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Systems development life cycle (SDLC)

The overall process for developing information systems from planning and analysis through implementation and maintenance

Planning phase

Involves establishing a high level plan of the intended project and determining project goals

Analysis phase

Analyzing end-user business requirements and refining project goals into defined functions and operations of the intended system

Business requirements

The detailed set of businesses requests that the system must meet in order to be successful

Development phase

Involves taking all of the detailed design documents from the design phase and transforming them into the actual system

Testing phase

Involves bringing all the project pieces together into a special testing environment to test for errors, bugs, and interoperability and verify that the system meets all of the business requirements defined in the analysis phase

Implementation phase

Involves placing the system into production so users can begin to perform actual business operations with the system

Maintenance phase:

Involves performing changes, corrections, additions, and upgrades to ensure the system continues to meet the business goals

Waterfall methodology

a sequential, activity based process in which each phase in the SDLC is performed sequentially from planning through implementation and maintenance

Rapid application development (RAD

Emphasizes extensive user involvement in the rapid and evolutionary construction of working prototypes of a system to accelerate the systems development process


A smaller-scale representation or working model of the user's requirements or a proposed design for an information system

Extreme programming (XP) methodology

Breaks a project into tiny phases, and developers cannot continue on to the next phase until the first phase is complete

Agile methodology

A form of XP, aims for customer satisfaction through early and continuous delivery of useful software components

Scope creep

Occurs when the scope of the project increases

Feature creep

Occurs when developers add extra features that were not part of the initial requirements

Critical success factor (CSF)

A factor that is critical to an organization's success

Feasibility study

Determines if the proposed solution is feasible and achievable from a financial, technical, and organizational standpoint

Business requirements

The detailed set of business requests that the system must meet in order to be successful

Requirements definition document

Contains the final set of business requirements, prioritized in order of business importance


The system users' actual signatures indicating they approve all of the business requirements

Process modeling

Involves graphically representing the processes that capture, manipulate, store, and distribute information between a system and its environment

Data flow diagram (DFD)

Illustrates the movement of information between external entities and the processes and data stores within the system

Computer-aided software engineering (CASE)

Software suites that automate systems analysis, design, and development

Commercial off-the-shelf (COTS)

A software package or solution that is purchased to support one or more business functions and information systems


The activity of drawing a graphical representation of a design

Graphical user interface (GUI)

The interface to an information system

Data models

A formal way to express data relationships to a database management system (DBMS)

Entity relationship diagram (ERD)

A technique for documenting the relationships between entities in a database environment

Test conditions

The detailed steps the system must perform along with the expected results of each step

User documentation

highlights how to use the system

Online training

runs over the internet or off a CD ROM

Workshop training

set in a classroom-type environment and led by an instructor

Help desk

A group of people who respond to internal system user questions


The fixing or enhancing of an information system

Adaptive maintenance

making changes to increase system functionality to meet new business requirements

Corrective maintenance

making changes to repair system defects

Perfective maintenance

making changes to enhance the system and improve such things as processing performance and usability

Preventive maintenance

making changes to reduce the chance of future system failures

Change management system

Includes a collection of procedures to document a change request and define the steps necessary to consider the change based on the expected impact of the change

Change control board (CCB)

Responsible for approving or rejecting all change requests

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