Cyber Security and Human Factors

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Faculty of Science and Technology
Department of Computing and Informatics
Individual Masters Project Handbook
2021/2022

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List of MSc Programmes, Programme Leader and Email
MSc Cyber Security and Human Factors
Dr Duncan Ki-Aries
[email protected]
MSc Data Science and Artificial Intelligence and MSc Digital Health and Artificial
Intelligence
Professor Zoheir Sabeur
[email protected]
MSc Digital Health
Dr Benjamin Gorman
[email protected]
MSc Information Technology
Dr Philip Davies
[email protected]
MSc Internet of Things, MSc Internet of Things with Cyber Security, and MSc Internet
of Things with Data Analytics
Dr Marios Angelopoulos
[email protected]

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Table of Contents
List of MSc Programmes, Programme Leader and Email …………………………………………….2
1. Introduction ………………………………………………………………………………………………5
1.1. The Individual Masters Project (60 Credits) …………………………………………………………… 5
1.2. Aims of the 60 Credit Project………………………………………………………………………………. 5
2. Timeline for the Individual Masters Project ……………………………………………………..6
2.1. Timeline for Full Time Students…………………………………………………………………………… 6
2.2. Timeline for Part Time Students ………………………………………………………………………….. 6
2.3. Project Approval Dates ……………………………………………………………………………………… 6
3. Valid Project………………………………………………………………………………………………8
3.1. MSc Cyber Security and Human Factors………………………………………………………………… 9
3.2. MSc Data Science and Artificial Intelligence…………………………………………………………. 10
3.3. MSc Digital Health ………………………………………………………………………………………….. 10
3.4. MSc Digital Health and Artificial Intelligence ……………………………………………………….. 11
3.5. MSc Information Technology ……………………………………………………………………………. 12
3.6. MSc Internet of Things; MSc Internet of Things with Cyber Security; MSc Internet of
Things with Data Analytics ………………………………………………………………………………………… 12
4. Project Proposal ……………………………………………………………………………………….13
4.1. The role of the Research Methods Unit ………………………………………………………………. 15
4.2. Industrial Collaboration …………………………………………………………………………………… 15
5. Supervision and Assessment ……………………………………………………………………….16
5.1. Supervision …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 16
5.2. Assessment Criteria ………………………………………………………………………………………… 17
6. Literature Review ……………………………………………………………………………………..17
6.1. Literature sources…………………………………………………………………………………………… 17
6.2. Library………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 17
6.3. Internet………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 18
7. Writing your Dissertation …………………………………………………………………………..18
7.1. Project Report (Dissertation)…………………………………………………………………………….. 18
7.5.1 Introductory Information ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….18
7.5.2 Main Body ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………19
7.5.3 Word Count Policy ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..19
7.5.4 References……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………19
7.5.5 Appendices…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..20
7.5.6 Report Layout and Style …………………………………………………………………………………………………………20
7.5.7 Copyright and Intellectual Property Rights……………………………………………………………………………….20
7.5.8 Writing Style…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………21
7.5.9 Additional Files ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..21
7.5.10 Video Presentation………………………………………………………………………………………………………………21

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8. How to submit your dissertation ………………………………………………………………….22
8.1. Brightspace …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 22
8.2. Video Presentation and Project Defence …………………………………………………………….. 22
8.3. Extension of Deadlines…………………………………………………………………………………….. 22
8.4. Late Projects………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 22
9. Regulations ……………………………………………………………………………………………..22
9.1. Academic Offences …………………………………………………………………………………………. 22
9.2. Failed Projects ……………………………………………………………………………………………….. 23
9.3. Student Support …………………………………………………………………………………………….. 23
10. References and Further Reading ………………………………………………………………….24
APPENDIX A – Master’s Project Proposal Form ……………………………………………………….25
Section 1: Project Overview ………………………………………………………………………………………. 25
Section 2: Artefact and Planning ………………………………………………………………………………… 26
Section 3: Evaluation ……………………………………………………………………………………………….. 26
Section 4: References……………………………………………………………………………………………….. 26
Section 5: Academic Practice and Ethics ………………………………………………………………………. 26
Section 6: Proposed Plan (please attach a GANTT chart below) ………………………………………… 26
APPENDIX B – Dissertation/Project Declaration Form ………………………………………………27
APPENDIX C – Guidance Notes for Assessing ILOs ……………………………………………………28
APPENDIX D – Masters Project Marking Sheet………………………………………………………..30
APPENDIX E – Assessment Criteria ……………………………………………………………………….32
APPENDIX F – Project Artefact …………………………………………………………………………….33

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1. Introduction
The Individual Masters Project provides you with an opportunity to pursue your academic interests in a
piece of individually researched work and to acquire skills and expertise different from those obtainable
through taught units. You will need to develop a systematic approach to research, planning your project
carefully, carefully defining the problem and your objectives, reviewing appropriate literature,
determining a methodology and dealing scientifically with data and being scrupulously honest with your
findings. You are not required to demonstrate originality, but you must show a sound grasp of the
technical and critical skills needed to apply your knowledge and analysis your findings.
The project requires you to engage with a complex problem of your own choice and will involve 15
weeks/600 hours. In summary your project will require:

60 Credit Project
15000 words
The solution of a complex problem
Work for 15 weeks / 600 hours (FT)
A detailed systematic approach / methodology
Genuine (Novel) research
Requires a critical and evaluative mind

1.1. The Individual Masters Project (60 Credits)
The importance of the project is reflected in the weighting given to it in the final degree assessment.
The project is 60 credits which means it is three times the size of a normal taught unit. Consequently
the 60-credit project is equivalent to one third of your overall course. The 60 credit Project is assessed
through 100% coursework comprising a Masters Dissertation usually accompanied by an artefact. This
represents 600 hours of study time resulting in the submission of around 15,000 words or equivalent,
excluding appendices. If an artefact is created, then this is equivalent to 5000 words and will be
accompanied by a 10000-word dissertation. Without an artefact a 15000-word dissertation is expected.
1.2. Aims of the 60 Credit Project
The 60-credit project enables you to develop an understanding of the characteristics and issues
inherent in the solution of a complex, real-world problem. A good project will fuse together knowledge
from the units you have been taught, together with recent research findings, industrial experiences, and
independent critical thinking. This will provide you with an opportunity to:
develop knowledge of philosophy, methodologies and techniques of research relating to the
domain of the named award.
critically investigate and report on a particular issue in depth.
engage with complex issues and present an analytically rigorous and well-argued case.
evaluate the results and the process to provide a judgement about how the project was carried
out.
The 60-credit project is usually centred on the construction of an artefact to professional standards. The
Pro forma for Project Proposal in respect of 60 credits project may be found in Appendix A. Having
completed this unit, the student is expected to demonstrate the following intended learning outcomes:
1. knowledge and understanding appropriate to subject area and the ability to handle inconsistency in
the problem domain and produce a viable solution.
2. analytical and critical evaluation when exploring solutions for a given problem domain.
3. problem solving skills and the application of knowledge across the discipline areas.
4. the ability to design, manage and demonstrate an appropriate test and verification strategy.
5. effective conduct of research, analysis and critical evaluation of different methodologies and
implementations.

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6. the ability to select appropriate strategies to successfully plan and execute design project.
7. the ability to present a reflective integrated discussion of the conclusion of the research,
development and practice activity and its implications for the future.
The foundations for the project are set in the taught units, where the assessment involves searching
for, and analysing relevant information, as well as producing appropriate solutions. The Research
Methods unit develops students’ skills and underpins the identification and development of a viable
research topic. Students will be allocated an individual supervisor who will act as mentor during the
project, encouraging the student to achieve their full potential and to complete the project within the
allotted timescale.
2. Timeline for the Individual Masters Project
The student can elect to start their masters project either in May before the taught lessons have
concluded or in late June after the assessment board has concluded. We would expect most students
to start in May.
2.1. Timeline for Full Time Students
September 2021 Project Start
starts on Monday the 27th of September 2021
ends on Monday the 17th of January 2022
January 2022 Project Start
starts on Monday the 31st of January 2022
ends on Monday the 13th of May 2022
May 2022 Project Start
starts on Monday the 16th of May 2022
ends on Friday the 26th of August 2022
2.2. Timeline for Part Time Students
The timeline for Part Time students is like the full-time students with the important exception that part
time students have 30 weeks in which to complete their project instead of 15 weeks. Thus, start and
end time for part time projects submitted will be as follows:

Part Time Projects Normal Route
Start date Monday 16 May 2022
End date Monday 16 December 2023

It is expected that many part time students will have individual start and end times for their project based
upon their individual needs. In all cases this will be agreed with the supervisor and the Project Tutor,
but students will still be entitled to thirty weeks to complete their project.
2.3. Project Approval Dates
The project proposal must be submitted to the Brightspace using the form in Appendix A.

