BUS5020 - Semester 2 , 2006 unit guide

Semester 2, 2006

Chief Examiner

Dr Tony Lewis


Clayton : Dr Tony Lewis


This unit introduces students to the fundamentals of trading systems, and then places them within an Internet context. Trading is the exchange of products for money. The unit is concerned with methods via which computer systems and technologies can be used to automate and control the process of trading. The unit has three parts. The first part looks at how computer systems and technologies can be used within the trading companies to control the procedures and information exchanges that are required in the exchange of products for money. The emphasis in this part is on the nature of the operational systems that exist in the individual firms and the issues involved in computerising them. These systems include the front-end (sales order entry and despatching) and back-end (purchasing and receiving) systems of a trading company, as well as the accounting and inventory systems. The second part of the unit concerns the opportunities that exist to use computer technologies and systems to automate the exchange of information between trading partners. This leads to a discussion of the technologies of Universal Product Numbering, Automatic Identification (Bar Coding), Electronic Data Interchange and Electronic Funds Transfer, which together make up the concept of Electronic Trading or Electronic Commerce. The concepts which are discussed in this unit apply to a wide range of companies involved in trading, whether their products are manufactured goods, merchandised goods or services. This section concerns traditional EDI trading formats such as ANSIX12 and EDIFACT, and newer ones such as XML. The final section covers security and encryption issues in Electronic Commerce.


At the completion of this unit students will have:

  • Knowledge of all of the key issues in understanding trading systems and their automation
  • Knowledge of all of the key technologies for B2B trading
  • Understanding of opportunities that exist to automate trading between business partners, particular large and smaller business
  • Understanding of internet trading
  • Skills in simulating a trading system which demonstrates knowledge and understanding of trading systems and their automation


Before attempting this unit you must have satisfactorily completed BUS9520 Business Systems A or equivalent, or equivalent.

Unit relationships

BUS5020 is an elective unit in the Bachelor of Business Systems Degree.

You may not study this unit and BUS3020, BUS4020, GCO5801, BEW2621, BEG2621, CPE5008, GCO5806 in your degree.


Texts and software

Required text(s)

Anne Parr: Trading Systems and Electronic Commerce (Tutorial Exercises)

R. Johnston: 1998, Trading Systems and Electronic Commerce (Eruditions Publishing)

Textbook availability

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

Laboratory exercises require the use of MYOB accounting package. This package is available in the labs used for tutorials.

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 2 hours per week for use of a computer, including time for newsgroups/discussion groups.

Recommended reading

Anne Parr: Trading Systems and Electronic Commerce (Tutorial Exercises)


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 BUS5020 are:

Lecture slides available on MUSO web site

MYOB exercise guide available on MUSO web site


Unit website


Structure and organisation

Week Topics
1 TOPIC 1 - Foundations of trading systems
2 TOPIC 2 - Trading systems
3 TOPIC 2 - Trading systems cont'd TOPIC3 - Inventory systems
4 TOPIC 3 - Inventory systems cont'd
5 TOPIC 4 - Standardised product numbering
6 TOPIC 5 - Bar codes
7 TOPIC 5 - Bar codes cont'd
9 TPOIC 7 - Security
10 Progress test
Non teaching week
13 Revision & Exam Prep


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


Assessment weighting

Assessment for the unit consists of 1 assignments with a weighting of 10%, a progress test with a weighting of 20%, and an examination with a weighting of 70%. Read this section VERY carefully.

Assessment Policy

To pass this unit you must:

To pass this unit you must achieve a pass rate of 50% in the exam. If you pass the exam yor exam amrk will be reduced to a mark out of 70 and have your assignment 1 and mid semester test results added on. If you fail to pass the exam, your mark in the exam will be your final mark.

Your score for the unit will be calculated by:

Assignment 1 - 10%, Progress Test - 20%, Exam - 70%

Assessment Requirements

Assessment Due Date Weighting
Assignment 1 11th Sept 2006 10%
Progress Test 19th Sept 2006 20 %
The exam is [2] hours long and is closed book. Exam period (S2/06) starts on 23/10/06 70 %

Assignment specifications will be made available Will be posted to MUSO web site.

Assignment Submission

Assignments will be submitted by paper submission to Box 4, Blg 63 (1st Floor) by 3:00 p.m. on the 11th September, 2006. Please fill out and attach an appropriate cover sheet for your assignment.

Extensions and late submissions

Late submission of assignments

Assignments received after the due date will be subject to a penalty of 1 mark per day.

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 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:

Grade Percentage/description
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%.

Assignment return

We will aim to have assignment results made available to you within two weeks after assignment receipt.


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 methods

Email to lecturer at tony.lewis@infotech.monash.edu.au


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

Lecturer has an open door policy

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 Anthony Lewis
Phone +61 3 990 59692

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: Jul 27, 2006