MMS9402 Digital media authoring - Semester 2 , 2006 unit guide

Semester 2, 2006

Chief Examiner

William Lay


Caulfield : William Lay


The unit will develop further the basic concepts of information technology and the hardware and software tools and will focus mainly on specialist tools which are used in multimedia systems. In particular attention will be given to the tools available to support linear and non-linear methods of integrating sound and video; the use of multimedia authoring tools to create and edit training and other interactive multimedia presentations; tools and programming techniques for multimedia interactivity; design techniques for interactive multimedia; and technologies such as CD-Rom and DVD.


Knowledge and Understanding

At the completion of this unit students will have a theoretical and conceptual understanding of:

  • information technology and the software tools as they relate to (and are used in) multimedia systems;
  • the Macromedia Flash and Macromedia Director authoring environments for CD-ROM, DVD-ROM and web based systems development;
  • codecs and compression techniques associated with digital video, images and sound and the appropriate application of these for use in ROM development;
  • the formal process undertaken for preparing and documenting the various development stages of a multimedia system;
  • how to achieve a range of special effects which are commonly required for advanced interactive design in multimedia systems;
  • fundamental programming techniques and how to carry this knowledge across multiple languages.
Attitudes, Values and Beliefs

At the completion of this unit students will have developed attitudes that enable them to:

  • outline strengths and weaknesses of information technology in the context of the development and use of multimedia systems;
  • make informed decisions on the most appropriate blend of tools and technologies to support a given multimedia system requirement;
  • formulate constructive criticism within the construct of critical analysis.
Practical Skills

At the completion of this unit students will have the skills to:

  • apply advanced interactive design techniques to a multimedia system using time/frame based authoring environments;
  • use a blend of industry standard multimedia tools and products.
  • write code to assist in advanced system interaction with the programming languages Lingo & ActionScript;
  • further enhance and refine user interface and navigational design and creativity skills in multimedia systems;
  • specify an appropriate toolset for developing and supporting advanced features/functionality in a multimedia system.
Relationships, Communication and TeamWork

At the completion of this unit students will have developed the teamwork skills needed to:

  • build confidence in formal presentation techniques presenting personal ideas, research concepts and developmental progress;
  • discuss and share developmental processes and techniques within an informal populated environment.



Before attempting this unit you must have satisfactorily completed MMS9401, or equivalent. Students should have a basic knowledge of Multimedia fundamentals such as appropriate file formats, file sizes, basic multimedia authoring principles, digital imaging skills and an adequate skill level in several fundamental multimedia applications.

Unit relationships

MMS9402 is a core unit in the Master of Multimedia.

It is a prerequisite/corequisite for Before attempting this unit you must have satisfactorily completed MMS9401, or equivalent..

You may not study this unit and MMS2402, FIT2012 in your degree.

Texts and software

Required text(s)

There will be no required textbooks for this unit. See "Recommended Reading" below for a list of recommended references.

Textbook availability


Software requirements

All software required for use in this unit can be accessed from allocated campus laboraties/tutorial rooms.

The software used in this unit consists of:

  • Adobe (formerly Macromedia) Flash Professional 8
  • Adobe (formerly Macromedia) Director MX 2004
  • Adobe Photoshop CS2
  • Adobe Illustrator CS2

30 Day Trial/Evaluation versions of the named software can be dowloaded for personal use if neccessary from the following websites:


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

Recommended reading

Macromedia Flash 8: Training from the Source by James English
Publisher: Macromedia Press; Bk&CD-Rom edition (October 18, 2005)
ISBN: 0321336291

Macromedia Director MX 2004: Training from the Source by Dave Mennenoh
Publisher: Macromedia Press (November 5, 2004)
ISBN: 0321223659

Digital Multimedia by Nigel Chapman, Jenny Chapman
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons; 2nd edition (March 26, 2004)
ISBN: 0470858907

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 MMS9402 are:

The MMS9402/FIT2012 web site on MUSO will host lecture slides, weekly tutorial requirements and assignment specifications. In addition, supplementary resources may also be posted.

