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CSC8429 : Capstone Project for Software Engineering Degree Apprenticeship

  • Offered for Year: 2023/24
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Ahmed Kharrufa
  • Lecturer: Dr Tejal Shah
  • Owning School: Computing
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 30
Semester 3 Credit Value: 30
ECTS Credits: 30.0


This individual work-based project is a substantial piece of independent work which is designed based on your job role and the specialism that you are undertaking as part of the Software Engineering Master’s Level Degree Apprenticeship. You will have the opportunity to solve real-world problem focus on live business scenarios in your workplace, develop your own specialist expertise in the project, and further improve and demonstrate your professional development skills. You will work closely with your employer and the apprenticeship tutor.

Specifically, the module aims to equip the apprentices with the following knowledge and skills:
• To deepen the knowledge, skills and behaviours acquired in the degree apprenticeship programme through practice.
• To develop an awareness of the range and limitations of technologies available.
• To develop an awareness of the real-world problems in Software Engineering.

Outline Of Syllabus

Toward the end of the programme a lead academic supervisor accompanied by multiple academic supervisors will agree upon a business-related project with the apprentice’s employer and the apprentices based on the apprentice’s job role and specialism that they are undertaking as part of the Digital and Technology Solution Specialist Master’s Degree. The independent assessor of the EPA (End Point Assessment) should present the meeting for finalising the topic for capstone project. If the apprentice or their employer needs to change the capstone project scope they must resubmit a project form for the EPA Assessor to approve.

The agreed project will present a typical business task, appropriate for demonstrating the skills and knowledge on the standard. In every project there will be a research component and a strong design, programming and/or analytic element.

1. Project Definition and Planning: The agreed project will be comparable in terms of content and complexity for all apprentices – it is the context within which the knowledge, and skills must be demonstrated that will vary. The project is undertaken and completed on programme and pre-gateway to the EPA (End Point Assessment).
2. Supervision: Each project has a lead supervisor and second supervisor, both staff from the School. Additional supervision support may be provided by the apprentice’s employer. The apprentice and lead supervisor will meet regularly throughout the period of the project.
3. Research: Background research will be undertaken in the selected topic with access to the library and online resources.
4. Development and Software Engineering Skills: The core of the project will involve carrying out the project plan largely independently, but with guidance from the supervisors.
5. Project Report: A project report will be prepared, describing the technical background, the work undertaken, the analysis of results and directions for further work. Guidance on the style and content of a report will be provided by means of lectures and through the supervisor.
6. Project Presentation: A mini show and share peers of their six-month project, and as a way to bring a celebratory closure to the program.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion142:0042:00Formative assessment. Submit draft interim report for feedback
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion262:0052:00KSB recognition and showcase mapping
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion601:0060:00Capstone project report writing
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion11:001:00Oral examination
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture21:303:00PIP Module overview, expectations, create plan of action, and short activities.
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion13:003:00Ethics form completion
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading131:0013:00Background research for dissertation
Guided Independent StudyProject work1400:00400:00Carries out project in the workplace
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDissertation/project related supervision131:0013:00Individual supervisor meetings/discussions that can be carries out in person or online
Guided Independent StudyOnline Discussion131:0013:00Asynchronous discussions, status updates and group support space.
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The project is undertaken with a lead academic supervisor, working collaboratively with the apprentice’s employer. There will be a designated Degree Apprenticeship Tutor to offer additional assistance or advice.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Dissertation3A100Word count: 10,000 words (+/-10%)
Zero Weighted Pass/Fail Assessments
Description When Set Comment
Prof skill assessmntMEthics form
Oral ExaminationMStructured discussion inc. a demo of the software implementation & a reflection on the key areas of personal skills & prof behaviour
ReportMEPA Report- 10,000 words (+/- 10%) informed by the capstone project.
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Research proposal2MProject proposal: Submit a 2,500 word draft dissertation for feedback.
Dissertation3MSubmit a 2,500 word draft dissertation for feedback
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The final dissertation allows apprentices to apply their accumulative knowledge and skills in their area of speciality to an agreed upon project by themselves, their employer and university supervisors. The formative assessment of writing an interim report will help apprentices prepare their final report. A presentation at the end of the module will provide an opportunity to showcase their projects to each-other and their employers. Overall the project, report and oral presentation should help prepare apprentices towards the apprenticeship Gateway and End Point Assessment.

Reading Lists