Duke Electrical & Computer Engineering students launch weather balloons on Harrington Engineering Quad as part of a class experiment

Senior Design

This capstone design course involves multidisciplinary teams which build and test custom-designed systems, components or engineering processes

The undergraduate ECE Program includes an Approved ECE Design Elective.  This course is normally taken during Senior Year after a student has completed core ECE, core Math, and core Science courses.

Students gain experience in designing/building/testing/demonstrating processes intrinsic to engineering design as practiced by engineering graduates.



  • Design plan incorporating engineering standards and realistic constraints
  • Timeline indicating project milestones
  • Written project report, including an assessment of the results
  • Oral presentations to the class

Project Assessment

Must include most of the following elements:

  • Cost
  • Environmental impact
  • Manufacturability
  • Ethics
  • Health and safety impacts
  • Social and political impacts

Approved ECE Design Electives

Typically offered spring and fall

  • ECE 559 (251): Advanced Digital System Design

Typically offered in the fall

  • ECE 459 (154): Embedded Systems Design
  • ECE 539 (261): CMOS VLSI Design Methodologies

Typically offered in the spring

  • ECE 449 (135): Sensor and Sensor Interface Design
  • ECE 458: Engineering Software for Maintainability
  • ECE 489: Advanced Robot System Design
  • ECE 496 (Sp16, Sp17): Advanced Robot System Design—now taught as ECE 489
  • ECE 496.01 (Sp20): Wearable & Ubiquitous Computing Design
  • ECE 496.02 (Sp20): System Design for Machine Learning & Signal Processing
  • ECE 532 (262): Analog Integrated Circuit Design