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Dr Asad Khan
Senior Lecturer
Phone: +61 3 990 54556
Fax: +61 3 990 55159

Lecturer(s) / Leader(s):


Asad Khan (weeks 1 to 8)

Carlo Kopp (weeks 9 to 13)


Welcome to FIT1005 Networks and Data Communications for semester 1, 2010. This 6 point unit is core to all undergraduate degree programs in the Facultyof IT except the Bachelor of Software Engineering. The unit has been designed to provide you with an understanding of data communications and networks, including such topics as standard layered architecture approach and the OSI model and each of its layers. This will introduce the fundamental building blocks of a communications system.

Unit synopsis

This unit introduces students to fundamentals of distributed networked environment. It provides knowledge of internetworking standards and understanding of the networking architecture, technology and operation.

Learning outcomes

At the completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  • discuss network architecture standards for open systems;
  • describe ISO reference and Internet models;
  • explain fundamentals and technologies of physical, data-link and network layers;
  • understand the functions and architectures of LAN and WAN;
  • analyse and design LAN architecture for organisational requirements;
  • adopt a problem solving approach, accept the code of professional conduct and
practice and act in accordance with best practice, industry standards and professional ethics;
  • analyse data communication networks;
  • cooperate effectively within small groups;
  • present their work in various forms.

Contact hours

2 hrs lectures/wk, 2 hrs laboratories/wk


For on campus students, workload commitments are:

Each teaching week requires,

  • A two-hour lecture and
  • A two-hour tutorial (or laboratory) requiring advance preparation
  • A minimum of 2 hours of personal study in order to satisfy the reading and assignment expectations.

You will also need to allocated 4 hours of personal study time in Week 7 for the Unit Test.

Off-campus students generally do not attend lecture and tutorial sessions, however, you should plan to spend equivalent time working through the relevant resources and participating in discussion groups each week.

Unit relationships

Teaching and learning method

Teaching approach

FIT1005 uses a lecture-tutorial teaching approach.

The lectures will discuss the weeks theoretical concepts and will also go through specific examples and demonstrations.

In tutorials students will discuss in-depth fundmental aspects about networks and data communications and apply their understanding to practical examples. The tutorials are critical in helping student consolidate concepts and practise their problem solving skills. Some tutorials will also contain a hands-on laboratory element.

Timetable information

For information on timetabling for on-campus classes please refer to MUTTS, http://mutts.monash.edu.au/MUTTS/

Tutorial allocation

On-campus students should register for tutorials/laboratories using the Allocate+ system: http://allocate.its.monash.edu.au/

Unit Schedule

Week Date* Topic Key dates
1 01/03/10 Introduction to Data Communications  
2 08/03/10 Data Transmission  
3 15/03/10 Transmission Media  
4 22/03/10 Signal Encoding 1  
5 29/03/10 Signal Encoding 2  
Mid semester break
6 12/04/10 Digital Data Communication Techniques Assignment One due Fri 16/Apr, 12PM
7 19/04/10 Data Link Control Protocols Hands-on Lab Practical Assessment
8 26/04/10 Multiplexing Unit Test
9 03/05/10 Local Area Networks  
10 10/05/10 High-Speed LANs  
11 17/05/10 Internetworking  
12 24/05/10 Internetworking and Transport Protocols Assignment Two due Fri 28/May, 12PM
13 31/05/10 Revision  

*Please note that these dates may only apply to Australian campuses of Monash University. Off-shore students need to check the dates with their unit leader.

Improvements to this unit

The unit now includes hands-on practicals and a mid-term (unit) test. The coursework contents have been revised with emphasis on network design and industry practices.

Students will be invited to provide their feedback during Week06 lecture about the unit (through a Monquest survey).

Unit Resources

Prescribed text(s) and readings

William Stallings, Data and Computer Communications, Prentice Hall, 8th Edition, 2007

Textbooks are available to purchase from Campus bookshops.

Recommended text(s) and readings

Behrouz A. Forouzan, Data Communications and Networking, 4th edition, 2007, McGraw-Hill.

David Stamper et al, Business Data Communications, 6th Edition, 2003, Prentice Hall.

Fred Halsall, Data Communications, Computer Networks, and Open Systems, 4th Edition, 1998, Addison-Wesley.

