SHE Level 5
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code MMI223996
Module Leader Brian Hainey
School School of Computing, Engineering and Built Environment
Subject Computing
  • B (January start)

Summary of Content

This module provides analytical and practical coverage of cloud computing and web services. It focuses on the technology, frameworks and associated standards: cloud models, cloud platforms and scalability. It also provides coverage of current web service technology and data transport representations, and integrated cloud and web service application development. Current examples from industry technology are used throughout


Cloud Models -360 - Service Delivery Models (IaaS, PaaS and SaaS) - Deployment Models (public, private, hybrid clouds) Cloud infrastructure and Services -360 - Virtualization: hypervisors and containers - Resource management and provisioning - Cloud service management including lifecycle management and SLA management and enforcement Cloud Scalability -360 - Reliability - Distribution and replication - Service-oriented principles for scalable architectures - Cloud storage - blobs, queues and non-relational tables Web Services and Data -360 - XML and JSON - SOAP and REST Security -360 - Security threats and best practice for critical areas of cloud computing - Secure web service technologies Technology Case Studies -360 - Web services e.g. Microsoft WCF, Microsoft Web API, Java JAX-WS and/or JAX-RS - Cloud Computing e.g. Amazon Web Services (EC2, Elastic Beanstalk etc.), VMware vSphere and vFabric, Microsoft Azure, Google App Engine, OpenStack, IBM SoftLayer/BlueMix Cloud Service Application Development -360 - PaaS cloud application development using multiple VM instances and cloud storage with software development tools and APIs currently used in industry Examples of tasks undertaken by students in practical sessions are: - Writing, building and running locally multi-tier cloud applications in an industry standard IDE e.g. Visual Studio with current SDKs, e.g. Microsoft Azure SDK. - Deploying coursework applications on a real data-centre e.g. a Microsoft Cloud data-centre.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module a student should be able to:Critically appraise cloud technologies, platforms, services and standards.Critically appraise web service technology including data transport representations.Develop integrated cloud and web service applications using a mainstream industry cloud platform and development technologies.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The learning and teaching strategy for this module has been informed by the university's 'Strategy for Learning' design principles. The course material is introduced through lectures and laboratory sessions that draw upon and extend the lecture material to deepen students' knowledge. The laboratory sessions are designed as a set of formative exercises and a substantial summative exercise spanning several weeks. The formative exercises introduce a range of technologies that allow students to gain confidence and build knowledge of the range of solutions that can be applied to particular problems. Summative exercises provide experience in real-world problem-solving and challenges students to demonstrate analytical skills and capacity for divergent thinking. Tutorials will be used to help explain and elaborate on both the lecture material and the laboratory exercises; these will include a range of case studies that bring a global perspective to the subject matter. During all lab and tutorial sessions students receive formative feedback on their performance in undertaking the laboratory and tutorial exercises. Summative feedback and grades are also provided for the coursework assignments undertaken as part of the module, using GCULearn. GCU Learn is also used to provide the students with module specific Forums and Wikis to stimulate student and lecturer interaction outwith the normal lecture, laboratory and tutorial sessions. Flexible learning is encouraged and supported. All teaching materials and self-testing exercises are made available on GCULearn and links are provided to external materials such as podcasts, MOOCs, videos and relevant literature. All the computing resources used for laboratories are made available either by virtual machine images (supplied to students for use on their own computers) or online using industry standard cloud computing services provided by major global computing industry vendors. Due to the provision of all material and computing facilities online, the module is suitable for use where Flexible and Distributed Learning (FDL) is required

Indicative Reading

Rountree, D, & Castrillo, I. (2013) The Basics of Cloud Computing: Understanding the Fundamentals of Cloud Computing in Theory and Practice, Syngress Thomas, E. & Puttini, R. (2013) Cloud computing: concepts, technology, & architecture, Prentice-Hall Carlson, L. (2013) Programming for PaaS, O'Reilly Media Alonso, G et al. (2004) Web Services, Concepts, Architectures and Applications, Springer Surya Nepal, Mukaddim Pathan, Editors. Security, Privacy and Trust in Cloud Systems. ISBN 978-3-642-38585-8, ISBN 978-3-642-38586-5 (eBook), Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg, 2014, 468 pages Cloud Academy (cloud computing technical news blog):

Transferrable Skills

D1 Specialist knowledge and application D2 Critical thinking and problem solving D3 Critical analysis D4 Communication skills, written, oral and listening D5 Numeracy D7 Computer literacy D8 Self-confidence, self-discipline & self-reliance (independent working) D12 Appreciating and desiring the need for continuing professional development D13 Reliability, integrity, honesty and ethical awareness D14 Ability to prioritise tasks and time management D17 Commercial awareness

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Practicals (FT) 24.00
Independent Learning (FT) 120.00
Assessment (FT) 20.00
Lectures (FT) 24.00
Tutorials (FT) 12.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework 1 n/a 50.00 45% Technical report on cloud platforms. (2000 words approx.)
Coursework 2 n/a 50.00 45% Development of a scalable cloud-based implementation which includes a web service and uses appropriate cloud storage