Sep 2021
Project
Jan
2022
May 2022
Project
Description

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Start Project
Start
Start
Project
Support
Sessions
30/10/21 30/09/21 03/03/22 -Guidance about the process and next steps.
Videos by supervisors and wiki.
-Students should contact potential supervisors
and arrange a meeting starting from the
designated Unit Support hours.
Supervisor
Assignment
UPDATED
from
20/21AY
08/11/21 21/03/22
(UPDATED
from
08/11/22)
Students send email to Project Coordinator
(
[email protected])
until this deadline to confirm. If not arranged
until this time, supervisor will be randomly
allocated.
Online
Ethics
Checklist
17/09/21 13/12/21 15/04/22 Students submit their online ethics checklist
and make sure it is approved by supervisor. It
can be revisited but must be approved by the
start of the project.
Project
Proposal
20/09/21 17/12/21 22/04/22 Students submit their proposal on Brightspace.
Supervisors give written feedback on
Brightspace. This is a required piece of work;
however, it is not formally assessed and does
not carry any marks. You are expected to
include this detailed project proposal as an
appendix in your Project Report, and to reflect
on whether and why you deviated from your
Project Proposal.
Project Start 27/09/21 31/01/22 16/05/22 Project work starts. Students must have their
project proposal and ethics checklist approved
by this date. Otherwise, they cannot start
working on their project.
First
Progress
Review
15/11/21
to
19/11/21
07/03/22
to
11/03/22
06/06/22 to
10/06/22
This is a required piece of work; however, it too
is not formally assessed and does not carry any
marks. Its value is in the feedback that you will
receive at an intermediate state, which will help
you get better marks for your project overall.
The progress review form should be included in
the Project Report as an appendix and
referenced in the section that reflects on the
project’s progress, possibly in the same section
as the reflection on your Project Proposal. See
Brightspace for the review form.
Draft Project
Submission
06/12/21
to
16/12/21
04/04/22
to
14/04/22
15/07/22 to
25/07/22
This is a required piece of work; however, it is
not formally assessed and does not carry any
marks. You are expected to submit your draft
report on Brightspace. Your supervisor will
provide you feedback to help you improve your
project overall. Try to complete all the sections
in your draft report as much as you can so that
you have enough time to improve your work.
Dissertation
Submission
17/01/22 13/05/22 26/08/22 Students submit their dissertation and
additional files on Brightspace.
Video 21/01/22 17/05/22 30/08/22 In addition to your written work, you are

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Question
and Answer
(Q&A)
session
1
24/01/22
to
04/02/22
18/05/22
to
01/06/22
31/08/22 to
14/09/22
required to present your work via a video
presentation. In addition, you may need to
defend it against questioning from your
markers as determined by your supervisor and
reader.
Results Around
Mid-March
22
Around
Mid-July
22
Around
Mid-Oct 22
Marks are released by PSO.

1The Q&A is determined by your supervisor and reader and may be required as a component of the
assessment and this is designed as a remote Questions and Answers (Q&A) session.
Readers (or second markers) and your supervisor and the second marker will arrange the remote Q&A
session according to their availability, which will be held within 2-3 weeks following the submission
deadline. Students are expected to be available during that period. Date, time, and the online
communication tool should be agreed by the student and the markers.
Its purpose is to enable the markers to clarify their understanding of the aims of your project and of what
you have achieved. The defence does not carry any marks but can affect your marks by providing
additional information to your markers, over and above that provided by your report.
The markers will be seeking clarification of various aspects of your project. The markers will ask
questions relating to the work to clarify any concerns or questions they may have regarding the project
and the project report. You will be expected to defend your work from such detailed questioning.
3. Valid Project
The Project must satisfy several requirements before it can be a suitable project. The Project should be
within the broad remit of the Programmes in Computing and Informatics Department, and it must be
relevant to the philosophy and outcomes of the specific degree title as described in the guidance below.
It must be of a scope sufficient to occupy a typical Level 7 student in 600 hours of study. The Project
must be original, and the student must demonstrate a professional approach to the project work. The
Project must involve independent research, practical work and critical reflection.
The Project must involve the identification, design, and development of a solution to an IT-related
problem using best practice and current technologies. The Project must produce an artefact, some
examples being a software application, an experimental design and results, a proposed new network
design, or a report on an investigation into an IT issue. For more detailed information about what
constitutes a valid artefact for your degree title, refer to the subsections below for each degree title.
The Project dissertation must demonstrate that you have considered all relevant legal, social, ethical,
and professional issues.
The Project will build on relevant prior learning such as from completing your other taught units. In
particular, the Project enables the student to demonstrate specific skills in appropriate areas of
Computing and Informatics.
All projects are expected to produce an artefact. An artefact is defined as a self-existing product of the
project with a view to subsequent use. Your project involves the research, design, implementation, and
evaluation of an artefact that solves a particular problem and answer novel research questions relevant
to your course of study. In other words, a project should have an artefact as a technical solution to the
related problem. You may build an artefact or write an artefact based on the valid project definition for
your degree title. If you write an artefact, you must make sure the artefact is actionable, which means
the artefact can be exploited technically. For example, a software requirements specification (SRS) can
be considered as a valid written artefact as it is a technical document that describes how a software
system is to be developed.
The following are valid projects for each programme below.

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3.1. MSc Cyber Security and Human Factors
Your MSc CSHF project should allow you to demonstrate your ability to define and solve a research
problem related to the course and its content. For example, related themes towards Security, Privacy,
Risk, Human Factors, within social and operational environments, design, and engineering. The
Project and its dissertation must have clear aims and objectives aligned with the course themes
but may take different approaches towards creating the artefact. All artefacts must aim to address or
solve the research problem, and therefore be actionable. The artefact can either be a single piece of
usually desk-based research, or a devised and tested process, framework, application – or ‘system’.
It is important to consider the required inputs and outputs for each project. For example, where an
artefact is being built, data would usually be gathered from sources to determine the needs of the
‘system’ and its users, before designing, building, testing, then implementing the ‘system’ with user
testing to gain feedback and validation towards the artefact. A written artefact would nevertheless still
require the same level of input, depth, critical analysis and evaluation, validity, and actionable output.
All projects are subject to approval and ethical approval, ensuring any participant interaction is
accounted for prior to approval. It is advisable to be very clear about these aspects towards to the
problem to be solved before completing your proposal and approaching potential supervisors, some of
whom would differ in expertise depending upon the type and theme of the project. It is also advisable
to ensure the project is fully approved in good time before the start of the project period.
See the table below for typical examples of artefacts.

Examples
Written artefact
A critically analysed and evaluated report to a client or client group;
A critically analysed and evaluated feasibility study;
Process, framework, (e.g., large scale);
Requirement’s specification (e.g., large scale);
Research findings (e.g., research question or hypothesis-based).
Built artefact
Security/Privacy application;
Security/Privacy process;
Security/Privacy framework;
Other Event Management, Network, or Forensic tools.

If you are not entirely sure whether your artefact idea and proposal is valid for your degree title, you
should discuss this with your supervisor or the Project Tutor. As a professional researcher, you should,
however, be aiming to produce professional quality, in-depth, critically analysed and evaluated
research, fused with strong project management, ensuring the project inputs and outputs can
realistically be achieved within the allotted project period.
On completion of your project, you are expected to
:
1. Demonstrate your knowledge and a critical understanding of assurance methods, human factors
and cyberpsychology practices, security, privacy and risk management concepts, and where
applicable, cutting-edge business risk analytics, interoperability of cross-domain solutions, and
skills to create and manage security events.
2. Demonstrate your ability to conduct to research, critically analyse and evaluate different
methodologies, implementations, ethical principles, then design, manage and use an appropriate
research methodology with appropriate strategies to successfully plan and execute your project.
3. Demonstrate your problem-solving skills, technical skills and competencies, and apply
knowledge across the discipline areas, with an ability to handle inconsistency in the problem
domain and produce a viable solution.
4. Demonstrate your ability to conduct in-depth research, critically analyse and evaluate findings,
leading to valid solutions for a given problem domain, presented in a well-structured dissertation.
5. Demonstrate your ability to present a reflective integrated discussion of the conclusion of the
research, development and practice activity, and its implications for the future.

