The University of Southampton

GENG0004 Electricity & Electronics

Module Overview

This module offers an introduction to the scientific principles and methods of electricity and electronics.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

• To introduce the scientific principles relevant to electric circuits, and electronic devices • To introduce the ideas of simple mathematical modelling as applied in electric circuits and electronic devices.

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • The components of and laws governing dc circuit theory
  • The components of and laws governing ac circuit theory
  • The theory of logic circuits and electronic devices
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Manage your own learning
  • Apply mathematical methods to solve problems
  • Apply problem solving techniques to familiar and unfamiliar problems
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Solve simple problems in basic electrical circuit theory
  • Analyse and predict the behaviour of simple logic circuits and electronic devices


Circuit Theory • Electric current, potential difference, EMF’s, resistors, ohms law, power • Circuits with one EMF - Kirchhoff’s laws, resistors in series and parallel, potential dividers, internal resistance of batteries • Measuring current and potential difference – moving coil meters, shunts and multipliers; digital voltmeters and ammeters. • Measuring resistance a) by measuring V and I, and b) with a Wheatstone Bridge • Multi-loop networks with more than one EMF – branch and loop currents, generating and solving simultaneous equations by applying Kirchhoff’s voltage law. Superposition. • Capacitors as circuit elements, energy stored in a capacitor, series and parallel connection. • Inductors as circuit elements – basic construction and electrical properties, energy stored in an inductor. • Transient response (Charge and discharge) of capacitors. Step and pulse response of C-R circuits • Transient response of R-L. • Kirchhoff’s laws applied to Bridge circuits • Circuit simplification by utilising Thevenin’s theorem Electronics Introduction– analogue and digital electronic systems • Digital Electronics o Examples of digital electronics (switching and control systems, computers, digital signal processing) o Combinational logic circuits –one and two input gates, Boolean algebra, o Analysis and design of combinational logic circuits, simplification using Karnaugh maps. Circuits with NAND gates only. o Sequential logic circuits – flip-flops, counters, shift registers. • Analogue Electronics o Properties of operational amplifiers o Op-amps as comparators – sine to square converter, generation of variable width pulses from a triangle waveform o Op-amps with negative feedback – inverting and non-inverting amplifiers, voltage follower, inverting summing amplifier, difference amplifier, differentiator and integrator AC Circuit Theory • AC voltage sources, amplitude and phase of voltage across R L and C driven by an AC current source. RMS values. • AC networks – phasors and their application (high and low pass filters). Electrical Conduction • Microscopic model of electrical conduction – drift velocity, current density, resistivity. The temperature coefficient of resistance. Discrete Devices • Diodes and Transistors – diode rectifier, zener diode, the transistor amplifier, the transistor as a switch Measurement Devices • Measurement transducers – thermocouples, thermisters, photodiodes, photomultipliers, CCDs

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Learning activities include • Individual work on examples, supported by tutorial/workshop sessions/e-learning • Elements of the coursework module GENG0015 may support your learning in this module. Teaching methods include • Lectures, supported by example sheets. • Tutorials/Workshops/Podcast videos/Online questions • Printed notes available through Blackboard and/or through your module lecturer.

Preparation for scheduled sessions20
Follow-up work20
Completion of assessment task2
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Morris, Prentice Hall (1994). Electrical & Electronic engineering Principles. 

Duncan (1997). Electronics for today and tomorrow. 

Dennis L Eggleston. Basic Electronics for Scientists and Engineers. 

Watson (1996). Mastering Electronics. 

Any A level physics text. e.g. A Level Physics, Muncaster, Nelson Thornes, 4th edition, 1993, ISBN 0748715843, Hartley Library Classification QC 21 MUN


Assessment Strategy

External repeat students will have marks carried forward from the previous year for tests (5%), and therefore exam will contribute 95% of total assessment.


MethodPercentage contribution
Exam  (120 minutes) 95%
Test 1%
Test 1%
Test 1%
Test 1%
Test 1%


MethodPercentage contribution
Exam  (120 minutes) 95%
Test marks carried forward 5%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External


Costs associated with this module

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this module typically also have to pay for:

Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

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