Model Builder - Intermediate

OMG Certified Systems Modeling Professional™ (OCSMP™)

Model Builder - Intermediate - Coverage Map


The OCSMP Model Builder – Intermediate examination tests the knowledge and skills used to develop system models using the full SysML feature set. This capability enables more detailed and precise modeling of requirements, structure, behavior, and parametric constraints than those modeled at the Fundamental level. In addition, this engineer has the understanding needed to organize complex models, define the inter-relationships among model elements and diagrams, and assess aspects of model quality including conformance to language and method constraints. The level of knowledge tested by this certification, accompanied by a corresponding level of expertise in model based systems engineering methods and tools, is appropriate for a System Modeling Lead for a project and for the top-ranked team members who contribute independently to the model or to the system, such as a Lead Systems Engineer. The OCSMP Model Builder - Intermediate Certification is a prerequisite for the program's highest certification, OCSMP Model Builder – Advanced, and requires the OCSMP Model Builder – Fundamental certification as its prerequisite.


Examination Number: ......................... OMG-OCSMP-MBI300
Number of Questions: .............................................. 90
Duration: .............................................. 105 minutes for residents of English-Speaking Countries; 135 minutes for all others
Minimum Passing Score: ................... 55
Exam Fee: ............................................ US $200 (or equivalent in local currency) for residents of English-Speaking Countries; US $210 (or equivalent in local currency) for all others
Prerequisite: ....................................... OCSMP Model Builder - Fundamental certification

This page starts with the Coverage Map for the OCSMP - Model Builder - Intermediate Examination - a list of the topics and subtopics covered, and the percentage of the exam that each occupies. Following the Coverage Map is the list of references, along with suggestions for study.


Coverage Notes:

Modeling a System:  This examination goes beyond the Model Builder - Fundamental examination in several ways. Of course it extends its coverage of SysML, in fact to the full feature set, testing your ability to build and use a model of a system using every element in the language. But this examination (and the Model Builder - Advanced that follows) goes beyond in another way, incorporating some questions that touch on modeling guidelines and practices. This type of question may ask you to consider, for example, the effect of decisions made early in the modeling process - about system design, or architecture, for instance - on factors that will be important as the model nears completion, such as model usability and suitability for different stakeholders and users. Use the references listed below under Modeling Guidelines and Practices to prepare for this type of question. Because OMG is strictly vendor- and methodology-neutral, practice-based questions on this examination will tend to be straightforward and will not require knowledge of any particular methodology. 

The Coverage Map below lists most of the SysML language elements added for this examination. Use the list more for organization than for completeness; every SysML diagram type and element is potentially a subject for a question whether it appears here or not. Do not study the diagrams and elements in isolation; instead, concentrate on how to incorporate advanced SysML capabilities into your overall model, and how to structure your model for effective use by all of your stakeholders. 

Model Concepts

Modeling guidelines and practices. Application of modeling guidelines and practices.   See References below. 

Organizing a System Model using the full set of SysML constructs

Building a package diagram using the full set of SysML constructs: Package and Element Import. Defining and using View and Viewpoint.  Building and using model libraries.  Awareness of assessment criteria and activities:  Structured queries as a part of assessment 

Building a Requirements Model using the full set of SysML constructs

Building a requirements diagram using the full set of SysML constructsSpecialized Requirements (SysML Annex C: functional, interface, performance, physical, design constraints); 
Establishing requirements traceability: derive, verify, satisfy, refine, trace, containment; Tracing requirements in tables and matrixes; 
Representing verification and testing; Test Context, Test Case; 
Building a use case model using the full set of SysML constructs; Relating use cases to behavioral models - activity diagrams and state machines; Relating use cases to requirements 

Building a Structural Model using the full set of SysML constructs

Building the block definition diagram: Adding block features: Receptions, Ordered and Unique Collections, Read only properties, Property redefinition, Constraint (Ref to Parametrics, below), Distributed properties. Block Relationships: Shared vs composite aggregation (white vs black diamond), Association Blocks, Generalization sets. Value Types: Enumerations, Structured Value Types ("Position Vector" w XYZ structure). Blocks and Behavior: Classifier behavior (See Friedenthal et al, pp 128-129), Owned behaviors, Activity hierarchies on bdds. Defining instances. 
Building the internal block diagram: Block Properties: Creating a property specific type; notation for part multiplicities on ibd's. Ports: Flow ports: Flow specifications and properties, Conjugated ports, Compatibility rules including item flows and ports. Standard ports: Defining required and provided interfaces; Typing a port with required and provided interfaces (i.e. with a provided interface, with a classifier with use/realize relationship). Port delegation (for both Flow ports and Standard ports).Connectors: Nested connector ends; Item Flows/item properties and conveyed classifiers: Typing item properties; Ownership of item properties; Connector properties 

