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Systems Development Essentials using Agile Course

Designed for business analysts and anyone new to Agile software development, this course will give you a solid grounding in the essentials of systems development using Agile. Systems Development Essentials is a Specialist Practitioner module on the internationally recognised BCS Diploma in Business Analysis.

  • Classroom

    Course Details:

    Duration: 3 days

    Price: Virtual £1250*+VAT
    *includes BCS exam

    Next available course:

    Virtual Classroom
    Virtual Classroom
    Virtual Classroom
  • E-learning
Who is this course for?

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 (ISEB) International Diploma in Business Analysis.

About the course

An overview of the issues and concepts involved in developing quality business solutions using Agile, the Systems Development Essentials course is perfect for business analysts and anyone wishing to learn about Agile software development. 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.

Topics covered include examining how the systems development effort can be organised; understanding requirements; stakeholders and roles in an agile environment and techniques that support iterative development such as prototyping, hothousing and scenarios.

When combined with our Systems Modelling Techniques course, this module provides you with the core tools and techniques you’ll need to become an effective systems analyst, development team analyst or technical business analyst.

How is the course structured?
  • 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

To give you more of an idea of what you’ll learn and how the course will help you, here’s a quick guide to those three days.

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

For virtual courses a printed copy of the latest edition of the comprehensive course manual will be sent to your home address in good time for the start of your course. Our delegates tell us that having access to a physical document is beneficial as both a reference document and for taking notes during the course. In addition, a link will be emailed to you to enable you to access an electronic copy of the same comprehensive manual for convenient future reference.

Is there an exam?

Yes. During this three day course you’ll receive all the training you need to prepare for the BCS Systems Development Essentials exam. A pass will contribute (as a Specialist Practitioner module) towards the BCS International Diploma in Business Analysis.

For delegates attending a classroom, virtual or online course, the exam is a written, scenario based exam, and is to be taken online from your home or office using our remote proctored service, TestReach. The pass mark is 25/50. Please contact us for further details, available dates and to make a booking.

What’s next?

If this course is part of your BCS Diploma in Business Analysis programme you have a choice of further modules which include the core BA Diploma modules, Business Analysis Practice and Requirements Engineering. Candidates who have already completed Systems Development Essentials also need to pass one of the Foundation Specialisms; in Business Analysis, IS Project Management, Business Change or Commercial Awareness. The structure of the certification is shown here.

Full course outline

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

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Customer Reviews

“Very much enjoyed this course and its content – it is so relevant to my job. I have a host of notes to action when I return. Thank you.” Gemma Byrne

“Our trainer was outstanding and made the course really engaging. I really appreciate group participation, having cameras on and a smaller group really supports this, as does the use of Mural.”Anastasia Bower

“A great trainer. He explained everything clearly and was happy to answer any questions.”Holly Puttnam

“The group exercises were beneficial as it was good to see other people’s perspectives, especially from people who had a range of experiences.”Heather Papworth

Presenters for this course

Pete Thompson
Pete Thompson
Andrew Kell
Steve Silsby Profile
Steve Silsby
Julian Cox
Julian Cox