- To give students the opportunity to work in a guided but independent fashion to explore a substantial computing problem in depth, making practical use of principles, techniques and methodologies acquired elsewhere in the course.
- To give experience of carrying out a large piece of individual work and in producing a dissertation.
- To enhance communication skills, both oral and written.
All projects should contain the following elements: research, design, realisation and evaluation. Particular topics are allocated on an individual basis.
Texts are recommended for specific projects as appropriate, depending on the nature of the project.
After completing the module students should be able:
- To specify a substantial problem, and produce a plan to address the problem
- To manage their time effectively so as to carry out their plan
- To locate and make use of information relevant to their project
- To design a solution to a substantial problem
- To implement and test their solution
- To evaluate in a critical fashion the work they have done, and to place it in the context of related work
- To prepare and deliver a formal presentation
- To prepare and deliver a demonstration of software
- To structure and write a dissertation describing their project
In the project we wish to foster independent learning, under the guidance of a supervisor, and within a framework provided by a series of reviews. Projects are assessed at the following five points: specification (written, week 4), design (oral presentation + documentation, week 8-10), progress report (written, week 15), software demonstration (week 22) and dissertation (written, week 24). These assessments, each carried out by two members of staff, provide an opportunity for monitoring progress and giving formative feedback. Students maintain regular contact with their supervisor throughout the project to obtain direction and advice as needed. Lectures addressing particular skills, such as report writing and presentation, are also offered to students. Pursuit of the project in a work based learning context is encouraged. Students on work based learning projects are also provided with feedback by the industrial sponsor.