Design Skills Pillar

Design theory and the scope of design-related strategies and techniques that an architect requires to be successful.

Design Skills Capabilities

Requirements Modeling

Multiple ways to model business and technical requirements, architectures, and designs and how to transform models of one type into another. Domain-specific modeling languages and other modeling approaches will be addressed.

Architecture Description

Formal architecture documentation techniques. Demonstrate competence in detailed architecture communication. Design diagramming notation, architecture views and viewpoints, and various architecture description languages will be discussed.

Decomposition and Reuse

Detail the major building blocks of modern software and infrastructure design and demonstrate competence in their synthesis.

Design Methods and Processes

Demonstration of being flexible, competent designers, fluent in a number of methods and tools by defining and describing the basic process of design, as distinct from the process as embodied in one of the prominent “methodologies.” Recognize major components of the process in various methods be able to determine when a given method is appropriate to the problem at hand.  Understand common development cycles and their role in design.

Design Patterns and Styles

Demonstrated understanding of metaphor and pattern concepts, styles versus pattern, and demonstrated competence in deriving and communicating pattern and style.

Design Analysis and Testing

Demonstrated understanding of architecture analysis techniques and related tools. Able to detail how to describe a design and its components, evaluate a design relative to alternatives, describe the structure and state of a design, and analyze the design’s dynamic behavior in response to external events. Demonstrated understanding of how to test a design as an artifact for completeness, correctness, efficiency, and a number of other criteria. Demonstrated competence in the application of highest priority techniques such as selected ATAM techniques, failure analysis, optimization, prototyping, simulation, scaled modeling, and various forms of walk-throughs and design reviews.

Traceability Throughout the Lifecycle

Demonstration of traceability from initial requirements through to the sustained system and the vital role of traceability throughout the lifecycle of developed products. Demonstrated use of associated techniques and tools, and will be required to demonstrate competence in highest priority techniques.

Views and Viewpoints

Ability to compare/contrast concept of views, viewpoints, and perspectives, differences between them and how they work together to describe an architecture. Able to discern various stakeholder groups typical of IT development projects, describing the typical viewpoint of each group, determine the set of views needed to satisfy project requirements.

Whole Systems Design

Demonstrated understanding of the “whole system” of interconnected elements that participate in, impact, and influence the design process. Demonstrated understanding of the nature and rich tradition of design theory and practice, relevancy of understanding design as a discipline; the systems sciences, systems theory, and systems thinking; developing  “whole systems” perspective, and its importance to architects; recognizing and addressing complex systemic problems and architecture praxis; modeling as essential design action, modeling tools, and business patterns; the importance of context; the architect’s role in the creation of a design culture; design judgment and the construction of meaning; and work redesign, industry perspectives, and the increasing importance of architecture as a profession.