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Monash University

FIT1010 Introduction to software engineering - Semester 2, 2012

This unit provides an introduction to the discipline of Software Engineering. The emphasis is upon a broad coverage of the areas, since students will at this early stage not have adequate programming skills to tackle many of the topics in greater depth. The notion of a software system as a model or approximation of a desired system is introduced, and used as a way of describing such things as the software life cycle and its various models, programming by contract, design and testing issues, maintenance, reuse, complexity, divide and conquer strategies, metrics and measurement, project management and software legacy.

Mode of Delivery

Clayton (Day)

Contact Hours

2 hrs lectures/wk, 2 hrs laboratories/wk, 1 hr tutorial/wk


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

  • two hours of lectures  and
  • one hour tutorial (requiring advance preparation)
  • two hours laboratory (requiring advance preparation)
  • a minimum of 7 hours of personal study each week inorder to satisfy the reading and assessment expectations.

Unit Relationships




FIT1002 or equivalent

Chief Examiner

Campus Lecturer


Robert Merkel

Consultation hours: Monday 2pm-3pm Wednesday 11am-12pm



Robyn Mcnamara

Academic Overview


At the completion of this unit students will have:
  • an understanding of the breadth and nature of the discipline of Software Engineering;
  • an understanding of the effect and implications of complexity in large software systems;
  • an understanding of the issues in constructing large software systems from its components, and the nature and design of those components;
  • an awareness of the responsibilities placed upon a software engineer;
  • an ability to use basic modelling techniques to define and describe the behaviour of software systems;
  • an understanding of common software team structures and have developed practical skills in solving small problems in teams.

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
Weekly Quizzes 5% Weekly, on-line, Monday before 10am.
Practical class assessments 25% Weekly in Lab classes
Work Folio 5% Friday, Week 12
Tutorial preparation and participation 5% Weekly in tutorial from weeks 1 to 12
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
  • Graded assignments without comments
  • Quiz results
  • Solutions to tutes, labs and assignments

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

This year only minor changes have been made to the unit.  There will be some extra material on software testing, and some material on legal and ethical aspects will be omitted as it will be covered more comprehensively in other units.

Staff-Student Meetings: Student also have the opportunity to provide feedback during the semester via student representatives at the Clayton School of IT Staff-Student meetings. Information about who your reps are and minutes of previous meetings are available at:


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

Required Resources

Please check with your lecturer before purchasing any Required Resources. Limited copies of prescribed texts are available for you to borrow in the library, and prescribed software is available in student labs.

Prescribed text: (the lectures will follow this text quite closely, and the lecture slides from the text will be made available)

  • Stephen R. Schach: Object-Oriented Software Engineering, 2008.McGraw-Hill 2008.

(Note: Schach's "Object-Oriented & Classical Software Engineering", 7th edition and 8th edition are very similar, and can be used in place of the 2008 "Object-oriented" version, if need be).

Recommended Resources

Pressman, R. S. (2009), Software engineering : a practitioner's approach, 7th ed, McGraw-Hill, Dubuque, IA.

Sommerville, I, (2011), Software engineering, 9th ed, International edition, Addison-Wesley, Harlow.

If you wish to work at home, you can install the free BlueJ development environment: http://www.bluej.org

No installation support will be provided for home installations of BlueJ.

Examination material or equipment

The exam will be an "open book" exam. Students may take in textbooks, any of the unit teaching material and any notes they have made themselves. More details will be provided on the unit website prior to the exam.

