CSE1205 Information systems 2 , Unit Information Guide (Semester 1, 2006)

Chief Examiner Ms. Chris Gonsalvez
Caulfield : Ms. Chris Gonsalvez

This unit will provide students with an introduction to the phases of the Systems Development Life Cycle, with a focus on the basic techniques commonly used for carrying out the analysis and specification of requirements for an information system. The unit will introduce students to the nature of systems analysis as a problem-solving activity, describe the key elements of analysis, and explain the place of the analysis phase within the system development life cycle. Key tasks in systems analysis will be studied as follows:

  • Data gathering and fact-finding: the unit will describe the nature of the problems encountered in gathering data about the user requirements for an information system, examine the main methods used and assess the strengths and weaknesses of each
  • System modelling: the unit will introduce students to the nature of modelling as an analytical and a communicative process. It will describe the four most common forms of systems modelling - process, data, object and soft systems modelling, and explain the role which these modelling techniques play in the development of an information system
  • System specification: the unit will explain the need for system specification as an end product of the systems analysis process. It will discuss the requirements of a good system specification, and describe the basic techniques for preparing and presenting it
  • Topics include:

  • Systems analysis in context
  • Analysis and problem-solving
  • Fact-finding and data gathering
  • Introduction to modelling
  • Process, data, object and soft systems modelling
  • The system specification
  • Design, Implementation & Maintenance phases

    Objectives Knowledge and Understanding

    C1. Understand the purpose and objectives of the phases of the systems development life cycle, and the tasks which are required to carry them out

    C2. Know the main types of modelling techniques which are used in systems analysis (process, data, object and soft systems modelling), and the purpose for which each is used

    C3. Understand the key issues involved in gathering data about system requirements and preparing a system specification

    Attitudes, Values and Beliefs

    A1. Recognise the value of a systematic team-based approach to the development of information systems

    A2. Recognise the importance of the phases of the systems development lifecycle, with a focus on the analysis phase 

    A3. Recognise the strengths and weaknesses of basic techniques for data gathering, system modelling and system specification

    Practical Skills

    P1. Develop a data gathering strategy and carry out data gathering as part of an analysis of user needs for an information system

    P2. Interpret basic process, data, object and soft systems models of a simple business system

    P3. Prepare process, data, object and soft systems models for a simple business system

    P4. Prepare and present a specification of system needs for a business system

    Relationships, Communication and TeamWork

    S1. Be able to work as part of a team responsible for carrying out analysis of a business system


    IMS1002 and CSE1205 students - IMS1001, CSE1205 or equivalent

    CSE1205 students - You should have knowledge about information systems and their use in organisations. This knowledge will provide the context in which the theory and practice of systems analysis is developed.

    Unit relationships

    CSE1205 is a core unit in the Bachelor of Computing. 

    CSE1205 is a core unit in the Bachelor of Information Systems (3323).  

    IMS1002 is a core unit in the Bachelor of Information Management & Systems (2358) and the Bachelor of Information Systems (2358).

    You can only study one of these 3 units in your degree.

    Texts and software

    Required text(s)

    Whitten, J.L., Bentley, L.D. and Dittman K.C. (2004) Systems Analysis and Design w/Project Cases CD (6th edition), McGraw-Hill, ISBN: 0072932619.


    Text books are available from the Monash University Book Shops. Availability from other suppliers cannot be assured. The Bookshop orders texts in specifically for this unit. You are advised to purchase your text book early.

    Software requirements:


    Hardware requirements:

    On-campus students may use the facilities available in the computing labs. Information about computer use for students is available from the ITS Student Resource Guide in the Monash University Handbook.

    Recommended reading

    Brooks, F. (1975). The mythical man-month. Addison-Wesley

    Checkland, P. (1999). Systems Thinking, Systems Practice. Wiley

    De Marco (1979). Structured analysis and system specification. Yourdon Press

    Hoffer, J.A. George, J.F. & Valacich, J.S. (2005) Modern Systems Analysis and Design, Prentice Hall

    Yourdon (1989). Modern structured analysis. Prentice Hall



    Library access You may need to access the Monash library either personally to be able to satisfactorily complete the subject.  Be sure to obtain a copy of the Library Guide, and if necessary, the instructions for remote access from the library website.
    Study resources

    Study resources for CSE1205 are:

