COMP22712 Microcontrollers syllabus 2020-2021
The module is a strong practical reinforcement of the software/hardware interface. It provides experience in hardware/software codesign as well as dealing with interfacing techniques, from 'bit fiddling' to interrupt routines. There is also an underpinning of operating systems and their implications in machine architecture. The module uses custom designed hardware and software tools developed locally for this specific purpose.
This course unit detail provides the framework for delivery in 20/21 and may be subject to change due to any additional Covid-19 impact. Please see Blackboard / course unit related emails for any further updates.
This course aims to familiarise students with the use of microprocessors/microcontrollers for simple control and interfacing applications. The course aims to develop the understanding of the programming and operation of the ARM processor introduced in COMP15111 to include modular program construction, separation of user and operating system tasks and interfacing techniques at the hardware and software levels.
This course builds upon the understanding of processor operation and assembler programming introduced in COMP15111 and upon the logic design in introduced in COMP12111 to show how hardware and software interact in the solution of interfacing problems.
This module currently runs as a first year CSE course or a second year CS course. There is some variation towards the end of the module to accommodate different backgrounds.
- Basic Interfacing 
- Parallel I/O 
- Procedure calls, Nesting & Stacking 
- System calls, Privilege levels, Initialisation 
- Timers 
- Interrupts 
- Real-time operation, User interaction 
- Introduction to Verilog /System design 
- System design /Project 
No formal lectures
44 hours in total, 22 2-hour sessions
Feedback methodsDirect verbal feedback and advice in scheduled laboratory sessions.
'Automatic' feedback from tools seeing exercises work/fail.
Written feedback by annotating listings from submitted exercises.
- Practical classes & workshops (24 hours)
- Analytical skills
- Problem solving
On successful completion of this unit, a student will be able to:
- interface, from the software side input and output devices with an embedded controller
- customise simple digital I/O hardware
- properly understand the von Neumann memory architecture (I can't think of a circumlocution which expresses this any better even if it does use a naughty word!)
- write reasonably sizeable assembly language routines with all the familiarity with processor architecture that entails
- write I/O software for parallel interfaces, including time-division multiplexing and timers
- write interrupt-driven code
- structure, lay-out and document code to a maintainable standard
No reading list found for COMP22712.
Course unit materials
Links to course unit teaching materials can be found on the School of Computer Science website for current students.