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Monash University

FIT3088 Computer graphics - Semester 2, 2013

Computer graphics is concerned with the creation of synthetic images and virtual worlds. This unit introduces the essential algorithms, theory and programming concepts necessary to generate interactive 2D and 3D graphics. Students will gain practical experience using the industry standard OpenGL API to develop their own interactive graphics applications. The topics covered form the basis of core knowledge necessary for developing applications in scientific visualisation, virtual reality, visual special effects and computer games.

Mode of Delivery

Clayton (Day)

Contact Hours

2 hrs lectures/wk, 2 hrs laboratories/fortnight

Workload requirements

For on campus students, workload commitments are:

  • two-hours of lectures each week, and
  • two-hour laboratory class each fortnight
  • a minimum of 3-4 hours of personal study per one hour of contact time in order to satisfy the reading and assignment expectations.
  • You will need to allocate up to 5 hours per week in some weeks, for use of a computer and assignment work.

Unit Relationships


CSE3313, DGS3622, FIT3005, GCO3817


FIT2004 or CSE2304

Chief Examiner

Campus Lecturer


Peter Tischer

Academic Overview

Learning Outcomes

At the completion of this unit students will have -A knowledge and understanding of:
  • mathematical representations of basic geometric primitives in Euclidean space, such as points, lines, polygons and parametric curves;
  • how to use homogeneous co-ordinates and transformations on geometric objects in two and three dimensions.
  • how to combine multiple transformations efficiently;
  • orthographic, parallel and perspective projections and their related homogeneous transformations;
  • appropriate data structures for hierarchical representation of polygonal datasets;
  • rasterisation algorithms for drawing in frame buffers;
  • the use of Quaternions to represent object rotation;
  • a synthetic camera model for viewing and projecting of two and three-dimensional geometry;
  • algorithms for hidden surface removal and backface elimination. The capacity to analyse the space and time complexity of these algorithms to determine the most appropriate in a given situation;
  • BRDF Shading models such as Lambert, Phong, Blinns Phong, Torrance-Sparrow-Blinn-Cook-Beckmann, Oren-Nayar;
  • textures and texture mapping;
  • basic knowledge of aliasing theory;
  • interpolative shading models. Shadow algorithms. Local and global illumination models;
  • the OpenGL state-machine, GPUs and graphics pipline.
Developed attitudes that enable them to:
  • understand the role and value of visual communication in the arts and sciences;
  • appreciate the uses and application of interactive, real-time graphics and software rendering.
Developed the skills to:
  • program basic interactive graphics applications in OpenGL;
  • apply computer graphics theory and algorithms to the design of visual computing applications.

Unit Schedule

Week Activities Assessment
0 Orientation week: No formal assessment or activities are undertaken No formal assessment or activities are undertaken in week 0
1 Course Overview, Introduction, History  
2 Displays, 2D Graphics with Processing  
3 2D Transforms, Homogeneous Transforms  
4 OpenGL I, OpenGL II  
5 OpenGL III, 3D Graphics Introduction  
6 3D Transforms, Compound Transforms  
7 Perspective, OpenGL Viewing Assignment 1 due Week 7, Monday 9 September 2013
8 3D Viewing, Hidden Surface Removal I  
9 Hidden Surface Removal II, Lighting  
10 Texturing, OpenGL Compositing/Animation  
11 Phong Shading, Global Illumination  
12 Developments in CG Research, Exam Revision Assignment 2 due Week 12, Monday 21 October 2013
  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 learning system.

Assessment Summary

Examination (3 hours): 70%; In-semester assessment: 30%

Assessment Task Value Due Date
Assignment 1: 2D Graphics 10% Week 7, Monday 9 September 2013
Assignment 2: 3D Graphics 20% Week 12, Monday 21 October 2013
Examination 1 70% To be advised

Teaching Approach

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

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
    Assignment 1: 2D Graphics
    Programming assignment 1: 2D graphics with Processing
    Criteria for assessment:
    Adherence to the specification; quality of programming: robustness, efficiency, correctness; correct implementation of required and optional features; adequate documentation; Creativity and innovation of solution; Quality of graphics code.
    Due date:
    Week 7, Monday 9 September 2013
  • Assessment task 2
    Assignment 2: 3D Graphics
    Programming assignment 2: 3D graphics with OpenGL
    Criteria for assessment:

    Adherence to the specification; quality of programming: robustness, efficiency, correctness; correct implementation of required and optional features; adequate documentation; Creativity and innovation of solution; Quality of graphics code.

    Due date:
    Week 12, Monday 21 October 2013


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

Learning resources

Reading list

Highly Recommended

Slater, Mel et. al.: Computer Graphics and Virtual Environments: from realism to real-time, Addison Wesley, 2002.

Hearn, Donald and M. Pauline Baker: Computer Graphics with OpenGL (3rd International Edition), Pearson Prentice Hall, 2004

Angel, Edward: OpenGL: A Primer, (2nd Edition) Addison Wesley, 2004.

Supplementary Reading

Van Verth, James M. and Lars M. Bishop: Essential Mathematics for Games and Interactive Applications, A Programmers Guide, Morgan Kaufmann, 2004.

Shreiner, D. et. al.: OpenGL Programming Guide (5th Edition), The Official Guide to Learning OpenGL, Version, Addison Wesley 2006.

Angel, Edward: Interactive Computer Graphics: A top-down approach using OpenGL (3rd Edition), Addison Wesley, 2003.

Hill, F.S. Jr.: Computer Graphics Using Open GL (2nd Edition), Prentice-Hall, 2001.

Monash Library Unit Reading List

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

Extensions and penalties

Returning assignments

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). Please note that it is your responsibility to retain copies of your assessments.

Online submission

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

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.

Processing: available from <http://www.processing.org>

Jogl (Java OpenGL): available from <http://java.net>

The Java Development Kit (JDK): available from <http://www.java.com>

Any machine with OpenGL or MESA installed (see: <http://www.opengl.org>).

Other Information


Graduate Attributes Policy

Student services

Monash University Library

Disability Liaison Unit

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.

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