Computer Science (COMP) 696

Master's Essay (Revision 1)

COMP 696 Course Cover

Delivery Mode: Individualized Study Online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Master's Essay

Prerequisite: Professor approval. Students must contact the MSc IS Administrative Assistant prior to registration in this course.

Faculty: Faculty of Science and Technology

Centre: School of Computing and Information Systems

Instructor: Dr. Larbi Esmahi

**Note:  This is a graduate level course and students need to apply and be approved to one of the graduate programs or as a non-program School of Computing and Information Systems graduate student in order to take this course.  Minimum admission requirements must be met.  Undergraduate students who do not meet admission requirements will not normally be permitted to take this course.

MSc IS students in COMP696 will have six months to complete the manuscript plus two months for review and required revisions. If you can not complete the full version of the manuscript within six months, you should apply for a course extension.


System integration is a pervasive aspect of IS practice. After completion of the foundation and core courses, MSc IS students need to synthesize what they have learned. Each essay shall be in an area directly related to IS/IT and must have a research component.


This is the final requirement for students choosing the course route. The essay provides a generalist rather than a specialist view, and will be a comprehensive critical survey of aspects of integration(applications, IS organization, and technology). Topics should show how disparate computer platforms and networks could be integrated to provide a flexible and efficient infrastructure for the organization. This course address both the WHAT and HOW of integration. The essay may identify significant open problems, but it is not expected to contribute significantly to their solution.

Course Route (Master's Essay): requires the completion of 3 elective courses (9 credits) plus the master's essay (3 credits). The essay should provide a comprehensive critical survey of aspects of integration (applications, IS organization, and technology). The essay may identify significant open problems, but it is not expected to contribute significantly to their solution.


To receive credits for the master's essay, the student must obtain a PASS grade.

Course Materials

The course materials will be available in electronic format and include: a Master's Essay Handbook that provides guidelines and explains the essay stages, and the MSc IS Style Guide.

Special Course Features

An essay supervisor is required, plus one additional reader. In addition to the essay, the student may be required to pass an oral examination on the contents of the Master's essay, to be administered by the essay supervisor and reader.

Information on Athabasca University Graduate Research fund can be found on the Research Centre's website.

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 1.