Computer Science

ECM3435 - IT Consulting 1 (2019)

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MODULE TITLEIT Consulting 1 CREDIT VALUE15
MODULE CODEECM3435 MODULE CONVENERDr Vladimir Ryabov (Coordinator)
DURATION: TERM 1 2 3
DURATION: WEEKS 0 11 0
Number of Students Taking Module (anticipated) 15
DESCRIPTION - summary of the module content

***DEGREE APPRENTICESHIP STUDENTS ONLY***

An IT consultant requires a broad set of skills in business analysis, solutions development, network infrastructure, data, cyber security etc. They use their consulting skills in order to advise clients on how to best utilise technology to meet their business objectives, overcome problems and increase productivity. They provide strategic guidance to clients with regard to technology and facilitate changing business processes through enhancements to technology solutions. They provide technical assistance, and are often responsible for providing training.

AIMS - intentions of the module

The aim of this module is to give you basic competence in IT consulting skills, including an understanding of the business context in which consultants operate and the client relationship, developed in part through the use of real-world case studies, the use of tools and techniques for solving business problems, and skill in gathering requirements for IT solutions.

INTENDED LEARNING OUTCOMES (ILOs) (see assessment section below for how ILOs will be assessed)

On successful completion of this module, you should be able to:

Module Specific Skills and Knowledge:

1. Participate in walk-throughs for IT, to identify and document key risks within a client’s organisation.

2. Define system level business requirements by interviewing staff  

3. Prepare detailed specifications for all requests for development/modification to the system.

4. Perform scoping processes such as definition of approach, scope and resource requirements

5. Liaise with delivery project managers and manage client expectations

 

Discipline Specific Skills and Knowledge:

6. Recognise how consulting ties into project management, business analysis and business management

7. Recognise the barriers to solving problems or maximizing opportunities

8. Recognise the different structured process approaches for consulting

9. Recognise how to frame/define business problems objectively before solving them

10. Recognise how to discover hidden requirements using probing techniques to establish trust, using open- and closed-ended questions effectively, and avoiding leading questions

Personal and Key Transferable/ Employment Skills and  Knowledge:

11. Communicate orally and in writing

12. Solve problems creatively

13. Think analytically and critically

14. Organise your own work

15. Work to a deadline

16. Collaborate and negotiate

 

SYLLABUS PLAN - summary of the structure and academic content of the module

Introduction (1 week)

•          The business context for consulting

•          Relationship of consulting with other disciplines

           o          Project management

           o          Business analysis

           o          Business management

•          Different structured process approaches for consulting

•          Introduction to case studies used throughout module

 

Engaging with the client (3 weeks)

•          The commercial relationship; lifecycle

•          Procurement processes

•          Performing scoping processes such as definition of approach, scope and resource requirements

 

Solving business problems (4 weeks)

•          Identifying problems; framing/defining business problems

•          Participating in walkthroughs for IT, to identify and document key risks within a client’s organisation

•          Problem-solving techniques

•          Barriers to solving problems or maximising opportunities

 

Requirements gathering (4 weeks)

•          Defining requirements; establishing trust; interviewing; open-ended, closed and leading questions

•          Probing techniques; discovering hidden requirements

•          Preparing detailed specifications for system development/modification requests

LEARNING AND TEACHING
LEARNING ACTIVITIES AND TEACHING METHODS (given in hours of study time)
Scheduled Learning & Teaching Activities 22.00 Guided Independent Study 128.00 Placement / Study Abroad 0.00
DETAILS OF LEARNING ACTIVITIES AND TEACHING METHODS
Category Hours of study time Description
Scheduled learning and teaching activities 18 Online learning activity, including virtual workshops, synchronous and asynchronous virtual lectures and other e-learning.
Scheduled learning and teaching activities 2 Lectures
Scheduled learning and teaching activities 2 Group workshops
Guided independent study 128 Coursework, exam preparation and self-study

 

ASSESSMENT
FORMATIVE ASSESSMENT - for feedback and development purposes; does not count towards module grade
Form of Assessment Size of Assessment (e.g. duration/length) ILOs Assessed Feedback Method
Contribution to class discussion N/A 1-16 Verbal
       
       
       
       

 

SUMMATIVE ASSESSMENT (% of credit)
Coursework 60 Written Exams 40 Practical Exams 0
DETAILS OF SUMMATIVE ASSESSMENT
Form of Assessment % of Credit Size of Assessment (e.g. duration/length) ILOs Assessed Feedback Method
Problem-solving and requirements gathering assignment 60 3,000 words 1-16 Written
Written exam 40 2 hours 1-15 Written
         
         
         

 

DETAILS OF RE-ASSESSMENT (where required by referral or deferral)
Original Form of Assessment Form of Re-assessment ILOs Re-assessed Time Scale for Re-assessment
Problem-solving and requirements gathering assignment (60%) Problem-solving and requirements gathering assignment 1-17 Completed over summer with a deadline in August
Written exam (40%) Written exam (2 hours) 1-15 August assessment period
       

 

RE-ASSESSMENT NOTES

Deferral – if you miss an assessment for certificated reasons judged acceptable by the Mitigation Committee, you will normally be deferred in the assessment. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of deferral will not be capped and will be treated as it would be if it were your first attempt at the assessment.

Referral – if you have failed the module overall (i.e. a final overall module mark of less than 40%) you may be required to sit a referral. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of referral will be capped at 40%.

RESOURCES
INDICATIVE LEARNING RESOURCES - The following list is offered as an indication of the type & level of
information that you are expected to consult. Further guidance will be provided by the Module Convener

ELE: vle.exeter.ac.uk

 

Reading list for this module:

Type Author Title Edition Publisher Year ISBN Search
Set Freedman, R. The IT Consultant : A Commonsense Framework for Managing the Client Relationship 1st Pfeiffer 2000 ISBN-13: 978-0787 [Library]
CREDIT VALUE 15 ECTS VALUE 7.5
PRE-REQUISITE MODULES None
CO-REQUISITE MODULES None
NQF LEVEL (FHEQ) 6 AVAILABLE AS DISTANCE LEARNING No
ORIGIN DATE Tuesday 10 July 2018 LAST REVISION DATE Wednesday 18 September 2019
KEY WORDS SEARCH IT, Consulting