Computer Science (COMP) 410

Software Engineering (Revision 4)

COMP 410

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online (with eTextbook)

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Science

Prerequisite: 1) COMP 206 or COMP 268 and 2) COMP 272 or instructor's permission, which is based on 1) the student's skills in a high-level programming language such as C, C++, or Java; and 2) the student's knowledge and familiarity with data structures.

Faculty: Faculty of Science & Technology

Centre: School of Computing and Information Systems

COMP 410 does not have a challenge option.

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**Note: Students who are concerned about not meeting the prerequisites for this course are encouraged to contact the course coordinator before registering


Computer Science 410 Software Engineering focuses on the principles and knowledge of software engineering. It covers the approaches taken in developing large programming projects, including requirements analysis, specification, design (e.g., top-down modularization), coding (e.g., structured programming), debugging and testing, maintenance, and thorough documentation as illustrated by examples and papers from current literature. This course will prepare students for working in teams to build quality software, and it provides the necessary hands-on practice for those who wish to enhance their knowledge base.

COMP 410 is designed for people who work or are about to work in any aspect of software development. It is also intended for people who have managerial responsibility for software development and anyone who is interested in how complex software systems are designed and built.


  • Unit 1: The Scope of Software Engineering
  • Unit 2: Software Life-Cycle Models
  • Unit 3: The Software Process
  • Unit 4: Development Teams
  • Unit 5: Software Engineering Tools
  • Unit 6: Testing
  • Unit 7: From Modules to Objects
  • Unit 8: Reusability and Portability
  • Unit 9: Planning and Estimating
  • Unit 10: Requirements
  • Unit 11: Classical Analysis
  • Unit 12: Object-Oriented Analysis
  • Unit 13: Design
  • Unit 14: Implementation
  • Unit 15: Post-delivery Maintenance
  • Unit 16: More on Unified Modeling Language (UML)
  • Unit 17: Emerging Technologies

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, you should be able to

  • manage object-oriented and classical software construction projects including planning, scheduling, and risk assessment/management.
  • author software requirement documents with the appropriate content.
  • author formal specifications for software systems.
  • demonstrate proficiency in rapid software development techniques.
  • identify specific components of a software design that can be targeted for reuse.
  • demonstrate proficiency in software development cost estimation.
  • author software-testing plans.
  • explain the direction of software engineering and technologies of the future.


To receive credit for COMP 410, students must meet the following criteria:

  • a course composite grade of at least 50%
  • a grade of at least 50% on the final examination
  • an average grade of 50% on assignments
  • a grade of at least 50% on the participation mark.

The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Activity Weighting
Assignment 1 25%
Assignment 2 25%
Assignment 3 10%
Marked Quizzes 5%
Participation 10%
Final Exam 25%
Total 100%

The final examination for this course must be taken online with an AU-approved exam invigilator at an approved invigilation centre. It is your responsibility to ensure your chosen invigilation centre can accommodate online exams. For a list of invigilators who can accommodate online exams, visit the Exam Invigilation Network.

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Registration in this course includes an electronic textbook. For more information on electronic textbooks, please refer to our eText Initiative site.

Schach, Stephen R. Object-Oriented and Classical Software Engineering, 8th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2011.

A print version of the eText may be available for purchase from the publisher through a direct-to-student link provided on the course website; you can also acquire the textbook on your own if you wish.

Other Resources

All other learning resources will be available online.

Special Course Features

COMP 410 can be completed on the student's workplace or home computer.

COMP 410 encourages and requires interaction and discussion between students through discussion forums.

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 4, December 12, 2013.

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