[CLIS logo]

LBSC 690 - Information Technology
Fall 2008 - Section 0101

Fall 2008 Projects

Project Guidelines

The project in LBSC 690 is designed to allow students to integrate and extend knowledge acquired throughout the course and to apply that knowledge to solve a problem of substantial scope. Students are required to work in groups of 3, and teams should plan to devote approximately 125 hours outside of class to the project over the course of the semester (6 hours per person for 7 weeks). Except in unusual circumstances (and with the approval of both professors), all team members should be registered for the same section of LBSC 690. Experience suggests that successful teams require expertise in design, implementation, and project management.

Immediately following the midterm exam, project groups will meet in class to nail down the details of their planned project. Each team will then make a brief (4-minute) minute presentation the following week to solicit feedback on their plans from other members of the class. Each team will produce a single written report and will present a 12-minute demonstration of their project during the last class session.

Both the Professor and the Teaching Assistant will be available for consultation with project teams by appointment. Because project teams will be working with a diverse array of technologies and application environments, this assistance will necessarily focus more on strategies than details.

Projects are required to make substantial use of at least two of the key technologies introduced in the course, integrated in a manner that is appropriate for their intended application:

Projects are also required to include significant real content; mock-ups that contain only a limited quantity of content for demonstration purposes would not be acceptable.

For your 4-minute presentation in the class session after the midterm, your objective should be to solicit reactions that might change theway you think about your project. You should use three slides: one to describe your goals, one that illustrates what a user would see, and one that describes the scope (i.e., what limitations you anticipate). This presentation is not graded. This presentation should be given by one person, but it should reflect the ideas of your entire team. The time constraint must be rigidly enforced if we are to stay within the scheduled class period.

For your 12-minute final presentation, your objective should be to help people to understand what you did and to share with your classmates some of the unique things that you have learned. This presentation should be given by the two members of the group that did not present in the 4-minute presentation. The structure of this presentation will naturally vary depending on the nature of your project, but to the extent possible you should try to help your classmates to actually experience the use of what you have created in some way. As with all presentations, the time constraint must be rigidly enforced if we are to stay within the scheduled class period.

The sole role of the project report is to convey information that cannot be conveyed as effectively during the final project presentation. The key here is the content, not the style of the report. So there are essentially no style guidelines except that I would like to be able to understand it (so it is helpful if it is well written), and I would like it to be reasonably concise (in my mind, about 5 pages, single spaced). The content of the report should address at least:

Of course, different groups will devote more or less space to each of these, and some groups will add other things. For example, some groups might talk about changes that they made to their vision of who their customer really was along the way as they learned more. Others might talk about suggestions for supportng project groups in future semesters that would extend their capabilities. Others might want to write about group dynamics (perhaps as a form of "group therapy":). So there is no cookbook recipe for a good project report. The key is to learn a lot, and to describe what you have learned.

Teams should discuss their project plans with the professor no later than the planning session following the midterm exam. It is important that the chosen project be sufficiently substantial to represent a significant accomplishment, but that it not be so complex that completion within the available time would be unlikely. Teams may select any topic for their project, but they should be careful to select a project for which the required content can be obtained in the available time. The following topics are offered as examples (which nobody has every chosen!):

The most exceptional project of the semester may be nominated for the Deans Award. Some professional societies also offer awards for which you can compete (e.g., from the the Art Libraries Society)

Here are some example projects from prior semesters that are still available on the Web. Some additional projects can probably be found by following links from my home page during earlier semesters using the Internet Archive.

Doug Oard