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3.2. MSc Data Science and Artificial Intelligence
Your Data Science and Artificial Intelligence Master of Science project should enable you to
demonstrate your research capabilities while defining and solving real world problems
, using intelligent
data processing, and modelling. This can be primarily done as follows:
Design of reproducible research experiments for problem solving, through the deployment
of machine learning algorithms and intelligent data-driven models
Algorithm’s performance testing and evaluation of precisions and accuracies
In-depth validation of your postulated research hypotheses with future recommendations
The postulated real-world problem to solve in your project is of your own choice. It may be applied to
health, environment, finance, socioeconomics, transport, security, or any other domain of your
own specific interest and career aspirations
.

Examples
Typical written artefact
An originally coded script to run your various data science experiments with generated machine
learning proven and demonstrable results
A rigorous use case study with the current state of the art of a relevant research topic in Data
Science and Artificial Intelligence
Typical built artefact
Architectural design and implementation of a decision-support web or mobile application using data
processing and analytics
A performing web or mobile based application with intuitively applied features and functionalities for
machine learning algorithms or classifiers training and performance testing.

You can develop your own idea of an artefact, but you will need to ensure that it is suitable for and
relevant to your programme and degree. If you are not entirely sure whether your artefact is valid for
your degree title you should discuss it with your supervisor or the Project Tutor.
On completion of your project, you are expected to have demonstrated your ability to:
1. Work independently on a Data Science and Artificial Intelligence related project through
defining and solving a particular real-world problem (either client based, or non-client based).
2. Apply knowledge about aspects of Data Science Artificial Intelligence to the problem, which
may be of scientific or engineering nature.
3. Produce a well-structured and articulated narrative’s report.
3.3. MSc Digital Health
Your MSc Digital Health project should allow you to demonstrate your ability to define and solve
a health-related problem by the means of a Computing/IT artefact. The project must result in an artefact
and be technology based, and then presented in a research dissertation
. You can think of an artefact
as being a solution to a problem. Artefacts can be of two kinds; written artefacts or built artefacts. See
the table below for examples. Often you will find that your project might have multiple artefacts. For
example, you might conduct a questionnaire, which leads to research findings, which informs
requirements for a software build. This is ok, but you must make clear in the dissertation what your main
artefact is.

Examples of MSc Digital Health Artefacts
Written artefact
A use case study followed by recommendations/guidelines
Implementation plan
Process, framework, model
Requirement specification document

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Research findings
Wireframe design
Built artefact
Mobile application
Hardware application
Software application/tool
Algorithm
Web application/website

You can develop your own idea of an artefact, but you will need to ensure this is suitable for and
relevant to your programme and degree. If you are not entirely sure whether your artefact is valid for
your MSc Digital Health title you should first discuss this with your supervisor or the programme
leader.
On completion of your project, you are expected to have demonstrated your ability to:
1. Work independently on a Computing/IT project through defining and solving a
particular healthcare related problem.
2. Apply knowledge about aspects of Computing/IT to the problem, which may be of an
engineering, analytical or academic nature.
3. Produce a well-structured report/dissertation.
3.4. MSc Digital Health and Artificial Intelligence
Your Digital Health and Artificial Intelligence Master of Science project should enable you to
demonstrate your research capabilities while defining and solving real world healthcare problems, using
intelligent data processing and analytics. This can be done in view of performing diseases diagnosis,
personalised treatment plans or deployment of assistive technologies such as smart sensing and
wearables for patients
health monitoring and critical care.
This can be primarily done as follows:
Design of reproducible smart healthcare problem solving, through the deployment of Analytics
and/or AI based methods for diseases diagnosis, patient treatment plans or patient health
monitoring and care response
.
Performance testing and evaluation of smart health care approaches
In-depth validation of your postulated smart healthcare solutions with future recommendations
The postulated real-world healthcare problem to solve in your project is of your own choice. It may be
applied to a specific smart healthcare of your own specific interest and career aspirations
.

Examples
Typical written artefact
An originally coded script to run your various experiments on a health condition diagnosis with
generated machine learning proven and demonstrable results
A rigorous use case study with the current state of the art of a relevant research topic in Digital
Health and Artificial Intelligence
Typical built artefact
Architectural design and implementation of a decision-support web or mobile application using
data processing and analytics for smart healthcare
A performing web or mobile based application with intuitively applied features and functionalities
for machine learning algorithms or classifiers training and performance testing.
A performing web or mobile application with intuitively applied features and functionalities for
smart sensing and wearables generated measurements with performing analytics for patient
health monitoring

You can develop your own idea of an artefact, but you will need to ensure that it is suitable for and
relevant to your programme and degree. If you are not entirely sure whether your artefact is valid for
your degree title you should discuss it with your supervisor or the Project Tutor.

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On completion of your project, you are expected to have demonstrated your ability to:
1. Work independently on a Digital Health and Artificial Intelligence related project through
defining and solving a particular real-world problem (either client based, or non-client based).
2. Apply knowledge about aspects of Digital Health Artificial Intelligence to the problem, which
may be of scientific or engineering nature.
3. Produce a well-structured and articulated narrative’s report.
3.5. MSc Information Technology
Your MSc IT project should allow you to demonstrate your ability to define and solve a general IT
problem. This can be wide-ranging, but your project must be technology based and demonstrate your
mastery of the skills and knowledge which you have acquired from your taught units. The dissertation
should be around 10,000 words and the artefact should be equivalent to 5,000 words.
Artefacts are of two kinds; written artefacts or built artefacts. Sometimes they may be a mixture of
both. The table below give you some typical examples of artefacts. These are only suggestions, and
you are not limited to the artefacts which you see listed here.

Examples of artefacts
Typical written artefact
A report to a client or client group
A rigorous use case study
Implementation plan
Network design
Process, framework, model
Requirement’s specification
Research findings
Wireframe design
Typical built artefact
Algorithm
Database application
A Programme or Mobile app
Network realisation/simulation
Software application/tool
Web application/website

You can develop your own idea of an artefact, but you will need to ensure this is suitable for your MSc
IT programme. If you are not entirely sure whether your artefact is valid for your degree title you
should discuss this with your supervisor or the Project Tutor.
On completion of your project, you are expected to have demonstrated your ability to:
1. Work independently on an information technology related project through defining and solving a
particular IT problem (either client based, or non-client based).
2. Apply knowledge about aspects of information technology to the problem, which may be of an
engineering, analytical or academic nature.
3. Produce a well-structured report.
3.6. MSc Internet of Things; MSc Internet of Things with Cyber
Security; MSc Internet of Things with Data Analytics
The selected topic of your project should demonstrate relevance to your degree title. It should also
demonstrate academic understanding, competence and skills at a level that is appropriate for an MSc
level. Your project should also allow you to demonstrate ability to work independently and produce a

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well-structured report. The following table includes some indicative artefacts/deliverables of your
project (non-exhaustive list); a performance evaluation study of a protocol or algorithm (e.g., via
simulations).

Examples Applicable degree titles
Written artefact
A systematic and rigorous review of a state-of-the
art research topic
MSc IoT; MSc IoTCS;
MSc IoTDA.
A use case development in an application domain
Built artefact
A proof-of-concept IoT system; MSc IoT; MSc IoTCS;
MSc IoTDA
A performance evaluation study of a protocol or
algorithm (e.g., via simulations);
Developing a communication protocol / algorithm.

