King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals

College of Computer Sciences and Engineering

Department of Computer Engineering


COE 485: Senior Design Project


Catalog Description:

This course is designed to give students the experience of tackling a realistic engineering problem. The intent is to show how to put theoretical knowledge gained into practical use by starting from a word description of a problem and proceeding through various design phases to end up with a practical engineering solution. Various projects are offered by the faculty members in their respective specialization areas. The project advisor guides the student in conducting feasibility study, preparation of specifications, and the methodology for the design. Detailed design and implementation of the project are carried out followed by testing, debugging, and documentation. An oral presentation and a final report are given at the end of the semester.


Prerequisite: Senior standing plus whatever prerequisites stated by the faculty members in their project proposals.


Reference Book:

Robert Angus and Norman Gundersen, ``Planning, Performing, and Controlling Projects: Principles and Applications'', Prentice-Hall, First Edition, 1997.

Also MS Project has a very useful help and tutorials in Project Management.


Instructor/Coordinator: Dr. Adnan Gutub, Office:  22/145, Tel: 1723,

Course URL:


Procedures and Schedule:

1.      The coordinator will collect project proposals from faculty members and make it available to the students by the beginning of the term.

2.      Students are required to carefully examine these proposals, possibly discuss them with the faculty members and then choose a project.

3.      When a project is chosen, all parties involved (students and supervisors) must sign a commitment form (obtained from the coordinator). Please note the following important issues:

a.       Students are advised to select a project based on their background, capabilities and interest.

b.      The senior project is not the place to learn too many new theoretical stuff but rather how to apply the knowledge already gained to a practical project development.

c.       Also keep in mind that the grade does not come only from the supervisor. So the project has to be of enough merit to get good grades from the examiners. The student bares the responsibility of selecting a good project; poor projects get low grades even if they are executed flawlessly.

d.      Projects are expected to have design part. Only literature survey is not considered a project.

e.       In the case of multi-student project, the project description must contain enough details to differentiate the task of each student. Also the action plan should clearly define distinct tasks for each member of the team.

f.        All Project presentations must be done by using Power point. Presentations are usually 15-20 minutes.

4.      By the third week the students are required to submit a project proposal detailing, in their own words, their project description, deliverables and the action plan.

5.      By the ninth week, a progress report detailing the work movement is to be submitted.

6.      By the end of week thirteen of the term (beginning week fourteen at most), a final report should be submitted and a final presentation is give.




Items and Policies Affecting the Grades:

The grades are divided among the course coordinator, project supervisor and the final examining committee. Below are the items that will affect your grade.


1.      Quality of Action plan (Week 3) and Progress Report (Week 9).                                                 

2.      Project Implementation

§         Engineering approach: System design, critical examination of different approaches and justification for the selected approach(s). The utilization of basic engineering science in the design.

§         Completion of the design.

§         Design verification and testing: Simulations, modeling, emulation, prototyping (when appropriate) and testing.

3.  Work habits

§         Motivation

§         Organization

§         self-reliance

§         planning

§         critical thinking

1.      Project Documentation and Final Report (Week 13, 14)

§        Compliance with the report writing guidelines

§        Clarity of the problem description and proposed solution

§        System design, approach selection and design segmentation

§        Implementation/Testing report and any ‘product manuals’ if the project requires it

2.      Final Presentation (Week 14, 15)

§         Clarity of stated problem and solution

§         Quality of presentation (organization, body language …etc)

§         Discussion (how the student answers the committee questions which demonstrate his understanding of the project and its socio-economical aspects).     


Important notes:

·        Students that are not regularly meeting with their project advisor will receive Warnings and a ``DN'' will be given to them if this situation persists. Students should meet weekly with their supervisors to discuss the work progress and determine future directions.

·        In connection with the progress and final reports, it is prohibited to copy or past text, figures, diagrams, or plots from other sources (books, articles, etc.) without referencing the original source. If you absolutely need to refer to figures, diagrams, or plots that appear in other sources, then you should include clear reference to their authors in the caption. An ‘F’ grade will be given to the student if this rule is not observed.


IC Grade Policy:

An IC grade will only be granted with the supervisor's consent. Students who do not submit a final report or an IC request (with appropriate justification and supervisor approval) shall receive an 'F' grade.


Students who obtain an IC grade in the current term need to be in contact with the advisor and coordinator in order to change their IC grade. If an IC grade is not changed, the registrar will give an automatic ‘F’ to the student. Normally, IC students will be required to submit their final report at least three weeks before the end of the project completion term. Also, these students should be ready to deliver a presentation on their senior project two weeks before the term ends.