FIT3086 IT project management - Semester 1 , 2008

Unit leader :

Rodney Martin

Lecturer(s) :

Clayton

  • Rodney Martin

Malaysia

  • Boon Han Yeap

Introduction

Welcome to FIT3086 Project Management for semester 1, 2008. This 6 point unit is core to Bachelor of Computer Science, Bachelor of Software Engineering, and for Science students doing a major in Computer Science. The unit has been designed to provide you with an understanding of modern project management. It will provide you with the knowledge to plan and manage projects, understand project accounting calculations and take part in the business activities of your organization.

Unit synopsis

ASCED Discipline Group classification: 029999 Information Technology Not Elsewhere Classified

The unit provides both a theoretical and practical overview of processes involved in managing projects. Topics include the practical and business aspects of project planning, scheduling and management, and costing, accounting and net present value calculations. These are followed by the project life cycle, project evaluation, high and low level planning, team building and people management, monitoring and control, reporting and communication, termination and assessment.

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Learning outcomes

On completion of this unit students will have:

  • Describe the characteristics and phases of a project and its life cycle and explain the role played by the project manager.
  • Explain the need for and develop specific goals, detailed plans and control strategies in large scale projects and relate this to the major reasons for the failure of IT projects.
  • Develop relevant, achievable and measurable project goals.
  • Explain and use standard project management techniques including Project Networks, Critical Path Analysis and Management, Gantt Charts and Time-Phased Budgets for high and low level project planning.
  • Discuss the communication, people handling and team management skills required of a project manager and explain some of the techniques that may be employed.
  • Identify and critically discuss the impact on a project of external influences, including organisational structure, and stakeholders.
  • Explain the processes involved in selecting and initiating a project and prepare various critical documents required for these processes, including financial justification.
  • Explain the importance of resource availability on project plans and develop and manage resource constrained project plans.
  • Describe the need for Quality Management in projects and explain, compare and use various techniques currently employed by professional project managers.
  • Describe the impact of risk on a project manager's decision process, explain how that risk may be managed and/or mitigated and develop an appropriate risk management plan..
  • Monitor the progress of a project, determine performance against the plan, develop strategies to manage any variation and discuss formal change control processes.
  • Produce useful, informative progress reports for various project stakeholders and conduct stage and post project reviews

and you will have developed attitudes that enable you to:

  • Take part in the business aspects of quoting and winning projects.
  • Understand what is required to become a successful project manager. 
  • Workload

    Unit relationships

    Prerequisites

    Before attempting this unit you must have satisfactorily completed

    Completion of at least 24 points of IT study, or equivalent.

    Relationships

    FIT3086 is a core unit in the Bachelor of Computer Science and Bachelor of Software Engineering .

    Before attempting this unit you must have completed at least 24 points of level one IT study.

    , or equivalent..

    You may not study this unit and

    FIT2002, BUS2176, BUS5150,CSE2203, FIT2039,GCO3807, MMS2203, CPE2006

    in your degree.

    Continuous improvement

    Monash is committed to ‘Excellence in education' and strives for the highest possible quality in teaching and learning. To monitor how successful we are in providing quality teaching and learning Monash regularly seeks feedback from students, employers and staff. Two of the formal ways that you are invited to provide feedback are through Unit Evaluations and through Monquest Teaching Evaluations.

    One of the key formal ways students have to provide feedback is through Unit Evaluation Surveys. It is Monash policy for every unit offered to be evaluated each year. Students are strongly encouraged to complete the surveys as they are an important avenue for students to "have their say". The feedback is anonymous and provides the Faculty with evidence of aspects that students are satisfied and areas for improvement.

    Student Evaluations

    The Faculty of IT administers the Unit Evaluation surveys online through the my.monash portal, although for some smaller classes there may be alternative evaluations conducted in class.

    If you wish to view how previous students rated this unit, please go to http://www.monash.edu.au/unit-evaluation-reports/

    Over the past few years the Faculty of Information Technology has made a number of improvements to its courses as a result of unit evaluation feedback. Some of these include systematic analysis and planning of unit improvements, and consistent assignment return guidelines.

