LD7029- Computer Science and Digital Technologies

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Department ofComputer and InformationSciencesLD7029- Computer Science and DigitalTechnologies ProjectProject Student Guide and Log BookVersion 2020/ 20212Contents1 Introduction to the Project ………………………………………………………………………………………31.1 A Note about Module Codes………………………………………………………………………………………41.2 Project Resources……………………………………………………………………………………………………..41.3 Project Milestones ………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 41.4 Project Timetable……………………………………………………………………………………………………..51.5 Learning Outcomes …………………………………………………………………………………………………..62 Choosing a Topic…………………………………………………………………………………………………….72.1 Finding a Supervisor………………………………………………………………………………………………….92.2 The Project Initiation Form ………………………………………………………………………………………103 The Research Proposal………………………………………………………………………………………….. 113.1 Writing your Research Proposal ……………………………………………………………………………….113.2 Research Proposal Review ……………………………………………………………………………………….123.3 Risk Assessment (Health and Safety)…………………………………………………………………………133.4 Ethical Approval ……………………………………………………………………………………………………..134 Working on the Project…………………………………………………………………………………………. 144.1 Responsibilities of the Student …………………………………………………………………………………144.2 Responsibilities of the Supervisor……………………………………………………………………………..154.3 Note on students using own hardware / software………………………………………………………154.4 If your supervisor “goes missing” ……………………………………………………………………………..155 The Dissertation ………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 165.1 Dissertation Contents ……………………………………………………………………………………………..175.2 Dissertation Layout and Format ……………………………………………………………………………….195.3 Project Completion and Submission………………………………………………………………………….215.4 Extensions ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………..246 Assessment Criteria and Mark Scheme…………………………………………………….. ……………… 256.1 A: Top-Down Measures of Quality…………………………………………………………… ……………….256.2 B: Bottom Up Marks Breakdown…………………………………………………………………… ………..26Appendix A. Project Log…………………………………………………………………………. ……………… 29Appendix B. Project Risk Assessment Form ……………………………………………………………….. 31Guidelines for Completing the Risk Assessment Form ……………………………………….. ………………….32Appendix C. MSc Project Ethical and Risk Assessment Form ………………………………………….. 33Appendix D. Key Facts & Dates/Deadlines …………………………………………………………………. 34Additional Important Information:…………………………………………………… …………………27Expected size of the submission……………………………………….. ………… ………..27Assignment weighting………………………………………….. ………………….. ………..276.3 Referencing Style…………………………………………………………………. …… …………………276.46.56.66.7 Plagiarism ……………………………………………….. ….. …..2831 Introduction to the ProjectThe Individual Cyber Security Project constitutes the final part of the M.Sc., and represents a focusfor earlier studies. It is a great opportunity for you to complete an in depth piece of research workon a topic of your own choosing. Successful completion of the project is an essential requirementfor the award of the M.Sc. degree. Undertaking the project will allow you to develop anddemonstrate two abilities:1. academic ability to undertake research;2. practical ability to apply skills and knowledge from the field of Cyber Security to thesolution of a defined problem.All projects must demonstrate both of these skills, although the balance between the two willdepend on the nature of the project you choose to carry out.Note the following key points about the project:3. It is largely an individual activity. You will be working alone on a unique task. While you willreceive guidance and assistance from your chosen supervisor, the responsibility for the workultimately lies with you. You will not be told what to do all the time. Any problems you comeacross are your problems.4. You must be able to apply the formal method of scientific enquiry and reporting. This meansthat you must select a task that involves some element of scientific research. In this context,research does not mean looking things up – you should discover new information foryourself.5. You must be able to demonstrate a disciplined approach in the application of Computingskills and theory to a relevant problem. This means that you will need to select a projectthat involves research and implementation of technologies and techniques in the field ofcyber security. The product should be developed using a professional, systematic methodthat uses skills taught on your course.6. You are expected to demonstrate your professionalism. You should take responsibility foryour own work, use professional development standards, stick to deadlines, respect thework of others and deal with your own problems in a responsible manner.7. Most of the marks given for the project will be given for your dissertation. The softwareproduct itself is not marked, but your description of its construction and information gainedfrom using/creating the product will be.8. The project is a large undertaking, representing 600 hours of work. It is equivalent to threeof the usual 20-point modules. Full-time students should expect to work from 9 to 5, fivedays a week for three months, in addition to time put into the project in the second term.9. The project will be carried out under Northumbria University, London Campussupervision. Completing your studies abroad or in another part of the country is notadvisable. Please see below if you think you need to do this.4The sections that follow this introduction are aimed to give guidance in a number of key areas thatrelate to the successful achievement of the project.The syllabus and formal module descriptor (Module LD7029) for the project are available online viaMyNorthumbria and the Blackboard (eLP) module site.1.1 A Note about Module CodesThe module code for the Masters Dissertation is , however much of the preparation for it is doneduring the LD7028 Research Methods and Project Management module.1.2 Project ResourcesThis handbook should give you answers to many questions about the MSc Cyber SecurityIndividual project, but is just a starting point. Other sources of information include:10. The lectures and seminars in the LD7028 Research and Project Management module11. The project tutor12. Your supervisor, once you find one13. Blackboard. There is a module site on Blackboard for MSc projects, containing guidance,example material and project suggestions. You should automatically be enrolled on it onceyou start your project. You should also check it regularly (at least once a week) to see ifthere are any announcements relating to your project/dissertation. If you experience anydifficulty accessing this module site, please contact the project tutor. Regular research seminars open to students from the department and university14. There are also many good books on student projects, including:o Pickard, A.J., 2013. Research methods in information. Facet publishing.o Dawson, C., 2015. Projects in Computing and Information Systems 3rd Edn. Pearson EducationLimited.o Evans, D., Gruba, P. and Zobel, J., 2011. How to write a better thesis. Melbourne Univ.Publishing.The Project TutorProfessor Hamid Jahankhani is the module leader with overall responsibility for the MastersDissertation, and should be approached for questions about finding supervisors, submissionsdeadline and procedures etc.Email:[email protected]Room Location: London Campus52. Develop and plan your proposal in more detail, in consultation with your supervisor. Write aResearch Proposal which describes in more detail what your project will involve.Deliverables: Research Proposal, Draft Ethics and Project Risk Assessment Forms.3. Arrange and attend a Research Proposal Review meeting. This is a meeting betweenyourself, your supervisor and another member of staff to discuss your research proposal.Deliverable: Final versions of Ethics and Project Risk Assessment Forms.The proposal is marked as part of the assessment of LD7028As part of LD7029 Dissertation4. Carry out the project. This is the bulk of the work. You will be creating your product, writingyour dissertation, carrying out research. You should have several meetings with yoursupervisor.Deliverable: Dissertation.5. Arrange and attend a viva to discuss your project with your supervisor and a second marker.1.4 Project TimetableThe following dates are indicative. The exact deadlines will be given to you at the briefing sessionsand will be available on the Blackboard site for the module.
Project Milestone
Indicative Timescales
Briefing by Project tutor
February 2020
Submission of Project InitiationForm
March 2020
Submission of Research Proposal
April 2020
Research Proposal ReviewMeetingSubmission of MSc ProjectEthical and Risk AssessmentForm
Ethical and Risk Assessment submission date: April 2020Research Proposal Review Meetings: May 2020
Submission of Dissertation &Seminar Presentation
20 January 202120- 28th January 2021
Award Board
October 2021
Write your deadlines in the spaces provided in the ‘Key Facts and Deadlines’ Form provided as oneof the Appendices to this handbook.1.3 Project MilestonesThe project goes through a number of stages, with five key deliverables.As part of LD7028 Research Methods and Project Management module:1. Find a project topic, and write a proposal document. Persuade a member of staff tosupervise the project.Deliverable: Project Initiation Form.2. Identify, plan and execute a substantial independent research project demonstratingoriginality, critical and innovative thinking and problem solving3. Critically evaluate and address professional, ethical, legal and social issues in an appropriatemanner within an academic research environment4. Effectively communicate the outcomes of a significant individual research project in bothwritten and oral formsPersonal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity)(PVA):Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:Apply in depth specialist technical and academic knowledge and critical understanding ofresearch methodologies and project management in the context of an independent academicresearch project related to your programme of study and at the forefront of the computerscience and digital technology field.Knowledge & Understanding:1.5 Learning OutcomesThese are the module learning outcomes:61.72 Choosing a TopicYou are expected to conceive, structure and plan your own project, but not without some assistancefrom a project supervisor. The most that can be initially expected from tutors (and possiblyindustrial clients) is that they may produce an outline project idea which requires significant furtherenquiry and definition. (If you need to be set to work on a fully pre-defined project, this is likely tocount against you in the project marking).The MSc Cyber Security projects are concerned with equipping students with the specilalisationsthat are required to deal with the diverse business needs and the breadth of technologies andtechniques to combat cyber threats as it is essential in the success of securing tomorrow’s cyberspace.All MSc degrees required students to develop and demonstrate the ability to do research and this isprimarily demonstrated through your dissertation. According to The QAA Framework for HigherEducation Qualifications’ Descriptor for Masters Level :Masters degrees are awarded to students who have demonstrated: a systematic understanding of knowledge and a critical awareness of knowledge,and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights, much of which isat, or informed by, the forefront of their academic discipline, field of study, or area ofprofessional practice

a comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to their own research oradvanced scholarship;originality in the application of knowledge, together with a practical understandingof how established techniques of research and enquiry are used to create and

interpret knowledge in the disciplineIt is likely that your first degree included some project element. However, while it is adequate in anundergraduate project for a student to make use of recent scholarship (e.g. in the form of journalarticles) and to re-apply knowledge, an MSc project should demonstrate originality in the applicationof scholarship.This means that your project must produce some new information, rather than simply re-writing orapplying existing information. For example, making a multimedia database would simply be applyingexisting knowledge. Attempting to construct the database using a novel approach (either suggestedin a recent article, or devised by the student) would allow your dissertation to discuss somethingnew. This does not mean that you have to come up with a totally new idea – you just have to solve aproblem in a slightly different way or try a technique that has not been fully explored yet.Your project should have either a “problem statement” or a “hypothesis”. A problem statement is adeclaration of the problem you plan to solve by constructing your product. A hypothesis is astatement that you plan to prove or disprove by constructing your product.8Some examples are:I intend to construct a compression algorithm that will store astronomical images more efficientlythan existing techniques.I intend to produce a program that will perform automatic data-cleansing on my company’sdatabase, using a new approach.I intend to prove that the efficiency of a pathfinding algorithm can be increased for large searchspaces by remembering previous partial solutions.I intend to determine which “lite methodology” is most suitable for games software development.I intend to show that using a contextual interface will reduce errors in a command-and-controlsystem.Choosing a project idea is a very important part of the project process. It is surprisingly difficult andtime-consuming. It is likely that your first ideas will turn out to be unsuitable. To help you find ideas,you should:1. Read past dissertations. There are electronic versions of good examples of dissertations onthe Blackboard module site.2. Read journal and conference articles in the library. Take particular note of “suggestions forfurther study”, which is often the last section of an academic article.3. Consult the list of suggested ideas on the Blackboard module site.1. Talk to staff who have interests similar to your own.2. Consider the needs of your workplace. Is there a research project they need to be carriedout?If you are interested in a project idea put forward by an industrial client, you are expected to meetwith the client to develop the idea eventually into a proposal and for both parties to decide if theywish to continue with the project. Remember that the MSc project requires a degree of originality. Ifyour client simply wants you to build a standard system using standard techniques, your project willlack a research element.There is often a temptation to select something that sounds good or is a trendy topic without thestudent having any real interest or commitment. This temptation should be resisted as experiencetends to show that the best projects are undertaken by students who have a deep interest in whatthey are doing – which gives them the motivation to succeed when inevitable problems and setbacksoccur. Remember that this project is possibly your last chance to pursue in some depth an interestOnce the initial idea has been generated, there are a number of questions that should beconsidered:1. What published information is available to support further inquiry?2. Is the project too narrow?3. Is the project too broad?4. Can the scope of the project be changed if it turns out to be unexpectedly easy or difficult?5. Has the hypothesis already been fully answered or the problem already been fully solved?96. How demanding are the project objectives compared to similar projects?7. Does the project rely upon third parties (e.g. industrial sponsors, hardware/software,systems suppliers and University personnel)? Can they be relied on?8. Does the project require specialist equipment or software? Can it be provided?9. Does the project require you to master a new skill or devise a new technique? What will youdo if you cannot achieve this?10. What do you plan to test and how do you plan to test it? If you plan to do qualitative testingon a group of users, can you obtain enough subjects for a statistically relevant sample?Defining the breadth, depth and support requirements of a project are critical determinants of itsultimate success and solid work done at this stage can often avoid many problems and heartacheslater on.If you take too long in coming up with an idea, you will have less time left to complete your project.Many of these questions will be hard to answer – especially determining the scope of the project. Itis likely that you will need guidance to refine your initial idea. To obtain this guidance, you will needto find a supervisor.2.1 Finding a SupervisorIt is your responsibility to find a supervisor for your project. This task also takes time. Do not leavethis until just before the deadline. You will need to find a member of staff who is interested in thearea you have chosen. Certain staff are available for project supervision – consult Blackboard for afull list.Note that there is a limit to how many students a single member of staff can supervise. It is in yourinterest to arrange a supervisor of your choice as quickly as possible. If you are interested in doing aproject in a popular area, you will need to find a supervisor quickly before they all get booked up.Inevitably, in some specialist subject areas, staff arrange projects with students quite early in theyear.Once you have an idea, you should write a short proposal document. This is a single sheet of paperthat describes what you plan to do. It should have the following sections:1. Your name.2. A proposed title. (This can change – it usually does).3. The problem statement or hypothesis.4. Background information.5. The product – what you plan to make.6. Reasons why you want to do this project.7. Any articles or books that you have already read that are relevant.You should then email this to a staff member and request a meeting to discuss your idea. You mayfind that the staff member is no longer available for any more project students, or that theyrecommend a more suitable person.At the meeting, you should explain your idea. It is likely that the staff member will have a number ofsuggestions. You may be asked to make changes to the proposal. It is also possible that the proposal10will be rejected as completely unsuitable. If this happens, you will need to come up with a new idea.You will probably need to have several meetings with your intended supervisor before they acceptthe proposal.2.2 The Project Initiation FormOnce a member of staff has agreed to supervise your project, complete the Project Initiation Formin accordance with the instructions given as part of the module LD7028.IMPORTANT INFORMATION: If you have NOT managed to find a supervisor, then you should stillsubmit a form with a proposed title but with the supervisor left blank. You will then be assigned asuitable supervisor.If you fail to submit a form then you will be allocated a supervisor and may have a more limitedchoice over the type of project you can do. When you have been assigned a supervisor, you shouldmeet him/her as soon as possible to decide on a project topic. Note that this means you will belimited in your choice of project. This may also cause a delay in starting your project. You will not begiven more time to complete your project.You are strongly advised to set yourself up with a supervisor quickly rather than be assigned asupervisor so that you can get started as soon as possible.113 The Research Proposal3.1 Writing your Research ProposalOnce you have a supervisor, your next task is to write your research proposal. Your researchproposal should contain the following items.1. Aim: which should summarise what the project will achieve in one or two sentences, often in theform of a research question.2. Background: This is typically 500-1000 words that explain:
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Why you intend to do it, i.e. why the project is worthwhile and relevant.What you intend to do, i.e. a brief summary of what activities will be undertaken in theprojectHow you will proceed, i.e. what method you will use in order to achieve the aim.