    • This Unit Information outlining the administrative information for the unit.
    • The MUSO web site for this unit, where lecture slides, weekly tutorial requirements, assignment specifications, sample solutions and supplementary material will be posted.
    • Newsgroups/discussion groups that can be linked to from the Unit Homepage

    Structure and organisation



    Study Guide

    1 Introduction & SDLC Review
    2 Analysis & modelling of Information systems
    3 Data gathering
    4 Process modelling
    5 Process modelling
    6 Data modelling
    7 Data modelling & Normalisation
    8 Normalisation
    9 Other modelling techniques
    10 Interface design
    11 Communication, System Specification & Presentation techniques
    12 Design, Implementation & Maintenance
    13 Revision

    The timetable for on-campus classes for this unit can be viewed in Allocate+


    Assessment for the unit consists of 2 assignments (one group assignment and one individual assignment) with a weighting of 40% and an examination with a weighting of 60%. 

    Backup copies are required to be made of all assignments and retained for 12 months, in case of loss.


    This is a six point unit which, according to University guidelines, requires you to spend 12 hours per week (a total of at least 156 hours per semester).  The anticipated workload is:

    • 2 lecture hour per week
    • 2 tutorial hours per week
    • 8 hours per week reading, preparation for lectures and tutorials, and completion of assignment work

    Assessment Policy

    To pass this unit you must:

    • achieve at least 40% of the marks available for the examination component,
    • achieve at least 40% of the marks available for the assignment component: i.e. the assignments and any other assessment tasks (such as presentations) taken as a whole
    • achieve at least 50% of the total marks for the unit

    Where a student gains less than 40% for either the examination or assignment component, the final result for the unit will be no greater than ‘44-N’.

    Your score for the unit will be calculated by:

    adding the results for the 2 assignments and the examination. Grade ranges are indicated below.

    Assessment Requirements


    Due Date


    Assignment 1 Tutorial - Week 7 20 %
    Assignment 2 Tutorial - Week 12 20 %

    Assignment specifications will be made available on the unit website.. Information about assignments will be published on the Unit's Notices Newsgroup.

    Assignment Submission Methods

    Assignments will be submitted by hard copy/ paper submission to your tutor on the designated dates, with the appropriate cover sheet correctly filled out and attached.

    Extensions and late submissions

    Late submission of assignments

    Assignments in this unit are no less important than those of other units. Your inability to manage your time or computing resources will not be accepted as a valid excuse. (Several assignments falling due at the same time is an unavoidable fact of university life.)

    Hardware failures are not normally recognised as a valid reason for obtaining an extension or handing in a late assignment.

    Late assignments submitted without an approved extension may be accepted up to one week late at the discretion of your lecturer,  but will be penalised at the rate of 10% of total assignment marks per day (including weekends).


    Total marks available for the assignment = 100 marks

    Marks received for the assignment = 70 marks

    Marks deducted for 2 days late submission (20% of 100) = 20 marks

    Final mark received for assignment = 50 marks

    This policy is strict because comments or guidance will be given on assignments as they are returned, and sample solutions may also be published and distributed, after assignment marking or with the returned assignment. 


    It is your responsibility to structure your study program around assignment deadlines, family, work and other commitments. Factors such as normal work pressures, vacations, etc. are seldom regarded as appropriate reasons for granting extensions. 

    If you believe that your assignment will be delayed because of circumstances beyond your control such as illness, a request for extension must be made by email to the unit lecturer at least two days before the assignment due date. You will be asked to forward original medical certificates in cases of illness, or other supporting documentation where necessary. A copy of the email or other written communication of an extension must be attached to the assignment submission.

    Grading of assessment

    Assignments, and the unit, will be marked and allocated a grade according to the following scale:

    HD High Distinction - very high levels of achievement, demonstrated knowledge and understanding, skills in application and high standards of work encompassing all aspects of the tasks.
    In the 80+% range of marks for the assignment.
    D Distinction - high levels of achievement, but not of the same standards. May have a weakness in one particular aspect, or overall standards may not be quite as high.
    In the 70-79% range.
    C Credit - sound pass displaying good knowledge or application skills, but some weaknesses in the quality, range or demonstration of understanding.
    In the 60-69% range.
    P Pass - acceptable standard, showing an adequate basic knowledge, understanding or skills, but with definite limitations on the extent of such understanding or application. Some parts may be incomplete.
    In the 50-59% range.
    N Not satisfactory -  failure to meet the basic requirements of the assessment.
    Below 50%.

