking 
  • Cybersecurity 
  • Parallel computing 
  • Human computer interaction 
  • Capstone project 

Computer Engineering, B.S.

Computer Engineering is a blend of computer science and electrical engineering. Our students see a broad spectrum of applications in the areas of computer hardware/software and electronics.

For additional programs and courses in this department, see Computer Science and Engineering.

Major Requirements

Core Courses

  • CSCE 160 - Introduction to Computer Programming

    CSCE 160 - Introduction to Computer Programming

    4.00 credit hours

    An introduction to computer science and programming, emphasizing the development of algorithms and problem solving skills using both procedural and object-oriented approaches. Topics include data types; I/O; arithmetic, relational and logical operators; control structures; functions; simple data structures; different computing environments such as the Linux operating system are also explored. Integrated laboratory.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • CSCE 210 - Data Structures

    CSCE 210 - Data Structures

    4.00 credit hours

    Elementary data structures and algorithms. Topics include the design, implementation, application and variations of the following: linked lists, stacks and queues; different types of trees; searching and sorting algorithms; graphs; and introduction to analysis of algorithms. Extensive programming required. Integrated laboratory.

    Prerequisite(s)

    CSCE 160.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • CSCE 220 - Computer Organization and Design

    CSCE 220 - Computer Organization and Design

    4.00 credit hours

    Basic computer architecture including combinational circuits, instruction sets, microprogramming, assembly language, I/O (devices, busses and interrupts) and memory systems and organization. Integrated laboratory.

    Prerequisite(s)

    CSCE 160.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • CSCE 230 - Discrete Structures

    CSCE 230 - Discrete Structures

    4 credit hours

    Fundamental topics in mathematics and computer science including: formal logic; proof techniques; sets, relations and functions; combinatorics and counting techniques; induction and recursion; discrete probability; number theory and cryptography; graphs; Boolean algebra; finite state machines and modeling computation; program verification and algorithm analysis. Programming may be required.

    Prerequisite(s)

    CSCE*160

    Schedule Of Classes

  • CSCE 306 - Object Oriented Software Development

    CSCE 306 - Object Oriented Software Development

    4.00 credit hours

    Object-oriented design and implementation of large scale software. Topics include object-oriented modeling and design, such as the use of UML and software design patterns, object-oriented language features, such as inheritance, polymorphism, encapsulation and overloading, and using existing class libraries. Extensive programming required. Integrated laboratory.

    Prerequisite(s)

    CSCE 210.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • CSCE 320 - Computer Architecture

    CSCE 320 - Computer Architecture

    4.00 credit hours

    Introduction to digital computer architecture. Topics include performance metrics and evaluation, instruction set architecture, data representation, processor design, memory hierarchy and cache, I/O, datapath and control, pipelining, branching, multiprocessors and (review of) assembly language programming. Integrated laboratory.

    Prerequisite(s)

    CSCE 220.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • CSCE 420 - Operating Systems

    CSCE 420 - Operating Systems

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of approaches to computer system resource management. Topics include scheduling, memory management, file systems, I/O management, multiprocessing, security, protection. Research literature is used to introduce systems research topics. Extensive programming required. Integrated laboratory.

    Prerequisite(s)

    CSCE 220 and CSCE 306.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • CSCE 494 - Senior Capstone

    CSCE 494 - Senior Capstone

    4.00 credit hours

    Students apply the many skills they have acquired during their undergraduate studies by participating as a member of a team to design, develop and present a computing solution (software/hardware) to a substantive problem. Group process and leadership skills are addressed as well as ethical considerations important to computer science professionals. Formal project proposal, progress report and technical report writing are emphasized.

    Prerequisite(s)

    CSCE 420 and Senior standing.

    Schedule Of Classes

    • Four credit hours of CSCE or INFS electives at or above the 200-level
  • ELEC 150 - Introduction to Electrical Engineering

    ELEC 150 - Introduction to Electrical Engineering

    4.00 credit hours

    Fundamental concepts of electrical circuits, components and measurement techniques. Lecture/Laboratory.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • ELEC 200 - Digital Logic I

    ELEC 200 - Digital Logic I

    4.00 credit hours

    Students learn to design digital logic building blocks and to create combinational and sequential logic circuits. Lecture/Laboratory.

    Prerequisite(s)

    ENGR 100.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • ELEC 250 - Circuit Analysis I

    ELEC 250 - Circuit Analysis I

    4.00 credit hours

    Basic circuit analysis, nodal and mesh, equivalent circuits, independent and dependent sources, power and multi-phase circuits. Lecture/Laboratory.

    Prerequisite(s)

    ENGR 100.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • ELEC 280 - Microcontrollers

    ELEC 280 - Microcontrollers

    2.00 credit hours

    Fundamentals of microcontroller design and operation. Lecture/Laboratory.

    Prerequisite(s)

    ELEC 150.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • ELEC 470 - FPGA Design

    ELEC 470 - FPGA Design

    4.00 credit hours

    Introduces students to advanced design methodologies and practical design approaches for high-performance FPGA applications. Lecture/Laboratory.

