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Does an electrical engineer circa 1970 have a different education than one nowadays

  1. Dec 9, 2009 #1
    Would an electrical engineer who earns a B.A. in Electrical engineering from around say 1998 - 2009 going to be taught different concepts than an electrical engineer who went to college say in 1950 or 1970 ? What are some of the differences?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 9, 2009 #2
    Re: Does an electrical engineer circa 1970 have a different education than one nowada

    I would seriously doubt it. Technology has changed so much since then that I would guess that everything but the fundamentals has change. Digital electronics for example. And don't forget things like power transistors and IGBTs. Computers have also made analyzing some of the most difficult problems a walk in the park.
     
  4. Dec 10, 2009 #3
    Re: Does an electrical engineer circa 1970 have a different education than one nowada

    I got my education in the 1950's, and my only EE lab electronics course covered thermionic emission and pentode amplifier circuits (Q to Forum Admins: why does your spell checker underline "pentode"?). If I got my education in 1970, I would learn about germanium and silicon BJTs, PDP-8 "flip-chip" computers, the Fairchild uA 702 and uA 709 amplifiers (and uA 741?), and SN7400 series digital gates. The HP-35 pocket calculator was still 2 or 3 years away, (and cost ~$395).. I quess few readers ever heard of Amplidyne power amplifiers (dc gain ~10,000 and unity-gain bandwidth about 100 Hz).
    Bob S
     
  5. Dec 10, 2009 #4
    Re: Does an electrical engineer circa 1970 have a different education than one nowada

    To a degree, yes. Today, an EE would be exposed to more semiconductor physics. Also, digital, and software gets more attention these days. The EE who graduated in 1950-1970 may more than likely have a stronger background in analog circuitry than a recent EE grad. But, a recent EE grad is more likely stronger in software, and semi physics.

    Both should be well versed in math, controls, and fields.

    Claude
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2009
  6. Dec 10, 2009 #5
    Re: Does an electrical engineer circa 1970 have a different education than one nowada

    I'm confident the answer is partly. I'm somewhat of an engineering historian, and I've seen plastic calculators that were specially designed for analyzing second order systems. When I went to school, we used mainframes to run Spice as a batch. Later, the kids were taking Spice and control systems programs home to run on their PCs.

    Now, I know more recent graduates that leave knowing VHDL and are ready for digital-hungry world.

    Then again, some things don't change much. I have an old edition of the General Electric A-Course and it pretty much teaches the same circuit analysis techniques you'd get now.
     
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