3. Objectives: the steps you will have to complete in order to achieve the aims. Most projectsinvolve 5-10 objectives, typically divided into stages of literature survey, practical work (design,implementation, results), analysis and evaluation. Objectives should be SMART, that is :
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Specific – Objectives should specify what they want to achieve.Measurable – You should be able to measure whether you are meeting the objectives ornot.Achievable – Are the objectives you set, achievable and attainable?Realistic – Can you realistically achieve the objectives with the resources you have?Timely – When do you want to achieve the set objectives.
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For example, one possible objective may be to ‘investigate different approaches to solving aproblem X’ however this is not S,M,A,R or T: it may be that you could spend the rest of yourprofessional life researching this area! A preferable way of defining the objective would be to‘identify alternative approaches to solving problem X, their advantages and disadvantages, andidentify one suitable to be implemented in this project’.4. Resources / Constraints: any resources you need to complete the project which are notprovided as standard by Northumbria University, or any external limitations, such as availabilityof a client. Distance Learning students will also need to consider how they will present their viva.5. Schedule of Activities: should include milestones, cross-referenced to objectives. This may bepresented as a Gantt chart.6. Sources of Information: you should identify high quality sources of information necessary forcompleting each of the objectives.NOTE: Normally your research proposal forms part of the assessment for module LD7028 andthus you should follow the exact guidelines given in the assessment specification for this module.You should submit your research proposal in accordance with the assignment specification.Please note that no extensions to the project deadline will be awarded on the basis of a delayedresearch proposal12Support for your Research ProposalYou should write your research proposal in consultation with your supervisor. He/she will expect tosee a draft version of the research proposal at least two weeks before the submission date and willsuggest changes and improvements.3.2 Research Proposal ReviewUpon submission of your accepted proposals students would be prompted to complete ethicalform which would be completed with the supervisor at this stage. The faculty will also allocatesecond marks based on the project subject/ field. Once the supervision team is allocated then, youshould arrange a date and time for your research proposal review meeting with your supervisorand second marker.Please note that it is your responsibility to arrange the research proposal review meeting before thedeadline.At the meeting, the supervisor and second marker will discuss your research proposal with you andmake sure that the project is worthwhile, achievable, and has the potential to generate adissertation capable of earning a MSc. This approval process is intended to protect you fromattempting to carry out an unsuitable project. Ultimately, though, the responsibility for the project isyours.At the end of the meeting, the second marker and supervisor will make a decision about yourresearch proposal. They will decide one of the following:
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Accept the research proposal.Ask for changes to be made to the research proposal and ask for an updated version to beemailed to both members of staff.Ask for changes to be made to the research proposal and ask for another review meeting tobe arranged.Reject the research proposal. If this happens, you will need to find a new project idea. Thiswill seriously delay the project. You are not entitled to more time and will need to workquickly to catch up.