    Monquest Teaching Evaluation surveys may be used by some of your academic staff this semester. They are administered by the Centre for Higher Education Quality (CHEQ) and may be completed in class with a facilitator or on-line through the my.monash portal. The data provided to lecturers is completely anonymous. Monquest surveys provide academic staff with evidence of the effectiveness of their teaching and identify areas for improvement. Individual Monquest reports are confidential, however, you can see the summary results of Monquest evaluations for 2006 at http://www.adm.monash.edu.au/cheq/evaluations/monquest/profiles/index.html

    Unit staff - contact details

    Unit leader

    Mr Rodney Martin
    Lecturer
    Phone +61 3 990 55289

    Lecturer(s) :

    Mr Rodney Martin
    Lecturer
    Phone +61 3 990 55289
    Boon Han Yeap

    Teaching and learning method

    The unit will be conducted as one 2 hour lecture and one 2 hour tutorial or laboratory session per week.

    Copies of lecture slides and tutorial exercises will be made available to all students through the unit website.

    Lectures will provide students with the knowledge of fundamental theories and concepts

    The tutorials will provide students with an opportunity to discuss and apply the concepts throughcase studies and problem solving exercises

    Communication, participation and feedback

    Monash aims to provide a learning environment in which students receive a range of ongoing feedback throughout their studies. You will receive feedback on your work and progress in this unit. This may take the form of group feedback, individual feedback, peer feedback, self-comparison, verbal and written feedback, discussions (on line and in class) as well as more formal feedback related to assignment marks and grades. You are encouraged to draw on a variety of feedback to enhance your learning.

    It is essential that you take action immediately if you realise that you have a problem that is affecting your study. Semesters are 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.

    Unit Schedule

    Week Topic Key dates
    1 Introduction to Project Management  
    2 Network Diagrams, Scheduling, Compression  
    3 Network Diagrams, Scheduling, Compression  
    4 Financial and Profit Calculations  
    Mid semester break
    5 Activity duration estimation and statistical techniques Assignment 1, part 1 - Project Networks due 4 April
    6 Net Present Value and other Project Selection Techniques  
    7 Net Present Value and other Project Selection Techniques Assignment 1, part 2 - Compression due 18 April
    8 Human Resource Management  
    9 Quality Management and ISO 9000 Standards  
    10 Contract Law and Contract Administration Assignment 1, part 3 - Project Financials due 9 May
    11 Project Life Cycle and other miscellaneous topics Assignment 1, part 4 - NPV due 16 MAY
    12 Project Management Body of Knowledge Assignment 2, MS Project due 23 MAY
    13 Summary and Revision  

    Unit Resources

    Prescribed text(s) and readings

    Schwalbe K., Information Technology Project Management, 4th Ed. Course Technology (2006). ISBN 0-619-21526-7.

    The text book is available from Monash University Bookshops.

    Recommended text(s) and readings

    Meredith J.R and Mantel S.J., Project Management a Managerial Approach, 5th Ed. Wiley (2003)

    Klastorin T., Project Management, Tools and Trade-Offs, Wiley (2004)

    Gido J. and Clements J.P., Successful Project Management, 2nd Ed., South-Western (2003)

    Cardle J. and Yeats D., Project Management for Information Systems, 4th Ed., Prentice-Hall (2004)

    Mantel S.J., Meredith J.R., Shafer S.M. and Sutton M.M., Project Management in Practice, 2th Ed. Wiley (2005)

    Kerzner H., Project Management, A Systems Approach to Planning Scheduling and Controlling, 8th Ed., Wiley (2003)

    Tavani, H.T. Ethics & Technology: Ethical Issues in an Age of Information and Communication Technology. John Wiley & Sons (2004)

    Hawthorn D., Luxford K., Jeganathan S., Martin R and White C., Project Management Basics, Epsilon (1998)

    Equipment and consumables required or provided

    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.

    Study resources

    Study resources we will provide for your study are:

    Lecture Notes, assignments, worked examples, past exams with solutions, and other materials will be made available via the MUSO website.

    Library access

    The Monash University Library site contains details about borrowing rights and catalogue searching. To learn more about the library and the various resources available, please go to http://www.lib.monash.edu.au.  Be sure to obtain a copy of the Library Guide, and if necessary, the instructions for remote access from the library website.

    Monash University Studies Online (MUSO)

    All unit and lecture materials are available through MUSO (Monash University Studies Online). Blackboard is the primary application used to deliver your unit resources. Some units will be piloted in Moodle.

    You can access MUSO and Blackboard via the portal (http://my.monash.edu.au).

    Click on the Study and enrolment tab, then Blackboard under the MUSO learning systems.

    In order for your Blackboard unit(s) to function correctly, your computer needs to be correctly configured.