Required software and/or hardware

Web Browser is needed to access study and tutorial material.

Email Client is required.

Wireshark (freeware) is optional; recommeded for home/out-of-lab study.

Equipment and consumables required or provided

Students 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.

Study resources

Study resources we will provide for your study are:

  • The FIT1005 web site on Moodle, where lecture slides, weekly tutorial requirements, assignment specifications, sample solutions and supplementary material will be posted.

  • Newsgroups/discussion groups that can be linked to from the Unit Homepage



Examination (2 hours): 50%; In-semester assessment: 50%

Faculty assessment policy

To pass a unit which includes an examination as part of the assessment a student must obtain:

  • 40% or more in the unit's examination, and
  • 40% or more in the unit's total non-examination assessment, and
  • an overall unit mark of 50% or more.

If a student does not achieve 40% or more in the unit examination or the unit non-examination total assessment, and the total mark for the unit is greater than 50% then a mark of no greater than 49-N will be recorded for the unit.

The minimum requirements that need to be satisfied to pass the unit are:

- A minimum result of 40% in the Unit Exam.

- A pass in the Non-Exam Component of the unit

Failure to meet the minimum requirements will result in a fail grade, with a maximum achievable final result of 49 N.

It is strongly recommended that students attend at least 80% of the lectures and tutorials, as success in this subject requires good understanding of the material which cannot be gained by reading lecture notes alone.

DE Students Only: Alternative assessment to Practical work & Unit/Class Test will be given to Distance Education students during teaching week 8

Assignment tasks

Assignment coversheets

Assignment coversheets are available via "Student Forms" on the Faculty website: http://www.infotech.monash.edu.au/resources/student/forms/
You MUST submit a completed coversheet with all assignments, ensuring that the plagiarism declaration section is signed.

Assignment submission and return procedures, and assessment criteria will be specified with each assignment.

  • Assignment task 1
    Assignment 1
    This assignment tests your theoretical understanding of the introductory data communications concepts through a series of short answer questions.
    Due date:
    Fri 16/Apr, 12PM
  • Assignment task 2
    Assignment 2
    This is a group assignment. It provides an opportunity for you to apply data communications concepts to a practical networking example. You will be required to analyse a case study and make networking recommendations based on the user requirements. This assignment will also allow you to present your solutions in a formal report format.
    Due date:
    Fri 28/May, 12PM
  • Assignment task 3
    Hands-on Lab Practical
    Students will be asked to perform a set of networking tasks in the lab and note their results. The results will be assessed.
    Due date:
    During the week starting from 19/Apr (Semester teaching week 07)


  • Examination 1

    Weighting: 50%
    Length: 2 hours
    Type (open/closed book): closed book

  • Examination 2

    Weighting: 10%
    Length: 1 hour
    Type (open/closed book): Closed book

    This will be the mid-term (unit) test. It will be conducted during the lecture of Semester teaching week 08 (on Tue 27/Apr).

See Appendix for End of semester special consideration / deferred exams process.

Due dates and extensions

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 not regarded as appropriate reasons for granting extensions. Students are advised to NOT assume that granting of an extension is a matter of course.

Students requesting an extension for any assessment during semester (eg. Assignments, tests or presentations) are required to submit a Special Consideration application form (in-semester exam/assessment task), along with original copies of supporting documentation, directly to their lecturer within two working days before the assessment submission deadline. Lecturers will provide specific outcomes directly to students via email within 2 working days. The lecturer reserves the right to refuse late applications.

A copy of the email or other written communication of an extension must be attached to the assignment submission.

Refer to the Faculty Special consideration webpage or further details and to access application forms: http://www.infotech.monash.edu.au/resources/student/equity/special-consideration.html

Late assignment

Assignments received after the due date will be subject to a penalty of 5% per day or part thereof including Saturday and Sunday.

Assignments received later than one week after the due date will not normally be accepted.

Return dates

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


Please visit the following URL: http://www.infotech.monash.edu.au/units/appendix.html for further information about:

  • Continuous improvement
  • Unit evaluations
  • Communication, participation and feedback
  • Library access
  • Monash University Studies Online (MUSO)
  • Plagiarism, cheating and collusion
  • Register of counselling about plagiarism
  • Non-discriminatory language
  • Students with disability
  • End of semester special consideration / deferred exams
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