Graduate Certificate in Software Design & Development


Student Self-Assessment Toolkit

Graduate Certificate Prerequisite Self-Assessment

Thank you for your interest in our Graduate Certificate in Software Design and Development (GCSDD). The GCSDD course content moves very quickly, and teaches advanced OOP concepts at a graduate level using C++. You will need to be competent and comfortable with the material covered in the programming admission prerequisites (CSS 142 & CSS 143) to be a successful student in the GCSDD.

With this in mind, our faculty leadership has compiled these two self-assessments for the GCSDD prerequisite courses CSS 142 and CSS 143 to help you gauge your programming knowledge.

Directions for each assessment are listed clearly at the top of the PDF documents; answer keys will NOT be provided.

Applicants to the GCSDD who have not taken formal programming courses but have strong experience may submit self-assessments as part of their application materials. For further information, please contact

Necessary files for the assessments can be downloaded here:

Please note that you will need to extract the source code files from the zip file, and that this is the sample rubric on how your self-assessment will be evaluated.

Graduate Certificate Curriculum Sample Homework Assignments

Once you are finished with the 142/143 self-assessments, we encourage you to take a closer look at the Graduate Certificate curriculum. The simplest way to confirm if the certificate is a good fit for your educational goals is to examine the course content. Our faculty has selected a set of sample assignments, labs, and quizzes from our courses in the Graduate Certificate, with the intent of giving prospective students a feel for exactly what the course content entails - and where their skill level matches.

The following are for students to assess their own abilities and level of preparedness for the certificate classes. These are examples of assignments given later in the quarter and they showcase the expected student learning outcomes for each of the corresponding classes.

Software and Systems Development Courses

CSS501: Data Structures and Object-Oriented Programming 1

CSS502: Data Structures and Object-Oriented Programming 2

CSS503: Systems Programming

Courses on Software Engineering, Design, and Test

Here is a brief, high-level overview of the expected knowledge students will gain from the following series of classes.

CSS506: Software Development Processes

CSS507: Software Modeling Techniques

CSS508: Software Testing and Quality