The scheduled class times in SIS for SWEN-561/562 Software Engineering Project I/II are Tuesday and Thursday from 5:30 - 6:50pm. On one of those days each week, you will have your project sponsor meeting. These meetings have typically started at 5pm. Our sponsors generally said that this was the most convenient time for them to meet with their senior project team. We are maintaining the 5pm start time with a nominal 6:30pm end time for project sponsor meetings since the 14-week term schedule does not have any classes scheduled between 4:50 - 5:30pm. Senior project teams also generally meet on the other day when not holding the project sponsor meeting. The team can decide when to start those meetings possibly with input from the faculty coach some of whom meet with the team on the non-project sponsor meeting day.
Can I register for another course offered at the same time as the Senior Project course?
You can not register for another course during those times. You must be available for meetings during those time periods because we tell the sponsors to be available for meetings with the students then. Also, it is when your faculty coach is available. The multiple sessions of end-of-term presentations are scheduled during those times. We also schedule mandatory "all student" meetings during those periods.
How are teams and projects assigned? When will this happen?
The faculty form the teams and assign projects to each team. You will rank your three top projects, and one project you do not want to work on. You can also, optionally, specify a student who you would like to have on your team and someone you would prefer not to have on your team. There are no guarantees that these requests will all be honored. The faculty will honor these requests as best as can be done while balancing the educational objectives of senior project for all students. Teams and project assignments are announced prior to the start of senior project.
What is the deal with this project agreement I have to sign?
RIT policy (C3.0 INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY POLICY) gives ownership of any work done as part of coursework to the student who created it. There is an exception in this policy (Section 5.B.2) that allows for students to be requested to assign rights to their work to RIT or others in exchange for access to certain project work. You will see that each project sponsor has selected one of three approaches for dealing with the potential intellectual property that a team creates. Each student working on a sponsor's project will be required to sign the agreement associated with the approach that sponsor selected. This will be the Student Course Project Intellectual Property and Non-Disclosure Agreement, the Student Course Project Limited Use and Non-Disclosure Agreement, or the Student Open Source Course Project Agreement. Please look at these three project types and consider them when you make your project selections. Note that the RIT policy does not require you to sign an agreement, or put your work into an open source community. If you would prefer to maintain all rights to the work done during senior project you should alert the Senior Project Coordinator before team and project assignments are made. The software engineering faculty will then create a class project for you to work on as your senior project.
What is the effect of having worked for a project sponsor?
Having worked for a project sponsor does not automatically eliminate you from consideration to work on that sponsor's project. We are concerned about two things, both related to you working on a senior project that is directly related to project work you did on co-op.
For the educational objectives of senior project, we want all students to come to the project with similar levels of experience in the project details. Students will have different levels of experience with the domain and technologies involved which is good for team diversity. If one student has indepth knowledge of the project, this would tend to make that student the presumed team leader, and the team will not have the same experience of learning the domain area and requirements for the project.
Also, we do not want project sponsors to view the senior project as an unpaid continuation of co-op. There are different purposes and expectations for co-op and senior project, and we want to make sure the project sponsor realizes that. When a sponsor comes with a project proposal and makes reference to students who have worked on this project before, we make the department's concerns clear to the sponsor, and indicate that there are no guarantees that any of those students would be placed on the project.
How can I game the project selection process?
Your project preferences is the only place where you have much control, and then there are still no guarantees. If you want to maximize your probablity of getting your first choice project, choose a project that does not have a high level of student subscription. There is a strong bias to assign a project a team of students who ranked the project as high as possible. Projects with low subscription are assigned students before projects with high subscription. If Project A has only a few students selecting it as their first choice, and Project B has 15 or more students ranking it first, Project A will be assigned students first. Even if one or two of the 15 students ranking Project B at the top are used to fill out the Project A team based on a second or third choice preference, there will still be many top choice selections available to make a Project B team. The creation of project teams is an iterative process that balances many competing goals as best as possible.
What if I change my mind about project selection or made a mistake when I completed the survey?
If this happens just complete the preferences survey again sometime before the survey closes. Try to enter your name the same way as you did with your original survey. We will use the information you provide on your last survey completion during composition of the teams.
Should students who want to work together have the same project choices?
This is not necessary. If two students, who both indicate they want to work with each other, have different project selections, it provides the coordinator with additional assignment flexibility in two ways. First, it provides more projects where the pair of students could be assigned by taking the union of their preferneces viewing it that if one student ranks the project then it is good for both of them. Second, if it is not possible to assign both students to the same project, it provides the flexibility to split the pair in an effort to give each student his or her first choice project, for example.
What if I do not give a full set of preferences including a fourth "assigned" project, or I put multiple projects as my first choice?
The senior project coordinator will consider that the bonus round was just entered and views missing or inconsistent, e.g. multiple choices in one selection category, as wild card choices meaning that any project can fit there. This makes for much easier team assignment.
Senior project teams can request space in the projects lab for their work. This will usually be granted for teams that have a server to maintain or some project-specific hardware that the team must work with. More information is in the guide to facilities use for senior projects
Departmental project requirements
Do we have to use the provided time tracking spreadsheets?
Tracking individual and team time is a requirement. The requirement is that the actual data be archived on a weekly basis on the SE department project website. You do not need to use the reporting spreadsheets made available to you. If you are using some external service, such as Google spreadsheets, you will meet the requirements as long as you copy the data to locations under SE department control, i.e. not just link to data on another website.