Structure and organisation

Week Topics Key Dates
1 Unit Introduction
2 Digital Imaging, Animation, Organisation and Preparation
3 The Macromedia Director Authoring Environment
4 Lingo Programming
5 Development Process and Documentation
6 Implementing Audio, Video and Real-time 3d in Director
7 Macromedia Flash Overview Assignment 1 Due
8 The Macromedia Flash Authoring Environment
9 ActionScript Fundamentals
10 Advanced ActionScript and Interactive Design in Flash
Non teaching week
11 Audio and Video Techniques in Flash
12 TBA
13 Revision Assignment 2 Due


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


Assessment weighting

Assessment for the unit consists of:

  • Assignment component: Two assignments with a weighting of 60% overall.
  • Examination component: An examination with a weighting of 40% overall.

This unit's assessment consists of three assessment peices:

  • Assignment 1
  • Assignment 2
  • Examination

Assignment 1: Director CD-ROM
This assignment requests the development of an interactive CD-ROM product using fundamental multimedia applications. The CD-ROM should be compiled within Macromedia Director and should demonstrate a firm understanding and knowledge of the authoring environment and the concepts attributed to developing a multimedia system. This assignment will be based on a proposed concept for students to research, design, develop and promote allowing creative freedom throughout development.

Assignment 2: Flash CD-ROM
This assignment requests the development of a content-rich Interactive CD-ROM product in Macromedia Flash. Fundamental multimedia applications should be used for the creation of content. This assignment has a strict brief based around e-learning structured product. Strict documentation is provided for Design Standards and Program Specifications in which students must adhere.

The end-of-unit examination will be a test of knowledge on all aspects of the unit from conceptual theories, practical development, interactive design principals and practical developmental tools and techniques.

Assessment Policy

To pass this unit you must:

Students must obtain at least 40% in the Assignment component of assessment and at least 40% in the Examination component of assessment in order to be elible for a pass in this unit.

An assignment will be graded as a fail if it does not satisfy the assignment criteria or plagiarises another person's work.

Your score for the unit will be calculated by:

Final grade = (R*A*E)/(((R-1)*A)+E)

A = overall assignment percentage
E = examination percentage
R = 100/assignment weighting (100/40 = 2.5)

If you achieve a grade of 0% for assignments your final grade will be
Final grade = E / 2.5

If you achieve a grade of 0% for the examination your final grade will be
Final grade = A / 2.5

Note: this means that if you achieve 0% for either component of your assessment your final grade cannot be higher than 40%, and you will therefore fail the unit.

Assessment Requirements

Assessment Due Date Weighting
Assignment 1: Director CD-ROM Week 7 30%
Assignment 2: Flash CD-ROM Week 13 30 %
The exam is 2 hours long and is closed book. Exam period (S2/06) starts on 23/10/06 40 %

Assignment specifications will be made available on the MMS9402/FIT2012 MUSO pages..

Assignment Submission

Assignments will be submitted by hand to the students' Tutor in their allocated tutorial with the appropriate cover sheet correctly filled out and attached.

Extensions and late submissions

Late submission of assignments

Assignments received after the due date will be subject to a penalty of 10% per day (including weekend days).

Assignments received later than one week after the due date will not be accepted for assessment unless prior (alternate) arrangements have been made with the unit Lecturer due to special circumstances.

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 to the unit lecturer/tutor 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.

If an extension is required it is in all circumstances recommended that you make your tutor/lecturer aware of your disruption to studies at the earliest convenient opportunity.

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

Communication between students and tutors is encouraged within allocated tutorial slots and the tutors allocated time of consultation.

Communication with the lecturer is encouraged during and after a Lecturer at appropriate intervals within the presented content. The Lecturer will also be available for consultation times in his/her office.

For Consultation times of tutor/Lecturer please refer to the FIT2012 MUSO pages.

In addition, a electronic forum will be accessible to all students on the the FIT2012 MUSO pages. This board will be monitored by teaching staff of the unit, but is also encouraged as a means of student to student discussion and collaboration.


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

See MMS9402/FIT2012 MUSO pages.

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 William Lay

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 16, 2006