CSC8799 : Project and Dissertation in Smart Systems

Semester 3 Credit Value: 60
ECTS Credits: 30.0


- To deepen the knowledge and skills acquired in the first part of the programme through practice.
- To develop an awareness of the range and limitations of technologies available for the analysis and development
of smart systems
- To enhance research skills and awareness of the professional literature.
- To develop an awareness of open problems in the subject.

The individual project is a substantial piece of independent work involving the technical and research skills
developed in the taught part of the degree. You will have the opportunity to contribute directly to research or
development activities, develop your own specialist expertise in the project topic, and further improve your
planning and communication skills. You will work closely with a member of staff from one of the University
research labs working with Smart Systems, and you may also be working with an industrial partner (possibly in an
industry laboratory)

Outline Of Syllabus

1. Project Definition and Planning: Bounding and clarifying a problem for research. Planning background
research, identifying relevant information sources. Decomposing a problem and forming a project outline in terms
of goals and criteria for success. Identifying resources and tooling required.
Students will either select a project from a list offered by potential supervisors or propose and refine a project proposal with an academic supervisor. In every project there will be a research component and a strong design, programming and/or analytic element.

2. Supervision Arrangements: Each project has a lead supervisor and second supervisor, both staff from the
Faculty of Science, Agriculture and Engineering. Additional supervision support may be provided by an industrial
partner. The student and lead supervisor will meet regularly throughout the period of the project.

3. Research: Background research will be undertaken in the selected topic using the skills developed in earlier
modules with access to library and online resources. The supervisor will advise on quality of sources and
standards in the topic area.

4. Development and Analytic Skills: The core of the project will involve carrying out the project plan largely
independently, but with guidance form the supervisors.

5. Report Writing: A project proposal report will be produced 6 weeks into the project, documenting progress to
date and future plans.

6. Technical Presentation: A presentation will be given to students and staff at the end of the project.

7. Dissertation: A dissertation 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 an academic dissertation will be provided

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion485:00240:00Writing dissertation
Guided Independent StudyProject work705:00350:00Undertaking project
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDissertation/project related supervision101:0010:00Supervisor meetings
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The project is undertaken with a lead academic supervisor, working in association with one of the research
groups in the University or with a collaborating industrial research laboratory (in which case it will be
supervised jointly). There will be a designated second academic supervisor to offer additional assistance.

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Report3M5Project proposal: 1000 words
Dissertation3M9040 pages in style of an academic paper
Case study3M5Presentation (10-15 slides)
Zero Weighted Pass/Fail Assessments
Description When Set Comment
Prof skill assessmntMEthics form
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The project proposal provides a means of assessing the project aims, methodology and planning. The presentation provides for an assessment of student’s skills at communicating work to a broader audience. The dissertation provides for an assessment of professional skills in research and development, analysis, and detailed technical communication

Reading Lists