Building a parametric model using the full set of SysML constructs

How to use constraints in SysML to model system analyses 
Defining constraints on a block definition diagram using the full SysML feature set: 
Nesting of constraintsTrade study support (Annex C.3): Measures of Effectiveness, Objective Functions, Alternatives. Constraining flows.

Building a behavioral model using the full set of SysML constructs

How to use SysML to model system behavior
Building an activity diagram using the full set of SysML constructs
I/O Flow: Optional vs. required; Streaming; Rates; Continuous, Discrete; No buffer, overwrite; Token ordering (FIFO, LIFO, etc); Data store/central buffer; Object node state; Parameter set; Probabilities. Control Flow: Control Operators: Flow final, Advanced Control Operations (decision input/ join specification). Control Pins; Interruptible Regions. Actions: Primitive Actions; Constraints: Pre/post conditions; defining properties on activities. 
Building a sequence diagram using the full set of SysML constructs: MessagesLifelines: Selectors, lifeline decomposition,  Activations (including nested). Interaction operators: Advanced interaction operators, Combining interaction operators, Nesting interaction operators. Interaction Decomposition: Interaction Use or References, Gates. Constraints: Observations and Timing Constraints, State invariants. 
Building a state machine diagram using the full set of SysML constructs:  Understanding that a SM represents the states of a block (Friedenthal et al p 241)Transitions: Graphical transition notation, Internal transitions, Deferred Events. State Hierarchy: Composite States, Orthogonal composite states. 
Pseudo StatesJunction State, Choice, History states - Shallow, Deep, Fork and Join, Entry and exit points, Terminate nodes. Nested state machinesSubmachine states. Connection points. 

Defining stereotypes, properties, and constraints (extension, subclass)




The OCSMP Model Builder - Intermediate Examination tests the knowledge and skills required to construct a complete and detailed SysML model of a system using every element defined in the language.  As you prepare for this examination, you should not only study the full set of SysML diagram types and model elements, but also should extend beyond to understand the relationships that tie them together.

The OCSMP Conventions and Abbreviations List: You are responsible for covering the elements of SysML yourself, but we've put together a short paper, posted here, listing a few notations and conventions that might not be pointed out in every study source. It's not complete, but we expect that you'll find it helpful. 

Modeling Guidelines And Practices:

As a vendor-neutral standards organization, OMG wants to encourage the use of SysML (and our other modeling languages) without endorsing any particular modeling methodology. Because any procedure used to create a SysML model, no matter how simple or ad-hoc, is a methodology by definition, it's not possible for this program to test skills and knowledge beyond basic SysML mechanics without straying into methodology-related topics. 

So, to avoid endorsing any particular methodology, we will do two things: (1) We state here that, even though we may reference publications by some number of methodologies, none of these references constitutes an endorsement. In fact, we believe that each methodology has its own set of advantages and disadvantages vis-a-vis development of particular types of systems, and that the choice of a methodology for a project is an important decision that must be made with care, following a thorough investigation of a number of candidates. (2) To avoid "playing favorites", we have referenced publications from a number of methodologies. Some exam-relevant  material will be sandwiched among methodology-specific (and perhaps even tool-specific) topics in these references but that's unavoidable; this examination will cover only the methodology-independent aspects. 

