GCO4500 Honours research project - Semester 2 , 2006 unit guide

Semester 2, 2006

Chief Examiner

Dr.Madhu Chetty


Gippsland : Dr. Madhu Chetty


Student undertakes a supervised research-oriented project, that includes a literature survey and identification of potential solutions to the problems stated in the project. Student write a preliminary report and present a seminar which describes the project background, proposed solutions and plans to implement and test the solutions. Off-campus students will present their seminars through a video-conference link or record a seminar given at their work place and send it to the supervisor. The next major phase of the project is to implement and test the solutions to the identified problems. The culmination is the writing a thesis of 10,000 to 20,000 words and a final presentation.


On completion of the subject students will have acquired in-depth knowledge in the area of a chosen project; developed research skills including identifying problems, literature survey, identifying potential solutions, implementing and testing solutions, and publishing project findings and results; developed their ability to effectively communicate technical information, both through oral presentations and through written communication; developed experience in using a variety of computing tools required to complete their projects.


You should have also enrolled in GCO4010 (co-requisite) in semester 1 along with this unit.

Only honours students are eligible to enrol in the unit.

Unit relationships

GCO4500 is a core unit in the Bachelor of Computing(honours) and Bachelor of Information Technology (honours) program.

Texts and software

Required text(s)

Research journals and conference proceedings which contain research publications related to the project work. Any book that is recommended by the supervisor.

Textbook availability

Text books and reference books recommended by the supervisor are available for purchase from Monash Book shop or can be borrowed from the library.

Software requirements

Depending on the need of the project, the supervisor will advise the required software.

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

Research journals and conference proceedings and book which contain research publications related to the project work.

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 GCO4500 are:

The requirements of a project suitable as a honours project are made available on the unit web site.

All relevant resources will be made available in consultation with your supervisor, who will provide the details depepending on the project that you are working on.

Structure and organisation

Week Topics Key Dates
1 Proposal development
2 Proposal development
3 Literature review
4 Literature review Report 1 due
5 Feasibility studies and analysis
6 analysis
7 analysis and proposing design
8 design and development
9 development (e.g. programming and coding) Report 2 due
10 development (e.g. programming and coding)
Non teaching week
11 experiements
12 experiments and report writing
13 Report completion Thesis submission


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


Assessment weighting

Based on thesis submission and evaluation and approval by two independent examiners. The evaluation for thesis report has 90% weighting for this unit. Report 1 has 5% weight and report 2 has 5% weight.

Assessment Policy

To pass this unit you must:

1) submit the required number of progress reports to the supervisor.

2) Submit final report(s) and deliverables to the supervisor.

3) Submit a thesis to be examined by two independent examiners

Your score for the unit will be calculated by:

The assessment is based on the final thesis report which comprises of 90% of the final mark and the two reports submitted earlier during the semester  which comprise of 10% of the final marks.  Your final thesis will be examined by two examiners.  The marks for the final thesis report, which comprises of 90% of the final mark will be the average of the marks allocated by the two examiners.

Assessment Requirements

Assessment Due Date Weighting
Report 1 Week 4 5%
Report 2 Week 8 5 %
Final thesis report Exam period (S2/06) starts on 23/10/06 90 %

Assignment specifications will be made available In consultation with your supervisor.

Assignment Submission

All students (on- campus or DE) will submit the progress reports either electronically or by hard copy to the project supervisor.

Extensions and late submissions

Late submission of assignments

Reports received after the due date (without prior approval) will be subject to a penalty imposed in consultation with the supervisor and the honours program coordinator.

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 supervisor (with a copy to the coordinator) 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 feedback of the reports made available to you usually within two weeks after receipt of the reports.


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 the project supervisor and the coordinator.


There is a honours mailing list created for honours students. You will receive information regarding attending seminars etc. via the honours mailing list.

Consultation Times

You can meet honours coordinator every Friday from 11:00AM till 1:00PM in his office. Else, you can email him to take an appointment for meeting at any other time.

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:

Dr Madhu Chetty
Senior Lecturer
Phone +61 3 990 27148

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: Aug 1, 2006