ECE420: @ Northwestern

Winter 2021

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Course Goals

To study the application of digital signal processing to problems in image processing. Topics covered will range from the fundamentals of 2-D signals and systems, to image enhancement, restoration and segmentation.

Course Description

The field of Image Processing is concerned with the study of computational approaches for the analysis, storage and interpretation of digital content. In modern times, the sphere of influence of Image Processing has expanded to include an assortment of fields ranging from medical diagnostics to autonomous navigation. This course provides introduces students to basic concepts and techniques in digital image processing. Topics covered will include characterization and representation of digital images, image enhancement, image restoration, image analysis, and image segmentation.


Desired: Introduction to Signal Processing or equivalent, Introduction to Linear Algebra or equivalent.

Required: Ability to program. The homework assignments and the exams will involve substantial amount of programming in MATLAB.

Textbook (Optional)

R. C. Gonzalez and R. E. Woods, Digital Image Processing, 4th Edition, Pearson, 2018

Time & Place

Tuesdays and Thursdays 1:00pm-2:20pm CT

ECE420 lecture: All lectures will held live on zoom and linked through canvas. Lectures will also be recorded for those who cannot attend during scheduled class times.

Instructors & Office Hours

Oliver Cossairt Office Hours: Thursday 3-5PM - write an email to oliver.cossairt (a) to book a 10min slot.

Florian Willomitzer Office Hours: Thursday 3-5PM - write an email to to book a 10min slot.

Teaching assistants & Office Hours

Jiazhang Wang Mail: JiazhangWang2024 (a)

Office hours: TBD.


Lecture Calendar

This is a prediction of what will be covered in each week but the schedule is subject to change as the course progresses.

Week of Lecture of week Topic
1/12 Tue Introduction
1/14 Thu Image Formation
1/19 Tue Mathematical tools for digital image processing
1/21 Thu Histogram Processing
1/26 Tue Spatial Domain Filtering I
1/28 Thu Spatial Domain Filtering II
2/02 Tue Fourier Domain Processing I: 1D Signals
2/04 Thu Fourier Domain Processing II: 2D Signals (Images)
2/09 Tue Image Restoration
2/11 Thu Morphological Procesing
2/16 Tue Edge Processing I: Detection
2/18 Thu Edge Processing II: Hough Transform
2/23 Tue Feature Extraction I: Corner Detection
2/25 Thu Feature Extraction II: SIFT
3/02 Tue Image Segmentation I: KMeans and Mean Shift
3/04 Thu Image Segmentation II: Graph Methods
3/09 Tue Final Review
3/11 Thu Final


See CANVAS for the link to assignments. Homework is due and assigned on the dates below.

Date Assigned Due
1/19 HW 1: Image Processing  
1/28 HW 2: Image Enhancement HW 1: Image Processing
2/09 HW 3: Image Restoration HW 2: Image Enhancement
2/18 HW 4: Edge Processing HW3: Image Restoration
3/02 HW 5: Hough Transform HW 4: Edge Processing
3/11   HW 5: Hough Transform

Recording of synchronous remote class sessions

This class or portions of this class will be recorded by the instructor for educational purpose and available to the class during the quarter. Your instructor will communicate how you can access the recordings. Portions of the course that contain images, questions or commentary/discussion by students will be edited out of any recordings that are saved beyond the current term.

Unauthorized student recording of classroom or other academic activities (including advising sessions or office hours) is prohibited. Unauthorized recording is unethical and may also be a violation of University policy and state law. Students requesting the use of assistive technology as an accommodation should contact AccessibleNU. Unauthorized use of classroom recordings – including distributing or posting them – is also prohibited. Under the University’s Copyright Policy, faculty own the copyright to instructional materials – including those resources created specifically for the purposes of instruction, such as syllabi, lectures and lecture notes, and presentations. Students cannot copy, reproduce, display or distribute these materials. Students who engage in unauthorized recording, unauthorized use of a recording or unauthorized distribution of instructional materials will be referred to the appropriate University office for follow-up.


Course lectures and materials are adapted from the course EE 5374/7374 – Digital Image Processing, offered by Southern Methodist University. Thanks and Aknowledgements to Prof. Prasanna Rangarajan for sharing materials from this course.

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