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Systems Development Essentials using Agile

Business analysts, solution developers, project managers and anyone who needs a thorough practical understanding of the various systems development approaches including the Agile framework. Systems Development Essentials is also a Specialist Practitioner module on the BCS International Diploma in Business Analysis.

You’ll also be given a comprehensive Systems Development Essentials course manual, containing additional information and guidance on further reading.

Select specific date to see price, venue and full details.

Learning Objectives

Calling all prospective Systems Developers and Business Analysts! Does the idea of gaining an overview of the issues and concepts involved in developing quality solutions that satisfy business requirements by using Agile approaches sound appealing to you? If the answer’s yes, then this Systems Development Essentials course is for you. You’ll study a number of systems development life cycles, both defined and evolutionary, and examine the context in which different lifecycles could be applied before focusing on an Agile approach.

Some of the key areas we’ll look at include examining how the systems development effort can be organised, understanding requirements, stakeholders and roles in an agile environment and considering techniques that support iterative development such as prototyping, hothousing and scenarios.

Presented to you by one of the expert training consultants pictured below, each member of our Systems Development Essentials training team bring their substantial experience of systems development and Agile development projects to the programme.


  • Quality driven systems development
  • Development lifecycles (Linear and Evolutionary)
  • Solution development approaches (Scrum, XP. DSDM, RUP)
  • Defining the system
  • Roles in systems development
  • Requirements in an Agile environment

Day 2 -        

  • Obtaining requirements
  • The use of facilitated workshops
  • Documenting requirements
  • Introduction to user stories
  • Selected models to support systems development (UML Use cases and Class diagrams)

Day3 -        

  • Elaborating the solution
  • Iterative system development (managing and estimating iterations)
  • Systems design and testing
  • Considerations for systems deployment
  • Automated support for systems development


None, but the course assumes a basic knowledge of IT systems.

Course Content

Systems Development Essentials using Agile (a three-day course)

Course Content


  • Characteristics of software quality
  • The purposes, objectives and tasks of systems development
  • Roles and responsibilities in systems development
  • Technical and interpersonal skills of the business analysts and solution developers

Systems architecture

  • Enterprise, systems and infrastructure levels of architecture
  • Inputs at an enterprise level
  • Inputs at system and infrastructure level
  • Model Driven Architecture

Development approaches

  • Bespoke development
  • Commercial off the shelf (COTS) software package solutions
  • Configuring and customising COTS software package solutions
  • Component-based systems development
  • Service-based solutions and other approaches
  • Evolutionary prototyping

Systems development lifecycles

  • Waterfall model
  • V model
  • Incremental model
  • Spiral (evolutionary) model
  • Advantages and disadvantages of each approach
  • Selection of an appropriate development approach

Methods and approaches

  • Detailed study of the Agile approach including life cycle, deliverables and roles
  • Iterative systems development using the DSDM Atern methodology
  • Other agile development methodologies (The Unified Process (UP), Scrum, eXtreme Programming)

Modelling techniques

  • Models of the Unified Modeling Language (UML)
  • Interpretation and principles of:
    • Use case diagram
    • Use case description
    • Class diagram
    • State machine diagram
  • Validating models using a CRUD matrix

Requirements in an Agile environment

  • Fact finding approaches:
    • Workshops
    • Interviewing
    • Questionnaires
    • Scenario analysis, storyboarding, user stories and hot-housing
    • Model office and focus groups
  • Functional requirements definition
  • Non-functional requirements definition
  • Documenting & prioritising requirements
  • Human aspects of systems investigation and introducing change

Iterative systems development

  • Features of iterative development approach
  • Prototyping
  • Categories of prototype
  • Timeboxing
  • Prototype development plans

Systems design, implementation and maintenance

  • Design principles and constraints (legal, ethical, financial)
  • Systems deployment and hand over
  • Post-implementation reviews
  • Different types of maintenance
  • Estimation and development planning

Quality assurance

  • Definitions of software quality
  • The V model
  • Requirements-driven testing
  • Static testing: types of walkthrough and inspection
  • Post-project reviews

CASE and CAST tools

  • Features of Computer-aided Software Engineering (CASE) and Computer-aided Software Testing tools (CAST)
  • Life-cycle coverage
  • Requirements traceability
  • Advantages and disadvantages of software development support tools

Exams & Certification

During this three day course you’ll receive all the training you need to prepare for the BCS Systems Development Essentials certificate examination, which is held on the final afternoon of the course.

A pass means you’re another step closer to achieving the BCS International Diploma in Solution Development. Incidentally, the course is also a specialist option for the BCS International Diploma in Business Analysis and is approved as consistent with the IIBA BABoK version 3.0. It also supports SFIA skills Prog, level 5. 

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