My first EE Lab emphasized both systems and the utility of computers in their characterization. We took real measurements of a real system by applying noise to the input and measuring the output. From this we computed the system's impulse response by running a computer program that our lab instructor provided.
The program computed the convolution of the input and output. We were given punch cards, a small deck, coded in Fortran. We punched data cards and ran the job on the IBM 7094 PUFF system.
I can't remember using computers at Purdue before running this job. This must have been my sophomore year; the EE program didn't start until then.