You can develop your own idea of an artefact, but you will need to ensure this is suitable for and relevant
to your programme and degree. If you are not entirely sure whether your artefact is valid for your degree
title you should discuss this with your supervisor or the Project Tutor.
If you are not entirely sure whether your artefact is valid for your degree title you should discuss this
with your supervisor or the Project Tutor.
On completion of your project, you are expected to have demonstrated your ability to:
1. Work independently on an information technology related project through defining and
solving a particular IT problem (either client based, or non-client based).
2. Apply knowledge about aspects of information technology to the problem, which may be of
an engineering, analytical or academic nature.
3. Produce a well-structured report.
4. Project Proposal
Selection of an appropriate project for your master’s degree is critical to ensure that it is both feasible
(e.g., that it can be completed within the available timeframe and can be properly resourced within the
University) and meets the academic objectives given in the Unit Descriptor. The chosen project must
be in line with the themes of the programme pathway.
The student must complete a project proposal from (Appendix A). This form is used by the student to
negotiate a project with a project supervisor. It is the student’s responsibility to choose a supervisor and
approach them with their project plan and verify with their supervisor that their project is appropriate.
The Project Proposal is where you set out exactly what your project is and how you will go about doing
it in more detail. There is a limit of 4 pages to the text of the Project Proposal including your initial plan.
The Project Proposal is submitted through the Brightspace submission portal; your supervisor will then
check that your project proposal if it is acceptable and give you feedback.
Your Project Proposal must start with your name, your degree course title and your project title, followed
by the six sections below:
Section1: Project Overview (problem definition, background, aims and objectives):
The problem that the project is intended to solve must be outlined with sufficient background
information.
• You also need to provide aims and objectives.
Section 2: Artefact
• The artefact that you intend to produce that highlights your contribution to the project needs to be
defined and valid (e.g., it must be actionable). This could have several different forms but for

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example could be a piece of software, a system, a business plan or report, an algorithm, or a
feasibility study. Check section 8.1 if you are unsure.
Section 3: Evaluation
• State how you plan to assess the extent to which the artefact solves the problem you have
identified.
• State what makes the project that you are proposing worthy of a student studying for a Masters
degree and what makes this project relevant to your chosen degree?
• All projects come with an element of risk. You need to identify the potential risks that could affect
your project and briefly discuss how they will be managed.
Section 4: References
• You need to provide references if you have used any when answering the questions above.
Section 5: Ethics
• You must also complete a Bournemouth University Research Ethics Checklist – this is completed
with an online checklist.
• This checklist must be submitted to your supervisor through the online system and approved by
your supervisor electronically and a copy of the approved checklist must be included in your
dissertation. A PDF copy can be downloaded from the online system.
• The system you need to use is available at https://ethics.bournemouth.ac.uk and you can login
with your BU Student account credentials. After your submission, your supervisor will check your
submission.
• The following links provide you more information and guidelines.
https://blogs.bournemouth.ac.uk/research/research-ethics-bu/
https://blogs.bournemouth.ac.uk/research/guidance-on-completing-the-ethics-checklist/
https://intranetsp.bournemouth.ac.uk/documentsrep/8B-research-ethics-code-of-practice.pdf
https://blogs.bournemouth.ac.uk/research/online-ethics-checklist-new-features/
https://intranetsp.bournemouth.ac.uk/documentsrep/Instructions%20for%20UG%20and%20P
GT%20students.pdf
• You cannot start working on your project until your Research Ethics Checklist has been approved.
• Please note that for conducting any primary research (i.e., carrying out an investigation to acquire
data first-hand, for example, where it involves approaching participants to ask questions or to
participate in surveys, questionnaires, interviews, observations, focus groups, etc.) you will require
ethical approval before doing so. The collection of primary data without appropriate ethical approval
is a serious breach of Bournemouth University’s Research Ethics Code of Practice and will be
treated as Research Misconduct.
Note:
• Most Computing Projects have no ethical issues, and they are low risk. Note that, you still need to
submit ethics checklist even if there is no risk.
• Here are two example cases where it becomes a high risk so the approval process can take longer:
1. A student proposes to interview school children aged 11 to 15, as part of their systems
analysis work: the issues were a) whether any harm could accrue to the under-aged
children, and b) the student needed the Criminal Records Bureau check before being
allowed to talk to the children.
2. A student working for a pharmaceutical company on a database containing clinical trial data
for a particular drug, using real data for testing; the data contained names of patients,
doctors, etc. and there are very clear GDPR concerns.
• If your project changes in any way that might change its ethical context while the Project is
proceeding, you must complete another Research Ethics Checklist for it. Include the last form that
you complete in an appendix in your Project Dissertation.
Section 6: Proposed Plan
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• Include a one-page Plan – a detailed project work breakdown or a schedule of work. This may be
done as e.g., a week-by-week work plan, or a Gantt chart, etc.
A project proposal template will be available on Brightspace.
Assessment of Proposals
Submitted proposals will be assessed by your supervisor and you will receive written feedback via
Brightspace. Proposals will be marked as follows:
• Satisfactory. Check the given feedback to improve your work. (Approved)
• Requires minor improvement. Check the given feedback to improve your work. (Approved)
• Requires major improvement. Update your proposal according to the given feedback and resubmit.
(Needs to resubmit)
• Unsatisfactory. Update your proposal according to the given feedback and resubmit. (Needs to
resubmit)
Please note that Project Proposal is a formative element so you can resubmit if major changes are
required or submit later if you agree with your supervisor.
Whilst every effort will be made to try to respect the wishes of the student regarding project supervisor,
this is not always guaranteed due to staff commitments. If the student hasn’t secured a supervisor within
a particular timeframe (within one month for full-time students and within two months for part time
students), a supervisor relevant to the corresponding Programme will be allocated to them.
4.1. The role of the Research Methods Unit
The Research Methods unit has been designed to prepare students for project work. Assessment for
the Research Method unit comprises two parts: a draft project proposal and a literature review.
The draft project proposal, will define the specific research questions or hypotheses to be
tested, methodology, evaluation criteria, time schedule, etc. The draft project proposal may
subsequently be submitted to the Project Board for consideration. In such a case the pro forma
in the Appendix A should also be used.
The process of producing a detailed literature review of a particular field is intended to assist in
developing suitable project ideas and ensuring sufficient background knowledge before the
project is properly commenced.
Each student is expected to complete a project in an area defined by an approved project proposal.
Should it be necessary to change the project objectives or deviate substantially from the substance of
the project proposal, a revised proposal may be required. The Project Supervisor and/or Project Tutor
will have to agree to the changes.
4.2. Industrial Collaboration
This section applies mostly to part-time students.
Students can engage in a “live” project with an industrial partner. This is useful for several reasons,
including employability, developing a relationship with a company with a view to obtaining promotion in
the longer term. If you are a part-time student, it is hoped that you will be conducting a piece of work for
your employers as a vehicle for your project.
Your industrial partner must be involved in the initial agreement process. If you are a part-time student,
your employer will obviously have a stake in the nature of the work which you are undertaking, and it is
in the interests of all to have the industrial and academic objectives as closely matched as possible.
You must furnish your Project Supervisor(s) with the name of an industrial partner who should be in a
supervisory role at your place of work, and complete participant agreement forms and ethics required.
If you are undertaking a project privately, then this representative must be your customer or his agent,

