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A model-based approach to Systems Engineering


Discover how adopting a model-based approach can improve your systems engineering. A complete overview of MBSE and how it can be used in your business.

On this course you will learn to:

  • improve systems engineering through use of MBSE
  • achieve improved communication, enhanced understanding and how to minimise complexity through use of modelling
  • demonstrate benefits of MBSE and their associated value to stakeholders within the business
  • implement MBSE into a business.

Who should attend?

Systems engineers and managers, software engineers and managers, quality personnel and anyone involved with business or enterprise modelling. No previous experience of modelling is required for this course.

Course Timings:

Day 1: 9:30am - 4:30pm

Day 2: 9:30am - 4:30pm


Introduction to Model-Based Systems Engineering

This introductory module establishes the need for MBSE, introduces the MBSE Mantra of People, Process & Tools, gives an overview of MBSE in One Slide and discusses the evolution of MBSE in your organisation.


An essential and obvious enabler for MBSE is, of course, modelling. In this module we discuss the what, where, when & how of modelling.

The structural and behavioural aspects of any model are discussed through two of the SysML diagrams which are covered in some detail. On overview of the remaining diagrams is given, with a focus on the relationships between the various diagrams rather than attempting to teach all of the syntax of the language (as this is an MBSE course and not a SysML course). By focusing on the use of modelling and consistency, we will demonstrate how to build up a true, consistent collection of views that make up a model, rather than just a collection of pictures.

MBSE Concepts - the MBSE Ontology

A key part of any systems engineering endeavour is for all of your teams to share a common language. This is a great idea in principle, but the practice is somewhat more difficult to attain. When considering common language, it is essential that we think about both the spoken language and the domain-specific language. In real life we cannot assume that adopting a common spoken language, such as English will result in efficient communication as we need also consider the domain specific language, perhaps based on: the discipline (for example: electrical, mechanical, software, etc.), the industry (for example: automotive, aerospace, IT, etc.) or, indeed, the organisation. In this course we introduce the Systems Modelling Language (SysML) as the spoken language and the use of an ontology (defined using SysML) to capture the domain-specific language.

This MBSE ontology captures all of the key concepts associated with MBSE, defines them and, very importantly, defines the relationships between the concepts. This MBSE ontology, derived from over 40 different best-practice models including standards, guidelines and techniques, is built up during this part of the course.

MBSE Topics

During this module a number of the concepts introduced in the previous MBSE Concepts module are discussed in more detail. The topics covered are:

  • Systems and Interfaces
  • Structures and Decomposition
  • Processes and Life Cycles
  • Frameworks

Implementing MBSE

This section of the course addresses the question of how to implement MBSE into your business. This will cover how to sell MBSE to different stakeholders within the business, as people in different roles will see different benefits of MBSE. This is an essential part of making the business case for MBSE.

Once the business case has been made, it is then possible to look at the three crucial enablers for MBSE which are people, process and tools. By ‘people’ here, we mean competent people with the right skills for their role. By ‘process’ we mean the underlying MBSE approach, including ontologies, frameworks and their associated process descriptions. By ‘tools’ here we mean the use of modelling tools, how to assess and select tools and to ensure that your approach drives the tool and not the other way around.

Alignment with UK-SPEC competence

A1, B: Apply appropriate theoretical and practical methods to the analysis and solution of engineering problems.

Course tutors

All courses are delivered by Professor Jon Holt and Simon Perry. Both are internationally-recognised authors, tutors and public speakers on Model-Based Systems Engineering.

Between them, they have authored eleven books covering many aspects of systems modelling, including process modelling, competence, architectures and, of course, Model-Based Systems Engineering.