At the conclusion of the research proposal review meeting, your supervisor and the second markershould ensure that both the Faculty Research Ethics Registration and Approval Form and the ProjectRisk Assessment Form have been completed (see appendices). One copy of the Faculty ResearchEthics Registration and Approval Form needs to be retained by your supervisor and a second copyshould be submitted to the Faculty Office marked for the attention of the Computing ProgrammeSupport Team. The form will need to be referred to FRAC for approval if flagged as red and you maynot submit your project until approval has been given by FRAC. You and your supervisor should keepcopies of the Risk Assessment Form for ongoing review during the project period.PLEASE NOTE: Your supervisor and second marker will give you a great deal of feedback andadvice on how to improve your project during the meeting — its a good idea to take pen and paperand take notes!133.3 Risk Assessment (Health and Safety)All research activity carried out by Northumbria University is subject to risk assessment and healthand safety issues. As part of your research proposal you should complete the Project RiskAssessment Form (see Appendices) in discussion with your supervisor. Depending on the identifiedrisks and associated health and safety issues, you may need to consult the relevant technical staff forfurther advice and guidance.3.4 Ethical ApprovalAll research activity carried out by Northumbria University is subject to ethical approval, and thisincludes Masters projects. Ethical policies cover such matters as biological weapons and drugstrials. For the purposes of MSc Cyber Security projects, the most likely issues concern access to realdata, commercially sensitive projects, and very occasionally health or animal related issues.The Research Ethics Registration and Approval Form includes a section on ethical considerations ofyour proposed research and you should complete this in advance. If you have any questions aboutthe form, discuss them with your project supervisor or the project tutor. For most students, therewill be no issues that need further conditions or approval by FREC (Faculty Research EthicsCommittee) but you must complete the form in all cases. Please make sure your supervisor has acopy of your final ethics form and a second copy is submitted to the Faculty Office.More guidance on the ethical approval process is available on the Faculty Ethics Information webpages (https://www.northumbria.ac.uk/sd/academic/ee/about/studentsupport/ethics1/) andfrom the Northumbria University Research Ethics and Governance Handbook (https://www.northumbria.ac.uk/static/5007/research/reghandbook.pdf ). This includes a good discussionof the principles of informed consent (ch3) and data confidentiality (ch6).A good summary of ethical principles in engineering is available herewww.theiet.org/about/governance/raestatementv2.cfm?type=pdf.144 Working on the ProjectYou should normally start work on your project during your third semester and following yourresearch proposal review and the acceptance of your project research proposal by the supervisorand second marker.During the main part of the project, you will have regular meetings with the supervisor to discussprogress and to receive advice/guidance. It is your responsibility to make and keep appointmentswith the supervisor and to inform the supervisor of any problems that are preventing normal projectwork from taking place. Initially these meetings will take place weekly (or every two weeks for parttime students). Meetings may be less frequent once you are well established on the project. Youshould consider the supervisor to be a source of guidance and advice. The responsibility for theproject is ultimately yours. Your supervisor should not have to tell you what to do – organiseyourself and your time. This does not mean that you should never ask for advice, but that you shouldknow what advice to ask for.An initial key activity, both for initial project definition and for building up a full picture of applicablerelated research work, is the literature survey. The University library is well stocked with computingbooks and journals Sometimes you may need to make use of an inter-library loan. Since inter-libraryloans take several weeks, it is a good plan to make these requests early in the project. Sometimesthe required information may be available in other nearby libraries where it may be consulted butnot borrowed.Progress will be monitored by both you and your supervisor against the detailed project plan agreedin the proposal. This will be done at your regular supervision meetings throughout the project. It isnormal for the detailed schedule in the plan to be modified and updated to take account ofunforeseen eventualities – both good and bad – but the project submission date is a deadline thatneeds to be met unless there is very good reason – for example if you have a sustained period of illhealth.The log book should be used to record significant variations in the project plan, and the meeting ofmilestones. Bring your log book to each meeting, with the relevant sections already filled it. At theend of the project the logbook will be submitted by the student.Failing to attend meetings, or to make satisfactory progress, may mean that you will be asked toattend a meeting with the course leader and/or project tutor.All projects produce a few surprises. You will need to deal with small changes. You may find thatyour project needs to change drastically, in which case you need to discuss this with your supervisor.4.1 Responsibilities of the Student

To agree on a schedule of weekly meetings with the supervisor and to attend thosemeetings.To keep the project Log Book up to date and to take it to every meeting with the supervisor.

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To submit at the agreed dates all project deliverables.To inform the supervisor of any problems arising out of the work.To arrange the Terms of Reference review meeting with the supervisor and second marker.
4.2 Responsibilities of the Supervisor

To give guidance about the nature of the project and the standard expected, about theproduction of the proposal, about literature, about techniques and methods, and about anyproblems of plagiarism.To ensure that the proposed project exhibits the appropriate attributes expected of aMasters level computing project.To hold regular tutorials with the student and maintain an attendance record of thesemeetings.To ensure that the Log Book is kept up to date.To be accessible, within reason, at other times for giving advice to the student.To request evidence of progress and to ensure that the student is aware of any inadequacyof progress or of standards of work below those expected.To provide constructive criticism on any work presented; Please note the supervisor will notbe marking your draft work , rather the supervisor will be advising you on how to improvethe quality of your work.To encourage the student to produce early draft chapters, to comment on them criticallyand return them promptly; ( If the student does not do so it is the student’s responsibility).


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4.3 Note on students using own hardware / softwareYou may use your own computer for part or all of the practical work involved in a project providedthat it is suitable for the purpose, as agreed by the supervisor, and that any propriety software usedis properly licensed. If a personal machine is used, the responsibility for back-ups etc. lies with you.If you lose programs and/or data and are unable to demonstrate deliverables, no allowance will bemade. Postgraduate computing students are expected to be aware of sensible back up/securityprocedures on their own equipment. Ignorance or carelessness is not acceptable as an excuse4.4 If your supervisor “goes missing”…let the project tutor know. It may be that your supervisor is ill. If you let the project tutor know,he/she will be able to find you a replacement if your supervisor is likely to be away for more than afew weeks.165 The DissertationDepending on the nature of the project, you will need to strike a careful balance between practicalwork such as programming/testing and the dissertation production work, literature reading/analysisand writing. Many students forget that it is the dissertation that will be marked, not the product. Itis important to allow enough time for the writing-up stage; a typical MSc dissertation is around12000 words will take at least a month of elapsed time to write, edit and assemble. It is worthconsulting some of the books on academic writing style and composition before beginning thewriting up work – see the resources at the end of this section. Some other notes on the form andformat of the dissertation are provided in Section 5.1 below.You are encouraged to write up draft chapters as the investigative and developmental work is done,and to ask your supervisor to read and comment on draft chapters. You should expect yoursupervisor to indicate particular areas of weakness – possibly in source material, analysis, reasoning,presentation or structure. The purpose of the criticism is to let you know what are the mostimportant improvements you should consider making. It is important for you to understand thatsupervisors are not able to mark work in advance of it being formally submitted in the finaldissertation. Do not expect your supervisor to say if you will pass, get a distinction etc – until the finaldissertation has been assessed they cannot answer such questions.You must also be realistic in the work you ask your supervisor to review, and allow adequate time forthem to look at your work. Also bear in mind that good answers require good questions. Forexample, instead of asking your supervisor a vague question such as ‘what do they think of thischapter’, ask specific questions such as ‘is the overall structure OK’ or ‘is it clear in section 4 how theprogram was written?’There is a word limit, and you will lose marks for exceeding it. You should restrict yourself to amaximum of 12000 words, not including diagrams, appendices, bibliography, abstract andcontents page. There is a set format that you should follow for your dissertations. A template foryour project report is available on Blackboard.The ability to express yourself efficiently is an important skill. You will probably find that you initiallywrite lot more. The process of trimming your dissertation will improve it considerably by making itmore focused. If you feel that you cannot discuss your work in the word limit set, consult yoursupervisor for guidance.Appendices should be used to provide supporting information and evidence for the dissertationitself. Appendices should not be excessive – there is usually no need to include every diagram, chartand listing which has been used in the development of a piece of software. Your supervisor will beable to give advice on what is best included in the appendices for your particular project. Normallythe appendices should be bound into the same volume as the dissertation itself.The original proposal should be included in the appendices.17Diagrams, tables and charts should be included in the appendix. These are not part of your pagelimit.Resources on Writing Harris D. (2015), Getting the Best of Your Dissertation: Practical Perspectives forEffective Research, Thought Clearing Bailey, S. (2011) Academic Writing for International Students of Business,Routledge, Abingdon Gillett, A, Hammond, A and Martala, M (2009) Inside Track to Successful AcademicWriting, Pearson Longman, HarlowAndrews G. (2017), How to Write a Master’s Dissertation: Outline and Examples (Essay and ThesisWriting Book 7), Kindle Edition.5.1 Dissertation ContentsYour dissertation should include the following chapters:1. Abstract2. Introduction3. Literature Review4. Practical Work5. Results, Analysis and Evaluation6. Project Evaluation7. Conclusions and RecommendationsThe chapters in bold must be included.The exact title and contents of the chapters in italics will depend on the nature of the project. Seebelow for more detailsAbstractThe Abstract should be a single paragraph summarising the project, including one or two sentenceseach on:
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Motivation for the ProjectResearch Hypothesis/Question/AimWork done

