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This is an archived syllabus from 2013-2014

COMP61532 Pattern-Based Software Development syllabus 2013-2014

COMP61532 Pattern-Based Software Development

Level 6
Credits: 15
Enrolled students: 29

Course leader: Liping Zhao

Additional staff: view all staff


  • Pre-Requisite (Compulsory): COMP61511

Assessment methods

  • 50% Written exam
  • 50% Coursework
Sem 2 P3 Lecture 2.19 Mon 10:00 - 10:00 -
Sem 2 P3 Lab 2.25abcd Mon 14:00 - 14:00 -
Themes to which this unit belongs
  • Software Engineering 2
  • Computer Science units for ACSwITM students (semester 2)


A software pattern is 'a solution to a recurring problem in a given context' (Grady Booch). Patterns capture existing best practice, and so are identified or discovered rather than invented. Software patterns first became widely known through the famous 1992 'gang of four' (GoF) book, called Design Patterns, although the notion of patterns in this sense originated with the architect Christopher Alexander in the 1970s. Design patterns are solutions to recurring software design problems; like other patterns they have names (e.g. Composite, Proxy) which form a language for communication between Software Engineers. Since the GoF book, many other design patterns have been identified.

The use of patterns spread rapidly from design to all other aspects of software development, so nowadays there are patterns for coding, testing, requirements capture, software architecture, and so on. More recently some organisations have focussed on documenting software patterns from a business rather than a technical perspective. IBM's 'patterns for e-business' project is probably the most comprehensive and useful of such efforts.


This course unit will introduce students to a wide range of software patterns, with particular emphasis on design patterns and e-business patterns. As well as a theoretical understanding of patterns students will gain practical experience of applying them through laboratory case studies.


  • Introduction to patterns; pattern descriptions; types of software pattern; problem-oriented vs. solution-oriented patterns
  • Overview of IBM Patterns for e-business and e-business architectural design
  • E-business patterns: Self-service, Collaboration, Information Aggregation, Extended Enterprise; Integration patterns; Composite patterns.
  • Case study applying e-business patterns and their relationship to business processes
  • Introduction to business process modelling
  • Design patterns: Singleton, Strategy, Composite, Proxy, Item Description, State, Command, Observer. Relationship to GRASP patterns.
  • Software architecture patterns and Service-oriented architectures
  • Examples of patterns for coding, testing and concurrency control.

Teaching methods


20 hours of lectures.


40 hours of labs

Feedback methods

The feedback to the coursework on this course will be provided in written.

Study hours


  • The notion of a pattern and of different kinds of software patterns;
  • The relationship between business requirements and e-business application architectures;
  • IBM Patterns for e-business as solutions for e-business application system design;
  • Commonly used software patterns, especially design patterns
  • The use of patterns for designing an e-business system based on a real world case study.

Intellectual skills

  • Demonstrate a good understanding of IBM Patterns for e-business design and their approach;
  • Demonstrate a competence in applying patterns to the e-business design.
  • Demonstrate competence in selecting and applying design patterns to construct software

Practical skills

  • Apply the pattern approach to two practical situations, one focussing on e-business patterns and one on design patterns.

Transferable skills

  • Independently gather, sift, synthesise and organise material from a variety of sources, and critically evaluate the extent to which it might contribute to current developments in the field.
  • Improve one's own approach to professionalism through planning, monitoring, critical evaluation and reflection.
  • Demonstrate an ability to collaborate with other people through group work.
  • Prepare a coherent and well structured written report.

Employability skills

  • Analytical skills
  • Group/team working
  • Leadership
  • Project management
  • Problem solving
  • Research
  • Written communication

Learning outcomes

Programme outcomeUnit learning outcomesAssessment
A1Describe a range of software patterns giving examples of their use
  • Examination
B2 B3 C1Select and apply design patterns to practical software design problems
  • Examination
  • Group coursework
B2 B3 C1Select and apply e-business patterns to realistic business situations
  • Group coursework
  • Examination
D1Work effectively in a small team to achieve 2 and 3 above
  • Group coursework

Reading list

Applying UML and patterns: an introduction to Object-Oriented analysis and design and iterative development (3rd edition)Larman, Craig0131489062Prentice Hall2004

Additional notes

Course unit materials

Links to course unit teaching materials can be found on the School of Computer Science website for current students.