Course syllabus - Quality assurance - Certification of safety-critical (software) systems 7.5 credits

Kvalitetssäkring - Certifiering av säkerhetskritiska (programvaru-) system

Course code: DVA467
Valid from: Autumn semester18
Level of education: Second cycle
Subject: Informatics/Computer and Systems Scie...
Main Field(s) of Study: Computer Science,
In-Depth Level: A1N (Second cycle, has only first-cycle course/s as entry requirements),
School: IDT
Ratification date: 2018-02-01


The aim of this course is to give students insight about certification and about what it means to certify/self-assess safety-critical systems with focus on software system and to create a safety case, including a multi-concern perspective when needed and reuse opportunities, when appropriate.

Learning outcomes

After the course, the student shall be able to:

1. explain fundamental concepts related to safety certification
2. create process-related compliance management artifacts
3. apply modelling methods stemming from state-of-the-art safety standards for developing reusable certification artifacts for safety-critical (software) systems

Course content

Module-1-Introduction to safety certification
This module is expected to: 1) give an introduction to certification of safety-critical systems; 2) transfer knowledge and skills on process vs product/ component vs system/ single system vs family of systems certification/qualification. It will also explain the relation between the following concepts: safety-critical systems, safety culture, development processes according to supplier and manufacturer perspective, certification, ”the safety case”. Challenges concerning reuse of certification artifacts and its systematization will be highlighted via reuse scenarios.

Module-2 Standards, certification, and compliance
This module is expected to:  1) give an overview of standards used as a baseline for certification; 2) transfer knowledge and skills on various standards (focus on 1 standard e.g., ISO 26262) and their role in the certification process; 3) state of the art overview on compliance management.
The usage of some selected and open-source tools enabling provision of compliance-related artifacts will be illustrated, if appropriate.
Module-3 Modelling methods
This module is expected to: 1) give an overview of modelling methods needed for the provision and reuse of certification artifacts; 2) transfer knowledge and skills on various modelling methods for the provision of certification artifacts (process as well as product related) of safety-critical systems.
The usage of some selected and open-source tools enabling provision and reuse of certification artifacts will be illustrated.

Teaching methods

Web-based video-lectures.

Specific entry requirements

120 credits where at least 22,5 credits are in computer science and 7,5 credits in software engineering or equivalent.
In case of at least 18 months of documented work experience in software development an exemption is made from 7,5 credits software engineering.
In addition, Swedish course B/Swedish course 3 and English course A/English course 6 are required. For courses given entirely in English exemption is made from the requirement in Swedish course B/Swedish course 3.


Module1: Introduction to certification
Written assignment 1 (INL1), 2,5 credits, examines the learning objective 1, marks Fail (U) or Pass (G)
Module2: Standards, certification, and compliance
Written assignment 2 (INL2), 1 credit, examines the learning objective 2, marks Fail (U) or Pass (G)
Project 1 (PRO1), 1,5 credits, examines the learning objective 2, marks Fail (U), 3, 4 or 5
Module3: Modelling methods
Written assignment 3 (INL3), 1 credit, examines the learning objective 3, marks Fail (U) or Pass (G)
Project 2 (PRO2), 1,5 credits, examines the learning objective 3, marks Fail (U), 3, 4 or 5

A student who has a certificate from MDH regarding a disability has the opportunity to submit a request for supportive measures during written examinations or other forms of examination, in accordance with the Rules and Regulations for Examinations at First-cycle and Second-cycle Level at Mälardalen University (2016/0601). It is the examiner who takes decisions on any supportive measures, based on what kind of certificate is issued, and in that case which measures are to be applied.

Suspicions of attempting to deceive in examinations (cheating) are reported to the Vice-Chancellor, in accordance with the Higher Education Ordinance, and are examined by the University’s Disciplinary Board. If the Disciplinary Board considers the student to be guilty of a disciplinary offence, the Board will take a decision on disciplinary action, which will be a warning or suspension.

Rules and regulations for examinations



Transitional provisions

The course overlaps with 2,5 credits towards Safety Critical Systems Engineering.

Course literature is preliminary until 3 weeks before the course starts. Literature may be valid over several terms.

Valid from: Spring semester19

Decision date: 2019-01-31

Last update: 2019-01-31

Other Materials

The literature consists of research papers and other web-based material

A complete list can be found on Canvas.