How to prepare for your final year project?
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It is that time of your college days when you need to put all your theoretical studies into a practical application. Yes. It is Project time. And undoubtedly it is one of the most exciting times of the college days. Why?
- It is one of the leanest period of your college days, no need to study 8 subjects all at once
- You get plenty of free time and you can utilize it to play cricket, watch movies, hangout with friends or girlfriend(s)/boyfriend(s) or like many people, simply do nothing.
- Final year projects can spark a love relationship if things go well for you 😛
Ok. Jokes apart. There are a few things that will happen during the project. That is of course assuming that you don’t BUY your project from someone like many people do. To them, this article may be a joke, but you will miss certain aspects if you decide to buy the project. So what will happen during the project days?
- You will start to interact with more peers
- You will get out of your comfort zone to research on the topics, solve problem, prepare a project report, etc.
- Your project buddies will become good friends
- You will learn how to apply technology to solve a particular problem
- You will learn how to distribute work among yourselves in order to finish it.
- You will learn to put forward your points and listen to others points during the course of the project
- Most importantly you will learn how to work in a Team based environment, how to solve problems together as a team, how to help each other out and to me, it is one of the most important learning for professional life and for that matter personal life as well.
Ok. Now moving on to the core topic. How will you prepare for your final year project? Or what are the key decisions that you need to take before your final year project. I am listing a few in this post.
Old wine vs New Wine
One of the most important decisions that you would need to take is whether to go for a stable technology or to go for a newer technology. The advantage of stable technology is that you will get plenty of help both inside the campus and outside the campus (read google search). And it can actually help you focus on the actual development. But advantage of trying out a newer technology is that, you get a head start when it comes to that technology when you are entering the professional life.
So choose a older stable technology if you are
- Not very confident that you can take up a newer technology
- Not a quick learner
- Not a quick problem solver
- You believe in working in a settled atmosphere rather than a chaotic one
Choose a newer technology/platform if you are
- Ready to take up any challenges head on
- Capable of thriving in a chaotic environment
- Quick Learner
- Willing to take risks
- Confident enough that you can handle the challenge
Your personality will also go a long way in determining in which type of project you will really shine and in which role. For example, if you have leadership qualities you might want to lead the project. If you are happy to be part of the team without actively leading it, you can still do it. But if you are in a position where you are doing the opposite of what you are really capable of, things may or may not produce the best result.
In-house Vs Company projects
Another important decision that you need to take is that, whether to do projects in-house or do a company related project. Again it depends on which project is more exciting and what company it is. I would always prefer an in-house project as that will allow more freedom to experiment. If I go for a company based project, I would rather suggest working for projects in startup companies rather than big MNCs because you will have more ownership of the work that you are doing and you will get a sense of satisfaction once you finish the project. Of course there are good project in big MNCs as well, but your role will be very limited in that case.
Care about the guidance
Another important aspect that you need to consider is how much guidance you would need. It is always good to get some guidance not just from the project mentor but also college seniors who might have passed out or about to pass out. They might be in a position to share their learnings and help you with a lot of things that you might require.
Check the feasibility
Again, we can dream a lot of wonderful projects, but we need to make sure that it is feasible within the current constraints. For example, the college infrastructure may not be sufficient for doing the project. You might need to spend lot of money buying different things for your project. And in all cases, it is best to do an estimate of the cost and other feasible resources so that it will not be a pain later on. This exercise will also help you in planning in advance for a project. If you feel trouble, just get in touch with your seniors or other mentors available.
Generalization Vs Specialization
Whether to do an end to end project or do a very specialized version of the project. This will be another question that you need to ask yourself and your team. Example of a generic end to end project is “Highly Scalable E-Commerce website supporting 10 million concurrent users” and example of a specialized project might be “Design of a rapid fire database for embedded systems”. There are advantages and disadvantages in both projects. Advantage of a generic project is that you tend to get an end to end view of the systems and you can operate in as many areas as you want. Advantage of a specialized project is that you tend to gain knowledge and expertise in that area pretty fast since it is very focussed.
So prepare for your final year project considering these points and you will be in much better shape for your project. Above all, once you are committed to a project, give your full heart into it. Feel like it is your own creation, that is actually when you will get that passion to go the extra mile.
So what are you waiting for? Have you already started thinking about your final year project yet? Please shoot out your comments in the comments section. If you liked this post, please share it with your friends using the social share buttons below this post.