Exploring Summer Course Options for Switching Majors

In summary, the individual is a sophomore Applied Physics major contemplating switching to Electrical Engineering. They are considering taking summer courses in Linear Circuits I, Linear Circuits II, and Differential Equations in order to graduate in four years without having to stay for a fifth year. The courses are offered at a nearby college and are divided into two sessions, with Differential Equations spanning both. The person is seeking advice on whether or not taking all three courses during the summer would be too much of a workload. The course descriptions for Circuits I and II were provided, with the suggestion that Laplace transforms may be covered in both courses.
  • #1
I am currently a sophomore Applied Physics major and I am considering switching to Electrical Engineering. I would prefer not to stay a 5th year, but, since I am behind, the only way I can graduate in four years is if I take some summer courses. The courses I would have to take are: Linear Circuits I, Linear Circuits II, and Differential Equations. They are all offered at a college near where I live.
Circuits I is a 5 week course
Circuits II is a 4 week course
Differential Equations is a 10 week course.

The summer is divided into two sessions, circuits I is during the first, circuits II is during the second, and Differential Equations spans both.

I am wondering if taking these three courses would be too much for the summer. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.
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  • #2
it would help to know just what the circuits courses cover.
  • #3
Here is the information:

Course Description of Circuits I:
The basic concepts of electric circuit theory and system analysis. Topics include basic circuit elements, loop and node analysis, network theorems, sinusoidal steady-state analysis, power, resonance, mutual inductance, and ideal transformers.

Course Description of Circuits II:
A continuation of circuits and systems with special emphasis on transient response. Topics include Laplace transform analysis, transfer functions, convolution, Bode diagrams, and Fourier series.
  • #4
I wouldn't consider those to be too much of a load for summer...but it really depends on your situation. Where are you taking the classes at?

If you're a reasonably bright student, Circuits I should be pretty easy. Circuits II might be a little rough considering the topics covered...it'll be much heavier on the math. Come to think of it, I don't think Laplace transforms are covered until Diff Eq, so ideally you would have some overlap there. At worst, you'd hit transform analysis before you studied them in Diff Eq...so you might need to spend some extra time with that.
  • #5
At the school where I teach, Diff Eq and Circuits are both offered in the 2nd summer session, which is only 6 weeks long. Our circuits course covers everything that you listed. Many students do both courses simultaneously in 6 weeks. I don't see any problem with doing those courses in 10 weeks, as long as you don't intend on working at a job.

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