16
as appropriate. Note that your industrial representative, as a non-academic, will not be involved in the
assessment process, although the assessment team may invite comment from him/her on your
performance throughout the project.
5. Supervision and Assessment
You will be allocated a supervisor who will monitor your project and provide tutor support to ensure that
progress is maintained and that you receive ongoing feedback as your study develops.
There will also be a reader who is to act as the second marker to ensure fairness and objectivity of the
final mark. The reader will not be released to students and will be allocated to second mark the project
after the final submission. A process that involves a third marker in the case of a big difference is in
place to ensure fairness. Specifically, if there is a difference in the marks of the ten and more marks
and there is no agreement between the markers, the third marking process will be triggered.
It is strongly suggested that you keep a development record of your project. This is likely to include your
thoughts and ideas, comments and suggestions from project supervisor, results of literature searches,
and results of analysis, design, and experiments.
5.1. Supervision
Normally the role of the project supervisor may include:
to advise on technical matters and offer direction.
to be available for regular meetings. These meetings may be on a one-to-one basis or could involve
other project students with the same project supervisor. The frequency of the meetings will depend
upon the type and status of the project.
to monitor your progress and report any serious problems to the Project Tutor; If a student doesn’t
engage for three consecutive weeks, the Project Tutor will be informed to issue an initial warning
to the student. If that doesn’t work, the official non-engagement process will be followed. During the
first month of the project, non-engagement should be raised within two weeks.
to read and comment on the preliminary draft of your project report/dissertation (provided you give
him/her sufficient time before the submission deadline).
to assess all aspects of your project.
You are expected to meet your project Supervisor regularly to discuss your progress and to obtain
feedback on your work. The frequency of these meetings will be agreed by the Supervisor and yourself;
in the initial and final stages of the project, weekly meetings are likely, whereas in the middle of the
project less frequent meetings may be appropriate. Typically, such meetings last up to 30 minutes every
week.
Your supervisor may hold meetings of group(s) of his/her supervisees; these can form a useful part of
your project as you can practice skills (such as critical review, analysis, and planning) in front of other
students, and assess their progress relative to your own.
Students and their Supervisors are expected to attend such meetings unless prevented by events such
as illness. If a student is unexpectedly unavailable, they should notify their supervisor. Failure to attend
scheduled meetings wastes time and gives a poor impression of professional behaviour. In the event
of a supervisor being absent for more than two weeks during term, the Supervisor is expected to arrange
for another member of staff to meet the student.
Mid-way through your project, you and your supervisor will together complete and sign a Progress
Review form. Supervisors will upload the completed Progress Review form to Brightspace.
When writing your project report, you can request feedback from your supervisor. If your writing style is
poor, then your supervisor may correct some examples in detail to show you how it could be improved
but will not correct the whole draft. Your supervisor will not write your report for you or check every
word. Once a Supervisor has commented on the draft of a section, they are not obliged to review that

17
section again. Do not expect your supervisor to grade your draft work.
5.2. Assessment Criteria
The criteria for assessment are as laid out in the Intended Learning Outcomes given in Section 1.2. An
indication as to the interpretation of each criterion is given in Appendix E.
6. Literature Review
6.1. Literature sources
You will need to use a wide range of sources. These may include:
Journal Articles: Journal articles are the main source of high-quality information about a subject area.
Every area of study has several high-quality journals, which publish the best research in their field. Most
journal articles are refereed, that is, before material is published it is reviewed by several other
researchers.
Conference Papers: Conferences are the source of the most up-to-date information on a topic.
However, the quality of conferences can vary greatly.
Technical Reports: Technical reports are published by product vendors, universities, and research
institutes as a means of disseminating information. Technical reports can provide a lot of in-depth
knowledge about a specific piece of research but can be difficult to obtain. However, care should be
taken in using information supplied by vendors for the purposes of selling a product.
Books: Books are normally used as an introduction to a subject. Because they take a long time to write
they normally discuss the foundations of a subject area and are not as up to date as journal articles and
conference papers.
Newspaper/Magazine Articles: Newspaper articles are not normally intended to report research
results and as such are not a good secondary source of information. They can provide an easy
introduction into a subject or provide support for claims about the relevance of a subject area.
Internet Conferences: The Internet is an increasingly useful source of information. However, anyone
is free to publish on the Internet and so the quality of the information can vary greatly.
6.2. Library
The library is the starting point for locating relevant material. You should find out about the services
offered by the library. Some of these include:
Book Catalogues: All the books in the library are indexed in the book catalogue. This is electronic and
can be search by author, title, keywords, etc.
Author/Keyword Indexes: These are large indexes of books, articles, and conferences, which have
been indexed by author, title and keyword. Many of these indexes classify the material according to the
subject covered and so can be used to quickly find a range of publications on a subject.
Citation Indexes: Citation indexes index publications according to who has used and referenced the
material in their own work. This is a good method of constructing a set of related materials on a subject.
On-line Indexes: On-line indexes provide a quick method of finding published material. However,
methods of searching for subjects can be limited and on-line searching should complement other forms
of search.
Inter-library Loan: The library can obtain publications from other libraries when it does not stock the
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material itself. This is very useful, but it can take a long time to find material (several weeks).
Librarians: Employed to help you find what you want.
6.3. Internet
The Internet is a very valuable source of information. However, publishing information on the Internet
is simple and free and, therefore, not all information published on the Internet is of a high standard.
Care must be taken in deciding to use information obtained through the Internet.
https://intranetsp.bournemouth.ac.uk/policy/Research%20Ethics%20Code%20of%20Practice.pdf
7. Writing your Dissertation
You will need to write 15000 words which is made up of 10,000 words for your dissertation plus an
artefact equivalent to 5000 words. Some general advice include:
Produce an outline of the report/dissertation or a draft of the contents page early in the project; this
will make the task of organising information and determining the scope and boundaries of the work
much easier.
Start writing early in the project (using a word processor allows you to easily change and re-organise
information)
Apportion the work correctly in your writing; for example, do not allocate half the document to the
introduction.
7.1. Project Report (Dissertation)
The Dissertation is normally a single volume including appendices. As with any other report, the Project
Report is presented in several parts, in this case: Introductory Information; Main Body; References;
Appendices. A project template will be available on Brightspace.
7.5.1 Introductory Information
This appears at the start of the Project Report. In the Introductory Information, it is not necessary to
number sections of the Introductory Information. It is usual for pages in the Introductory Information to
be numbered using roman numerals, excluding the Title Sheet.
7.5.1.1 Title Sheet
A standard dissertation title sheet will be made available to you and must be used as the cover of your
dissertation. The title sheet is not numbered.
7.5.1.2 Abstract
The purpose of the abstract is to summarise the Project, giving the reader of the report an overview of
the project. It should be enough to convince them to read the rest of it or decide if it is inappropriate to
their interests.
Abstracts are roughly 300 words (around half a page) and should explain both what the project aims
were and what was achieved. In practice it is usual to write the Abstract last. Have a look at some
published papers for examples of the style and format used in abstracts.
7.5.1.3 Declaration Sheet
There must be a declaration sheet, as in Appendix B of this Handbook. You must complete, date, and
sign the dissertation declaration and sign the own work declaration, on both copies of your dissertation.
7.5.1.4 Acknowledgements
It is common to acknowledge people who have aided you during the project, either in terms of
knowledge and equipment or in terms of support. This is your opportunity to formally acknowledge their
assistance. Whilst an acknowledgements page is not essential it is usual to acknowledge your
supervisor and any staff who have provided support during the project.
7.5.1.5 Table of Contents
A list of the sections and subsections of the Main Body, along with the References and all Appendices.
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Page numbers must be given for each section and subsection and for the References and each
Appendix. This follows the Acknowledgements.
7.5.2 Main Body
In the main part of the report, all sections and subsections should be numbered. The pages should be
numbered using Arabic numerals. If the Introductory Information used roman numerals the page
number should start from 1, otherwise it should continue from the Introductory Information.
The structure of the Main Body will depend on the nature of the project. As the Project should be an
investigation, this should lead to some findings from which conclusions can be drawn and, if appropriate,
recommendations made. The Main Body will normally start with an Introduction section and will end
with a Conclusions or Summary section. It is up to you to decide what sections are appropriate and
what the content of each section will be.
The maximum word count limit of 10,000 words applies to the Main Body of the Project Report. State
the word count for the Main Body of your Project Report after the final section of the Main Body. Your
artefact is expected to be no more than 5,000 words or equivalent. If you need more words for the Main
Body and can make a good case for your artefact being either less than 5,000 words or the equivalent
of 5,000 words, then the ‘spare’ words can be used in the Main Body. A Main Body of 15,000 words
plus an artefact is not acceptable.
Some suggestion for organising and writing the Main Body of your Project Report:
• At an early stage of your project, plan the sections and estimate the size of each section, to help
you write your report without exceeding the word count limit. For example, do not allocate half the
words to the Introduction. Establish the scope of your project and avoid deviating when writing your
report.
• Start writing early in the project. Ask your supervisor for feedback on drafts of sections or parts of
sections. A formal, academic writing style is expected, and early feedback on your writing will help
you.
• Remember that when you write your report, you are primarily writing for the examiners, who will
use the assessment criteria in Appendix E to assess your work.
7.5.3 Word Count Policy
It has been agreed that all words, excluding those appeared in any Figure or Table within the Main Body
of the Project Report will be counted towards the 10,000-word limit. Note: (1) it is your responsibility to
make sure your Main Body will not exceed the word count limit and (2) using large tables, figures and/or
appendices to bypass word count limit will not be tolerated and will be penalised.
7.5.4 References
The purpose of citing references in the text is to acknowledge the ideas and work of other authors and
to enable your reader to find the source of your information if they should wish. All references cited in
the text must be listed in the references section. References should be cited using the Harvard System,
following BU Guide to Citation and Referencing in the Harvard Style.
You must acknowledge your source every time you refer to others’ work, using the Harvard Referencing
system (Author Date Method). Failure to do so amounts to plagiarism which is against university
regulations and is classified as an academic offence. Please refer to BU library online resources for the
University’s guide to citation in the Harvard style.
More information can be found at BU library online resources:
• http://libguides.bournemouth.ac.uk/bu-referencing-harvard-style
• http://libguides.bournemouth.ac.uk/bu-referencing-harvard-style/quick-guide
• http://libguides.bournemouth.ac.uk/bu-referencing-harvard-style/list-at-end
• http://libguides.bournemouth.ac.uk/bu-referencing-harvard-style/pdf-guide
• http://libguides.bournemouth.ac.uk/endnote

