Carnegie Mellon University

Electrical and Computer Engineering

College of Engineering

Course Information

18-642: Embedded System Software Engineering




In a very real sense, embedded software is what makes our everyday world function. From self-driving cars to chemical processing plant equipment, and from medical devices to the electric grid, embedded software is everywhere. You already know how to write code for a microcontroller. Now, learn software quality, safety, and security skills that are required to make embedded systems that can handle the messiness of the real world. This course provides in-depth coverage of the topics that are essential to the success of embedded software projects based on case studies of industry project teams that have suffered or failed. Students will learn about a variety of topics including: lightweight but high quality embedded software processes, technical best practices for embedded software, effective testing and validation, causes of software system failures, software for safety-critical systems, and embedded-specific aspects of software security. The material will generally be broken up into a set of four related topics each week, with one assignment per topic weekly, involving a combination of programming assignments, tool use experiences, and research questions to get hands-on experience at dealing with the types of problems that are encountered in industry embedded projects. We assume you already know how to code in C and understand the basics of microcontrollers. This course is about getting you ready to build industry-strength embedded projects. Undergraduate students are required to take 18-349 prior to enrolling in this course. Graduate students are strongly encouraged to take 18-613/15-213/15-513/18-213 before or concurrently with this course.

Last Modified: 2024-06-28 10:21AM

Semesters offered:

  • Fall 2024
  • Fall 2023
  • Fall 2022
  • Fall 2021
  • Fall 2020
  • Fall 2019
  • Spring 2019
  • Fall 2018
  • Spring 2018
  • Fall 2017
  • Fall 2013
  • Fall 2012