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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Converter Control by University of Colorado Boulder

599 ratings

About the Course

This course can also be taken for academic credit as ECEA 5702, part of CU Boulder’s Master of Science in Electrical Engineering degree. This course teaches how to design a feedback system to control a switching converter. The equivalent circuit models derived in the previous courses are extended to model small-signal ac variations. These models are then solved, to find the important transfer functions of the converter and its regulator system. Finally, the feedback loop is modeled, analyzed, and designed to meet requirements such as output regulation, bandwidth and transient response, and rejection of disturbances. Upon completion of this course, you will be able to design and analyze the feedback systems of switching regulators. This course assumes prior completion of courses Introduction to Power Electronics and Converter Circuits....

Top reviews


Feb 10, 2020

I am really happy taking this course. Challenging but the course really well structured so it helps a lot! My learning curve taking this course is huge. Thank you Prof. Erickson and team!


Jun 25, 2016

The analysis and materials of this course are very useful. A great section. If the MATLAB script for calculating the converter Poles and Zeros can be provided will be even better.

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1 - 25 of 117 Reviews for Converter Control

By Szilard L

Apr 19, 2020

Quite frankly it's a horrible course. I was hoping to get through it to get to more interesting subjects. This course has no marks of the consistency and beauty of the previous ones.

Prof. Erickson teaches control theory using a very outdated approach and using a very non-intuitive approach and he brands it all "design-oriented thinking". Well if I was designing circuits using this approach, I'd be unemployed by now. He highlights that pages long algebraic derivations are prone to errors, which is very true, but he's not gonna teach modern numerical methods using Matlab, Octave, which is standard practice in today's graduate control theory courses. Instead he goes on to pushing his brand mark equivalent circuit modelling, with even more error-prone circuit manipulations, and then finishing it off with a ruler and semilog paper based drawing approach, where each drawing takes 30m+! And don't get me started on the absurdity of the "canonical model" they're pushing with "s" Laplace operator variables all over your circuit. And he says these fast and reasonably accurate approximations are useful to give a quick intuitive feel for the design engineer about the most important parameters. Then in the homework assignments they expect 0.1% accurate calculation using these admittedly inaccurate approximations. On EDx, in many MIT courses, they actually do support design thinking, and let you choose any path in solving a problem as long it does the job and meets the specs. Here you're forced to one single "correct" solution, while in designing actual control circuits there is very seldom one "correct" solution.

The homeworks are also generally sloppy, week4 part 1 actually has a misleading instruction (oh a forward converter's model is essentially that of a buck converter plus a factor equal to the turn ratio), well that made me waste 6 hours before I realized that was not true. Quite outrageous waste of time considering you're paying hard cash, while trying to balance having a job, a family, and a small boy. And this course has been running with this error for years and nobody could be bothered to fix it. The discussion forum is routinely filled with people giving up on the their certificate right on the last week because of this.

Other than the problems above, the entire approach is quite outdated. He only makes one rushed remark of state-space control that basically it gives you the same thing... Well, it does, but for a fraction of the pain. Just look at the stats how many people believe this course will advance their careers... Let me be frank with you; you're never gonna use this in real life.

By Ramu N

Dec 30, 2019

Excellent course..very inspiring professors...Thank you Prof. Erickson, Prof. Maksimovic, Prof. Afridi...Looking forward for courses on resonant converters...

By Muhammad A A

Nov 20, 2017

The course made me loose the forest for the trees. The next course Advanced Converter Control relied heavily on this course. Even though I got a 100% grade on this course, I couldn't map its teachings to the next course which basically required the application of Converter Control techniques.

The method of presenting concepts is not streamlined in this course. It is often the case that while discussing a main concept, the course branches off to some secondary concept and ends up spending majority time there. The over all impression one gets is that the secondary concept is the main concept and this leads to confusing the bigger picture.

If only engineering instruction could be made more intuitive, life would be much easier.

Having said the above, I am immensely helpful that the instructor presented this material in an online platform. Yes, I found the content confusing and frustrating, but it made me aware of field of converter control and its main components. Had this course not being offered online, I would never had the chance to learn about converter control. For this, I am indebt to the instructor. Thank you!

By shubham a

Jul 20, 2018

I have used classical control techniques earlier but could never have thought the way it has been taught here... A whole new approach has been taken up to design the controller for converters in an extremely simple manner... The approximations taken up not only provide a close answer to the actual solution but also change the way a gives a better visualisation for the frequency design...

By Swinzal P

Feb 4, 2021

Very nicely designed course, Started from basics without skipping any topic with very nice explanation. Recommended for every power electronics engineer.

By Nathan M

Jun 16, 2016

This is a great course to get a basic foundation of bode plot techniques and fundamental control theory in relation to power converter design.

By DingsihaoLyu

Apr 6, 2021

A very insightful generic control course for power electronics people.