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7.5.5 Appendices
The Appendices should appear after the References. Each appendix should be identified by a letter.
The page numbering should be consecutive with the Main Body of the report.
You should not assume that people will read an appendix unless they are directed to do so in the main
body of the report, and even then, you should make the Main Body self-contained as the appendix may
not be read in detail; the appendix is not a way of subverting the word count limit of the Main Body of
the report. You should direct a reader to an appendix with a phrase such as “see appendix A for further
details”.
Some of the appendices are required for all Project Reports. Other appendices will be included because
they contain relevant information that does not belong in the Main Body of your Project Report.
Guidance and requirements follow:
• One of your appendices must be your Project Proposal, including your plan. You may wish to
include revised plans.
• Progress Review Form should be in another appendix.
• A copy of completed and approved Bournemouth University Research Ethics Checklist must also
be an appendix.
• Your artefact will usually be in one or more appendices. Examples of material in this category are
System Requirements Specifications, Company Reports, Network Designs, Software Designs,
Test Plans and Results, Business Plans, etc.
• A list of the contents of the Additional Files submitted on Brightspace into the Large File submission
area should be another appendix if relevant. (See Section 8.5.9 for information about the Additional
Files submission).
The following list of documents could be included as appendices:
• Important communications between you and your client (private data should be deleted and all
data should be anonymised)]
• Extra background information that is not included in the main body but is helpful to understand the
project such as a summary of the used methods or techniques.
• Revised project proposals and plans.
• Any other relevant information, please discuss with your supervisor first.
7.5.6 Report Layout and Style
The following rules must be followed:
• The project report template will be provided on Brightspace.
• The document must be produced in black type.
• It is recommended that body text should be at least 11pt font size and be spaced at one and a half
line spacing. Where footnotes are used, these should be single spaced and 10pt in size.
• A minimum of 2cm margins should be used in all directions.
• All pages should be numbered consecutively.
• Figures may be in black and white or in colour.
7.5.7 Copyright and Intellectual Property Rights
As the project report is being written as part of the degree course, it should be written for publication in
the public domain. Normally, you retain copyright over the dissertation, and you retain the Intellectual
Property Rights (IPR). However, it can be the case that you are working with a party (e.g., company)
that wishes to restrict circulation of some information (e.g. to protect their commercial interests).
There are various tactics that can be implemented:

21
• You can inform us that the dissertation is not to be placed in SciTech Project Library. In that case
the people who will read it will only be your supervisor, the second marker and one external
examiner.
• You can supply a shortened form of the report together with an additional document that contains
the restricted information. The two documents are used for marking, but only the shortened form
goes into the SciTech Project Library.
• You may agree with the external party to assign IPR to them wholly or in part. Do this with great
care and only do this if necessary (i.e., the external party has explicitly requested this) – don’t hint
your client you can transfer to them if they didn’t ask! If in any doubt consult your supervisor or
project coordinator.
• Security can be enhanced by use of non-disclosure agreements between a) the external party and
b) the supervisor, the second marker and one external examiner.
7.5.8 Writing Style
The underlying principle which should govern your writing style is that of persuasive communication.
Remember to support your decisions with reasons, and to cite external sources where appropriate.
Your writing should be simple, clear, and unambiguous; long winded sentences should be avoided.
Avoid padding the text with unnecessary adjectives and phrases.
Jargon and acronyms should be explained where they first occur. If necessary, a glossary of special
terms can be provided as an Appendix.
It is presumed you will use a word processor to produce your report so remember to use the spellchecking and grammar facilities. A report with spelling errors leaves a bad impression and is likely to
lose marks. A good thesaurus can also help you find alternatives to simplify a sentence. No matter how
careful you are, proof reading is still essential to catch errors such as ‘their’ for ‘there’ and ‘it’s’ for ‘its’.
7.5.9 Additional Files
A large file submission on Brightspace should be done for any additional files required for the
assessment of your project.
These files should include any information not included in your project report, for example:
• A copy of program source code.
• Software installation requirements (e.g., hardware/software environment and configurations,
instruction on how to compile and run the source code).
• Test files and results.
• An executable version of a software system, etc.
7.5.10 Video Presentation
A few days following your project report submission, you are asked to submit a 10-minute video
presentation of your work via Brightspace. External examiners may also wish to check your presentation
to gain a better understanding of your project.
Like project proposal, video presentation does not carry any mark, but it can influence your final mark
if the markers could not establish a good understanding of your work when purely relying on your
dissertation. Video presentation can affect your marks by providing additional information to your
markers, over and above that provided by your report. For example, if you wrote a program, but did not
explain very clearly what the program does within your report, then a marker can get a better idea of
the scope of your achievement, by seeing a demonstration of the artefact. This is particularly important
if a third marker or an external examiner is involved in marking your project.
When preparing your presentation, concentrate on presenting your Artefact. You should explain the
problem that you set out to solve and indicate the extent to which your artefact solves that problem.
If you are doing a confidential project, then please consult your supervisor and the Project Coordinator

22
before designing or completing any presentation.
8. How to submit your dissertation
8.1. Brightspace
You are required to submit your project report (dissertation) and additional files electronically to Turnitin
via Brightspace for plagiarism checking. Failure to submit the electronic copies by the due date will
count as a non-submission unless an extension has been granted.
Note if your project is confidential, you must NOT upload it electronically to Brightspace and so to the
formal Turnitin via Brightspace for a plagiarism check. However, you must still run a plagiarism check
on your dissertation using the try-it-out service and attach the similarity report. While doing this, specific
identifiers should be removed from the report as well. Students need to consult with their supervisor
before preparing and completing any presentation. You must contact the project coordinator as soon
as you decide your project will be confidential as the submission process will not be on Brightspace in
that case.
8.2. Video Presentation and Project Defense
In addition to your written work, you are required to present your work via a video presentation as
explained in Section 7.5.10. In addition, you may need to defend it against questioning from your
markers as explained in Section 2.3 of this Handbook.
8.3. Extension of Deadlines
Extensions to the submission deadline for the Project Report can only be agreed in exceptional
circumstances that are clearly beyond the student’s control, and which do not constitute a contingency
for which provision should have been made. Extensions can only be granted by the Programmes
Leaders (PL). In the case of emergency, you may contact the Project Coordinator or Deputy Head of
Department.
If you have any valid exceptional circumstances which mean that you cannot meet an assignment
submission deadline and you wish to request an extension, you will need to complete and submit the
Exceptional Circumstances Form for consideration to your Programme Support Officer (PSO) together
with appropriate supporting evidence (e.g., GP note) normally before the coursework deadline.
Further details on the procedure and the exceptional circumstances form can be found on Brightspace.
Please make sure that you read these documents carefully before submitting anything for consideration.
For further guidance on exceptional circumstances please contact your PL or PSO.
8.4. Late Projects
If a Project Report is submitted later than the prescribed deadline without an approved extension it will
not be assessed and will receive a mark of zero (0%).
9. Regulations
9.1. Academic Offences
Refer to your Programme Handbook for information on academic offences.
One such academic offence is Plagiarism, where an author presents the work of another as their own.
This includes copying from another student, book, web site, or any other source without citing the
source.
You may be accused of an academic offence if you:
• Use the exact words of an author without giving a reference and indicating a direct quote.
• Write about someone else’s ideas without giving a reference even though you use your own words.

