Electrical Engineering at Sonoma State prepares undergraduate senior students for professional and technical success through rigorous academics in small classes and an industrial Senior Design Project course that provides practical training. Undergraduate Electrical Engineering students are trained in electrical, computer, electronics and communications engineering subjects such as circuits, analog/digital electronics, electromagnetic fields, microprocessors, analog/digital communications and networking. The Senior Design Project is a 2-semester, team-based experience where students design, build and test prototypes to solve real-world problems. Generally, the ideas are initiated by students or sponsored by the industry and supervised by an industry mentor, a faculty advisor and graduate students. For more information read our paper: Generating Start-up Relevance in Capstone Projects.
In the senior design project course we emphasize on a number of needs, including the following:
- The need to generate a product that is relevant to both a user and the economy rather than just interesting to the student team;
- The importance of commercial viability;
- The need for our students to come up with relevant ideas on their own.
In order to achieve these goals with limited resources we draw on entrepreneurship education to develop four entrepreneurial processes (ideation, customer discovery, client validation and commercial viability) that teach the above concepts. Furthermore, we draw on pedagogical research in experiential learning and scaffolding to "package" the processes to support student learning with a minimum of resources.
What constitutes a good senior design project?
Visit our Senior Design Projects to learn more about previous project works. We emphasize on ideation, design, prototype and testing in every project. A project that is purely a paper design or simulation-based, is not appropriate for the senior project.
Benefits of sponsoring a project
- Try a new innovative idea
- Try a new approach
- Try a faster prototyping method
- Low risk for your company
- Recruit great undergraduate senior students
- Access to world-class faculty and graduate student mentors
- Work on a start-up idea
What does it cost to sponsor a project?
We ask all sponsors to provide the materials and an unrestricted donation to cover any student team's expenses to produce a functional prototype of their design solution. The requirements are specified and budgets are finalized with the student team before the prototypes are built. We ask all sponsors to remain in close contact (at least weekly) with their sponsored team, to answer technical questions, stay informed about the progress, guide any decisions, and help the faculty advisors to evaluate the team.
Learn more about our faculty members.
To learn more about our faculty, their research and courses please visit our Engineering Faculty & Staff.