Software Engineering

University of Reading

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Software Engineering

  • Host University

    University of Reading

  • Location

    Reading, England

  • Area of Study

    Computer Engineering

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    Pre-requisites:
    Non-modular pre-requisites:

  • Course Level Recommendations

    Lower

    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

    5
  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4
  • Overview

    Summary module description:
    This module introduces students to the concepts, practice and management of software engineering. It addresses the lifecycle activities associated with developing software as part of a system as well as the management activities required to ensure that the software is developed on time, within budget and is fit for purpose. The module also incorporates case studies and examples to show the application of the concepts and principles to real-world systems. A Team Based Learning (TBL) approach is adopted, whereby students work in heterogeneous teams to achieve common goals within the lecture periods. Students are given course material to read/view prior to the lectures. A substantial group project is also undertaken spanning the Autumn and Spring terms with support for this provided in the seminar sessions. Due to the Team Based Learning approach, attendance at all lectures and seminars is compulsory.

    Aims:
    This module will provide an understanding of the concepts, practice and management of software engineering and how it relates to the wider context of systems engineering.

    Assessable learning outcomes:
    By the end of the module, it is expected that the student will be able to:

    - Understand how software engineering fits within the wider context of systems engineering;
    - Describe the software life cycle and the activities associated with each phase of it (feasibility, requirements, design, implementation, testing, handover, maintenance and evolution);
    - Describe the essential concepts of project planning, risk analysis, configuration management and testing;
    - Understand the difference between plan-based and agile-based approaches to software development;
    - Understand how the software lifecycle stages ?come into play? within a number of different process models;
    - Appreciate the importance of software engineering to real-world projects.
    - Apply software lifecycle activities and project management concepts to a given specification (linked to the assignment).

    Additional outcomes:
    The module also aims to encourage the development of the following skills:
    - Working with others in a group project and understanding a team approach to projects;
    - Understanding why planning is important in their own work;
    - Appreciating the need for back-ups and contingency plans;
    - Innovation and creative thinking
    - Communication and documentation
    - Critical evaluation of technical, team and individual performance

    Outline content:
    Introduction

    - Introduction to the module, team based learning, software engineering and assignment
    - Systems, processes, systems engineering and software engineering

    Software Lifecycle

    - Feasibility
    - Specifying requirements
    - Specifying design (architectural, detailed, interface and human computer interaction)
    - Implementing software systems (development vs. COTS including reuse and libraries)
    - Testing and evaluation
    - Handover, maintenance, support and evolution
    - Software process models (Waterfall, Spiral, RAD, RUP, eXtreme)
    - Diagramming methods for systems and software engineers

    Projects and Implementation

    - Project planning (Activities and WBS)
    - Project planning (Gantt, PERT, critical path)
    - Risk analysis and contingency planning
    - Configuration, version and release management
    - Verification, validation and quality assurance
    - Project resources and costing

    Case Studies and Application

    - London ambulance
    - The case of the killer-robot
    - Industrial case-studies

    Case Studies and Application

    - General-practice medical system
    - London ambulance
    - The case of the killer-robot
    - Industrial case-studies

    Career Management

    - Applying for placements - CVs and cover letters
    Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
    One two-hour lecture each week and one 1-hour seminar class each week.
    The lectures will adopt at their core a team-based learning (TBL) approach. TBL is a form of collaborative learning that incorporates (A) strategically-formed, permanent teams, (B) readiness assurance, (C) application activities, and (D) peer evaluations:
    (A) Teams ? students will work in staff-selected teams of 5-7 students throughout the module.
    (B) Readiness assurance comprises 4 elements (1) Pre-reading by students prior to the class (e.g. articles/podcasts/videocasts/slides etc.) covering theoretical concepts. (2) Individual readiness assessment tests (iRAT) set as short but challenging multiple-choice tests about the pre-reading. (3) Team readiness assessment tests (tRAT) which is the same test as the iRAT but with team discussion and consensus of the answers and with immediate feedback of performance. (4) Appeals ? if teams want to make a case for an incorrect answer to be ?correct?. Based on the group answers - misconceptions are explained in the remainder of the lecture period.
    (C) Application Activities ? carefully designed activities that require teams to address a significant problem that demonstrates a particular concept of usefulness and requiring justification of conclusions and rationale of answer.
    (D) Peer evaluation of team members and their contributions.
    Some lecture weeks will incorporate (B) activities, some (C) activities and some external industrial speakers. Some iRAT, tRAT and Application activities will be graded and summative; other will be purely formative.
    The seminars, will be the focus for the group project that will run throughout the year, with teams working on the major Assignment deliverables during this period. Associated with the group project, will be required deliverables at various points throughout the Autumn, Spring and Summer terms.

    Summative Assessment Methods:
    Set exercise 50%
    Class test administered by School 50%

    Other information on summative assessment:
    50% of the module mark will come from the Team Based Learning (TBL) approach running in the lecture periods. As per the rules of TBL the marks will be comprised from iRAT, tRAT, application activities and peer evaluation. Students get immediate/near immediate feedback on performance in the iRAT and tRAT activities and mid/termly feedback on peer review and assessments.
    50% of the module mark will come from the Software Engineering Games-based assignment, which has a series of staged deliverables across the Autumn, Spring and Summer terms with cumulative summative and formative feedback.
    Formative assessment methods:
    Formative feedback occurs throughout the modules and is incorporated into activities, staged assessments and deliverables.

    Penalties for late submission:
    Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy.
    The following penalties will be applied to coursework which is submitted after the deadline for submission:
    ? where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark;
    ? where the piece of work is submitted more than one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.
    (Please refer to the Undergraduate Guide to Assessment for further information: http://www.reading.ac.uk/internal/exams/student/exa-guideUG.aspx)

    The Module Convener will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.
    where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
    where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

    The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    None

    Requirements for a pass:
    40%

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

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Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.

ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) credits are converted to semester credits/quarter units differently among U.S. universities. Students should confirm the conversion scale used at their home university when determining credit transfer.

Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.

Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.