    Prerequisite(s)

    ELEC 280.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • ENGR 100 - Introduction to Engineering

    ENGR 100 - Introduction to Engineering

    1.00 credit hours

    An overview of specific engineering majors, lab safety, competitions, internships, research, post-graduate opportunities and employment options. Examines the relevancy of a liberal arts foundation and how it relates to the field of engineering.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • ENGR 110 - The Engineering Method

    ENGR 110 - The Engineering Method

    2.00 credit hours

    Methods and practices employed to develop, commercialize and distribute products and services dependent on engineering will be presented. Includes descriptions of the four major career paths available to engineers. Lecture/Laboratory.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • ENGR 120 - Engineering Calculations

    ENGR 120 - Engineering Calculations

    2.00 credit hours

    Develops the student's ability to use MATLAB to solve various engineering problems. Lecture/Laboratory.

    Schedule Of Classes

Required Support Courses

Ethics

One of the following:

  • PHIL 110 - Ethics

    PHIL 110 - Ethics

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of alternative bases for morality and the arguments by which moral claims are justified.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, Community Engaged Learning.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human, Engaging Civic Life.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 210 - Professional Ethics

    PHIL 210 - Professional Ethics

    4.00 credit hours

    Professional ethics in selected career fields including law, business and biomedicine. Students may apply basic concepts to the career of their choice, relate their personal ethics to professional ethics and become better informed consumers of professional services. This course begins with an examination of the alternative bases for making moral judgments.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Innovating World.

    Schedule Of Classes

Mathematics
  • MATH 253 - Calculus III

    MATH 253 - Calculus III

    4.00 credit hours

    A continuation of calculus with an emphasis on vectors, vector-valued and multiple-variable functions, partial derivatives, line and multiple integrals, vector analysis, Green's, divergence and Stokes' theorems.

    Prerequisite(s)

    MATH 152.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Quantitative Analysis.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MATH 255 - Linear Algebra and Differential Equation

    MATH 255 - Linear Algebra and Differential Equation

    4.00 credit hours

    First and second order differential equations, systems of differential equations, matrix and vector algebra, systems of linear equations, eigenvalues and eigenvectors. Students may not receive credit for both MATH 255 and either MATH 300 or MATH 315.

    Prerequisite(s)

    MATH 253.

    Schedule Of Classes

Laboratory Science

Two of the following:

  • BIOL 106 - Introduction to Environmental Science

    BIOL 106 - Introduction to Environmental Science

    4.00 credit hours

    An overview of biological and physical processes that affect the environment in the context of current environmental issues. Topics include population, community, and ecosystem ecology, conservation biology, water and air pollution and natural resource management. Includes integrated laboratory experience.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Science, Global Understanding.
    iCon(s)
    Experiencing Place, Sustaining Our World.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • BIOL 108 - Water, Food and Sex

    BIOL 108 - Water, Food and Sex

    4.00 credit hours

    This course explores five biological systems in depth: excretory, respiratory, circulatory, digestive and reproductive. Biological concepts are complemented by discussion from ethical, public health and public policy perspectives, considering topics such as water and food policy, environmental policy and bioethics (e.g., research ethics, informed consent, eugenics, moral status of animals and the human genome). Intended for students not majoring in the laboratory sciences. Includes integrated laboratory experience.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Science
    iCon(s)
    Sustaining Our World, Challenging Inequity

    Schedule Of Classes

  • BIOL 109 - Genes and Our Genetic Future

    BIOL 109 - Genes and Our Genetic Future

    4.00 credit hours

    Exploration of genetics and its medical, social and ethical implications. The science behind advances in genetic technology such as screening for genetic diseases, DNA fingerprinting, stem-cell therapy, genetically modified organisms and gene therapy is discussed in the context of the increasing importance of these technologies in modern society. Includes integrated laboratory experience.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Science
    iCon(s)
    Innovating the World, Engaging Civic Life

    Schedule Of Classes

  • BIOL 195 - Investigating Biology

    BIOL 195 - Investigating Biology

    4.00 credit hours

    Students and faculty work as a team to conduct an authentic course-based undergraduate research project in an area of current importance. Course content is selected to support the research project and introduces students to concepts, techniques and skills of modern biology. Class activities move fluidly among lecture, laboratory, fieldwork, discussion and problem-solving modes. Gateway to the major.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Science.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • CHEM 121 - General Chemistry I

    CHEM 121 - General Chemistry I

    4.00 credit hours

    A discussion of chemical principles through examples from the chemistry of carbon compounds and the molecules found in living systems. Major topics include atomic and electronic structure, ions, molecules, Lewis structures, VSEPR, hybridization, intermolecular forces, chromatography, equilibria, kinetics, stereochemistry and polymer chemistry. Laboratory required.

    Prerequisite(s)

    One year of high school chemistry and two years of high school algebra.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Science.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • CHEM 122 - General Chemistry II

    CHEM 122 - General Chemistry II

    4.00 credit hours

    An introduction to chemical principles within the context of the environmental issues of fuel and energy, water treatment and acid rain. Major chemical topics include gas laws, aqueous reactions and solubility, equilibria, acid/base chemistry, buffers, thermochemistry, redox, electrochemistry and nuclear chemistry. Laboratory required.

