Skip to main content

Unit information: MSc Advanced Project in 2021/22

Unit name MSc Advanced Project
Unit code COMSM3100
Credit points 60
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Academic Year (weeks 1 - 52)
Unit director Professor. Calway
Open unit status Not open




School/department Department of Computer Science
Faculty Faculty of Engineering

Description including Unit Aims

The teaching and assessment of MSc projects is split across two units:

1) A taught Research Skills unit (worth 20 credits in the 2nd semester) that will give you guidance on how to do research, plan your project, and write scientific reports. You will submit several courseworks including a major report, called a Research Review, on which you will receive constructive feedback before starting your project work. This unit was specifically introduced in order to allow us to more effectively teach and assess the required project skills (which are substantially different from those needed in regular taught units) and to provide students with helpful feedback before they start their project.

2) The untaught Individual Project unit (worth 60 credits over summer) in which you will carry out the actual technical work of your project, evaluate the results, and write up the work in the form of an MSc thesis on which you will be assessed. You will also be required to give a poster presentation and a demonstration of your work.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete the unit will be able to:

  • Work independently on a Computer Science related project for which they have defined the objectives and rationale.
  • Apply knowledge about an area to a specific problem, which may be engineering, analytical, academic or applied in nature.
  • Effectively communicate their conclusions in terms of their motivation, methodology, results and relation existing work.

Teaching Information

The supervision of every MSc project is carried out by a member of academic staff, sometimes with the assistance of a research associate (RA) or doctoral student (PhD). All students are expected meet regularly (at least fortnightly) with their supervisor (or assistant supervisor) throughout the Research Skills and Individual Project units. The allocation of students to supervisors and topics takes place during a period of staff/student interviews (to help ensure students get projects suitable for the abilities and ambitions). This happens in the first two weeks of the Research Skills unit (so your subsequent courseworks are tailored to your project). Although supervisors play an important role in proposing an initial set of potential project ideas, helping students turn those ideas into viable proposals (in the Research Skills), guiding the students to actually do the required work (in the Individual Project), and suggesting how the results can best be written up (for the final thesis), the entire project is ultimately the responsibility of the student.

Assessment Information

100% Coursework


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. COMSM3100).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.