Master and Bachelor Seminar: Winter Semester 2014/2015

In the Winter Semester 2014/2015 we offer a Master and Bachelor seminar “Software Engineering” (cf. 89-3372/89-3311) on topics in the category of advanced aspects of functional programming.


Please register for the seminar via a short mail to Peter Zeller. The mail can be written in English or German and should include your name and your course of study (in particular: Bachelor or Master seminar?).

Update: Unfortunately we do not have any more open places. Nevertheless, please still write me a Mail if you were planning to do the seminar this semester. This will help us to plan for the next seminars and in case we get any new places I will let you know.

The seminar will start with a kick-off meeting in the first week of the winter semester 2014/2015. The exact date will be announced soon.

  • Kick-off meeting: 31.10.2014, 11:45am, Room 48-379
  • Submit Outline: 28.11.2014, 23:59
    • Send to supervisor
    • See section Outline
  • Submit paper: 12.01.2015, 23:59
  • Submit review of two papers: 23.01.2015, 23:59
  • Submit final paper: 13.02.2015, 23:59
  • Presentations:
    • Bachelor students: 19.02.2015, 14:00 - 17:30
    • Master students: 20.02.2015, 9:00 - 12:30 & 14:00 - 17:30
    • See section Presentation


If you have any questions concerning our seminar please send an e-mail to Christoph Feller.

Seminar Topics

See List of topics

General Remarks

The goal of a seminar is to introduce students to the major constituent of scientific method that is concerned with critically reading, understanding, summarizing, explaining and presenting existing scientific papers. The following links present this goal in more detail: General guidelines for seminars in English and German. This seminar in particular provides the students opportunity to get acquainted with the research in software engineering.

Successful participation in the seminar requires:

  • Term Paper
  • Term Paper Review
  • Presentation


In general bachelor students can choose between German and English, although there might be a few topics which have to be done in English (more details on this will be given in the first meeting). The master seminar has to be done in English.

Outline / Table of Contents

The outline / table of contents (which has to be submitted on the first deadline) should include the section titles for your paper and a few sentences or bullet-points per section. The intention behind writing an outline in the beginning is the following:

  • Have a basis for discussion with your supervisor
  • Have a basis to plan the further research and writing process
  • Give the paper a coherent structure / story

Term paper (Preliminary and Revised Versions)

  • Master students: Approximately 15 (fifteen) pages (excluding table of contents, title page, references, figures)
  • Bachelor students: Approximately 10 (ten) pages (excluding table of contents, title page, references, figures)

The term paper must be written in LNCS Style, a popular medium for efficient dissemination of new developments from all areas of computer science. The LaTeX template with instructions can be downloaded here (local copy), while the Microsoft Word template is available for Word 2003 (local copy) and Word 2007 (local copy). We provide an example on how to use the LaTeX template here. Please supply the paper as a PDF file.

Here are some advice on writing your term paper in addition to the general guidelines:

Term paper review

  • Each student reviews two term papers
  • A review contains
    • Title of the reviewed paper
    • Summary
    • Comments to the author
    • Positive and negative aspects
    • Between 400 and 1000 words (that is, about 1-2 pages)
  • The reviews must be submitted as plain text files - your are encouraged to use the template we have sent you.

The following links provide some guidelines how the review should be done. Although they are geared more towards paper reviews in a scientific conference/journal setting, many of the reviewing concepts are still applicable in this review task.


Every student must give a presentation on his topic. The time structure of a presentation is listed below.

  • 20 min. presentation for Master students (hard deadline!)
  • 15 min. presentation for Bachelor students (hard deadline!)
  • 10 min. Q & A and comments on presentation style

Some bright people have given up their time to write some tips on how to do a presentation. As with other tips given on this page, we can’t encourage you enough to read them.

How to fail a seminar

  • Plagiarism
  • Non-observance of deadlines
  • Non-observance of compulsory attendance
  • Poorly written term paper (e.g. failed scope)
  • Superficial reviews
  • Bad presentation
  • No participation at discussion rounds
  • Not using a spell checker software

On the topic of plagiarism: here are some sources to help you avoid plagiarizing the work of others: 1, 2, 3, 4.

Previous Seminars

Below are the links to homepages of several previous seminars. More links are available from ELSA (use the search tool with the search term “Seminar: Software Engineering”). Valuable tips can also be obtained from these sites.