References for SysML Modeling Guidelines and Practices: 

  • A Practical Guide to SysML: The Systems Modeling Language [Book; full reference below] Chapter 16 presents OOSEM (Object-Oriented Systems Engineering Method), a basic methodology defined by an INCOSE committee and used heuristically throughout the chapter to present a SysML project case study. 
  • Systems Engineering with SysML/UML: Modeling, Analysis, Design [Book; full reference below]  This book defines a methodology, SYSMOD, and uses it throughout as it presents the many aspects and elements of SysML. 
  • Karban, Weilkiens, Hauber, and Diekmann, MBSE Practices in Telescope Modeling, white paper downloadable here. The authors participated in the INCOSE MBSE Challenge; this paper presents aspects selected for their relevance to the OCSMP Model Builder - Fundamental and Intermediate examinations. 
  • The Telescope Challenge Team's Cookbook for MBSE can be downloaded here. It's an expanded version of the White Paper referenced just above.  Although it's useful for study as a general example of modeling technique and practice and contains hundreds of valuable tips, we don't suggest that you study this document in detail - The book was completed after our examinations, and is too extensive for memorization. We expect it to see use as a desktop or shelf reference. 

  • MBSE Initiative, INCOSE: Survey of Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) Methodologiescan be downloaded here. Chapter 2 of this extensive survey compares methodology with process, method, and lifecycle models; much of this material relates to modeling practice. Although theirs is not the only possible definition of methodology, it is one that is well thought-out.
  • IBM Harmony Deskbook Reference. Although written for a particular modeling tool, this document includes much helpful general advice. Appendices 3 through 5 collect recommended practices, and the various chapters include (at appropriate spots) details about the relationships that connect elements on different diagram types. 
  • A Practical Guide to SysML: The Systems Modeling Language - Second Edition
    Sanford Friedenthal, Alan Moore, and Rick Steiner - Morgan Kaufman/OMG Press, 2008
    This comprehensive book covers much more than the fundamental level of SysML tested on this examination. Study the examples to learn how an underlying model is represented consistently in a set of diagrams of different types. Chapter 3 provides a good introductory example. All three authors contributed to the SysML specification.
  • Systems Engineering with SysML/UML: Modeling, Analysis, Design
    Tim Weilkiens - Morgan Kaufman/OMG Press, 2006
    This book covers SysML starting from a UML perspective, including all of the subtopics in this exam. The author contributed to the SysML specification.
Presentations (Downloadable Free):
  • The OMG SysML Tutorial 
    This tutorial presents SysML basics (and, for some topics, more than just basics) in an extensive slide set. 
  • Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) with the Systems Modeling Language (SysML)
    Joe Wolfrom – Johns Hopkins University/Applied Physics Laboratory (JHU/APL) 
    An introductory course in SysML that provides an overview of the basic concepts and constructs of the language. Sections include a Course Overview, a SysML Overview, a section on each of the nine SysML diagram types, and a section on Allocation. This course was developed as a JHU/APL internal training course, and is based primarily on the material found in the book , “A Practical Guide to SysML”, referenced above. The zip file of course material contains 14 PDF files of slides. 
Article (Downloadable Free): 
  • Georgia Tech Parametrics Primer 
    Simulation-Based Design Using SysML. Part I: A Parametrics Primer, by RS Peak and others including four contributors to these examinations. Sections 1 and 2 of this article cover parametrics at about the OCSMP  Model User level. 
SysML Examples: 

Many of the questions on this examination test your ability to extract information about a system from a model, but the exam will not test your knowledge of any particular domain such as the Hybrid SUV, telescope, etc. modeled in these examples. The collection illustrates the range of application of SysML and may let you choose one or a few close to your own application domain for detailed study.

  • Automobile Design Example: Chapter 3 of A Practical Guide to SysML: The Systems Modeling Language (cited above) presents an example model that uses every SysML diagram type at least once, and most more than once. Like the Hybrid SUV model just above, this example does not cover all of the constructs included in this exam although the two examples combined cover 90% of the material. 
  • The official OMG SysML Website includes a very brief introduction to SysML, news items (including many about this certification program), and links to papers and websites with examples and other useful SysML-related information.
OMG Specifications (Downloadable Free): 
  • The SysML Specification, V1.2 
    Note: We do not recommend that you study the language itself from this document since it's a formal definition written for SysML tool builders, not model builders. The extensive Hybrid SUV example in Annex B, which includes every diagram type and is well worth studying, is available as a standalone document via the link a few paragraphs above. Version 1.1 is also consistent with the current version of the OCSMP Certification. 

For more information or questions about the OMG Certification Program, contact

OCUP, OCRES, OCEB and OCSMP are joint programs of the OMG and the UML Technology Institute (UTI).