Electrical engineering (terminology)

Electrical engineering (terminology)

:"This article discusses the meaning of the term "electrical engineering". For the topic itself, see electrical engineering."The precise meaning of the term electrical engineering is not universally agreed upon. In some parts of the world, it is considered to be the most general of the electricity-related engineering disciplines, with electronics engineering being a subfield.

In other areas, electronics engineering is considered to be at the same level as electrical engineering, requiring that more generalised programs be called electrical and electronics engineering. Both terms define a broad field that encompasses many subfields including those that deal with power, instrumentation engineering, telecommunications, and semiconductor circuit design amongst many others.

Regional differences

Electrical engineering is considered distinct from electronics engineering especially in the United Kingdom and parts of Europe where the strict definition of electrical engineering (whose practitioners are called electrical engineers), is: an engineering discipline that deals with the study and application of electricity and electromagnetism.

Where this distinction is made, electrical engineering is considered to deal with the problems associated with large scale electrical systems such as power transmission and motor control where as electronics engineering is considered to deal with the problems associated with small scale electronic systems such as semiconductor circuitry very-large-scale integration.


There is considerable overlap between electrical and electronics engineering fields in practice, and in some countries the two phrases may be used interchangeably. Whether or not electronics engineering is distinguished from electrical engineering must be interpreted from the context in which the term is used. Some have suggested that in places such as the United States the distinction is less common than in places such as the United Kingdom. However both usages can be found throughout the world. For example, the Institution of Electrical Engineers (which also includes electronics engineers) is a UK based organization but the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers is a U.S. based organization.


Here is a list of some of the universities that that feature departments on the subjects and what such departments are called.

*Hong Kong University of Science and Technology - Department of Electronics and Computer Engineering:Offers courses only related to Electronics. [http://www.ece.ust.hk/undergrad/undergrad.html]
*Massachusetts Institute of Technology - Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science:Courses focused on both Electrical, Electronics, "and a third for those whose interests cross this traditional boundary" [http://web.mit.edu/catalogue/degre.engin.elect.shtml]
*University of Sheffield - Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering:Has many courses featuring either Electrical or Electronics Engineering [http://www.shef.ac.uk/eee/admissions/which_course.html]
*Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina - Department of Electrical Engineering:Focuses on both Electrical and Electronics [http://eel.ufsc.br] .

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Armature (electrical engineering) — In electrical engineering, an armature is one of the two principal electrical components of an electromechanical machine a motor or generator. The other is the field winding, field magnet. The role of the field component is simply to create a… …   Wikipedia

  • Engineering tolerance — is the permissible limit or limits of variation in a physical dimension, a measured value or physical property of a material, manufactured object, system, or service, other measured values (such as temperature, humidity, etc.). in engineering and …   Wikipedia

  • Electrical discharge machining — An electrical discharge machine Electric discharge machining (EDM), sometimes colloquially also referred to as spark machining, spark eroding, burning, die sinking or wire erosion,[1] is a manufacturing process whereby a desired shape is obtained …   Wikipedia

  • Electronic engineering — is a discipline dealing with the behavior and effects of electrons (as in electron tubes and transistors) and with electronic devices, systems, or equipment.The term now also covers a large part of electrical engineering degree courses as studied …   Wikipedia

  • Audio engineering — An audio engineer at an audio console. An audio engineer, also called audio technician, audio technologist or sound technician, is a specialist in a skilled trade that deals with the use of machinery and equipment for the recording, mixing and… …   Wikipedia

  • Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers — Infobox Non profit Non profit name = Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Non profit Non profit type = Professional Organization founded date = January 1, 1963 founder = location = origins = Merger of the American Institute of… …   Wikipedia

  • Computer-aided engineering — Nonlinear static analysis of a 3D structure subjected to plastic deformations Computer aided engineering (CAE) is the broad usage of computer software to aid in engineering tasks.[1][2] …   Wikipedia

  • Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers — (IEEE) Zweck: Förderung technologischer Innovationen zum Nutzen der Menschheit Vorsitz: Moshe Kam Gründungsdatum …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • List of software engineering topics — This list complements the software engineering article, giving more details and examples. For an alphabetical listing of topics, please see List of software engineering topics (alphabetical).Influence on societySoftware engineers affect society… …   Wikipedia

  • Safety engineering — is an applied science strongly related to systems engineering and the subset System Safety Engineering. Safety engineering assures that a life critical system behaves as needed even when pieces fail.In the real world the term safety engineering… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”