23
• Change too few words of the original source even with a reference.
• Present a compilation of other people’s ideas without giving any sources.
• Copy another student’s work. If one student lends work to another, both can be penalised for
plagiarism.
• Submit work that was written for you by someone else.
• Include material that you have previously submitted for another assignment.
There are a few simple rules which would help avoid plagiarism:
• Record all bibliographical information before you take notes from a book/journal/website.
• Take careful notes that are distinguishable from the original source.
• Paraphrase paragraphs, not sentences.
• Include referencing with all drafts.
• When collaborating share information and ideas but not drafts if your project involves collaboration
with other students.
• Read widely to learn how other authors avoid plagiarism.
Use Turnitin before you submit your dissertation, to ensure that you have not accidentally committed
an act of plagiarism.
There are also other types of academic offence including duplication or ‘self-plagiarism’ (copying parts
of your own writing that has already been marked). Be aware of Self-plagiarism, this primarily occurs
when a student submits a piece of work to fulfil the assessment requirement for a particular unit and all
or part of the content has been previously submitted by that student for formal assessment on the
same/a different unit.
More information can be found at BU library online resources:
https://www1.bournemouth.ac.uk/students/library/using-library/how-guides/how-avoid-plagiarism
https://www1.bournemouth.ac.uk/students/library/using-library/how-guides/how-avoid-academicoffences
https://www1.bournemouth.ac.uk/students/library/using-library/how-guides/how-cite-references
Please also check the link below for BU important information for students:
https://www1.bournemouth.ac.uk/students/help-advice/important-information
9.2. Failed Projects
The pass mark for the Project is 50%, as with all other units.
Students who fail the project at the first attempt will usually be given the opportunity to repeat the project
in the next academic year, with the mark capped at 50%. When the Project is repeated, it must be a
new project, not a further attempt at the failed project, unless the University exceptionally allows you to
rework your previous attempt at the project.
In a repeat project, inclusion of a significant amount of material from the first submission may be
considered as Duplication, which is an academic offence. Students repeating the project are advised to
discuss concerns about possible Duplication with their supervisor or with the Project Coordinator.
However, where a student has been asked to resubmit, based on the recommendation of the exam
board, the feedback given by the supervisor and second marker must be worked upon and the project
updated with significant changes, before it is resubmitted. Also, the student is expected to discuss the
changes required with their supervisor before resubmission.
9.3. Student Support
Students with Additional Learning Needs may contact Learning Support on
http://studentportal.bournemouth.ac.uk/learning/als/index.html or www.bournemouth.ac.uk/als

24
General academic support is available via the Study Skills area on Brightspace (within the Library &
Study Support menu).
If you are experiencing technical problems when submitting online, then you must contact the IT Service
Desk immediately and before the deadline. Call 01202 965515 off-campus, or 65515 on-campus. It’s
best to call, especially if it’s close to the deadline. You can log a problem online too:
https://bournemouth.service-now.com
10. References and Further Reading
1. How to Manage Your Postgraduate Course, 2004, Lucinda Becker, Palgrave Macmillan,
140391656X
2. How to Write a thesis, 2002,
Rowena Murray, Open University Press, 0335207189
3. Research: The Student’s Guide to Writing Research Papers, 4th Edition, 2004,
Richard Veit,
0321198344, (Paperback)
4. Success in Your Project,
Philip Weaver, 2003, 0273678094 (Paperback)
5. Surviving your Dissertation, 2000,
Rudestam K, Newton R, Sage ISBN 0839-4562-0
6. The Postgraduate Research Handbook: Succeed with your MA, MPhil, EdD and PhD, 2001,
Wisker G, Palgrave, UK, ISBN 0333747771, (paperback)
7. Writing a Master’s Thesis: How to Plan, Draft, Develop and Publish Your Thesis, 2004,
Alan Bond
(Editor),
Studymates Ltd, 1842850385
Web sites
8. www.gradschools.ac.uk/jfp/research/writing/
: Writing up tips for good writing and checking drafts
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APPENDIX A – Master’s Project Proposal Form
A Project Proposal allows you to explore areas of study relevant to your interests within the programme.
It is a document that opens a discussion between you and a possible supervisor and allows negotiation
of the aims and goals of the project. The proposal is therefore a document that needs to be agreed with
a supervisor before you start work on your project. You will have to work closely with your supervisors
for this work. Your supervisor is your principal tutor for the project and monitors your process and
product; he/she provides tutor support to ensure that you maintain contract progress is maintained and
receive ongoing feedback as your study develops.
An assignment brief is provided for your project. It serves as the Learning Contract which is a written
agreement between you and the University. The brief contains the deliverables and the relative
weighting attached to each aspect of the project. The marking method is evident in the assignment
brief. The form which should be used for the project proposal:
Project Proposal Form
Please refer to the Project Handbook when completing this form and note that your proposal should
be your own original and you must cite sources in line with university guidance on
referencing and
plagiarism
1.

Student’s Name:
Degree Title:
Project Title/Area:
Supervisor’s Name:

Section 1: Project Overview

1.1 Problem definition – use one sentence to summarise the problem:
1.2 Project description – briefly explain your project:
1.3 Background – please provide brief background information, e.g., client, problem domain:
1.4 Research question(s):
1.5 Aims and objectives – should be specific and measurable:

1 https://libguides.bournemouth.ac.uk/study-skills-referencing-plagiarism
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Section 2: Artefact and Planning

2.1 What is the artefact that you intend to produce?
2.2 How do you intend on conducting the project (to produce the above artefact
successfully)?
Please provide a GANTT chart at the end of this form, in Section 6.

Section 3: Evaluation

3.1 How are you going to evaluate your project?
3.2 How does this project relate to your degree title outcomes?
3.3 What are the risks in this project and how are you going to manage them?

Section 4: References

4.1 Please provide references for citations used above.

Section 5: Academic Practice and Ethics
Please delete as appropriate.

5.1 Have you made yourself familiar with, and understand, the University
guidance on referencing and plagiarism?
Yes / No
5.2 Do you acknowledge that I declare that this project proposal is your own
work and that it does not contravene any academic offence as specified in
the University’s regulations?
Yes / No
5.3 Have you submitted online ethics checklist to your supervisor? Yes / No
5.4 Has the checklist been approved by your supervisor? Yes / No

Section 6: Proposed Plan (please attach a GANTT chart below)
Note: Proceed to Project is subject to completing all taught units and recommendation by Board of
Examiners.
This form is NOT approval to proceed. On completion, please submit this form to your
supervisor for approval.

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APPENDIX B – Dissertation/Project Declaration Form
DISSERTATION DECLARATION
This Dissertation/Project Report is submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for a Masters
degree at Bournemouth University. I declare that this Dissertation/ Project Report is my own work
and that it does not contravene any academic offence as specified in the University’s regulations.
Retention
I agree that, should the University wish to retain it for reference purposes, a copy of my
Dissertation/Project Report may be held by Bournemouth University normally for a period of 3
academic years. I understand that my Dissertation/Project Report may be destroyed once the
retention period has expired. I am also aware that the University does not guarantee to retain this
Dissertation/Project Report for any length of time (if at all) and that I have been advised to retain a
copy for my future reference.
Confidentiality
I confirm that this Dissertation/Project Report does not contain information of a commercial or
confidential nature or include personal information other than that which would normally be in the
public domain unless the relevant permissions have been obtained. Any information which identifies
a particular individual’s religious or political beliefs, information relating to their health, ethnicity,
criminal history or personal life has been anonymised unless permission for its publication has been
granted from the person to whom it relates.
Copyright
The copyright for this dissertation remains with me.
Requests for Information
I agree that this Dissertation/Project Report may be made available as the result of a request for
information under the Freedom of Information Act.
Signed:
Name:
Date:
Programme:

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APPENDIX C – Guidance Notes for Assessing ILOs
Threshold performance is the minimum acceptable standard. It is consistent with systematic
understanding coupled with some ability to evaluate and critique methodologies and shows some
evidence of critical awareness of current problems and forefront techniques, with some originality in
their application. Good performance is consistent with systematic understanding coupled with good
ability to evaluate and critique methodologies and shows good evidence of critical awareness of current
problems and forefront techniques, with originality in their application. Excellent performance is
consistent with systematic understanding coupled with strong ability to evaluate and critique
methodologies and shows comprehensive evidence of critical awareness of current problems and
forefront techniques, with originality and flair in their application.

