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FIT1005 Networks and data communications - Semester 2, 2012

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.

Mode of Delivery

Caulfield (Day)

Contact Hours

2 hrs lectures/wk, 2 hrs laboratories/wk


Students will be expected to spend a total of 12 hours per week during semester on this unit as follows:

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

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


BUS2062, BUS3150, CPE1007, CSE2004, CSE2318, CSE3318, CSE9801, GCO3812, FIT2008

Chief Examiner

Campus Lecturer


Malik Khan



Malik Khan

Academic Overview


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.

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

Assessment Task Value Due Date
Assignment 1 15% Monday 20 August 2012, 12pm
Assignment 2 20% Monday 15 October 2012, 12pm
Hands-on Lab Practical 5% During the tutorial/lab in Week 7 (between 3 - 7 September 2012)
Unit Test 10% During the lecture in Week 8 (Week starting 10 September 2012)
Examination 1 50% 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
  • Test results and feedback
  • Solutions to tutes, labs and assignments
  • Other: Graded hand's-on exercise

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

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.

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

Prescribed text(s)

Limited copies of prescribed texts are available for you to borrow in the library.

William Stallings. (2007 or 2011 (latest)). Data and Computer Communications. (8th or 9th (latest)) Prentice Hall.

Unit Schedule

Week Activities Assessment
0 Students should register for tutorials No formal assessment or activities are undertaken in week 0
1 Introduction to Data Communications  
2 Data Transmission  
3 Transmission Media  
4 Signal Encoding 1  
5 Signal Encoding 2 Assignment 1 due Monday 20 August 2012, 12pm
6 Digital Data Communication Techniques  
7 Data Link Control Protocols Hands-on Lab Practical Assessment during the tutorial/lab in Week 7
8 Multiplexing Unit Test during lecture in Week 8
9 Local Area Networks  
10 High-Speed LANs  
11 Internetworking  
12 Internetworking and Transport Protocols Assignment 2 due Monday 15 October 2012, 12pm
  SWOT VAC No formal assessment is undertaken in SWOT VAC
  Examination period LINK to Assessment Policy:

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

Assessment Requirements

Assessment Policy

Faculty Policy - Unit Assessment Hurdles (

Academic Integrity - Please see the Demystifying Citing and Referencing tutorial at

Assessment Tasks


  • Assessment task 1
    Assignment 1
    This assignment tests your theoretical understanding of the introductory data communications concepts through a series of short answer questions.
    Criteria for assessment:
    1. Completeness - that you have answered all parts of each question.
    2. Presentation - that you have presented your answers in a suitably formatted report style.
    3. Use of evidence and argument - you are able to explain your position by using logical argument drawing on the theory presented in the unit.
    Due date:
    Monday 20 August 2012, 12pm
  • Assessment 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.

    Contributions from individual members of a group will be described in the formal report. Such data will be used to individualise student marks in cases of substantially inequitable work put in by members of a given group.
    Criteria for assessment:
    1. Correctness and understanding - there may be more than one "right" answer in many cases. We will look for answers that reflect understanding of the underlying principles and theories.
    2. Completeness - that you have answered all parts of each question. 
    3. Presentation - that you have presented your answers in a suitably formatted report style.
    4. Use of evidence and argument - you are able to explain your position by using logical argument drawing on the theory presented in the unit.

    A marking guide will be provided on the unit website detailing the over all marks distribution and for allocating marks in a way that recognises different contributions of group members for this assessment.

    Due date:
    Monday 15 October 2012, 12pm
  • Assessment 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.
    Criteria for assessment:
    1. Completeness - that you have answered all parts of each question.
    2. Presentation - that you have presented your answers in a suitably formatted report style.
    Due date:
    During the tutorial/lab in Week 7 (between 3 - 7 September 2012)
  • Assessment task 4
    Unit Test
    A one-hour unit test will be conducted during the lecture of Week 8. It will be closed book, and no electronic devices will be permitted except for non-programmmable calculators.
    Criteria for assessment:
    Due date:
    During the lecture in Week 8 (Week starting 10 September 2012)
    Only non-programmable calculators will be allowed in the test.


  • Examination 1
    2 hours
    Type (open/closed book):
    Closed book
    Electronic devices allowed in the exam:
    Only non-programmable calculators will be allowed in the exam.

Assignment submission

It is a University requirement ( for students to submit an assignment coversheet for each assessment item. Faculty Assignment coversheets can be found at 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).

Online submission

If Electronic Submission has been approved for your unit, please submit your work via the VLE site for this unit, which you can access via links in the portal.

Extensions and penalties

Returning assignments

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 For Sunway see, and for South Africa see

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 or the library tab in portal for more information. At Sunway, visit the Library and Learning Commons at At South Africa visit

Academic support services may be available for students who have a disability or medical condition. Registration with the Disability Liaison Unit is required. Further information is available as follows:

  • Website:;
  • Email:
  • Drop In: Equity and Diversity Centre, Level 1 Gallery Building (Building 55), Monash University, Clayton Campus, or Student Community Services Department, Level 2, Building 2, Monash University, Sunway Campus
  • Telephone: 03 9905 5704, or contact the Student Advisor, Student Commuity Services at 03 55146018 at Sunway

Reading list

  • 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.