Results

Conclusions
The job of the abstract is to summarise the project in such a way to allow a reader to decide whetherthe report is relevant to them, and whether they should read it.IntroductionThe Introduction should summarise the entire project, including a paragraph each on: Motivation18
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Research Hypothesis/Question/AimWork done (including list of objectives achieved)Results

Conclusions
The Introduction should also include an explanation of structure of the report. The job of theIntroduction is to summarise the entire project in such a way that the reader should not need toread the rest of the report, since all the important points are summarised here. If the reader wereinterested in some particular detail of the project, then the introduction should direct them to therelevant chapter.You should not write the introduction and abstract until you have completed the entire projectLiterature ReviewThe literature review chapters should each concentrate on one particular aspect of the background.It is a review, not a survey, which means that it should not be a collection of all previous literature inthe field, but instead should be a careful selection of relevant papers. For each paper selected, youshould discuss its relevance to your project, discuss the work done, the results found and thestrength of those findings. There should be some degree of critical evaluation: some research isstronger than others, and just because some research has been published does not mean that it willbe convincing or definitive.The hypothesis or research question and research aim should be the natural conclusion of theliterature review. In other words it should follow clearly and logically from your review why yourchosen question is worth asking (and answering). For example because it fills a hole in existingresearch, or corroborates previous work, or tries a variant of previous researchPractical WorkThis should discuss any practical work done.If your practical work has consisted of experimental work, then this should include a discussion ofeach stage of the experimental process including
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Definition of experimental variables and other requirementsDesign of experimentsImplementation

Collection of Results
Along with consideration of any tools and technologies used.19This discussion should outline the choices made, along with any alternatives considered and thereasons for those choices.Results, Analysis and EvaluationThe content of these chapter(s) depend on the nature of the project but the overall idea is todetermine how well you have met your original research aim/question. For development typeproducts this should include an analysis of to what extent the product created – or the method usedto create the product – meets some evaluation criteria. In this case then this chapter should discussthe choice of criteria, how they were measured, and the results. In the case of experimentalprojects, this chapter should include an analysis of the results of the experiments, including someconsideration of their statistical significance and reliability.In addition you should discuss how your findings contribute to the wider academic body ofknowledge, and compare your results/findings/hypotheses with those of others, particularly thosestudies you included in your earlier literature review.Project EvaluationThis should evaluate the quality of the project as a whole, including a consideration of how well eachof the objectives were met. For example:

