COMPGM98 - Individual Project (MSc CSML)

This database contains 2016-17 versions of the syllabuses. For current versions please see here.

Year MSc
Prerequisites Successful completion of core and option courses within the MSc Computational Statistics and Machine Learning
Term 2-3 and summer
Taught By Various academic staff supervisors. Co-ordinator = David Barber (100%)
Aims To give students experience of undertaking and completing a large piece of work, applying techniques learned throughout the programme, including the technical skills of analysis, design and implementation.
Learning Outcomes To be able to: work individually developing a major project, plan and coordinate development activities, make realistic work commitments, present the work done effectively to a deadline.


There is no set syllabus: students identify their chosen project area and are allocated a supervisor who is a member of academic staff. The supervisor provides support and guidance. The project runs from immediately after the examination period (May/June) with the students responsible for organising themselves and their work, with advice from their supervisor. Students are expected to meet with their supervisor on a regular basis, as agreed with the supervisor. A typical project will comprise approximately 4 weeks of background reading, analysis and design, followed by 12 weeks of implementation and finally 4 weeks to write an in-depth dissertation.
Exceptionally a student may undertake a project that does not require programming skills. However a student undertaking such a project would be required to demonstrate an exceptionally high level of skill in the areas of analysis synthesis critical assessment and design. It is not a soft option and students are advised that such a project is typically much harder than a 'programming' project.
Some projects are done in conjunction with other departments of the College. Others are done in conjunction with external organisations although supervision is always provided within the department.

Project Report
The main report documents the results of the project. The deadline for submission is normally the first week of September. The project has a weighting equivalent to 4 course units so represents four twelfths of the MSc programme.
Formatting Details
The dissertation text (defined as everything except title page, table of contents, references and appendices) should typically be between 30 and 100 pages in 12 point type and 1.5 or double spacing. The total dissertation length (main text together with appendices) should under no circumstances exceed 120 pages.
Students should place their code in an online repository and provide access details to it in their dissertation.
Writing the dissertation is LaTeX is optional, but strongly recommended.

Method of Instruction:

Individual working with support from the project supervisor.


The course has the following assessment component:

  • Reports (100 project report hours, 100%)

To pass this course, students must:

  • Obtain an overall pass mark of 50%