    For example :

    • Blackboard supported browser
    • Supported Java runtime environment

    For more information, please visit

    http://www.monash.edu.au/muso/support/students/downloadables-student.html

    You can contact the MUSO Support by: Phone: (+61 3) 9903 1268

    For further contact information including operational hours, please visit

    http://www.monash.edu.au/muso/support/students/contact.html

    Further information can be obtained from the MUSO support site:

    http://www.monash.edu.au/muso/support/index.html

    If your unit is piloted in Moodle, you will see a link from your Blackboard unit to Moodle at http://moodle.med.monash.edu.au.
    From the Faculty of Information Technology category, click on the link for your unit.

    Assessment

    Unit assessment policy

    Assignment tasks

    • Assignment Task

      Title : Assignment 1

      Description :

      Numerical Exercises: There are four (4) main numerical topics in the course. These are (1) an introduction to project networks; (2) project compression; (3) project financials, cash flow, inventory valuation and accounting calculations; and (4) net present value and associated calculations. Assignment 1 consists of two practice exercises on each of these numerical topics. Marks will be 5% per topic, adding to 20% for the four topics.

      Weighting : 20%

      Criteria for assessment :

      Students must submit calculations to solve each problem which has been handed out. Marks will be given for correct answers.

      Due date : Project Networks 4 April, Compression 18 April, Project Financials 9 May, NPV 16 MAY

    • Assignment Task

      Title : Assignment 2

      Description :

      Use MS Project Software to plan and control a medium sized project.

      Weighting : 20%

      Criteria for assessment :

      The aim of this assignment is for you to demonstrate your knowledge of MS Project and general project planning and project management principles. Marks will be a professional judgement of to what extent you have demonstrated this knowledge.

      Due date : 23 May

    Examinations

    • Examination

      Weighting : 60%

      Length : 3 hours

      Type ( open/closed book ) : Closed book

    Assignment submission

    Assignments should be submitted as hard copy with files on cd if appropriate.

    Assignment coversheets

    All assignment submissions must include an assignment cover sheet that can be

    downloaded from the unit MUSO site

    University and Faculty policy on assessment

    Due dates and extensions

    The due dates for the submission of assignments are given in the previous section. Please make every effort to submit work by the due dates. 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. Students are advised to NOT assume that granting of an extension is a matter of course.

    Requests for extensions must be made to the unit lecturer at your campus 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.

    Requests will be decided on a case by case basis.

    Late assignment

    Assignments received after the due date will be subject to a penalty of 10% of the total mark for the respective assignment, as long as the solution has not been published. If an assignment is submitted after the solution has been published, then the assignment may recieve zero (0) marks.

    Return dates

    Students can expect assignments to be returned within two weeks of the submission date or after receipt, whichever is later.

    Assessment for the unit as a whole is in accordance with the provisions of the Monash University Education Policy at http://www.policy.monash.edu/policy-bank/academic/education/assessment/

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

    Plagiarism, cheating and collusion

    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 (http://www.infotech.monash.edu.au/about/committees-groups/facboard/policies/studrights.html) 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.

    Register of counselling about plagiarism

    The university requires faculties to keep a simple and confidential register to record counselling to students about plagiarism (e.g. warnings). The register is accessible to Associate Deans Teaching (or nominees) and, where requested, students concerned have access to their own details in the register. The register is to serve as a record of counselling about the nature of plagiarism, not as a record of allegations; and no provision of appeals in relation to the register is necessary or applicable.

    Non-discriminatory language

    The Faculty of Information Technology is committed to the use of non-discriminatory language in all forms of communication. Discriminatory language is that which refers in abusive terms to gender, race, age, sexual orientation, citizenship or nationality, ethnic or language background, physical or mental ability, or political or religious views, or which stereotypes groups in an adverse manner. This is not meant to preclude or inhibit legitimate academic debate on any issue; however, the language used in such debate should be non-discriminatory and sensitive to these matters. It is important to avoid the use of discriminatory language in your communications and written work. The most common form of discriminatory language in academic work tends to be in the area of gender inclusiveness. You are, therefore, requested to check for this and to ensure your work and communications are non-discriminatory in all respects.

    Students with disabilities

    Students with disabilities that may disadvantage them in assessment should seek advice from one of the following before completing assessment tasks and examinations:

    Deferred assessment and special consideration

    Deferred assessment (not to be confused with an extension for submission of an assignment) may be granted in cases of extenuating personal circumstances such as serious personal illness or bereavement. Information and forms for Special Consideration and deferred assessment applications are available at http://www.monash.edu.au/exams/special-consideration.html. Contact the Faculty's Student Services staff at your campus for further information and advice.