Course syllabus

Lecture days: Tuesdays and Thursdays

Time: 1100 hrs - 1220 hrs

Location: 2200 Sidney Lu Mechanical Engineering Building.

Credit: Four (4) hours.

Prerequisite: If you are an undergrad: ECE 486 or an equivalent. For everyone else familiarity with linear algebra & classical frequency domain concepts.

Course staff

  • Instructor: Ivan Abraham
    • e-mail: itabrah2 [at] illinios [dot] edu
    • office: 164 Coordinated Science Laboratory
    • office hours: Thursdays, 4.30 pm to 5.30 pm

  • Teaching Assistant: Emre Eraslan
    • e-mail: emree2 [at] illinois [dot] edu
    • office hours: Tuesdays, 5.00 pm to 6.30 pm
    • location: ECEB 2036

Course resources

The main document we will use is the course notes (required):

  • [BMP] T. Başar, S. P. Meyn, W. R. Perkins, Lecture Notes on Control System Theory and Design. Available online.

The above set of notes can also be purchased from the ECE Supply Center (ECEB 1031).

In addition to the course notes the following textbooks are suggested reading, which will supplement the material we will cover in class:

  • [LSTC] C.-T. Chen, Linear System Theory and Design, 3rd edition. Oxford University Press, 1999. On reserve in Grainger Library.
  • [LSTJ] J. P. Hespanha, Linear Systems Theory. Princeton University Press, 2009, 2018. Available online through Grainger Library.
  • [FDLS] R. W. Brockett, Finite Dimensional Linear Systems. Wiley, 1970, reprinted by SIAM, 2015. Available online through Grainger Library.

If you would like to refresh your understanding of prerequisites then I would recommend the following textbooks:

  • [LADR] S. Axler, Linear Algebra Done Right. Springer, 2015.
  • [FCDS] G. Franklin, D. Powell, A. Emami-Naeini, Feedback Control of Dynamic Systems. Pearson, 2021.

For an in-depth or advanced treatment of some relevant concepts (for the interested student) the following may prove useful:

  • [SCLA] R. Horn & S. R. Garcia, Matrix Mathematics: A Second Course in Linear Algebra, Cambridge University Press, 2023.
  • [CVOC] D. Liberzon, Calculus of Variations and Optimal Control Theory. Princeton University Press, 2012.
  • [OVSM] D. Luenberger, Optimization by Vector Space Methods. John Wiley & Sons, 1969. On reserve in Grainger Library.

Academic integrity

The usual academic integrity policies apply. Students are expected to behave in a professional & ethical manner, and your work should be your own. At minimum, plagiarism or cheating will result in a zero for the relevant assignment. More severe ethical violations can warrant further penalties, including a failing grade at the discretion of the course instructor.

Details can be found in:

For homework in particular, while you discuss problems together with your peers, any work handed in must be your own! Identical submissions will result in violations of the academic integrity policy.

Ignorance is not an excuse for any academic dishonesty. It is your responsibility to read the linked policy to avoid any misunderstanding. Do not hesitate to ask the instructor(s) if you are ever in doubt about what constitutes plagiarism, cheating, or any other breach of academic integrity.

For the primary audience of this course, academic integrity should not be an issue. Nevertheless, if you find that you are struggling with the material in the course, feel free to reach out to me or the TA. Send us an email, drop by during office hours, see me after class, post on Ed, etc. No student should feel like they must resort to cheating in this class.

The true mark is not what one knows, but what one does, when one does not.

Discussion forum

We will use the EdStem portal for discussion. You can sign up for the course on Ed if you have a e-mail address with this link:


Homework is due at the beginning of class on the due date via Gradescope. Absolutely, no late homework will be accepted at all:

  • this is a graduate course
  • Emre is TA-ing two courses and
  • I am responsible for another one with an enrollment of ~400 students.

There simply is no way to support late assignments or a late submission policy.

To account for any personal events, emergencies or unforeseen circumstances, the lowest homework grade will be dropped.

No exceptions will be made to the above policy or any extensions given. In case of an event that greatly interferes with your ability to complete assignments this semester, grading will be determined by the University policy on such extenuating circumstances.

Find homework assignments here.


There will be two midterms for this course and a final exam as scheduled by the Registrar’s office. Please see the course schedule for tentative contents of the exams.

  • E1: In class
  • E2: In class
  • FE: As per the Registrar’s office

A conflict final exam will only be offered by policy if another exam or course in which the student is enrolled occurs at the same time as the ECE 515 exam. Please note that documentation about the conflict from the other course’s instructor will be required. Instructions regarding the exam and practice material will be available here.


Illinois law requires the University to reasonably accommodate its students’ religious beliefs, observances, and practices in regard to admissions, class attendance, and the scheduling of examinations and work requirements. You should examine this syllabus at the beginning of the semester for potential conflicts between course deadlines and any of your religious observances. If a conflict exists, you should notify your instructor of the conflict and follow the procedure to request appropriate accommodations. In particular, students should complete the Request for Accommodation for Religious Observances as necessary.

