Surrey University Stag


Module code: EEEM017

Module Overview


Expected prior/parallel learning: It is helpful, but not essential, to take module EEE3006 – Digital Communications, or to have equivalent learning.

Module purpose:  This module equips students with fundamental knowledge and skills of mobile/personal communications systems design, and forms the basis for the students to conduct further learning of advanced mobile technologies in EEEM018 – Advanced Mobile Communication Systems and EEEM061 – Advanced 5G Wireless Technologies.



Module provider

Computer Science and Electronic Eng

Module Leader

MA Yi (Elec Elec En)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

JACs code: H640

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 87

Lecture Hours: 11

Seminar Hours: 11

Tutorial Hours: 11

Captured Content: 30

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content


Indicative content includes the following.

Fundamental theory of communications, mobile communications, and wireless networks: modelling point-to-point communications; elements of mobile communication systems; elements of wireless networks which include fundamental problems of multiple access channel, broadcast channel, relay channel, two-way channel.  and crosstalk channel. Capacity theorems and outage behaviour of fundamental channel models will be introduced. Application use-cases which relate theory to practice.

Mobile Propagation Channel & Physical Impairments: Large-scale path loss. Small-scale fading (mobility and channel time variation, wideband channel and frequency selectivity, timing, channel diversity), noise temperature. Theory and practice of handling the impact of physical channels.

Interferences and Competition: Four-terminal interference channel; Signal-to-interference noise ratio (SNR/SINR); Fundamentals of interference behaviour; Capacity theorem in competition environments.

Energy efficiency: Energy vs. Spectral Efficiency; modelling cellular system power/energy consumption; energy efficiency - spectral efficiency trade-off in cellular system

Air-Interface, Waveforms & Multiple-access: Common elements of an air interface; fundamentals of 4G waveforms and beyond; from waveform to multiple-access

Resource Allocation & Optimisation: Static vs. dynamic resource allocation; user and power allocations; elements of convex optimisation.

Densification & Heterogeneous Network: Densification process & small cells; fundamental of heteronegeous network; implementing densification (backhauling, cell association, load balancing, handover issues in heteronegeous network)

Cooperative communication: fundamental of relay based (supportive) communication (Amplify and Forward); fundamental of joint processing communication (cooperation vs. coordination); implementing cooperative communication




Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework Group Assignment 20
Examination Online 4HR ONLINE (OPEN BOOK) EXAM 80

Alternative Assessment

 Alternative assessment (resit) as to the group assignment will be an individual assignment (individual report).  

Assessment Strategy

The summative assessment for this module consists of the following.

·         Group assignment: joint technical written report on selected topics in wireless communication (20%).

·         4 hrs open-book examination (80%).


Formative assessment and feedback

For the module, students will receive formative assessment/feedback in the following ways.

·         During lectures, by question and answer sessions

·         During tutorials/tutorial classes

·         Via the marking of written reports

·         Via assessed coursework



Module aims

  • The aim of the module is to equip the students with the knowledge of mobile/personal communications engineering fundamentals, present the problems and possible solutions as well as familiarise them with the currently operational digital mobile communication systems in and their comparisons, as well as the international standardisation activities on future systems.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
1 Describe the need and main purpose for the basic building blocks in modern mobile communication systems including the mobile propagation channel, relaying channel, interference behaviour, cooperative communications, MIMO, OFDM KC
2 Explain the underlying principles of mobile communication systems K
3 Analyse/simulate/solve simple problems involved in link-level design KCP
4 Explain the underlying concept and reasons for different design choices K

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to achieve the following aims.

  • To equip students with deep understanding of the fundamental theory of mobile communications

  • To facilitate students with strong capability of devising mobile communication systems and link-level resource planning.

  • To develop the students’ ability to work within the mobile communications industry and quickly perform a useful role in analysing, designing or managing mobile communication systems, or to enter an advanced research programme on this topic

Learning and teaching methods include the following.

  • Lectures (11 hours): face to face lecturing

  • Seminars (11 hours): face to face seminars with technical discussions 

  • Tutorials (11 hours): online tutorials

  • Capture contents (30 hours): pre-recorded videos of lecture contents

  • Independent learning (87 hours): this includes group assignment and other independent learning activity.



Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: EEEM017

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Electronic Engineering (by short course) MSc(EEE SHORT COURSES OPTIONAL) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2023/4 academic year.