    Prerequisite(s)

    CHEM 121.

    iCon(s)
    Sustaining Our World.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • CHEM 125 - General Chemistry for Engineers

    CHEM 125 - General Chemistry for Engineers

    2.00 credit hours

    An introduction to chemical principles within the context of engineering. Major chemical topics include gases, periodic table trends, bonding, atomic and molecular structures, energy, entropy, kinetics, acid-base and equilibria and electrochemistry.

    Prerequisite(s)

    One year of high school chemistry and two years of high school algebra.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHYS 110 - Astronomy

    PHYS 110 - Astronomy

    4.00 credit hours

    Celestial phenomena, the sun and solar system and the observable universe with emphasis on astronomy as a scientific activity relevant to the perception and comprehension of our world. Laboratory required, includes observational techniques and physical principles relevant to astronomy and astrophysics.

    Prerequisite(s)

    Precalculus (Algebra & Trigonometry) competence.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Science.
    iCon(s)
    Experiencing Place.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHYS 161 - Physics I: Mechanics and Heat

    PHYS 161 - Physics I: Mechanics and Heat

    4.00 credit hours

    Newton's Laws of motion, energy conservation, rotational motion, thermodynamics. Laboratory required, includes experimental physics and an introduction to computational modeling. Credit may be earned for only one of PHYS 131 and PHYS 161.

    Prerequisite(s)

    CSCE 160; MATH 151 or concurrent enrollment.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Science.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHYS 162 - Physics II: Electromagnetism, Waves and Optics

    PHYS 162 - Physics II: Electromagnetism, Waves and Optics

    4.00 credit hours

    Oscillations, waves, electricity, magnetism, optics. Laboratory required, includes experimental physics and computational modeling. Credit may be earned for only one of PHYS 132 and PHYS 162.

    Prerequisite(s)

    CSCE 160, MATH 151 and PHYS 161.

    Schedule Of Classes

Additional Requirements for the B.S. Degree

  • MATH 151 - Calculus I

    MATH 151 - Calculus I

    4.00 credit hours

    An exploration of the fundamental concepts of single-variable calculus including limits, continuity, differentiation and integration with applications.

    Prerequisite(s)

    MATH 140 or placement; Four years of math including algebra, geometry and trigonometry recommended.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Quantitative Analysis.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MATH 152 - Calculus II

    MATH 152 - Calculus II

    4.00 credit hours

    A continuation of single-variable calculus with emphasis on advanced integration techniques and applications, parametric equations, polar coordinates, and infinite series.

    Prerequisite(s)

    MATH 151.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Quantitative Analysis.

    Schedule Of Classes

Statistics/Probability

One of the following:

  • BUSN 265 - Business and Economics Statistics

    BUSN 265 - Business and Economics Statistics

    4.00 credit hours

    Provides an overview of basic statistics as it applies to business. The focus is on learning statistical concepts by applying analytical reasoning to business applications. Examples illustrating the relevance of statistics to broad areas of business are used. The course requires students to use spreadsheet programs, statistical programs, the Internet and other computer tools in analyzing statistics. The focus is on application of the material and on solving problems. Only one of BUSN 265 and PSYC 250 may be taken for credit.

    Prerequisite(s)

    MATH 130 or higher.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Quantitative Analysis.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • MATH 260 - Introduction to Mathematical Statistics

    MATH 260 - Introduction to Mathematical Statistics

    4.00 credit hours

    This course provides a calculus-based introduction to probability and the beginning of statistical inference. Topics included: Descriptive statistics, elements of probability theory, random variables, central limit theorem, confidence intervals, hypothesis testing and simple linear regression.

    Prerequisite(s)

    MATH 253.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PSYC 250 - Statistics

    PSYC 250 - Statistics

    4.00 credit hours

    The methods, concepts and logic underlying the statistical evaluation of research data with an emphasis on "why" as well as "when" to use various statistical methods. Content includes descriptive and inferential statistics, estimation and hypothesis testing. Analyses include z and t tests, one-way and factorial ANOVA, correlation, regression and Chi square. Assignments focus on problem solving, technical writing and use of computer statistical packages (SPSS). Only one of BUSN*265 or PSYC*250 may be taken for credit.

    Prerequisite(s)

    MATH 130 or higher.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Quantitative Analysis.

    Schedule Of Classes

Invest in your future

Choosing the right college is a big decision. Don’t make it alone. North Central’s admission and financial aid team is here to help you design a financial aid solution that works best for you and your family.

Merit scholarships, grants, loans, campus employment - these are just some of the resources available to you. Over 95 percent of students and 100 percent of all eligible students receive aid. Let our team partner with you in finding the best value for your education.

Learn more about financial aid and costs for North Central College

Apply to North Central College

The first step to becoming a North Central student is reading the application instructions specific to you. Find out everything you need to know about applying by selecting the group you belong to below.


Related Programs

Explore Similar Programs