INDIVIDUAL MASTERS PROJECT (60 Credits)
Intended Learning
Outcome
CRITERIA
Threshold Good Excellent
Knowledge and
understanding
appropriate to
subject area and
the ability to
handle
inconsistency in
the problem
domain and
produce a viable
solution;
Knowledge is partial or
incomplete but sufficient to
tackle the problem
The solution is based on
abstraction and its
architecture is sound.
Solution has the basic
functionality to be useful and
is usable and maintainable.
There is evidence of adequate
reliability, derived from a
sound formal approach.
Knowledge is comprehensive of
the problem area
The solution is based on
abstraction, and its architecture is
sound, showing some
imagination.
Solution has competent
functionality and is usable, though
it misses some marginally useful
features. Thought has been given
to its maintainability. There is
structured evidence of good
reliability, derived from a sound
formal approach, used with some
insight.
Knowledge extends beyond the
problem area
The solution is based on
abstraction, and its architecture
is effective and elegant,
showing imagination and flair.
Solution has almost complete
functionality and is usable. It
has been well designed for
maintenance. There is
structured evidence of strong
reliability, derived from a
thorough formal approach used
with insight.
Analytical and
critical evaluation
when exploring
solutions for a
given problem
domain;
Learner shows capability to
critically review but has gaps
in coverage and/or lacks focus
in discussion.
Reasonably thorough critical
review with some emphasis on
relevance to stated objectives.
Thorough critical review with
major emphasis on relevance to
stated objectives
Problem solving
skills and the
application of
knowledge across
the discipline
areas;
Problem definition is clear, but
only covers the principal
aspects of the problem.
Objectives miss some minor
points but are clear.
Application of knowledge is
incomplete but useful
Problem definition is clear and
covers most of the problem sub
components.
Objectives reasonably focused
and clear.
Application of knowledge matches
the problem domain
Problem definition is clear and
comprehensive.
Objectives very focused and
clearly defined.
Application of knowledge is
extensive
The ability to
design, manage
and demonstrate
an appropriate test
and verification
strategy
Design and execution
decisions are based on
reasonable evidence, and
some show evidence of
anticipation and perception of
the relationships between
design factors with some
grasp of implications of design
decisions.
Quality Control methods
provide a basic level of Quality
Assurance.
Design and execution decisions
are based on good analysis, and
the majority show evidence of
anticipation and perception of the
relationships between design
factors and sound grasp of
implications of design decisions.
Sound choice and use of Quality
Control methods lead to good
Quality Assurance.
Design and execution decisions
are based on insightful
evaluation, and the learner has
anticipated the need, and
planned, for decisions in the
great majority of circumstances.
The learner has thorough
perception of relationships
between design factors, and
clear grasp of implications of
design decisions.
Choice and use of Quality
Control methods show flair and
lead to a high level of Quality
Assurance.
Effective conduct
of research,
analysis and
critical evaluation
of different
methodologies
and
implementations.
There is basic evidence of
criticality, but appraisal
contains some gaps in
coverage of, and misses some
relationships in, the
development process, which it
may relate only to the principal
features of the solution.
There is good evidence of critical
capability. Appraisal covers the
whole development process, but
not always with full depth, or
incompletely related to the
solution.
There is substantial and strong
evidence of a critical
perspective on the development
process, as a whole and in
terms of inter-related parts, and
its relationship to the solution.

29

The ability to select
appropriate
strategies to
successfully plan
and execute
design project.
Most of the
methods/methodology are
appropriate to objectives.
Decisions on technical
approach show basic
evaluation of the needs of the
development process.
Methods/methodology are
appropriate to the objectives.
Decisions on technical approach
are generally derived from sound
evaluation of the needs of the
development process.
Methods/methodology totally
appropriate to the objectives
and used with flair.
Decisions on technical
approach show critical
awareness of the needs of the
development process.
The ability to
present a reflective
integrated
discussion of the
conclusion of the
research,
development and
practice activity
and its implications
for the future.
The learners have shown
limited reflection and
discussion of the issues
The learner would improve
some aspects of future
performance because of own
criticism.
The learner has shown
comprehensive reflection and
discussion of the issues
The learner understands how to
use critical reflection to improve
future performance.
The learner has shown
extensive and wide-ranging
reflection on their own and
other’s contribution to the
issues
The learner has thoroughly
applied critical reflection to the
improvement of future
performance.

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APPENDIX D – Masters Project Marking Sheet
Student Feedback Form 2021/22
For each category, indicate the marks and provide feedback reflecting each assessment criterion
with at least one sentence.

1. Definition of the problem (10)
Context
Problem definition (problem statement/ research question)
Rationale (motivation)
Aim(s) and objectives
— / 10
Feedback:

 

2. Review of literature and related work (20)
Comprehensiveness and relevance to the problem
Depth
Quality of the sources
Critical evaluation
— / 20
Feedback:

 

3. Planning and Methodology (20)
Planning (project methodology/ approach)
Justification of processes and methods
Design of an appropriate evaluation of the solution
Execution of plans/methods
— / 20
Feedback:

Student’s Name:
Project Title/Topic:
Supervisor: Reader:
Third marker (delete as appropriate):
Date:
Click or tap to enter a date.
31

4. Artefact (solution to the problem) (30)
Solving the problem (relevant, actionable)
Quality of artefact
Scope of the artefact (comprehensiveness)
Justification of choices
Novelty/difficulty of choices
Evaluation of the artefact
— / 30
Feedback:

 

5. Conclusion and Reflection (10)
Reflection on the process
Appraisal of achievement of objectives
Quality of conclusions
Discussion of related future work
— / 10
Feedback:

 

6. Project Report (10)
Documentation structure
Scholarship
Coherence and clarity
Use of English
Referencing
Professionalism and defence
— / 10
Feedback:

 

7. Justification for the final mark and any additional comments
Feedback:

 

Mark (%):

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APPENDIX E – Assessment Criteria
The marking criteria for the Project are identified along with the detailed criteria used in assessment:

• Definition of the problem
• Providing context and rationale
• Aims and objectives
• Literature review of other relevant work
• Project planning and methodology
• Analysis of the problem
• Design of an effective solution to the problem
• Selection and justification of processes, methods, and tools
• Design of an appropriate evaluation
• Construction of an artefact to solve the problem
• Quality of the artefact
• Evaluation of the solution
• Quality of conclusions
• Appraisal of achievement of objectives
• Discussion of future work
• Document structure and coherence
• Scholarship and clarity, use of English
• Referencing

The detailed marking criteria will be available on Brightspace. Marking criteria is aligned with the unit’s
Intended Learning Outcomes:
1. knowledge and understanding appropriate to subject area and the ability to handle inconsistency
in the problem domain and produce a viable solution.
2. analytical and critical evaluation when exploring solutions for a given problem domain.
3. problem solving skills and the application of knowledge across the discipline areas.
4. the ability to design, manage and demonstrate an appropriate test and verification strategy.
5. effective conduct of research, analysis and critical evaluation of different methodologies and
implementations.
6. the ability to select appropriate strategies to successfully plan and execute design project.
7. the ability to present a reflective integrated discussion of the conclusion of the research,
development and practice activity and its implications for the future.

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APPENDIX F – Project Artefact
For some examples of a written artefact or a build artefact, please see the table below. Section 3
provides information about what can be considered as a valid project and artefact for a specific degree
title. Please discuss with your supervisor or programme leader if you need more advice.

Examples Applicable degree titles
Written artefact
A report to a client or client group IT / DS & AI / IoT
A feasibility study IT / DS & AI / IoT
Implementation plan IT / DS & AI / IoT
Network design IT / IoT
Process, framework, model IT
Requirement specification IT / IoT
Research findings IT / DS & AI
Wireframe design IT
Built artefact
Algorithm IT / DS & AI / IoT
Database application IT / DS & AI
A Programme or Mobile app IT / IoT
Network realisation/simulation IT / IoT
Software application/tool IT / DS & AI
Web application/website IT

Please note that producing an artefact or implementing a software application without satisfying the
degree requirements is not a valid project.