The interim report is worth 25% of the total project mark. It should cover the results of the first stage of the project. This report usually consists of the results of the background study and a detailed analysis of the problem with a description of an approach of how to address the problem. The precise nature of this report depends on the project and the agreed deliverables for the interim report in the initial plan to indicate the progress made on the project to account for 25% of the project. For example, it may for some projects also contain an initial version of a final deliverable or some other building block of the overall project. The interim report forms part I of the project and has to be submitted towards the end of the first semester. See your project details in PATS for the submission deadline.
Please check your initial plan in which you should have clearly outlined the deliverables for the interim report. Your supervisor and/or moderator may have left additional comments on your plan on PATS to tell you whether these deliverables are suitable and what they expect for the interim report. Also discuss carefully with your supervisor what you should be including in the interim report. You can deviate from the initial plan, if you have a good reason for this, and should explain this in the report.
The interim report should be at most 5,000 words long. General guidance on project report structures is available in Arranging Material and Structuring the Project Report. A possible structure for your interim report is:
|Table of Contents|
|Table of Figures|
|Table of Abbreviations|
If you are implementing a piece of software the “Approach” section above would be the “Specification”, possibly with a discussion of how to realise this. For a project addressing a “softer” problem the Approach section may be “Selection of Approach”. If instead you intend to compare algorithms it may a “Description of Algorithms” and if you intend to design and and analyse an algorithm it could be “Algorithm Designs”. The Conclusions section should briefly conclude only your interim report.
You should adjust the structure of the interim report to your specific project and choose suitable sections to represent this. Please discuss the structure and contents of your interim report with your supervisor. The three main sections / topics you should be covering are (unless differently agreed upon in the initial plan):
The introduction should describe what your project is about, outline the problem you intend to work on and its context and what you aim to achieve.
The background should cover the information that a typical reader cannot be expected to know, but which they will need to know in order to fully understand the project. This covers information about related work that you may either use in your project or that attempts to solve a similar problem.
The approach is a project specific part and should cover details about how you intend to solve the problem. It should cover the deliverables your prescribed in the initial plan for your interim report. This could be the requirements and specification with a design of the whole or part of the problem, or simply the approach you intend to use to gather the requirements and validate your models. You may also describe the algorithms you intend to implement for a more research oriented project. Alternatively it could also cover the design and implementation of a smaller component of your complete system.
The conclusions should be a summary of the main results and the aims of your interim report. You can also mention your future work, intended to be executed for the final report, and to link it to the final report. In some cases you may also wish to provide an update timeplan, from the initial plan, describing how you are continuing the project until the final report submission. This timeplan could be included in as an appendix of the interim report.
After the submission deadline your supervisor and moderator assess the interim report independently of each other. They will submit the marks and their comments on your report on PATS where you will be able to view these. You will be informed by e-mail when these results are available (after the marking deadline as soon as both marks are available). You will have the opportunity to discuss the results and the feedback on the interim report with your supervisor at your regular meeting.
The criteria for assessing the interim report are listed below. Please read these carefully as it will help you to see what your assessors will be looking for in your report. Also take into account what you promised to produce for the interim report in your initial plan, and your supervisor's and moderator's comments on this on PATS. How far you managed to produce these deliverables is part of the interim report assessment.
A mark out of 25 is given on the Report, representing 25% of the total mark. The mark awarded for the Interim Report will be carried over from the first semester, and will be added to the marks given for the initial plan and the final report to give a total mark from each assessor. If their total marks differ by less than 10, the final mark for the project will be the average between the supervisor's and moderator's total mark. If the difference is 10 or greater, they meet together to discuss the reasons for the difference, and try to come to an agreement. If they cannot agree, a third marker will be appointed.
You can resubmit your interim report at any time until the deadline and your supervisor and moderator will not be able to mark this or make any comments online before the deadline. Please discuss your interim report with your supervisor at your regular meetings. You can upload parts of the report onto PATS so that your supervisor can look at these (or give the report in any other way to your supervisor). Just upload the files in the file upload section and your supervisor and moderator can see these there (you can, but do not have to submit them until you have the final version).
Your supervisor and moderator will assess your interim report according to the following criteria:
The scale for this assessment is: