What is a system model approach?

The systems model approach is a process-oriented representation that emphasizes the impact or flow of information between modules. The multidisciplinary study of the use of models to design and create systems in business and IT development is known as systems model approach. It models how processes interact and what these processes do, but it does not go into detail about how these processes are implemented. Functional decomposition may be utilized to enhance the models employed in this technique, and they can be coupled to requirements models for additional system partitioning.

System modeling

The system model approach involves the use of models in order to illustrate the software process. It is all about utilizing some type of graphical notation to represent a system, which is nearly often based on notations from the Unified Modeling Language (UML). There are certain basic requirements that must be satisfied by every model which are listed below. The model developed must be

  • Consistent: Concepts and definitions must be consistent across the model.
  • Traceable: It must be derived from well-established concepts and guidelines.
  • Complete: It must be complete in all aspects in terms of all the entities involved, their relationships and the parameters.

A system model is a combination of multiple perspectives.

Types of system modeling approaches

Different types of system modeling approaches are detailed below.

  • Functional modeling
  • Systems architecture
  • Business process modeling
  • Enterprise modeling

Functional modeling

A function model or functional model is a systematic representation of the functions that comprises activities, actions, processes, and operations inside the modeled system or subject area in systems engineering, software engineering, and computer science. It is analogous to an activity model/a process model. A functional modeling approach is a graphical representation of an administration’s function within the defined scope. The purpose of this method is to focus on describing functions and processes, as well as to assist in the discovery of information needs, to identify the opportunities and estimation of product and service pricing. Multiple diagrammatic approaches and modeling notations are used to augment the functional approach. In systems engineering and software engineering, a function model approach is developed from a functional modeling technique. 

The focus of functional modeling is on characterizing the dynamic process. Data flow diagrams are a well-known example of a modeling language that is used in modeling a process.

To describe a process, the perspective employs four symbols:

  • Process: It represents some operations performed on input in order to get the desired output.
  • Store: It is used to represent a data repository.
  • Flow: It represents the flow of logic.
  • External Entity: A non-modeling entity that interacts with the modeled system.

Systems architecture

A system architecture approach is a conceptual model design that defines a system’s structure, behavior, and other aspects. A system architecture can be made up of system components and subsystems that will collaborate to construct the overall system. A formal description and representation of the system arranged in a way that facilitates reasoning about the system’s structures and behaviors are known as an architecture description. The underlying organization of a system, as embodied in its components, their interactions with one another and with the environment, and the design and evolution principles.

A system architecture can be made up of system components and subsystems that will collaborate to construct the overall system. The informational content of the pieces that make up a system, their interactions, and the rules that control those relationships are all conveyed by system architecture. The underlying organization of a system is embodied in its components, their interactions with one another and with the environment, and the design and evolution principles. The internal interfaces among the system's components or subsystems, as well as the interface(s) between the system and its external environment, particularly the user, are the focus of a system architecture. A system model includes a mapping of functionality to hardware and software components, a mapping of software architecture to hardware architecture and human interaction with these components.

Business process modeling

In business process management and systems engineering, business process modeling (BPM) approaches the activity of modeling business processes so that they can be studied, modified, and automated. A business model is a structure for generating economic, social, and/or other types of value. BPM is often carried out by business analysts, who are specialists in the modeling discipline; subject matter experts, who are experts in the processes being modeled; or, more commonly, a team that includes both. Alternatively, process mining methods can be used to derive the process model directly from event logs.

Increasing process speed or reducing cycle time, improving quality or lowering expenses, such as labor, materials, scrap, or capital costs are all common corporate goals. A business process is a set of connected, organized actions or operations that result in the delivery of a certain service or product to a specified client or customers. The necessity to specify requirements for an information technology project often motivates management to invest in business process modeling design.

To put any enhanced company procedures into practice, change management programs are usually used. Business process modeling technologies allow users to model their business processes, implement and execute those models, and modify those models based on data collected during execution. The idea of BPM models becoming fully executable (and capable of simulations and round-trip engineering) is becoming a reality thanks to advancements in software design.

Enterprise modeling

Enterprise modeling is the abstract representation, description and characterization of an identified corporation, government body, or other huge organization’s structure, procedures, information and resources.

This method is based on the design and analysis of enterprise models to better understand a company and improve its performance. An enterprise model is a depiction of a corporation, government, or other organization's structure, operations, procedures, information, resources, people, behavior, objectives, and restrictions. This method is based on enterprise knowledge, previous models/reference models, and domain ontologies, which are all represented using model representation languages. An organized depiction of the functions, activities, or processes inside the modeled system or topic area is called function modeling in systems engineering. This method involves modeling the appropriate business domain (which is usually quite stable), business processes (which are usually dynamic) and information technology applications within the business domain and processes.

Modeling languages

Any graphical or textual computer language that specifies the design and creation of structures and models according to a set of rules and frameworks is referred to as a modeling language. Modeling languages are mostly used in computer science and engineering to create models for new software, systems, devices, and equipment.

  • Framework-specific modeling language
  • Systems modeling Language

Framework-specific modeling language

Framework-specific modeling language (FSML) is a domain-specific modeling language for use in an object-oriented application framework. Framework-specific models, as the name implies, help developers understand, create, and evolve application code. Abstractions offered by the framework are defined in FSMLs as FSML ideas, which are then deconstructed into features. Different implementation options or steps are represented by the features. FSMLs may define models of how applications utilize APIs by modeling abstractions and rules of application programming interfaces (APIs) offered by frameworks. An FSML idea can be customized by choosing features and assigning values to them. Developers may use such models to better understand, create, and evolve application code. A content setup like this illustrates how the idea should be coded. To put it another way, the content configuration outlines how the framework must be used to generate the idea’s implementation.

Systems modeling language

The systems modeling language (SysML) is a modeling language designed for use in systems engineering applications. A wide range of systems and systems-of-systems may be specified, analyzed, designed, verified and validated using the System Modeling Language. This method can be used for performing data analysis, to specify, develop, verify and to validate a wide range of systems and systems-of-systems. SysML was created by an open-source specification initiative and is distributed and used under an open-source license. Several modeling tool manufacturers have already included support for the OMG System Modeling Language standard, or are in the process of doing so. SysML is specified as a profile-based extension of a subset of the Unified modeling language (UML). The modifications to the language were created to aid in the systems engineering process.

Context and Applications

This topic is important for postgraduate and undergraduate courses, particularly for,

  • Bachelors in Computer Science Engineering.
  • Associate of Science in Computer Science.

Practice Problems

Question 1: ________ is not an example of system modelling language.


B. SysML



Answer: Option D is correct.

Explanation: Machine learning is not related to system modeling. It is a type of AI that helps software to predict outcomes.

Question 2: Which model depicts the dynamic behavior of the system?

A. Object model

B. Behavioral model

C. Context model

D. None of these

Answer: Option B is correct.

Explanation: The executing system is described by the behavioral model describing their dynamic behavior.

Question 3: Which model describes the static nature of the system?

A. Behavior model

B. Structural model

C. Data model

D. None of these

Answer: Option B is correct.

Explanation: Structural model represents the static nature of the system and shows the organization and architecture of the system.

Question 4: _____________________ represents information flow.

A. Workflow diagram.

B. Data Flow Diagram.

C. Control Flow Diagram.

D. None of these

Answer: Option B is correct.

Explanation: The DFD represents information flow and transforms that are applied as the data progresses from input to output.

Question 5: In which level of entity-relationship diagram models all entities and relationships?

A. 2

B. 3

C. 4

D. None of these

Answer: Option A is correct.

Explanation: Level 2 models all the entities and relationships in the entity-relationship diagram and other levels gather all data objects, attributes, etc.

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