Introduction on final year project
A good introduction to a final year project should tell the reader what the project is about without assuming special knowledge and without introducing any specific material that might obscure the overview. It should anticipate and combine the main points described in more detail in the rest of the project report.
Also, importantly, it should excite the reader about the project, to encourage them to read the whole report. Normally it should include such things as:
- The aim(s) or goal(s) of the project;
- The intended audience or “beneficiaries” of the work done;
- The scope of the project;
- The approach used in carrying out the project;
- Assumptions on which the work is based; and
- A broad summary of important outcomes.
The “Background” on final year project
The purpose of the final year project Background section is to provide the typical reader with information that they cannot be expected to know, but which they will need to know in order to fully understand and appreciate the rest of the report.
It should explain why the project is addressing the problem described in the report, indicate an awareness of other work relevant to this problem and show clearly that the problem has not been solved by anyone else.
This section may describe such things as:
- The wider context of the project;
- The problem that has been identified;
- Likely stakeholders within the problem area;
- Any theory associated with the problem area;
- Any constraints on the approach to be adopted;
- Existing solutions relevant to the problem area, and why these are unsuitable or insufficient in this particular case;
- Methods and tools that your solution may be based on or use to solve the problem;
- and so on.
The wider context of the final year project includes such things as its non-computing aspects. So, for example, if you are producing software or any other products, including business recommendations, for a specific organisation then you should describe aspects of that organisation’s business that are relevant to the project.
Relevant existing products, documents or artefacts that you should mention could be ones that, for example,
- Are similar to the one you are proposing;
- Support your project;
- Your project aims to extend or replace; demonstrate the “deficiencies” your project intends to address.
You need only describe things that will be unfamiliar to the potential reader, or are unique to the organisation or topic your project addresses. Long descriptions of details are to be avoided and references to suitable sources of detailed information should be given instead.
Other background information of your final year project could consist of the sequence of events leading up to the present situation or the results of earlier investigations. You could also discuss such things as any cost or time constraints imposed on the project.
Your final year project background section should end with a clear statement of the research questions problem your project is trying to answer. These will reflect the aim of your project, but will be different in that they explain the problem you are attempting to solve, e.g.,
The aim of this project is to develop an SEO strategy for Fatherprada that will improve the survivability of Fatherprada in the face of increasing global competition.
In order to develop an SEO strategy, it will be necessary to identify key stakeholders and determine their vision for the organisation at the end of the strategic planning timeframe, assess the likely outcome, in terms of the organisation’s survivability, of maintaining the current strategy and develop and assess an alternative set of activities to achieve the stated vision.