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e-Grade- Exam Marks Submission System

The Scenario

As with other universities, The University of Intellect (UoI) uses an assessment process by which course and module marks are submitted to the university by individual lecturers. The marks will then be discussed by an examination board for approval and ratification. The fate of students in a particular course depends on the decision of the examination board for that course, which depends on the accuracy of information presented before it. UoI is facing a number of problems with its current student progression information system due to reported delays, errors and discrepancies in mark entries for modules and courses. In the past academic year, UoI received a number of complaints from both students and staff because of delays and/or errors in the preparation of final student results and course marks reports, as well as feedback to students. The university’s executive management team have taken the issue seriously and therefore wish to invest in the purchase of a new information system to help in the exam marks submission and the generation of the final marks reports to be presented to the examination board meetings in a timely and accurately manner. The university also wishes to grab this opportunity to improve its services to students and staff by allowing the students and staff to have access to relevant information in the student records. In addition, it wishes to employ mobile technologies such as SMS and Mobile Apps to notify students of changes to any of their assessments or results.

The university uses a number of systems to keep records of current students, such as the Student Records Information System (SRIS) and LDAP, which any new system must interact with seamlessly in order to prevent problems with duplicate information. The university has recently invested in an Assessment Moderation System (AMS) where all assessment materials are moderated internally and externally. All assessment materials are moderated internally by other staff members within the university, who are not involved in setting up the assessment. The materials then go through moderation by external examiners who are academic staff from other Universities. The AMS system is used (by moderators) in isolation of the new e-Grade system and will continue in this way. However, the e-Grade system shall use information made available in the AMS system during the process of the exam board meetings.

The aim is to produce an on-line web based system to help in the exam marks submission and the generation of the final results. The system would also be used to aid in preparing course mark reports to be presented before the examination board meeting for discussion and approval. When module tutors have all marks ready, they submit the marks for the module components (exams and/or assignments) to the system. Once they are in the system and after ratification by the exam board, the marks may be made available for students for viewing.

The user needs for the system includes the following features or functionality:

An assessment administrator would use the system to add and modify courses and modules within courses. Details of the courses and modules are entered including level, code, number of credits and final degrees.

New students are to be added into the system by the assessment administrator to be registered into a specific course.

Lecturers submit their marks for all the modules they teach using a variety of methods. For example, they may enter an individual mark for an individual student or they may use a bulk entry mode to enter marks for all components for all the students registered on the module, by uploading a file.

When all the marks are ready in the system and on the request of the assessment administrator (or assessment officer), the course marks report is generated containing the marks for each module (including each component mark and the module total mark) in the course and the decisions suggested to the board. At the end of the board meeting, the assessment administrator would record the final board decisions where the final decision is different from the one suggested by the system. All the information is presented online during the examination board meeting.

The decisions suggested by the system depend on the circumstances of each student and governed by the rules and regulations of the university; examples of these rules are presented below. However, broadly speaking the outline decision of the system would be one of the following:

  1. Proceed to next level (for non-final year students).
  1. Award degree and compute classification (for final year students; see rules and regulation for classification computation).
  2. Re-sit all failed modules (with list of modules and components to re-
  3. do)
  4. Repeat year with attendance.

The assessment officer or the assessment administrator may use the system to review the current status of the marks available in the system. For example, either of them may need to verify which module marks are already submitted and which still waiting to be entered into the system. These details may also be requested as an assessment progress report.

Students may use the system to view their results once their results have been discussed and approved by an authorised examination board.

The system may send update messages to the students in the case that their marks become available on the system or in the case of a change has been made.

Sample Rules

The decisions produced by the system are as follows:

  1. The pass mark of a module is 40%.
  2. If a student passes a particular module, then they will accumulate the number of credits associated with that module.
  3. If the student achieves the number of credits in their level, the decision is:
    1. Proceed to next level (non-final year students).
    2. Award Degree and compute classification (final year students).
  4. If the number of credits achieved by a student ≥ the number of credits in their level - 20 credits; and the level average mark ≥ 40%; and all

non-pass module marks are between 30 and 39 then the decision is:

  1. Proceed to next level with Automatic Compensation (AC) of

failed modules (non-final year students).

  1. Award degree with Automatic Compensation (AC) of failed

modules and compute classification (level 3).

  1. The examination board may grant discretionary compensation (DC) for one module, if the average level mark ≥ 40% and by doing so, the student may pass the year.
  2. If none of the above conditions then the decision is:
    1. Re-sit components (exam or assignment) for which they did

not achieve a pass mark, or ii. Repeat modules with attendance.

Tasks

Produce architecture documentation for the suggested solution showing multiple views of the solution. Your documentation should contain the following views:

  • Use Case View; a use case view should describe the users’ view of the system and should include the following:
    1. Identify and name the actors of the system.
    2. For each actor in the system, identify and name the use cases for the actor.
    3. Draw a detailed use case diagram for the system. Where possible use actor and use case relationships.
    4. For each use case, identify
      1. The primary and secondary actors.
      2. Pre-conditions Post-conditions iv. Triggers
  • The Physical and Logical View, including
    1. Deployment view.
    2. Component-and-Connector view.
    3. Identify any architectural styles that you have used in the system, with rationales for their use.
  • Security architecture: this view should capture any security requirements that you think the software developers must take into consideration when developing the application. Typically, this should contain:
    1. Issues related to service availability and component dependability.
    2. User types and privileges for access control.
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