Software Engineering Individual Research Project
COMP4730 (6cp) and COMP4540 (12cp)
Fourth year software engineering students can apply to do an
individual research-oriented project instead of the group project. You
need to get permission from the software engineering convenor
Dr Shayne Flint
and the Honours convenor Dr Weifa Liang;
normally, this form of project is restricted to students
with a Distinction average on all computing courses
they took in their 2nd and 3rd years.
Doing a research project enables you to demonstrate your own
inventive abilities and to work one to one with a supervisor on a topic which is
usually related with his or her own current research. You will learn
how to perform research literature survey, how to form a cost model,
how to introduce your own theory or hypothesis, and how to
conduct experiments to validate your theory or evaluate
your algorithms performance, etc.
In the end, you usually create some working
software which contributes to the research area, and report the results
by writing a research thesis plus a short software engineering process report.
You can see some archive examples of previous theses--in 2003, 2005,
and 2007. Notice that the software engineering reports were included in
the theses. This kind of project and report constitutes
a good supporting evidence of your research abilities and experience if you want to apply to do
postgraduate research, towards a PhD. But first you have to find a
Topics are usually proposed by academics who are willing to
supervise your work. You don't have to be constrained by what you see
on the Honours web site project list Honours Research Topics .
If you have something that you would like to work on as a project,
then feel free to discus it with potential supervisors
who are academia or full-time researchers at SoCS, NICTA and CSIRO,
or the Honours convenor Dr Weifa Liang
to see if it could form the basis of an honours research project and to identify a possible
The structure of BSEng individual research project
Students are required to
take a 18 unit research project. This 18 unit project is taken over 2 semesters by enrolling in
COMP4730 (6 units) plus COMP4540 (12 units).
The project is taken by enrolling in course COMP4540 (usually in
semester 2), preceded by the smaller preparatory course COMP4730 with the same
supervisor (usually in semester 1).
The results for both
courses will be reported at the end of the main project comp4540. The
grade will be the same for both courses.
In principle, each research project will require
- two seminar presentations (one is in the end of 1st semester and another is in the end of 2nd semester)
- thesis report (no less than 80 pages is recommended), which is almost identical to the regular Honours thesis
- the retrospective of the project (no less than 5 pages) will be submitted separately. The past examples
can be seen from Chapter 9 (p. 85) and Appendices G and H of the thesis
by Toben Schou in 2007,
or Appendix D (p. 97+) "Observations on the
Development Process and Web Services" of the thesis by Tim West in 2005
The thesis submission deadline is at 3:00pm, Oct. 30, 2009. Bring FOUR hard copies of double-side printed
your thesis to Ms Julie Arnold and an electronic copy in PDF to Dr Weifa Liang. Three copies of your project
retrospective will be submitted by 5:00pm on Nov. 2, 2009 (Monday) to Julie as well.
The final seminar will be held at the seminar room of
Ian Ross Building on Oct. 15 from 9:00am to 12:50pm.
You can see
previous BSEng (Hons) theses as examples of the scope of work
Each thesis will be assessed by two academic staff and
the retrospective will be marked by an academic staff
whom is working in Software Engineering. The final marks are calculated as follows.
- the written thesis is worth 80%
- two seminars are worth 10%, and each is worth 5%
- the retrospective of software engineering project is worth 10%.