Software Product Management Specialization

Software Product Management (SPM) is a 6-course specialization in mastering Agile software development practices to confidently interact with clients and work with a development team. This Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) is delivered online making it easy to grow your career in software product or project management.

About the Course

The Software Product Management specialization is designed to help learners create better software, satisfy their clients, and grow their careers. 

The specialization focuses on current approaches to software product management, including the principles of efficient and effective software development using the “Agile” framework. It provides an opportunity for professional development for those already in the field—whether they are looking at exploring current practices and techniques, or wishing to move into the role of a software product manager.

Enrollment is open. 


 Course Preview

Software Product Management course preview.



Advance your career in software product management in as little as 6 months.

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Course Format

In this specialization you will master Agile software practices to lead a team of developers and interact with clients. In the final capstone project you will practice and apply management techniques to realistic scenarios that you will face in your career as a Software Product Manager. You will have the opportunity to share your experiences and learn from the insights of others as part of a Software Product Management community.

COURSE LISTING  

  • Introduction to Software Product Management
  • Software Processes and Agile Practices
  • Client Needs and Software Requirements
  • Agile Planning for Software Products
  • Reviews & Metrics for Software Improvements
  • Software Product Management Capstone

About the Specialization

The Software Product Management specialization is a series of courses which build on each other and culminate in a capstone project. Upon successful completion, a certificate from the University of Alberta is awarded.

Each of the specialization's courses can also be taken individually.

UPON COMPLETING THE SPECIALIZATION

You’ll be comfortable with Agile software development practices, and you’ll be able to confidently interact with clients, manage a team of developers, and learn from the insights of others in the software product management community.

Instructor

Ken Wong is an associate professor in computing science at the University of Alberta.

Software Product Management Specialization Syllabus

Introduction to Software Product Management

This two-week course highlights the importance and role of software product management. It also provides an overview of the specialization, as well as its goals, structure, and expectations. The course explains the value of process, requirements, planning, and monitoring in producing better software. Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • Relate software product management to better software products
  • Recognize the role of a software product manager
  • Reflect on how Agile principles will improve your own projects

Software Processes and Agile Practices

This four-week course delves into a variety of processes to structure software development. It also covers the foundations of core Agile practices, such as Extreme Programming and Scrum. Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:
  • Distinguish between different process models for organizing software production
  • Gauge the applicability of process models for a software development project
  • Apply the fundamentals of Agile software development practices

Client Needs and Software Requirements

This four-week course covers practical techniques to elicit and express software requirements from client interactions. Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:
  • Create clear requirements to drive effective software development
  • Visualize client needs using low-fidelity prototypes
  • Maximize the effectiveness of client interactions
  •  Adapt to changing product requirements

Agile Planning for Software Products

This four-week course covers the techniques required to break down and map requirements into plans that will ultimately drive software production. Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:
  • Create effective plans for software development
  • Map user requirements to developer tasks
  • Assess and plan for project risks
  • Apply velocity-driven planning techniques
  • Generate work estimates for software products

Reviews & Metrics for Software Improvements

This four-week course covers techniques for monitoring your projects in order to align client needs, project plans, and software production. It focuses on metrics and reviews to track and improve project progress and software quality. Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:
  • Apply techniques to measure and visualize project progress
  • Integrate Agile review practices to increase project visibility
  • Reflect on lessons learned in software projects through retrospective exercises
  • Improve project and process quality through ongoing measurement

Software Product Management Capstone

In this six-week capstone course, you will gain practical management experience in a safe, simulated software production setting. You will apply agile practices and techniques to conquer industry-inspired challenges. Interacting with a realistic client, you will discern what they want, what they truly need, and express that as software requirements to drive software production. Upon completing the capstone, you will be prepared to advance your career as a confident software product management professional.


What background knowledge is necessary?

You should have a basic knowledge on how software is developed. Programming experience is not required.

Do I need to take the courses in a specific order?

We recommend taking the courses in the order presented, as each subsequent course will build on material from previous courses. With this in mind the courses Software Processes and Agile Practices and Client Needs and Software Requirements do need to be taken before the remaining courses but both can be selected as your second or third course.

How often is each course in the Specialization offered?

The first five courses in the Specialization are offered on demand, and may be taken at any time. The Capstone is offered on a regular schedule.