Systems Analysis & Design (VIP)



The world is constantly changing, with new and emerging digital technologies bringing many challenges to the commercial world. Organisations have to respond to these changes in addition to responding to new markets and different ways of doing their business. The systems they use to run their businesses have to respond quickly to these transformations. Organisations can find themselves in a situation where they have to regularly upgrade old systems or develop new ones in order to continue operating successfully in the evolving competitive business environment. Before any system can be upgraded or a new system developed, the system requirements have to be analysed and the system designed, whether this is for a database system, or a web, game or mobile application, and failure to do this adequately could lead to a costly systems failure.

This unit explores the processes of systems analysis and design using two methodologies – the traditional systems development lifecycle methodology providing a comprehensive structured framework and the agile methodology with different framework models developed with the emphasis on variations of iterative incremental modelling. To provide perspective, students will examine the models in both these methodologies. They will consider the particular strengths and weaknesses of the two methodologies and examine the suitability of the methodologies using different examples. Topics included in this unit are: examining the business case for a new system or for upgrading an existing one, looking at traditional and agile systems analysis methodologies and evaluating the merits of each, considering the implications of moving from using the traditional methods of analysis and design to agile methods on analysts, designers and developers in an organisation, and applying systems design tools and techniques.

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to produce a business case, and analyse a system and its requirements using a suitable methodology. They will be able to design a system suitable for their application. Theoretical understanding will be translated into practical skills through actual systems investigations and students will become confident in the use of particular tools and techniques relevant to the methodology chosen. Although for practical purposes, it is likely that one particular methodology and related tools and techniques will be used, it is important that students understand that others are available. As a result students will develop skills such as communication literacy, critical thinking, analysis, reasoning and interpretation, which are crucial for gaining employment and developing academic competence.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the unit students will be able to:

LO1. Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the traditional and agile systems analysis methodologies.

LO2. Produce a feasibility study for a system for a business-related problem.

LO3. Analyse their system using a suitable methodology.

LO4. Design the system to meet user and system requirements.

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