Module code: ENGM186

Module provider

Mechanical Engineering Sciences

Module Leader

ABASOLO D Dr (Mech Eng Sci)

Number of Credits


ECT Credits



FHEQ Level 7

JACs code


Module cap (Maximum number of students)


Module Availability

Semester 1

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 100

Lecture Hours: 22

Laboratory Hours: 20

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Examination EXAM 2 HOURS 60%
Coursework COURSEWORK 40%

Alternative Assessment

Not applicable.

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

Normal entry requirements for the Biomedical Engineering MSc degree programme.

Module overview

This module introduces the student to the basic concepts of instrumentation, with a focus on medical instrumentation. It provides a critical understanding of the principles underpinning medical equipment development.

The student is required to conduct a mini project in which an appropriate initial design of a measuring system for a specific medical signal is presented, explained, and discussed. Synthesis of information from the lectures supplemented with the review of relevant literature is an essential part of the project.

Module aims

A critical awareness of the importance of medical instrumentation.

A thorough understanding of: fundamental analogue circuit laws, basic instrumentation building blocks, and their limitations, fundamental digital circuits and their limitations, the importance of noise and its sources, and amplification and filtering circuits.

A critical awareness of the relevant concepts underpinning the design of medical instrumentation devices.

An awareness of the limitations of medical instrumentation and future challenges.

The critical knowledge to evaluate medical instrumentations systems.

The ability to specify design requirements for instrumentation systems to be used for the recording of different signals in a medical context. 

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
Demonstrate an awareness of the issues at the forefront of medical instrumentation. KC
Identify correctly the specifications for the core analogue and digital building blocks in medical instrumentation systems. K
Identify sources of noise in electronic systems and propose remedial action. KC
Identify specific sampling rates, resolution and accuracy for data acquisition in medical instrumentation systems, synthesising information from the relevant literature. CP
Design and simulate basic instrumentation devices using software tools. CP
Demonstrate the ability to identify the necessary instrumentation building blocks to record biomedical signals accurately, integrating reference to literature effectively with own ideas as part of a written coursework assignment. KT
Critically evaluate the different possible solutions for the design of medical instrumentation systems. KC
Communicate complex information and nuance of meaning effectively as part of a written coursework assignment on the design of a medical instrumentation device. PT
Independently continue to advance their knowledge of the subject from the body of literature in order to tackle new and emerging problems. CP
Demonstrate independent learning ability applying selected aspects of electronics and instrumentation to the design of a medical instrumentation device in a coursework assignment. CP

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Module content

Indicative content includes:

* Introduction to Instrumentation.

* DC and AC circuit analysis.

* Measurement equipment: voltmeters, current meters and oscilloscopes.

* Operation and function of semiconductor devices and power supplies.

* Amplification. The operational amplifier. Differential amplifier. Instrumentation amplifier.

* Introduction to filters.

* Digital electronics: number scales, combinational logic and sequential logic, counters and memory blocks.

* Data acquisition and control: analogue to digital and digital to analogue conversion, sampling theory.

* Function and operation of computers.

* Examples of medical instrumentation.

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

Introduce basic medical instrumentation principles through theory with worked examples. This is delivered principally through lectures and tutorial classes. In the latter students will have to design and simulate electronic circuits with Multisim.

The learning and teaching methods include:

2 hours of lectures per week x 10 weeks
2 hour Multisim-based tutorials x 10 weeks
2 hours revision lecture


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate understanding of medical instrumentation principles as well as the ability to analyse analogue and digital electronic circuits in the final examination. The coursework assignment allows students to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the fundamental concepts of medical instrumentation, presenting, explaining and discussing an appropriate initial design of a measuring system for a specific medical signal. Synthesis of information from the lectures, supplemented with the review of relevant literature is an essential part of the project.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

·         Coursework    [Learning outcomes 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10] (40 hours)       Deadline W11 {40%}

·         Examination   [Learning outcomes 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 9]    (2 hours)                                 {60%}


Formative assessment and feedback

·         Formative verbal feedback is given in tutorials

·         Formative Multiple Choice Tests are available on SurreyLearn to give feedback on the understanding of circuits and instrumentation principles

·         Written feedback is given on the coursework assessment

Reading list

Reading list for INSTRUMENTATION :

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 2017/8 academic year.