You can use a Design Document to describe how you intend to design a software product and provide a reference document that outlines all parts of the software and how they will work. This document gives the software development team an overall guidance of the architecture of the software project.

Use the Design Document to:

  • Describe structures that reside within the software, including attributes and relationships between data objects.
  • Map information flow characteristics into the program structure.
  • Describe internal and external program interfaces as well as the design of human interface.

Table of Contents

1.Executive Summary
1.1 Purpose of this document
1.2 Identification
1.3 Scope
1.4 Relationship to Other Plans
1.5 Methodology, Tools, and Techniques
1.6 Policies, Directives and Procedures
2 Design Overview
2.1 Background Information
2.2 System Evolution Description
2.3 Current Process
2.4 Proposed Process
2.5 Technology Forecast
2.6 Constraints
2.7 Design Trade-offs
2.8 User Characteristics
2.8.1 User Problem Statement
2.8.2 User Objectives
3 System Architecture
3.1 Hardware Architecture
3.2 Software Architecture
3.3 Communications Architecture
4 Data Design
4.1 Database Management System Files
4.2 Non-Database Management System Files
5 Detailed Design
5.1 Hardware Detailed Design
5.2 Software Detailed Design
5.2.1 Module [X]
5.2.1.1 Processing
5.2.1.2 Local data structures
5.2.2 Module [X]
5.3 Communications Detailed Design
6 External Interface Design
6.1 Interface Architecture
6.2 Interface Detailed Design
7 Human-Machine Interface
7.1 Interface Design Rules
7.2 Inputs
7.3 Outputs
7.4 Navigation Hierarchy
7.4.1 Screen [x.1]
7.4.2 Screen [x.2]
7.4.3 Screen [x.3]
8 System Integrity Controls
9 Appendix A
10. Requirements Traceability Matrix
10.1 Glossary of Terms

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