Computer Laboratory

Course material 2010–11

Group Project

Lecturer: Dr A.F. Blackwell

No. of lectures: 3

Prerequisite courses: Software Design, Software Engineering, Further Java


The aim of this course is to give students a realistic introduction to software development as practised in industry. This means working to rigid deadlines, with a team of colleagues not of one’s own choosing, having to satisfy an external client that a design brief has been properly interpreted and implemented, all within the constraints of limited effort and technical resources.


  • Initial project briefing. Software engineering: design, quality and management, application of course material. Introduction to possible design briefs. Formation of groups, selection of tools, review meetings.

  • Administrative arrangements. Announcement of group members. Deliverables: functional specification and module design, module implementation and testing, system integration, testing and documentation. Timetable. Advice on specific tools. First project meeting.

  • Presentation techniques. Public speaking techniques and the effective use of audio-visual aids. Planning a talk; designing a presentation; common mistakes to avoid.


At the end of the course students should

  • have a good understanding of how software is developed;

  • have consolidated the theoretical understanding of software development acquired in the Software Design course;

  • appreciate the importance of planning and controlling a project, and of documentation and presentation;

  • have gained confidence in their ability to develop significant software projects and Part IB students should be prepared for the personal project they will undertake in Part II.