Teaching differently: The digital signal processing of multimedia content through the use of liberal arts Articles uri icon


publication date

  • May 2021

start page

  • 94

end page

  • 104


  • 3


  • 38

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1053-5888

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1558-0792


  • Generally, the curriculum design for undergraduate students enrolled in digital signal processing (DSP)-related engineering programs covers hard topics from specific disciplines, namely, mathematics, digital electronics, or programming. Typically, these topics are very demanding from the point of view of both students and teachers due to the inherent complexity of the mathematical formulations. However, improvements to the effectiveness of teaching can be achieved through a multisensorial approach supported by the liberal arts. By including the development of art and literacy skills in the curriculum design, the fundamentals of DSP topics may be taught from a qualitative perspective, compared to the solely analytical standpoint taken by traditional curricula. We postulate that this approach increases both the comprehension and memorization of abstract concepts by stimulating students' creativity and curiosity. In this article, we elaborate upon a methodology that incorporates liberal arts concepts into the teaching of signal processing techniques. We also illustrate the application of this methodology through specific classroom activities related to the digital processing of multimedia contents in undergraduate academic programmes. With this proposal, we also aim to lessen the perceived difficulty of the topic, stimulate critical thinking, and establish a framework within which nonengineering departments may contribute to the teaching of engineering subjects.


  • Telecommunications


  • art; engineering education; curriculum development; digital signal processing; writing; programming; multimedia communication; educational courses