Describe the Software Development Life Cycle

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The following report is going to cover the Software Development Life Cycle and the tools and techniques that are used with them to create software. The tools include what UML and SSM are used for, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of the different models which are used in the industry.

Structuring software development

When developing a new piece of software or improving and updating an old deployment it is important to have a structure or plan. This show at what stage the development should be at throughout the process.

The plans and structures that are used are referred to as the “Software Development Life Cycle” (Tutorials Point, 2015). There are many different structures which can be used which will be explained in the Models section. Developing software without using one of these models can end in unexpected results, such as a program not meeting the user requirements. In the worst cases of not using a software development life cycle the whole project has had to be scrapped because it is too far behind schedule or over budget. This would mean that the finished product would cost too much to get to a useable state or take too long to implement, or the project becomes out of date and have to be started again straight away.


Software development life cycle(SDLC) is the general term given to a plan or structure that is followed when developing a piece of software. These plans or structures are referred to as models and there are many different models. The first two created and implemented were the Waterfall and the Spirals models.

The waterfall model is a software development life cycle. This was the first model to be widely used as explained by ISTQB Exam Certification (2015) and it is easy to understand. This model is linear-sequential. By dividing the different stages in separate phases, the flow of the project can be shown, meaning that it can be tracked to check that it is on target and budget. As shown in appendix 1, each of the separate phases do not overlay, meaning that when the first phase is done, then and only then can the next phase start.

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The spiral model is an SDLC model which allows for testing and development to be done continually, implies Bellin and Simone (1997). Using this model,  it is easy to control and keep track of the process, which has been made by iterating through the different phase of an SDLC, says Sabharwal (2009). Appendix 2 contains a model of the spiral method, which clearly shows how the project begins in the middle with basic requirements and expands out as the project develops.

When using the Waterfall model some problems may occur as the model does not allow for much revision or ...

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