GCO9805 Object oriented programming - Semester 2 , 2006 unit guide

Semester 2, 2006

Chief Examiner

Adrien Driver


Gippsland : Adrien Driver


Various stages of object-oriented program development starting with problem definition, then algorithm construction, and finally coding, testing and debugging a program. The lexical elements and syntax of the Java programming language and the nature of compilation, interpretation and execution. Computer programs with elements such as simple data types, variables, constants, declarations, one and two-dimensional arrays, block structures, expressions, statements, compound statements and selection and repetition control structures. Programs are also organised into classes of variables and methods that communicate by passing parameters and returning values. Instantiation and use of objects achieved by invoking methods. The programs process input and output, including strings and characters.


Knowledge and Understanding

This unit aims to develop sound object-oriented computer program design and construction practices and to provide a solid foundation for further programming units.

On completion of this subject students will be able to:

  • item understand the principles and processes of object-oriented software design;
  • item understand the principles and processes of simple object-oriented software development using Java;
  • item solve simple algorithmic design problems using representational notations;
  • item understand the need for and techniques of object communication;
  • item design and write single and multiple class object-oriented solutions to programming problems;
  • item understand how to translate user needs into object-oriented computer programs;
  • item understand simple data structures such as arrays.


Attitudes, Values and Beliefs

On completion of the unit students will:

  • Appreciate the need for effective design strategies in software development.


Practical Skills

Students will be able to:

  • display skills in problem solving and algorithmic design using representational forms such as pseudocode;
  • item item apply strategies to translate users' needs into object-oriented computer programs;
  • use appropriate techniques for communicating program data between objects;



There are no prerequisites for this unit.

Unit relationships

GCO9805 is a core unit in the Graduate Diploma in Computing degree and for Master of Applied IT program. It is a corequisite for GCO9802 unit. There are no prerequisites for this unit. You may not study this unit and GCO1811, CSE1102, CSE1301, CSE1202, CSE2200, CPE1001, SFT1102, SFT2021, SFT3021, CFR2121, CSC1011, CSC1021, RDT1301 in your degree.

Texts and software

Required text(s)

  • Horstmann C: Big Java 2 ed., John Wiley & Sons, 2005, ISBN 0471697036
  • Robertson LA: Simple Program Design, 4 ed., Thomson/Nelson, 2003, ISBN 017010704-3

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

All software ( except JCreator) listed below is provided to you on a CD labelled GSIT Unit Software.

BlueJ, Version 2.1.2 Programming Development Environment. Although available on CD, version 2.1.3 can be downloaded from


Java Development Kit, Version j2sdk-1_5_0_06 or later, Sun Microsystems, Inc.

Jcreator - jcreator LE v3.5 is a powerful IDE (Integrated Development Environment) for Java and is strongly recommended. It can be downloaded from the Web Site:


You should download the freeware version. You have no need for the fuller facilities provided in JcreatorPro, and would have to pay for it as well.

jEdit - Text editor written in Java which can auto indent and provides syntax highlighting for more than 130 languages.



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

Recommended reading

Savitch W. : Absolute Java 2nd Ed., Addison Wesley 2006, ISBN 0321330242

Malik D.S. : Java Programming - From Analysis to Design., Thomson Learning 2006, ISBN 0619216085

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 GCO9805 are:

  • A printed Unit Book containing a number of Modules covering certain topics
  • This Unit Information outlining the administrative information for the unit
  • A CD-ROM sent at the start of the year, with software required for the unit
  • The MUSO unit web site where lecture slides, weekly tutorial requirements, assignment specifications, sample solutions and supplementary material will be available
  • Discussion groups via MUSO
  • Structure and organisation

    Week Topics Study Guide Key Dates
    1 Introduction / Basics of Programming B1,B2,T1,T3
    2 Java Elements - Variables, Types, Operators and Expressions / Basic Input and Output E1, D1, E2, E4
    3 TBA Thursday August 3rd - Assignment 1 Due
    4 TBA
    5 TBA
    6 TBA Thursday August 24th - Assignment 2 Due
    7 TBA
    8 TBA
    9 TBA
    10 TBA
    Non teaching week
    11 TBA Monday October 2nd - Assignment 3 Due
    12 TBA
    13 TBA


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


    Assessment weighting

    Assessment for the unit consists of 4 assignments with a weighting of 40% and an examination with a weighting of 60%. Read this section VERY carefully.

    Assessment Policy

    To pass this unit you must:


    • attempt all assignments and the examination
    • score at least 50% of the possible marks for the unit
    • achieve no less than 50% of the total available marks for the assignments overall, and the examination.

    Your score for the unit will be calculated by:

    Not available at the moment - to be advised.

    Assessment Requirements

    Assessment Due Date Weighting
    Assignment 0 Thursday August 3rd 1%
    Assignment 1 Thursday August 17th 4 %
    Assignment 2 Thursday September 14th 15 %
    Assignment 3 Monday October 9th 20 %
    The exam is 3 hours long and is closed book. Exam period (S2/06) starts on 23/10/06 60 %

    Assignment specifications will be made available via the GCO9805/GCO1811/FIT1002 MUSO site..

    Assignment Submission

    Assignments will be submitted via the WebFace Assignment Submission System. Assignments will be graded and returned electronically via WebFace to the email address that you have registered with WebFace.

    Some students may feel a little uncertain about their assignment submissions and request if the assignment can be looked over prior to submission. Unfortunately this is not possible (and disadvantages other students). Use the assignment newsgroup to place a question related to your area of uncertainty.

    Extensions and late submissions

    Late submission of assignments

    Assignments received after the due date without an extension will incur a penalty of 10% reduction in grade for each day late (inclusive of weekends). 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.

    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. 

    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 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.

    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

    Any unit material or assignment query must be posted to the relevant discussion group. Any email sent that relates to the content of the unit will be answered via the relevant discussion groups.

    Personal queries, which include include requests for assignment extensions, special consideration requests, or the need to discuss your personal progress can be directed to the campus lecturer or tutor via email.

    You are not asked to put anything of a personal nature into your newsgroup postings. You can discuss matters over the phone but email is the preferred method of contact.


    Notices related to the unit during the semester will be made via the Announcement tool in MUSO. For a set period a pop up box will notify you of any important notices, after than you must check the Announcement tool for any that you missed. Check this regularly. Failure to read the announcements is not regarded as grounds for special consideration.

    Consultation Times

    Tuesday 2-4

    Thursday 2-4

    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 Adrien Driver
    Phone +61 3 990 26856
    Fax +61 3 990 26879

    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 7, 2006