    In general, we will aim to have assignment results made available to you within two weeks after assignment receipt.

    Feedback Feedback to you

    You will receive feedback on your work and progress in this unit. This feedback may be provided through your participation in tutorials and class discussions, as well as through your assignment submissions. It may come in the form of individual advice, marks and comments, or it may be provided as comment or reflection targeted at the group. It may be provided through personal interactions, such as interviews and on-line forums, or through other mechanisms such as on-line self-tests and publication of grade distributions.

    Feedback from you

    You will be asked to provide feedback to the Faculty through a Unit Evaluation survey at the end of the semester. You may also be asked to complete surveys to help teaching staff improve the unit and unit delivery. Your input to such surveys is very important to the faculty and the teaching staff in maintaining relevant and high quality learning experiences for our students.

    And if you are having problems

    It is essential that you take action immediately if you realise that you have a problem with your study. The semester is short, so we can help you best if you let us know as soon as problems arise. Regardless of whether the problem is related directly to your progress in the unit, if it is likely to interfere with your progress you should discuss it with your lecturer or a Community Service counsellor as soon as possible.

    Plagiarism and cheating

    Plagiarism and cheating are regarded as very serious offences. In cases where cheating  has been confirmed, students have been severely penalised, from losing all marks for an assignment, to facing disciplinary action at the Faculty level. While we would wish that all our students adhere to sound ethical conduct and honesty, I will ask you to acquaint yourself with Student Rights and Responsibilities and the Faculty regulations that apply to students detected cheating as these will be applied in all detected cases.

    In this University, cheating means seeking to obtain an unfair advantage in any examination or any other written or practical work to be submitted or completed by a student for assessment. It includes the use, or attempted use, of any means to gain an unfair advantage for any assessable work in the unit, where the means is contrary to the instructions for such work. 

    When you submit an individual assessment item, such as a program, a report, an essay, assignment or other piece of work, under your name you are understood to be stating that this is your own work. If a submission is identical with, or similar to, someone else's work, an assumption of cheating may arise. If you are planning on working with another student, it is acceptable to undertake research together, and discuss problems, but it is not acceptable to jointly develop or share solutions unless this is specified by your lecturer. 

    Intentionally providing students with your solutions to assignments is classified as "assisting to cheat" and students who do this may be subject to disciplinary action. You should take reasonable care that your solution is not accidentally or deliberately obtained by other students. For example, do not leave copies of your work in progress on the hard drives of shared computers, and do not show your work to other students. If you believe this may have happened, please be sure to contact your lecturer as soon as possible.

    Cheating also includes taking into an examination any material contrary to the regulations, including any bilingual dictionary, whether or not with the intention of using it to obtain an advantage.

    Plagiarism involves the false representation of another person's ideas, or findings, as your own by either copying material or paraphrasing without citing sources. It is both professional and ethical to reference clearly the ideas and information that you have used from another writer. If the source is not identified, then you have plagiarised work of the other author. Plagiarism is a form of dishonesty that is insulting to the reader and grossly unfair to your student colleagues.


    Communication in this unit will be through:

    • class contact
    • email to tutors/lecturer
    • consultation with tutors/lecturer
    • unit discussion group

    If you need a staff member urgently and are unable to contact them, please contact: Caulfield School of IT Reception Desk, Level 6 – Building H, Ph: 9903 2535


    Notices related to the unit during the semester will be placed on the Notices Newsgroup in the Unit Website. Check this regularly. Failure to read the Notices newsgroup is not regarded as grounds for special consideration.

    Consultation Times

    Tutor consultation times will be given to each tutorial group.

    Consultation with the lecturer is by appointment only. 

    Please email chris.gonsalvez@infotech.monash.edu.au to organise an appointment.

    If direct communication with your unit adviser/lecturer or tutor outside of consultation periods is needed you may contact the lecturer and/or tutors at:

    Ms Christabel Gonsalvez
    Associate Head of School
    Phone +61 3 990 32554

    Mr David Grant

    All email communication to you from your lecturer will occur through your Monash student email address. Please ensure that you read it regularly, or forward your email to your main address. Also check that your contact information registered with the University is up to date in My.Monash.

    Last updated: Mar 2, 2006