the robotics course

Course numbers and descriptions

This course is being offered as CSCI 373.004 and EGM 373.001 with different official course descriptions.

CSCI 373.004: Robotics Design

An introduction to the design and construction of a microcontroller based robot and the development of related web applications. Students will work in teams to develop a robot and web application for the IEEE SoutheastCon 2012 competitions. The course will cover technical aspects of sensor-based robots, project management, and system design. The course taught in conjunction with JEM 373. Corequisite: CSCI 255 or permission of instructor.

EGM 373.001: Advanced Mechatronic Design Lab

An introduction to the design and construction of microprocessor-controlled electromechanical systems. This course builds on fundamental mechatronics concepts and is project and design oriented. It provides hands-on working knowledge of real time software, real time programming, computer interfacing, mechanical design, fabrication and control system design and the integration of these areas. Prerequisite: EGM 180.

Meetings and People

The course instructor is Dean Brock. Pope Drews is also the TA for the course.

One large goal for the course is to design a robot for a student competition. Instructors aren't allowed to compete in student competitions. This means that students must assume a significant role in the course. The instructor will provide some insightful lectures, but there will be many student-led discussions.

The official meeting time and place is Tuesday from 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM in the Robinson 223 computer lab. However, teams of students will be arranging their own meeting times.

Class home page

All class handouts, including homework assignments, can be found through the following URL:

Official student learning outcomes

Presently the student learning outcomes are a work in progress. However, there are a few issues we will need to address.


No textbooks will be required for this course. All reference material will be available through the web.


You need to have some experience in either programming or mechatronics design to take this course. Preferably, you have taken either CSCI 255 or EGM 180.

Grading Policy

Grades are based on written reports, projects, and the occassional brief quiz. When projects will be completed by teams, there will be some peer evaluation of the contributions of individual team members.

The final project will be due during NCSU “Dead Week”, but will be assigned early enough for you to complete it before Dead Week.

Accommodations for Students with Disabilities

Students with disabilities requiring reasonable accommodations must register with the Disability Services Office by providing current diagnostic documentation. All information provided will remain confidential. For more information please contact the Disabilities Coordinator in the OneStop Student Services center or view the UNC Asheville Disability Services webpage.

Email Communication

The Director of Distance Education Programs at NCSU and the Dean of Students at UNCA has told instructors that all email protected by the federal Family Educational Right to Privacy Act (FERPA) must be sent to your official university email address. FERPA protected information includes not only recorded grades, but any information that would reveal that you are a student in this class.

For more information

The best way to get in touch with me is to send email to Please include the course number in the subject line. If you need to see me, send me email to arrange an appointment.