University of Hawaii

Electrical Engineering

Instructions to EE496 Students

A. Description of EE 496 Senior Capstone Design

Syllabus of EE 496 (pdf)

EE 496 is a significant and advanced level design project that integrates the design content of previous courses under the supervision of a faculty advisor.  It can be an individual or team project, where the team may be a mix of beginning to advanced level students.  The project may be a continuation of an EE 396 project, an entirely new project, or a continuation of an earlier EE 496 if it spans multiple semesters.

The project must cover at least two of the following four topics: (i) data collection and analysis; (ii) design methodology; (iii) design tools; and (iv) instruments.  It must cover engineering standards and practical constraints that include most of the following considerations:  economic; environmental; sustainability; manufacturability; ethical; health and safety; social; and political.

The course has requirements of written reports and oral presentations. Sections A.1 and A.2 describe the minimal of these. A faculty advisor may have additional requirements and procedures that would be appropriate for the project. For example, the advisor may require other students (e.g., team members) to evaluate oral presentation performance along with the advisor. Requirements, procedures, and scope of the project should be discussed at the initial meeting with a candidate advisor before registration.

Reports and presentations should be of professional quality, prepared using modern tools such as word processors for written reports, and computer presentation tools (e.g., powerpoint) for oral reports.

A.1. Written Reports

EE 496 is a writing intensive (W) course and must conform to the W Hallmarks. (Note there is a web site for student writers.) If a student takes multiple EE 496s to complete a project (e.g., two credits of EE 496 in one semester and two credits of EE 496 in the next semester), each EE 496 is writing intensive and must conform to the W hallmarks.

EE 496 requires a written final report, which must cover the following items:

  • Project objectives and criteria
  • A discussion of related work and how the project is different.
  • Final design
  • Alternate solutions
  • Explanation of how previous and concurrent course work is related to the project.
  • Future work or subsequent development
  • At least two of the following four topics
    • Data collection and analysis
    • Design methodology
    • Design tools
    • Instruments
  • Engineering standards and practical constraints including most of the following considerations (for the following considerations that are not applicable, it must be explained why they are not)
    • Economic
    • Environmental
    • Sustainability
    • Manufacturability
    • Ethical (for reference, the IEEE Code of Ethics)
    • Health and safety
    • Social
    • Political
The report must have a cover sheet with the following information (to download a sample cover sheet, click here [Word doc]):
  • Project title
  • “EE 496 Final Report”
  • Semester (e.g., Spring 2003)
  • Student’s name
  • Date
  • Faculty advisor name

A.2. Oral Presentations

EE 496 requires participation in a poster session that is organized by the Department. The sessions are typically scheduled during the last week of class.

In addition, to the poster session, students should give other oral presentations, where the faculty advisor will provide feedback. The presentations, including the poster session presentation, should total 30 minutes or more. These presentations can be given midterm such as progress reports, and at the end of the semester such as final demonstrations.

B.  Procedure

Before registering for EE 496, the student finds a faculty advisor, discusses the project with the advisor, and then completes and submits the “EE 496 Project Form” (pdf) to the EE Office, Holmes 483.

Before receiving a grade for the course, the student must submit the following documents to the faculty advisor and the Department.

To the faculty advisor, a final report must be submitted.  The advisor may require that the document be hard copy or electronic.  The advisor may require additional documents to be submitted, e.g., source code.

To the EE Department, the following three electronic documents must be submitted  to the
  • A copy of the written final report, which must be a Word or PDF document.  The name of your file should be "report.doc" or "report.pdf" depending on the format.
  • A copy of the oral presentation slides, which must be a Powerpoint or PDF document.   The name of your file should be "oral.ppt" or "oral.pdf" depending on the format.
  • A copy of a 2–5-minute video presentation, which must be uploaded through Google Drive and shared with The name of your file should be “ProjectTitle_Video.*” Ex: “WindTurbine_Video.mp4”
To turn in documents please email

The video must be uploaded and shared one day prior to the EE 496 Poster Session.

The copy of the written final report and oral presentation slides must be submitted by the date specified by your faculty advisor.

C.  Resources