Individual Project MEng

Module aims

In this module you will have the opportunity to demonstrate independence and originality, to plan and organise a large project over a long period, and to put into practice the knowledge, skills and research methods that you have learnt throughout the course. 

Learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of this module, you will have demonstrated your ability to:

  • apply previously taught knowledge and skills to a substantial problem in Computing, as an individual
  • conduct an independent investigation and apply cutting-edge research, methods and thinking appropriate to the problem
  • present complex technical material orally to a mixed audience
  • exercise scientific writing skills by way of a substantial written report, summarising your findings

Module syllabus

There will be a small number of supporting lectures that will

1. describe the structure of the project, including expectations, milestones and deliverables,

2. give guidance on writing and presentation skills targeted specifically at individual projects,

3. explain the assessment procedures.

The rest of the project involves an independent investigation under the supervision of an academic advisor.       

Teaching methods

This is an independent project, although you will be supervised throughout by an academic supervisor, possibly in conjunction with a Postdoctoral Research Assistant or PhD student. MEng individual project topics vary widely: some involve contributing novel and potentially publishable research, whilst others are concerned with tackling a substantial practical or theoretical problem using state of the art techniques, methods or thinking drawn from the research literature. The supervisor's role is to provide guidance and expertise when needed, but it is up to you to demonstrate your ability to think and work independently and to evaluate your findings in a sound and rigorous manner. You will have regular meetings with your supervisor(s), typically one every week or two on average, although more regular interactions are common as the project nears completion. A second marker for the project will be assigned at around the midpoint of the project and they will conduct a progress check, based on an interim report and a short interview.                   

Assessments

The project will be assessed by an assessment team which will include the supervisor and a second marker. Each team assesses a number of projects in order to facilitate effective moderation. The assessment is based on a. individual reports from the supervisor and the second marker, b. an oral presentation. The presentation is not assessed in its own right but it used to extract a detailed account of what you have achieved. All students' progress will be checked at approximately the midway point. Underperforming students will be given guidance and additional support to help them back on track. The final assessment is based on the supervisor and second marker's preliminary assessment of the project background/ research, management, technical achievement and final report, along with input from the other members of the assessment team based on the presentation and Q&A. Any disputes are resolved by independent assessors, although these are rare in practice.                           
There will be continuous feedback throughout the supervision period and verbal feedback at the midpoint and during the final presentation via Q&A.   

Module leaders

Dr Thomas Lancaster