CS958 – Project

Credits 60
Level 5
Semester 3
Prerequisites N/A
Availability Possible elective
Contact Lectures: 0 | Tutorials: 0 | Labs: 0
Assignments: 0 | Self study: 600
Assessment See below.
Resit N/A
Lecturer Professor Ian Ruthven

Class Assessment

Participants will complete an individual project (100% of the marks), which should normally be 20,000 words (+/- 10%) in length and submitted as bound copy.  Projects are marked according to one of the following five types:

1.     An extended literature review (i.e. desk based research exploring issues, analysing and comparing alternative approaches to addressing these issues, and forming recommendations and conclusions based on this analysis).

2.     Case study based (i.e. identifying, studying, discussing, observing and describing cases to ascertain how different approaches, solutions, methodologies, etc., have been applied or pertain, assessing their relative strengths and weaknesses, and forming conclusions and recommendations based on this analysis).

3.     Application based (i.e. analysing, specifying, building and evaluating a prototype application or demonstrator, and forming recommendations and conclusions on the relative merits of the technologies involved and the methodologies used).

4.     Survey based (i.e. investigating opinion regarding a systems issue using a suitable survey instrument, analysing the data collected, and forming recommendations and conclusions based on this analysis).

5.     Experiment (i.e. designing an experiment to test the performance of system or system component, analysing the data collected, and forming recommendations and conclusions based on this analysis).

Each project type employs a different weighting for the key marking criteria as follows:

Criteria weighting by project type
Key marking criteria 1 2 3 4 5
Introduction and rationale 5% 5% 5% 5% 5%
Literature review 40% 30% 15% 15% 20%
Methodology 5% 10% 20% 30% 30%
Analysis 25% 30% 35%* 25% 20%
Conclusions and recommendations 15% 15% 15% 15% 15%
Structure, presentation and referencing 10% 10% 10% 10% 10%

* Including any systems documentation.

Students taking the MSc Advanced Computer Science, MSc Advanced Software Engineering, MSc Enterprise Information Systems, MSc Mobile Computing or MSc Software Development must undertake an Application based project (see type 3 above).

General Aims

This module aims to:

  • develop participants’ research skills;
  • advance participants’ understanding of a specialist research topic.

Learning Outcomes

After completing this module participants will be able to:

  • undertake individual research;
  • demonstrate deeper understanding of their research topic;
  • demonstrate advanced research skills;
  • demonstrate understanding of how to manage research to completion, including management of risk.


The project is a piece of individual research completed under supervision, which should contain an element of original work. Originality may be expressed in various ways: a small-scale field study, a survey, development of a prototype application, an experiment to test the efficiency or effectiveness of a system or system component, or an original analysis or critique of literature. Students who proceed to the MSc project will be allocated a supervisor (a member of the teaching staff) once their research topic has been approved.

Recommended Text/Reading*

* This list is indicative only – the class lecturer may recommend alternative reading material. Please do not purchase any of the reading material listed below until you have confirmed with the class lecturer that it will be used for this class.

Indicative texts are dependent upon topic and should be identified by the participant as part of independent research. For more general research guidance participants are referred to the indicative texts for CS957 Research Methods.