IMS2501 Studio 3: Systems Development 1 , Unit Information Guide (Semester 1, 2006)

Chief Examiner Peter O'Donnell and Sue Foster
Caulfield : Peter O'Donnell and Sue Foster

The subject is designed to revisit skills gained in the course so far and provide students with an opportunity to consolidate and reinforce these skills. This unit will introduce students to the practical aspects of systems development and the nature of the environment in which development takes place. A case study will be used based on a simple organizational scenario and students will be expected to develop a set of deliverables and provide a simple web-based application that addresses some of the case study's core requirements. This solution will be used as the basis for the development of a more complete and modular working system in second semester.

Topics include:

  • Project Management techniques
  • Quality Issues
  • Professional Practice and Communication
  • Organisational Environment for Practice
  • Information Management
  • Career Development
  • Skills Development


    Knowledge and Understanding

    Students will gain knowledge and understanding of:

    • The tasks necessary to complete the analysis phase of systems development and produce accurate sets of system specifications that can be used as the basis for further development
    • The nature and contents of the initial project planning documentation and how project management is an essential controlling mechanism for systems development
    • The issues surrounding systems development that can both positively and negatively affect the development process
    • The nature of integration and modularity in systems development and how they can be achieved
    • The nature, processes and dynamics of working in teams and how to resolve conflicts
    Attitudes, Values and Beliefs
    • Students will develop professional attitudes towards development tasks and activities and an appreciation of the value of these attitudes
    • Students will begin to develop an appreciation of the value of group work, and its fundamental contribution to the systems process
    • Students will develop healthy attitudes towards critical self-assessment and gain an appreciation of its importance to professional practice
    • Students will gain an appreciation of the importance of good project management practices
    Practical Skills
    • Further development of analysis skills in the areas of requirements definition and specification
    • Development of project management skills in the areas of feasibility assessment, task scheduling and resource allocation
    • Development of skills that enable students to conduct critical examinations of themselves, their teams and their team processes
    • Development of skills in the use of software necessary to produce system specifications for analysis and project planning documentation particularly in the areas of report writing, modeling and project planning.
    • Further development of their written and oral interpersonal communication skills while working in teams to produce accurate and complete project documentation
    Relationships, Communication and TeamWork
    • Students will further develop team skills and gain an appreciation of the skills and dynamics conducive to synergistic teamwork
    • Students will have the opportunity to develop meaningful working relationships and gain an appreciation of their importance to a constructive development environment
    Prerequisites Before attempting this unit you must have satisfactorily completed IMS1502, IMS1805, IMS1906, IMS1907 or equivalent. Knowledge of systems analysis techniques, programming and database implementation are viewed as prerequisites for this unit. The project-based environment provides students with the opportunity to practice and build on these skills, and integrate them in the development of a working application.

    Unit relationships IMS2501 is a core unit in the Bachelor of Information Systems degree. You should be studying (have studied) IMS2805 and IMS2906 while you are taking this unit. You may not study this unit and IMS2000 in your degree.
    Texts and software

    Required text(s)

    Prescribed textbooks for the core course units

    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.

    Hardware requirements:

    Students studying off-campus are required to have the minimum system configuration specified by the faculty as a condition of accepting admission, and regular Internet access. On-campus students, and those studying at supported study locations 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. You will need to allocate up to n hours per week for use of a computer, including time for newsgroups/discussion groups.

    Recommended reading

    Prescribed textbooks for the core course units

    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 IMS2501 are:

    Structure and organisation



    Study Guide


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


    Assessment for the unit consists of n assignments with a weighting of x% and an examination with a weighting of y%. Read this section VERY carefully.

    Assessment Policy

    To pass this unit you must:

    Your score for the unit will be calculated by:

    Assessment Requirements


    Due Date


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

    Assignment Submission Methods

    Assignments will be submitted by [electronic/paper] submission to [enter submission URL/location] On-campus Students Submit the assignment to the [enter submission location] by [enter submission date], with the appropriate cover sheet correctly filled out and attached Off Campus (OCL) students [OCL only] Mail your assignment to the Off-Campus Learning Centre with the cover sheet attached. Singapore and Hong Kong Students [Gippsland only] Mail your assignment to the Distance Education Centre with the cover sheet attached. Do not email submissions. The due date is the date by which the submission must be received/the date by which the the submission is to be posted.

    Extensions and late submissions

    Late submission of assignments

    Assignments received after the due date will be subject to a penalty of [describe penalty for late submission, describe the deadline for late assignment acceptance or any conditions that are placed on late assignments, e g, "Assignments received later than one week after the due date will not normally be accepted."]

    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. 

    Requests for extensions must be made by [method of request, for example, 'email to the unit lecturer'] at least two days before the due date. You will be asked to forward original medical certificates in cases of illness, and may be asked to provide other forms of 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%.

    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.



    Notices related to the unit during the semester will be placed on the home page of the unit website. Check this regularly. Failure to read the notices is not regarded as grounds for special consideration.

    Consultation Times


    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:

    Mr Peter O'Donnell
    Phone +61 3 990 32502

    Miss Susan Foster
    Phone +61 3 990 32404

    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: Feb 27, 2006