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Teaching larger software engineering project courses at the end of a computing curriculum is a way for students to learn some aspects of real-world jobs in industry. Such courses, often referred to as capstone courses, are effective for learning how to apply the skills they have acquired in, for example, design, test, and configuration management. However, these courses are typically performed in small teams, giving only a limited realistic perspective of problems faced when working in real companies. This paper describes an alternative approach to classic capstone projects, with the aim of being more realistic from an organizational, process, and communication perspective. This methodology, called the company approach, is described by intended learning outcomes, teaching/learning activities, and assessment tasks. The approach is implemented and evaluated in a larger Master's student course.
Date of Publication: Nov. 2012