COMP 495/496 Project Manual
It is preferable that you select a suitable project supervisor from within the AU School of Computing and Information Systems, or other academic units or professional organizations. If you are unable to find an appropriate project supervisor, Athabasca University will make suggestions.
A project supervisor should at least have a master’s degree in computing science or a related area, or be a certified ISP (Information Systems Professional). The project supervisor must have access to email for communication with you and the course coordinator.
The role of the project supervisor is as follows:
- to assist you in preparing a project proposal that has clear and obtainable objectives;
- to identify materials (software, equipment, etc.) that will help you fulfill the project requirements;
- to provide verbal or written information to you; to ensure that the project consists of new work;
- to evaluate the project development and implementation with respect to the objectives and evaluation scheme agreed upon in the approved project proposal / learning contract;
- and to advise you when the you are preparing the project report.
The project supervisor acts as a representative of Athabasca University, and may or may not be a full-time employee of the University. If the project supervisor is not a full-time employee of Athabasca University, he or she may be paid a small honorarium consistent with average marking costs and tutor costs per student.
Student and Supervisor Credentials
When you submit a draft project proposal to the course coordinator, along with evidence that you have completed all the credits necessary to take COMP 495/496, the course coordinator must confirm that the proposed or recommended project supervisor has appropriate credentials and appears to understand and agree to her or his duties; that you are capable of proposing and completing the project; and that the project appears to be suitable. If the draft project proposal is approved, you will be given permission to register in the course.
Upon registration, you will have online access to the materials necessary for further development of the project proposal through the myAU portal. The course coordinator will have to make arrangements to provide course site access to any project supervisor from outside the University.
You will upload the completed project proposal to the appropriate link in the online course site. If the project proposal is acceptable to the course coordinator, the approved project proposal will serve as a learning contract between you and the project supervisor. You will then work independently with the project supervisor in completing the project. Contact with the course coordinator will be limited to unforeseen and exceptional circumstances that may affect the project’s progress, and that cannot be handled by the project supervisor (e.g., advice on Athabasca University regulations), and to reporting of any agreed-upon milestones.
You, your supervisor, course coordinator, and host site contact will initially agree on a rough schedule and milestones. These will be detailed for a maximum period of 4 weeks ahead, and sub-divided into 30- to 40-hour/team workload checkpoints. The remainder of the milestones will be “best guesses.”