How effective was the literature review? Is it possible that there were relevant techniques orissues that were ignored?Were there alternative hypotheses that could have been tested?For developmental projects, what other evaluation criteria could have been considered?How complete were the experimental results; how reliable are the conclusions
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Conclusions and RecommendationsThe conclusions should present the answer to the original research question, along with any otherconclusions reached along the way (for example, about the best choice of tools or technologies).There should be no ‘surprises’ in this chapter: each conclusion should have been noted andevidenced elsewhere in the dissertation.Recommendations should also be included for further research, for any possible practicalapplications, or any recommendations for future practice.5.2 Dissertation Layout and FormatDissertations are required to be written in a standard format, to ensure consistent lengths and tomake marking easier. A dissertation template is included on Blackboard to make this process easier.You should use this whenever possibleLayoutPaper size: A4, Typed on one side of the paper only in a 12-point font.The paper should be of good quality and not be transparent.Margins: At least 20mm should be left all round and a left-hand margin of 40mm to allow binding.20Spacing: Double or one and a half spacing should be used throughout, except for indentedquotations or footnotes, where single spacing is adequate.Pagination: Pages should be numbered consecutively throughout the dissertation, includingpreliminaries and appendices; it may be advisable to number the pages only when all the typing hasbeen completed.Preliminary materialThe title page should state:
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the full title and sub-titlethe full name of the author, including forenamesthe qualification for which the dissertation is submittedthe name of the institutionthe department in which the work was conductedthe year of submission
The title should describe the subject matter accurately and comprehensively as it may subsequentlyappear in bibliographies which will be consulted by other research workers.The declaration provided in the dissertation template should immediately follow the title page.Please make sure you complete the word count.An abstract of the dissertation, usually around 300 words and not exceeding 500 words, shouldthen be included. The abstract should occupy one side of one sheet, be clearly typed or printed andheaded with the author and title of the dissertation.The table of contents should immediately follow the abstract and list, with page numbers, all thechapters and subdivisions that are included in the dissertation.Main text of dissertationThis should be divided into numbered chapters each with a clear title.BibliographyThis should be a list of sources that have been referenced in the text, along with any other relevantsources consulted, listed in alphabetical order. The bibliography should use a standard form ofreferencing such as the Harvard style of referencing. If you are uncertain what to use, please consultyour supervisor.AppendicesAppendices should be numbered and given a descriptive title. The research proposal should beincluded as an appendix. Experimental results, design documentation, coding, etc can also beincluded as appendices. There is usually no need to include all this information – only the parts thatare relevant to the discussion.21FootnotesFootnotes should be identified in the text by numbers and place the notes in numerical order at thefoot of the pageReferences and QuotationIt should be clear from the text which of the material presented and opinions expressed are yoursand which are other peoples. You do not need to worry about copyright in making direct quotationsor copying figures provided you acknowledge the source. However, any failure to acknowledge thesource of material, however minor, will be treated as plagiarism according the UniversityAssessment Regulations.You should list references in the bibliography, using a standard form of referencing such as theHarvard system.References may be cited in the text in a number of ways. The Harvard system simply states thename(s) of the author, followed by the date of the publication.… a popular Pascal text by Findlay and Watt (1985) is employed …If there are more than two authors, you simply state the name of the first author on the publicationfollowed by et al and the date of publication in brackets.… according to findings by Benedict et al. (1993) …All text in the dissertation should be your own. If you wish to quote some text from another source,it must be clearly indicated, or you will be considered to have plagiarised. To quote text fromanother source:Small quotes: This applies if you wish to quote a single sentence, or less. Include the text inside yourown words inside quotation marks. Italicise the text and put the reference in brackets afterwards.For example:It is indisputable that “ACS is more effective if the ants start at different cities” (Rook 1999)Large quotes: This applies to any quote that is more than a single sentence. The text should beinserted as a separate paragraph to your own text. The paragraph should be indented, and possiblyuse an alternate font. The quote should be clearly referenced at the bottom. For example:The following is a taken from a paper describing research on artificial intelligence.It is easy to modify the experiment above to the case in which the bridge’s branchesare of different length [60], and to extend the model of Equation 1 so that it candescribe this new situation. In this case, because of the same pheromone layingmechanism as in the previous situation, the shortest branch is most often selected:The first ants to arrive at the food source are those that took the two shortestbranches, so that, when these ants start their return trip, more pheromone ispresent on the short branch than on the long branch, stimulating successive ants tochoose the short branch.22(Dorigo and Di Caro 1999)It can be seen from this that…(In the bibliography, this should be referenced as:Dorigo, M. and Di Caro, G. Ant algorithms for discrete optimisation. Artificial Life. Vol 5 No 3pp 137-192 1999. )Very large quotes: Quotes of more than six sentences should not be used, unless your supervisorhas indicated that it is safe to do so.5.3 Project Completion and SubmissionThe project is only deemed to be completed when all of the aims/objectives set out in the projectproposal have been achieved. You should seek the advice of your supervisor on the issue of whetherthe project is in fact complete and has apparently achieved its aims and objectives. An incompleteproject, even if the dissertation is well produced and written, may count against you.Make sure you know the deadline for the dissertation submission. If you are not sure, ask the projecttutor and make a note on the back page of this document.You are required to submit your dissertation online through the BlackBoard portal. Details of theform and format of the dissertation are provided above. The project log book should be submitted asan appendix in your dissertation. You should also submit any additional materials in a form ofappendices.We will also ask you to place your project onto the TurnItIn database, in order to guard againstplagiarism. We will give you more guidance on how to do this later.If you think you may not be able to complete your dissertations by the published deadline, youshould ensure that the Project Tutor and your Supervisor are both aware of the situation as early aspossible and you will need to follow the process for a late submission or personal extenuatingcircumstances (PEC) claim.Online SubmissionYou are required to submit your dissertation online through the BlackBoard.Submission ProcedureSince the project is a major component of your MSc, and also represents genuine research that maybe of benefit to other professionals, the submission procedure is more complicated than othermodules. Make sure you allow time for this. In this instance. To submit, you need to do thefollowing:23 Make any last checks for spelling. Check the bibliography adheres to the referencing systemyou are using. Make sure that there are no sections that have been accidentally copied fromother sources. (See below on how to use TurnItIn to do this.) Include your original research proposal in the appendix. Sign and date the page near the front that reads “I certify that …….” Load your dissertation onto the Blackboard (eLP).1. This system will check your dissertation for originality. If you have copied anymaterial from another source, the system will note this. You can view an “Originalityreport” which will show any sections of your report that seem to be similar to otherreports or internet resources. It is normal for any report to contain several phrasesthat are similar to other sources, so don’t worry about small sections. You also don’tneed to worry about sources that are clearly marked as quotes and properlyreferenced. Note that a clear originality report does not mean that your dissertationincludes no plagiarism, only that the TurnItIn system could not find it. We might stillbe able to. You are welcome to upload one draft copy of your dissertation to thissystem, in case you want to try out a draft of your dissertation before submitting thefinal one. If you have any problems with this system, just contact the project tutor. After you have submitted your project, you should arrange the viva. This should normally beheld about a week after submission. This gives the markers time to read your report. Yoursupervisor and second marker will attend the viva. See the section below for advice on theviva.245.4 ExtensionsRequests for extensions to the project need to be approved by the Faculty Office initially. They maythen refer you to your programme leader. No-one else can grant an extension. Extensions will onlybe granted for genuine reasons, backed up my documentary evidence. The normal extensionrequest form available from the Faculty office should be completed by you, normally after discussionwith your supervisor.Suitable reasons for extensions include:
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Serious illness that prevents you from working for a week or more.A personal tragedy, such as bereavement or personal problems that required counselling.A natural disaster – earthquake or flood.
You can only get an extension if you have documents as proof – such as a doctor’s note or a notefrom the counselling service. The following are not reasons for extension.
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“I need more time.” You should have worked harder.“It took me a long time to come up with an idea.” That is part of the project. If it took you along time, you should have worked faster on other parts.“I went on holiday for two weeks.” You knew the time scale of the course. You should nothave taken holiday during term-time if you could not afford to. If you have to take yourfamily on holiday, take your work with you.“My computer crashed and I lost all my work.” Have you never heard of backups?“It took me a long time to learn XYZ.” It was part of the project. You should have allowed forit.“I’m a full-time student, but I had to work over the summer.” We sympathise with students

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who need to work to pay their fees and will continue to press the government for morestudent funding. However, this is a full-time course and you should be working full-time onit.

“I’m a part-time student and I had a hard time at work.” We have already given part-timestudents extra time to allow for this. We cannot allow more. We may be more sympathetic ifyou have been sent abroad for a month or more.“The printer ran out of ink and I only have 10 minutes until the deadline.” You should haveallowed time. Have a busy 10 minutes.“I had a cold for a few days.” Serious illness only, please.