It first teaches essential knowledge such as small-signal average modeling of power converters (buck, boost, buck-boost), basic bode plot knowledge (zeros, pole, drawing techniques of the plot), and transfer function of the converter. With those knowledge obtained, the design of the feedback control of the power converters is explained.

The slides are concise and easy-to-follow, the lecturer has a very good pace of presenting, and most importantly, many practical examples are given and solved step-by-step during the teaching, which are nice supplement for the newbies to get the basic understanding.

There is also some room to improve regarding the assignments. In the whole online learning process, It becomes really hard when there is one question you get stuck with. Even though there is a forum for posting discussion and questions, but there is no moderator or official help that can give a tip. Moreover, it is definitely not easy to discuss something that involves equations in the online forum. Therefore, some more additional material, video, tips, or from time to time, some active moderators in the online forum to help out some stuck people, would be nice.

By Hikmet H

Feb 15, 2022

The course content is well explained. I do not have electronics engineering background, but it was easy enough to follow the professor and complete the homeworks. I am doing this course, because it is free for me and I would like to get some insights into electronics engineering. So, I truly believe, people with electronics background can do faster than me. I was completing 2-3 weeks of course content and homework per week, so it took me about 4-5 weeks to complete first 3 modules of the course and now aiming to start the last module - magnetics. I am excited.

By Shailesh K

Dec 15, 2021

This course is an exellent career option for engineers desirous of being specialists in the design of controls systems for power electronics systems.

The course instructor has described the concepts by taking into consideration the various aspects of control systems design/analysis.

The quiz/assignments are set up such that they tend to increase the proficiency of a candidate.

OVERALL 10/10 for this course.

By Xingyu Z

Apr 6, 2020

It's a great course! With a great professor! Strongly recommend to people who want to learn power electronics deeper! In this course, the professor discusses the dynamic characteristics of power converters in a fundamental way so that we can do the algebra by graph and gain valuable insights into the converter! It is an amazing methods for engineering design.

By Rahul D

Mar 15, 2021

The course covers the fundamentals of small-signal a.c. modeling of dc-dc power converters and illustrates the complete design cycle of designing a control loop, to regulate the output voltage. The content is very well structured and explained with practical examples. It was a good learning experience.

By Naveed I

May 8, 2020

Gives insight of regulator and practical op-amp compensator design. The concept build up from ac equivalent circuit modelling to bode plot review and finishing the regulator design with feedback loop, i saw the application of all concept and tools gathered from this course along with the previous ones.

By Abhinav K

May 17, 2019

The 3rd course in the specialization is more detailed and explained thoroughly. He has taken some extra lectures on Bode Plots as well, which is needed for the course. Tough quizzes, great assignments! And Dr. Robert Erickson is amazing as usual! A very helpful course in Power Electronics domain!

By Nafize I H

Dec 17, 2019

Those who are going for MSc and PhD in power electronics,for them this is a great resource. I really enjoyed the course. If I get the opportunity to have prof. Dr. Erickson's live class as his student, I will consider myself the luckiest man on earth. I wish I have that opportunity.

By Evis V

Mar 12, 2018

I have got another great experience through this coursere. Thanks to Professor and the community on the forum, I was able to understand much better the converter control techniques. I am looking forward to finish all the Power Electronic Specialisation courses. Thank you!


Nov 10, 2019

If possible, please keep some more assignments and extend the duration of course by one or two weeks exclusively for those assignments. The assignments for this course are quite challenging, except for week 4. So please make us do more assignments.

By Srinath M

Feb 16, 2018

Professor Erickson is really good in classical control. In a world where Bode plots are considered obsolete dinosaurs, he extracts so much info from these "old-fashioned" tools and offers deep insight and quick practical solutions

By Wahyu G

Feb 11, 2020

I am really happy taking this course. Challenging but the course really well structured so it helps a lot! My learning curve taking this course is huge. Thank you Prof. Erickson and team!

By Ping-Liang C

Jun 26, 2016

The analysis and materials of this course are very useful. A great section. If the MATLAB script for calculating the converter Poles and Zeros can be provided will be even better.

By HisComing I

Jan 17, 2021

simply the best...

i would love to have more courses pertaining to various IC design topics such as data converters , PLL etc

Looking forward for Colorado University


Mar 6, 2018

This is the important part of converters to learn.It shows how much complex the systems will be and shows how can we minimize complexity by taking approximations.

By Javier A L C

Jul 26, 2020

Very insightful course. I've been working on power electronics (and control) for a while now and I got new tools to work in control systems

By Syeda Q u a A

Apr 26, 2020

very well designed course content with a very eloquent explanation of Dr. Erickson. Highly recommended for power electronics engineers!!

By José A S

Sep 9, 2017

One of the best courses I've ever taken. It was not so easy to follow, which made me review some topics of my Engineering course.

By Ebeny W T k

Aug 14, 2019

It was not easy, but I learn a lot about how to make a transfer function of an all system.

It was a really very good experience.