Course Overview

This module examines the evolution of the cellular network with emphasis on second and third generation mobile communications. An analysis of the electromagnetic spectrum and other key RF fundamentals form the basis for a comprehensive examination of key concepts such as; multiple access techniques, modulation, transmitters and receivers, and network architecture.


5 days

Delivery Method

Classroom based, instructor led tuition with elements of guided research to develop academic writing skills.


The course is aimed at people who are looking to establish themselves in the mobile telecommunications industry as network surveyors, architects, field engineers and planners.

Course Prerequisites

Students attending this course should have a good understanding of the electromagnetic spectrum.

Course Objectives

On completion of the course delegates will be able to:

  • Understanding the planning and methodology of academic writing with emphasis on structure and formatting.
  • Understand the characteristics of an RF wave.
  • Explain modulation and different modulation techniques.
  • Understand GSM 2G, GPRS and EDGE technology, network topology and functionality.
  • Explain the role of the SIM, mobile station and security measures in the mobile environment.
  • Specify the correct antenna and suitable frequencies for specific roles or environments.
  • Differentiate between different multiple access methods such as TDMA, FDMA and CDMA.
  • Understand the security and authentication mechanisms of GSM.
  • Explain the architecture of a UMTS network.
  • Understand UMTS scrambling codes.
  • Explain the UMTS authentication process, highlighting key differences in comparison to GSM authentication.

Content Headings

Academic writing and research methodology
An introduction to the electromagnetic spectrum
The characteristics of a wave
An introduction to modulation
The mobile station and SIM
The base station subsystem
The network switching subsystem
Multiple access techniques
GSM frequencies
GSM air Interface
GSM security
Introduction to UMTS
UMTS topology and elements
UMTS air interface
Cell breathing
UMTS security


The student will submit a 4000-6000 word assignment on a subject covered in the course syllabus within six months.

Course Guide

Wireless and Radio Engineering