Our policy may seem harsh, but we have to be fair to students who manage their time well. We alsoneed to justify our policies to external moderators and other organisations that inspect ourinstitutional standards.Extensions will normally be for no more than two weeks. This is very important: if you are granted anextension of more than two weeks, we cannot guarantee to mark your project before the awardboard. We might, but we might not. This could mean that you will wait several months beforereceiving your MSc award.6 Assessment Criteria and Mark SchemeThe assessment criteria and mark scheme used to assess your project dissertation and viva areprovided below. Please ensure you look at these before you start your project so you know what weare going to assess you on.6.1 A: Top-Down Measures of QualityIn reaching a final mark for the project, dissertation and viva, a top down and bottom up approachwill be adopted. The top down measures of quality are as follows:0 – 39% Clear Fail: Attainment is consistently and clearly below Masters level. The reason(s) forthis may include some or all of the following:• An inadequate survey of the available literature in the area of the study.• Failure to meet one or more of the objectives of the project.• Inadequate rigour in the application of techniques/tools.• Lack of a disciplined, ethical and professional approach to tackling the research project.• Failure to address a central computer science and digital technology issue in necessarydepth.• The absence of a required section in the dissertation.• A partial or no demonstration/presentation was given, or the demonstration/presentationgave no useful information.• The student could not answer some questions during the viva in any meaningful way.40 – 49% Marginal failure: Attainment generally below acceptable level, although there ispotential for it to reach a pass standard. The dissertation and viva and their response to questions inthe viva should show that higher achievement could be reached is more time was devoted to it oranother approach had been taken.50 – 59% Basic Pass: Close to the minimum acceptable standard for a pass. Work in this markrange may fail to fulfil one of the major objectives of the project yet must exhibit a reasonableunderstanding of the fundamentals of computer science and digital technologies relevant to theirchosen project and adequate use of technical communication skills, problem solving, independentstudy, knowledge of the literature and a disciplined, ethical and professional approach to tackling asubstantial research project. The viva demonstrated an acceptable level of understanding.60 – 69% Good Pass: Attainment which is overall better than acceptable but is not outstanding.There is evidence from the dissertation and viva of a sound understanding of the major computerscience and digital technologies relevant to their chosen project together with a reasonable attemptto tackle more advanced topics and issues. There should be a convincing demonstration of technicalcommunication skills, problem solving, independent study, knowledge and application of theliterature and a disciplined, ethical and professional approach to tackling a substantial project.252670 – 85% Distinctive: The dissertation and viva clearly demonstrate a high degree of qualityand originality in the application of standard techniques, and indicate an excellent professionalendeavour. The work includes novelty and invention that goes beyond the accurate, appropriateand validated use of standard methods and tools, demonstrating strong technical communicationskills, problem solving, independent study, knowledge and application of the literature and adisciplined, ethical and professional approach to tackling a substantial project. The dissertation isfluent, coherent and of an excellent academic standard. The viva clearly outlined the researchapproach, its implementation and the key findings and outcomes and demonstrated a deepunderstanding.86-100% Distinctive and Outstanding: In addition to the distinction category, here theresearch work exhibits a high level of complexity and professional quality, evidence of an excellentunderstanding of the academic context of the work, a capacity for analytic thought, an ability topenetrate a complex application domain and a high quality of self appraisal. The standards of proofand the quality of writing shown in the dissertation should be equivalent to that of publication in agood quality journal. The viva provided valuable and thoughtful insight into innovative research andits outcomes.6.2 B: Bottom Up Marks BreakdownThe following provides a breakdown by the four different elements that are assessed and should be usedin conjunction with the top down measures of quality outlined above.Abstract, Introduction and Literature Review (25 marks): The abstract should make clearthe main question/aim addressed, the broad methodology used and the main findings. The introductionshould include a discussion of the context and potential benefits of the work, an explanation of the mainaims, a list of the objectives and a breakdown of the structure of the report. If you have changed oradded any objectives since the research proposal review, these changes should be made clear. You willbe expected to consider and outline here the main professional, ethical, legal and social issues related tothis academic research project. The literature review should assess your presentation of a suitable rangeof literature relevant to the research. This section is a review, not a survey. This means that you shoulddiscuss the literature, explaining the range of validity, relevance to the project, strength of the findings,etc. rather than simply paraphrasing. You can be given credit for a clear explanation of difficult concepts.You should discuss the relevance and applicability of the literature to your own work. You shoulddemonstrate the ability to critically evaluate the research of others and to assess the strength of theevidence/discussion presented.Description of Practical Research Work Undertaken (25 marks): This section shouldassess the discussion of the practical work you have done, such as requirements analysis, design,construction, installation, experimental work. Your testing and/or data collection approach should beincluded in this section although the results from this form part of the next section. You should make itclear what you have done, and should also include rationales for the approaches and techniques used,including how you have addressed any ethical, social and legal issues in your approach. You should alsoinclude a discussion of any ideas that have been rejected.Results and Analysis (25 marks): This section should assess your results/findings and youranalyses of these. Examples of techniques you may use include reasoned evaluation, thorough producttesting, scientific testing, data analysis, internal and external validation and statistical survey. You wouldnormally make use of more than one technique, and your use of the techniques should reflect thepostgraduate nature of the research. You should also justify your choice of techniques and ensure thatthey are applied in an ethical and professional manner, including any data protection issues.27Critical Evaluation, Conclusions and Recommendations (25 marks): Your criticalevaluation should assess your own research outcomes and how your findings contribute to thewider academic body of knowledge, including any comparison of your results/findings/hypotheses with those of others. You should assess the strength of the key findings, the limits oftheir applicability and their probable usefulness. You should discuss the extent to which themain aim has been achieved and which objectives have been satisfactorily met. There shouldalso be a critical assessment and evaluation of your own work and your professional approach tothis research project, including an appraisal of how you have addressed any ethical, legal andsocial issues. In the conclusions and recommendations, you should assess the strength andpresentation of the findings and the recommendations. You should present your answer to theoriginal research aim/question and should discuss how well the original problem has beensolved. This should include reference to the results obtained by you. You should also discuss anyinteresting additional discoveries that have been made. Recommendations may includesuggestions for further research, suggestions for improved practice based on your findings andsuggestions for practical application of any new concepts that have been investigated.6.3 Referencing StyleThe set referencing style for the dissertation is Harvard, you should consult with your supervisorand follow this standard system.6.4 Expected size of the submissionThe length of the written dissertation should be typically in the range 10,000 – 12,000 wordsincluding the abstract but excluding the references and appendices. Further guidance on theformat and layout of the dissertation is provided in the project handbook. The project viva willusually last no more than 30 minutes with 10-15 minutes of presentation and 10-15 minutes ofquestions. The viva can also be used to demonstrate any practical products/applications/experiments that have formed part of the project.6.5 Assignment weightingAn overall mark will be agreed for the dissertation and viva and is worth 100% of the overallmark for this module.6.6 Additional Important Information:Academic Integrity Statement: You must adhere to the university regulations on academicconduct. Formal inquiry proceedings will be instigated if there is any suspicion of plagiarism orany other form of misconduct in your work. Refer to the University’s Assessment Regulations forTaught Awards if you are unclear as to the meaning of these terms. The latest copy is availableon the University website.https://www.northumbria.ac.uk/sd/central/ar/qualitysupport/asspolicies/Failure to submit: The University requires all students to submit assessed coursework by thedeadline stated in the assessment brief. Where coursework is submitted without approval afterthe published hand-in deadline, penalties will be applied as defined in the University Policy onthe Late Submission of Work. https://www.northumbria.ac.uk/static/5007/arpdf/lateappr286.7 PlagiarismAll phases of the project are covered by Northumbria University Assessment Regulations, availableat http://northumbria.unn.ac.uk > current student > assessment regulations.If you haven’t read the assessment regulations, read them now. Ignorance of the assessmentregulations is not a defence in the case of accusations of academic misconduct.And finally, we hope you find your MSc research project anenjoyable, stimulating and rewarding experience.29Appendix A. Project LogThe purpose of this log is to provide a record of the supervision process and to ensure that anyissues and agreed tasks are recorded. This form must be presented and signed at each meeting withyour supervisor. You should record time spent and a summary of work done before the meeting. Theother parts of the form must be completed at the meeting. After completing the form it must besigned by both parties.Meetings with your supervisor should be on a regular basis. Generally such meetings will be amaximum of one hour in duration. Depending on progress they may be shorter. They must takeplace so that your supervisor can assess your progress.30
Date and time of meeting
Brief description of work done since last meeting
Hours spent on project since last meeting
Issues identified during supervision
Agreed tasks for next meeting
Date and time of next meeting
Student signature
Supervisor signature
31Appendix B. Project Risk Assessment FormThis form is to be completed by you and discussed with your supervisor and second marker duringyour Research Proposal Review. You and your supervisor should each retain a copy and review it onan ongoing basis during the project period.ARE YOU AWARE THAT NO ONE IS ALLOWED TO WORK ALONE IN THE LABORATORY? YES/NO(delete as applicable)
Student Name
Student ID
Student Email
Programme Title
Project Title
Project Location
List the Significant Hazards associated withyour project (continue on a separate sheet ifnecessary)
List the other people at risk (continue on aseparate sheet if necessary)
Describe the working procedures to be usedto minimise risk (continue on a separate sheet ifnecessary)
Are there any other Risk Control Measuresneeded? (continue on a separate sheet if necessary)
When will you and your supervisor reviewthe risk assessment? And how will the riskbe monitored on an ongoing basis?
Student Signature
Supervisor
Supervisor Signature
Second Marker
Second Marker Signature
Date of Agreement
32Guidelines for Completing the Risk Assessment FormSignificant hazards might include one or more of the following. The list is not exhaustive, and you must includeany other items, which might be interpreted as comparable or more serious than these. If you feel there areno significant risks, write “None”.
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Live electrical supplies in excess of 50 Vac or 120 Vdc.Soldering.Lasers, RF or microwave sources.Hazardous chemicals or substances, such as PCB etching fluid (FeCl3), hot liquids, dry ice etc.Mechanical hazards, such as traps, rotating shafts, robots, reciprocating and rotating machinery.Systems subjected to pressure such as pneumatics or hydraulics.Manual handling, such as lifting heavy or bulky objects.

