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Academic Overview

Learning Objectives

At the completion of this unit students will:

  • be competent in designing, constructing, testing and documenting small computer programs using Java;
  • be able to demonstrate the software engineering principles of maintainability, readability, and modularisation; and,
  • understand the concepts of the object-oriented style of programming.

Graduate Attributes

Monash prepares its graduates to be:
  1. responsible and effective global citizens who:
    1. engage in an internationalised world
    2. exhibit cross-cultural competence
    3. demonstrate ethical values
  2. critical and creative scholars who:
    1. produce innovative solutions to problems
    2. apply research skills to a range of challenges
    3. communicate perceptively and effectively

Assessment Summary

Examination (3 hours): 60%; In-semester assessment: 40%

Assessment Task Value Due Date
Exercise on Plagiarism, Cheating and Collusion 0% (compulsory hurdle) 15 August 2011
Assignment 1, Assignment 2 (Stage 1) & Assignment 2 (Stage 2) 35% total (10%, 5% & 20%) Assignment 1 - 5 September 2011; Assignment 2 (Stage 1) - 3 October 2011 and (Stage 2) 17 October 2011.
ViLLE exercises 5% 21 October 2011
Examination 1 60% To be advised

Teaching Approach

Lecture and tutorials or problem classes
This teaching and learning approach provides facilitated learning, practical exploration and peer learning.


Our feedback to You

Types of feedback you can expect to receive in this unit are:
  • Informal feedback on progress in labs/tutes
  • Graded assignments with comments
  • Quiz results

Your feedback to Us

Monash is committed to excellence in education and regularly seeks feedback from students, employers and staff. One of the key formal ways students have to provide feedback is through SETU, Student Evaluation of Teacher and Unit. The University's student evaluation policy requires that every unit is evaluated each year. Students are strongly encouraged to complete the surveys. The feedback is anonymous and provides the Faculty with evidence of aspects that students are satisfied and areas for improvement.

For more information on Monash's educational strategy, and on student evaluations, see:

Previous Student Evaluations of this unit

If you wish to view how previous students rated this unit, please go to

Required Resources

Required Text

Objects First with Java (4th Edition), Barnes and Kolling (Prentice Hall), 2009

In this unit we will use Java and the BlueJ development environment.
This software is available on CD with the text book. 


The Java software is available to download from Sun website at: http://java.sun.com/javase/downloads/

BlueJ is available to download from the BlueJ site at: http://www.bluej.org/
You will be given instructions on how to use this in your first tutorial.
You are expected to work in the BlueJ development environment.
Tutors will only assess the assignments under this environment.

Unit Schedule

Week Activities Assessment
0   No formal assessment or activities are undertaken in week 0
1 Introduction to FIT9017 and expectations; introduction to programming, basic OO concepts, objects, classes, attributes, behaviour, state and identity. Note: Tutorials commence in Week 1
2 Class definition, fields, constructors, methods, parameter passing, variables, expressions, statements, assignment, primitive data types, arithmetic operators, strings, basic output.  
3 Selection (if and switch statements), conditions, relational & logical operators, shorthand operators, ++ operator, precedence, scope and lifetime, basic input.  
4 Object creation and interaction, abstraction, modularisation, class & object diagrams, object creation, primitive vs. object types, method calling, message passing, method signatures, method overloading. Exercise on Plagiarism, Cheating and Collusion, due 15 August 2011
5 Class libraries, importing classes, collections, ArrayLists, arrays, iteration, pre and post test loops.  
6 Testing, unit testing, testing heuristics, regression testing, debugging.  
7 Class documentation, Javadoc, identity vs. equality, more on strings, sets and maps, conditional operator. Assignment 1 due 5 September 2011
8 Information hiding, encapsulation, access modifiers, scoping, class variables, class methods, constants.  
9 Program design, design methods, responsibility-driven design, design documentation, testing a program, specifying a test strategy.  
10 Programming errors, exception handling, file I/O. Assignment 2 (Stage 1) due 3 October 2011
11 Code quality, coupling, cohesion, refactoring, using the Java SDK  
12 Inheritance, superclasses, subclasses, subtypes, substitution, polymorphic variables, protected access, casting, wrapper classes, collection hierarchy. Assignment 2 (Stage 2) due 17 October 2011; ViLLE exercises due 21 October 2011
  SWOT VAC No formal assessment is undertaken SWOT VAC
  Examination period LINK to Assessment Policy: http://policy.monash.edu.au/policy-bank/

*Unit Schedule details will be maintained and communicated to you via your MUSO (Blackboard or Moodle) learning system.