This should be done by the 10th-day drop deadline.

All other instances will be handled on a case-by-case basis and will require appropriate documentation (note from McKinley, athletic director, etc.) and approvals (relevant campus unit).


As a graduate class, we understand you may have different commitments, responsibilities and deadlines. Thus attendance is not required but highly encouraged.

Attendance of lectures is crucial in the sense that exams will be based on both lectures and assigned reading materials. You are responsible for all lecture materials and for any announcements made in class, whether or not you are present.

Please communicate with the instructor and/or the teaching assistant if you become ill or emergencies arise so that we will be aware of your circumstances. If you miss a class, you should ask a classmate to review their notes from that day. If you have to miss classes for a prolonged period due to serious illness, you should speak to the teaching assistant and/or the instructor as soon as possible.

See important information regarding absence letters.

Grade breakdown

The two midterm exams are weighted equally. The lowest homework score will be dropped.

Component Weight
Homework 35%
Midterms 40%
Final Exam 25%


Students enrolled in the course have the opportunity (on a first-come first-served basis) to transcribe the lectures into lecture notes to be shared with the class.

Each quality transcription (see first few for examples on the Lectures page) can earn up to 2% extra credit in the course (to make up for points lost in the midterms, homework or final exam) for a maximum of up to 8%.

Sign up here to scribe the lectures (limited to two students per lecture). While the example notes are typeset and converted to HTML, you may also send in typset PDFs (or their latex source files) and neatly handwritten notes.

Inclusivity & diversity

The Grainger College of Engineering is committed to the creation of an anti-racist, inclusive community that welcomes diversity along several dimensions, including, but not limited to, race, ethnicity and national origins, gender and gender identity, sexuality, disability status, class, age, or religious beliefs.

The success of this course depends on each of us creating a supportive and safe learning environment that promotes free discussion and ensures that everyone has an equal opportunity to succeed. Everyone is expected to contribute to creating and sustaining a climate where employees, instructors, and students may work together without being concerned about personal ridicule, or being exposed to inappropriate or intolerable language. You are invited to notify the course director of any instances of racism, discrimination, microaggressions, or other offensive behavior if you feel safe doing so.

You can also report these behaviors to the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. Based on your report, they will follow up and reach out to students to make sure they have the support they need to be healthy and safe.

Community of care

As members of the Illinois community, we each have a responsibility to express care and concern for one another. If you come across a classmate whose behavior concerns you, whether in regards to their well-being or yours, we encourage you to refer this behavior to the Student Assistance Center (call 217-333-0050 or see here). Based on your report, the staff in the Student Assistance Center reaches out to students to make sure they have the support they need to be healthy and safe.

Further, as a Community of Care, we want to support you in your overall wellness. We know that students sometimes face challenges that can impact academic performance (examples include mental health concerns, food insecurity, homelessness, personal emergencies). Should you find that you are managing such a challenge and that it is interfering with your coursework, you are encouraged to contact the Student Assistance Center (SAC) in the Office of the Dean of Students for support and referrals to campus and/or community resources.

Campus emergency policy

In the event of a major campus emergency, course requirements, deadlines, and grading percentages are subject to changes that may be necessitated by a revised semester calendar or other circumstances.

Please review the run, hide, fight handout and video provided on campus for information from the U of I Police Department.

Emergencies can happen anywhere and at any time, so it’s important that we take a minute to prepare for a situation in which our safety could depend on our ability to react quickly.

  • Take a moment to learn the different ways to leave the class building. If there’s ever a fire alarm or something like that, you’ll know how to get out and you’ll be able to help others get out.
  • Next, figure out the best place to go in case of severe weather – we’ll need to go to a low-level in the middle of the building, away from windows.
  • If there’s ever someone trying to hurt us, our best option is to run out of the building. If we cannot do that safely, we’ll want to hide somewhere we can’t be seen, and we’ll have to lock or barricade the door if possible and be as quiet as we can. We will not leave that safe area until we get an Illini-Alert confirming that it’s safe to do so. If we can’t run or hide, we’ll fight back with whatever we can get our hands on.

If you want to better prepare yourself for any of these situations, visit Remember you can sign up for emergency text messages at

Final thoughts

All students are expected to contribute to a supportive learning environment which involves helping each other learn. Therefore, students are expected to be civil and respectful in their engagements with each other and staff.

Throughout the course, any and all questions on the course content are welcome. There are no stupid questions, and everyone should feel comfortable asking any clarifications during the class. However, we may move discussions offline, either to office hours or a discussion forum, if there is not enough in-class time to fully resolve the matter.

In necessariis unitas, in dubiis libertas, in omnibus caritas