This paper describes the authors’ experiences using a system-on-a-programmable-chip (SOPC) approach to support the development of design projects for upper-level undergraduate students in their electrical and computer engineering curriculum. Commercial field-programmable gate-array (FPGA)-based SOPC development boards with reduced instruction set computer (RISC) processor cores are used to support a wide variety of student design projects. A top-down rapid prototyping approach with commercial FPGA computer-aided design tools, a C compiler targeted for the RISC soft-processor core, and a large FPGA with memory is used and reused to support a wide variety of student projects.
T. S. Hall and J. O. Hamblen, “System–on–a–programmable–chip development platforms in the classroom,”IEEE Transactions on Education, vol. 47, no. 4, pp. 502–507, Nov. 2004.