Assessment Requirements

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

Assessment Tasks


  • Assessment task 1
    Exercise on Plagiarism, Cheating and Collusion
    Students will complete exercises in class to make sure they are familiar with and fully understand the concepts, rules and issues relating to plagiarism, cheating and collusion with respect to work submitted for assessment in this unit.
    0% (compulsory hurdle)
    Criteria for assessment:

    Completion of the task with satisfactory answers. 

    Due date:
    15 August 2011
  • Assessment task 2
    Assignment 1, Assignment 2 (Stage 1) & Assignment 2 (Stage 2)
    These assignments will require students to design, write, test and document a program in Java.
    35% total (10%, 5% & 20%)
    Criteria for assessment:

    These are individual assignments and must be entirely your own work.

    Assessment of these assignments is by interview. You will be asked to demonstrate your system during an interview and can also expect to be asked to explain your system, your code, your design, discuss design decisions and alternatives and modify your code / system as required. Marks will not be awarded for any section of code or functionality that a student cannot explain or modify satisfactorily. (The marker may delete excessive comments in code before a student is asked to explain that code).

    Interview times will be arranged in the tutorial labs immediately preceding the submission deadline. It is your responsibility to attend the lab and obtain an interview time. Students who do not attend an interview will receive zero marks for the assignment. 

    Due date:
    Assignment 1 - 5 September 2011; Assignment 2 (Stage 1) - 3 October 2011 and (Stage 2) 17 October 2011.
  • Assessment task 3
    ViLLE exercises
    Set exercises in the ViLLE online learning environment to be completed throughout the semester.
    Criteria for assessment:

    Marks awarded for correct completion of exercises.

    Due date:
    21 October 2011


  • Examination 1
    3 hours
    Type (open/closed book):
    Closed book
    Electronic devices allowed in the exam:

Assignment submission

It is a University requirement (http://www.policy.monash.edu/policy-bank/academic/education/conduct/plagiarism-procedures.html) for students to submit an assignment coversheet for each assessment item. Faculty Assignment coversheets can be found at http://www.infotech.monash.edu.au/resources/student/forms/. Please check with your Lecturer on the submission method for your assignment coversheet (e.g. attach a file to the online assignment submission, hand-in a hard copy, or use an online quiz).

Extensions and penalties

Returning assignments

Resubmission of assignments

There will be no resubmission of assignments.

Referencing requirements

Students must reference material used from other sources.

Other Information


Student services

The University provides many different kinds of support services for you. Contact your tutor if you need advice and see the range of services available at www.monash.edu.au/students The Monash University Library provides a range of services and resources that enable you to save time and be more effective in your learning and research. Go to http://www.lib.monash.edu.au or the library tab in my.monash portal for more information. Students who have a disability or medical condition are welcome to contact the Disability Liaison Unit to discuss academic support services. Disability Liaison Officers (DLOs) visit all Victorian campuses on a regular basis

Reading List

The following may provide useful extra reading for this unit. Copies of these are available in the Caulfield Library (on reserve, one day loan or in the normal circulation).

Java Foundations, Lewis, De Pasquale & Chase, (Pearson Education), 2008 

Big Java (4th edition), Cay Horstman (John Wiley & Sons), 2010 

Java Programming - from Problem Analysis to Program Design (3rd edition), D. S Malik (Thomson), 2008

Thinking in Java (4th edition), Eckell (Prentice Hall), 2006

Absolute Java (3rd edition), Savitch (Addison Wesley), 2008

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