CS3RD16-Requirements, Domains and Soft Systems

Module Provider: Computer Science
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn term module
Pre-requisites: SE1SE11 Software Engineering
Non-modular pre-requisites: Equivalent non-modular experience may be acceptable (subject to convenor's approval)
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2017/8

Module Convenor: Dr Kenneth Boness

Email: k.d.boness@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:

This module is aimed at aspiring systems analysts, system architects and development managers. It concerns the quality of systems requirements and how systems requirements are derived from the motivations goals of stakeholders. Analysis patterns, domain analysis, goal-orientation and management are included.


It aims to introduce goal-oriented motivation modelling as a basis for systems’ requirements engineering. It further aims to familiarise students with the importance of domain analysis and to introduce key analysis patterns to assure quality and capture of adequate requirements.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of the module it is expected that the student will be able to:

1. Use analysis patterns to guide domain and requirements analysis;

2. Produce a hierarchical domain analysis to support requirements elicitation;

3. Write requirements specifications based on goal-refinement argumentation;

4. Use goal analysis to assess the completeness of requirements elicited; 

5. Build motivation models that make explicit the rationale joining stakeholders’ motivations to specific system requirements;

6. Explain how it is that requirements engineering involves both hard and soft systems analysis;

7. Build goal-graphs using a KAOS approach guided by pursuit of acceptance criteria;

8. Explain how detailed component requirements can be developed by extending systems requirements through detailed refinements.

Additional outcomes:

The module also aims to encourage the development of the following skills:

• Confidence to perform soft-system as well as hard-system analyses;

• Requirements elicitation, analysis, specification and process planning;

• Awareness of requirements analysis and management tools;

• Familiarity with international publications concerning current practice.

Outline content:

1.Introduction to motivation modelling as a holistic approach to systems requirements analysis; a coherent way of combining stakeholder, domain and requirements analyses;

2. Theory and practical work on Motivation Modelling using ArchiMate to produce acceptance test oriented systems requirements;

3. Learning about a problematical situation and using mind maps to structure stakeholders and their concerns;

4. Introduction to KAOS - an exemplar software engineering goal-oriented requirements engineering approach;

5. Grammar and semantics of goal-refinement using acceptance oriented Goal-Sketching;

6. Domain analysis involving: Jackson Context Diagrams;

7. Requirements Management: Using goal-graphs to review requirements scope completeness. Prioritising and managing requirements.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The material will be provided in the lectures and reinforced by practical work, exercises and clinic sessions.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 10
Tutorials 6
Practicals classes and workshops 4
Guided independent study 80
Total hours by term 100.00
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 100

Other information on summative assessment:

Formative assessment methods:

Critique and feedback on problem-oriented exercises.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    One 2-hour examination paper in May/June

    Requirements for a pass:

    A mark of 40% overall.

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Examination only.
    One 2-hour examination paper in August/September.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 31 March 2017

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