Unit Schedule

Week Activities Assessment
0 Check your tutorial and lab class enrolments. No formal assessment or activities are undertaken in week 0
1 Introductions. Note: TUTORIALS START WEEK 1 (Monday/Tuesday) Assessment task 4: Tutorial preparation and participation - Weekly in tutorial from weeks 1 to 12
2 Software Lifecyles Assessment task 1: Weekly quizzes (weeks 2-12) to be submitted via Moodle, closing each Monday before 10am; Assessment task 2: Practical class assessments - weekly (weeks 2-12) in Lab classes
3 Requirements  
4 Analysis  
5 Dynamic modelling  
6 Design  
7 Modules  
8 Testing  
9 Implementation  
10 Formal Methods  
11 Ethics  
12 Tools/Review Assessment task 3: Work Folio due Friday
  SWOT VAC No formal assessment is undertaken in 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

Faculty Policy - Unit Assessment Hurdles (http://www.infotech.monash.edu.au/resources/staff/edgov/policies/assessment-examinations/unit-assessment-hurdles.html)

Academic Integrity - Please see the Demystifying Citing and Referencing tutorial at http://lib.monash.edu/tutorials/citing/

Assessment Tasks


  • Assessment task 1
    Weekly Quizzes
    Weekly on-line multiple choice quizzes.  These will be open on-line each week and must be completed before Monday 10am
    Criteria for assessment:

    Correct answers demonstrating basic knowledge and understanding of course material.

    Due date:
    Weekly, on-line, Monday before 10am.
    Each quiz closing on Monday will cover material from the previous week's lecture. This material will be required for the tutorial and laboratory work following the closing of the quiz. The intention is that the quiz will assist students to prepare for these tutorial and lab classes.
  • Assessment task 2
    Practical class assessments
    Range of tasks, including team exercises, software design,implementation. 
    Some work will be assessed individually, whereas for some assessment activities, students will work in pairs.
    Criteria for assessment:

    For group work, some marks will be for the group as a whole, some for an individual's contribution; details will be specified in the assessment task description.
    Some tasks will be assessed in the lab class itself. When marking is done outside the lab, in most cases students must submit their work at the end of the lab class. Details will be given with each the lab class description provided each week.

    Due date:
    Weekly in Lab classes
  • Assessment task 3
    Work Folio
    Students must produce a range of documents (text, UML diagrams, code, etc) from tutorial and laboratory class activities. These will be collected in a Google Documents folder that will form an "eFolio". A more detailed decription of the requirements for the eFolio will be available on the unit Moodle site.
    Criteria for assessment:

    A set of guidelines for the eFolio is provided online.
    Criteria for assessing the folio are:

    1. Inclusion of all specified documents (completeness)
    2. Appropriateness of contents and presentation
    3. Organisation
    Due date:
    Friday, Week 12
  • Assessment task 4
    Tutorial preparation and participation
    Students will work on individual and group based tutorial activities that in most cases align with the previous week's lecture objectives, and the lab class following the tutorial.
    Criteria for assessment:

    Students will be assessed on their participation during the tutorials, such as group work on activities and contributions to discussions. They will also be expected to prepare and make presentations to the class at various times during the semester, which will contribute to this assessment.

    Due date:
    Weekly in tutorial from weeks 1 to 12


  • Examination 1
    2 hours
    Type (open/closed book):
    Open 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).

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 my.monash portal.

Extensions and penalties

Returning assignments

Resubmission of assignments

If students do not attend a laboratory class, they cannot submit work for that assessment later. Late or re-submissions may be permitted at the discretion of the demonstrator or lecturer, for example if there have been technical difficulties during the laboratory class.

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. For Sunway see http://www.monash.edu.my/Student-services, and for South Africa see http://www.monash.ac.za/current/

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. At Sunway, visit the Library and Learning Commons at http://www.lib.monash.edu.my/. At South Africa visit http://www.lib.monash.ac.za/.

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: http://monash.edu/equity-diversity/disability/index.html;
  • Email: dlu@monash.edu
  • 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

Recommended (good general "classic" software engineering texts):

  • Pressman: Software Engineering - A practitioner's approach, McGraw-Hill.   (Latest edition?)
  • Sommerville, Software Engineering, Addison-Wesley.    (Latest edition?)

Also, for the "Ethics" topic, the reading will be Chapter 8 from

  • Michael J. Quinn. Ethics for the Information Age, 4th ed. Boston, MA: Addison-Wesley, 2011 (available electronically from the Monash library reading list:http://lib.monash.edu/resourcelists/f/fit1010.html
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