Avoid mentioning the trivial, such as tripping over chairs, accidentally pulling equipment of benches or banginginto doors. These generally fall into a category against which we must all be alert, but which do not requirespecial cautionary knowledge or preparation, not have special safety regulations, or need any protectiveequipment.Others at risk might be your fellow students nearby, or technicians or lecturers (don’t mention them bynames). The aims are for you to be aware that you have some responsibility for your neighbours, and toinform them of, or protect them against, any of your activities that might be hazardous.The answer to the question of awareness of not working alone in the laboratory must be yes.Procedures might include the following

High voltage: use our special isolating boxes and shrouded cable terminals. Connect up circuits onlywhen they are “”dead” and if, required by your supervisor, energise only after they have beenchecked.Soldering: use a metal guarded stand for the soldering iron to prevent burning. Avoid working withyour eyes very close to the workpiece, or, if you must, wear glasses or goggles.Lasers: be familiar with the CVCP code.RF or microwave signals: be familiar with the power density of your source(s), the dangers ofexcessive levels, and the necessary precautions.Hazardous chemicals or substances: provide a COSHH assessment and follow these guidelines.Mechanical hazards: be aware of the dangers to yourself and others, and use suitable guards.Heavy or bulky objects: be trained in the correct ways to handle such items, or ask someone who has.Computers: follow the guidelines (HSE’s “working with VDUs”) on adopting comfortable seating,typing and reading positions, with suitable display clarity, and avoid sitting in the same position forlong periods.

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A mid session date should be specified, e.g. week 6 of the semester, to reassess the position in the light of yourprogress. New hazards will require you to complete a new form, or adding to this one. No change of hazardshould be stated as such on this form, and additionally dated and initialled by you and your supervisor.Two copies of this risk assessment are needed:
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One for our department files (to be retained by your supervisor for the duration of your project).The other for you to bring to project laboratory sessions.
This form has been devised to comply with the Management of Health at Work Regulations 1992.33Appendix C. MSc Project Ethical and RiskAssessment FormThis should be completed at your research proposal review meetingand one signed completed copy should be retained by yoursupervisor, and a second copy submitted to the Faculty Office forthe attention of the Computing Programme Support Team. Ifapproval results in a ‘red’ flag, this form should be referred to FREC(Faculty Research Ethics Committee) and approval must be givenbefore any research can commence.34Appendix D. Key Facts & Dates/DeadlinesPLEASE COMPLETE THIS TABLE WITH THE KEY INFORMATION & DATES/DEADLINES
Deadline for submitting ProjectInitiation Form
Deadline for submitting ResearchProposal
Date of Research Proposal ReviewMeeting
Deadline for submitting MScProject Ethical and Risk AssessmentForm
Deadline for submittingDissertation
Date of Viva
Name of Supervisor
Name of Second Marker
Name of Project Tutor
Name of Programme Leader

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