Foundation degrees

Course Information

MSc Project

Module summary

Module code: COMP1252
Level: 7
Credits: 60
School: Liberal Arts and Sciences
Department: Computing and Information Sys.
Module Coordinator(s): Tatiana Simmonds



This course is designed to provide the student with the opportunity to carry out an individual piece of supervised work which reflects their programme area and is at, or informed by, the forefront of their academic discipline.

Business, industry and commercial enterprise, as prospective employers also require that MSc graduates have a range of transferable skills. Such skills include being able to work independently, solve complex problems, organise their learning and work, and undertake and successfully complete projects running over several months. All of these activities should be performed by a student in an autonomous fashion, with some direction but minimal direct help from her/his supervisor(s), and must be completed to a specified deadline. Employers also expect MSc holders to be able to evaluate their own work in the context of other related work, and draw and present their conclusions both orally and in the form of a cogent, well-written and well-presented report.

Additionally, a Masters course should equip students to pursue a research programme, such as M.Phil. Or PhD which requires that an applicant be able to select a research topic, read and evaluate relevant literature, select appropriate research methods/tools, conduct the research and present their findings supported by rigorous discussion in a thesis.
The project may include the design and development of a software or hardware product (or artefact) or involve an in depth investigation of a relevant technical issue in the right subject area with clearly defined questions, metrics and solution criteria using appropriate tools and techniques.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this course a student will be able to:
1 Demonstrate a deep understanding and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights, within their specialist programme area.
2 Apply competently and professionally key elements of their domain knowledge and skills acquired in the programme of study to a realistic problem of real industrial or research relevance.
3 Demonstrate ability to deal with complex issues both systematically and creatively, make sound judgements in the absence of complete data, and communicate their conclusions clearly to specialist and non-specialist audiences.
4 Demonstrate self-direction and originality in tackling and solving problems, and act autonomously in planning and implementing tasks at a professional level.
5 Display ability to appraise critically, by producing an academic report of the project (explaining the problem, aims and objectives, methods/approach and techniques used, the literature review and critical evaluation of it, a body of the project work and the findings, conclusions together with references and citations).

Indicative content

Students will select a topic from either a published list suggested by lecturers or suggest one (possibly relating to their work or employer). The topic must be agreed as suitable by the supervisor.
The project proposal must be uploaded and the layout should conform to the model outlined in lectures and published on the web page for this course. An appropriate member of the academic staff will be assigned as a supervisor for the student.
The student will examine different codes of practice and codes of ethics applicable to the computer professional; explore teleological, deontological and rights based reasoning plus conflicts of value and investigate the role of the law and how it applies to their project.
Opportunities will also be provided to assist students in being able to recognise and articulate the employability skills developed both within their programme area and in other activities.

Teaching and learning activity

Students undertaking this course will be supported by:

• A series of lectures which will outline the project process, support mechanisms and explore cover critical thinking, problem solving, research methods, entrepreneurship and employability skills.
• A supervisor who will give advice and guidance. Students are expected to meet regularly with their supervisor. Supervisors are not expected nor required to provide specific technical support for a project. Staff supervising projects will normally be assigned to projects that fall within their area of teaching, research or general interest, and will therefore be in a position to ensure that a student's project conforms to the project requirements.
• An interactive project web site.
• Online conference materials covering both technical and academic issues.
It is expected that the project work will require approximately more than 600 hours of work. This is equivalent to four 15 credit courses.


Report - 100% weighting, 50% pass mark.
Learning Outcomes - All.
Word Length - 15,000.

Students are required to pass all elements of summative assessment in order to pass the course.

Formative Assessment:
Project Proposal: must be approved by a supervisor.
Initial Report (1,000-1500 words).
Interim Report (Minimum of 2500 words).