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Unit of study_

CSEC3616: Cybersecurity Engineering

Semester 2, 2022 [Normal day] - Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney

This unit provides an introduction to the many facets of security in the digital and networked world, the challenges that computer systems face, and the design principles that have been developed to build secure systems and counter attacks. The unit puts the focus squarely on providing a thorough understanding of security principles and engineering for security. At the same time, we stress a hands-on approach to teach the stateof-the-art incarnations of security principles and technology, pretesting, and we practice programming for security. We pay particular attention to the fact that security is much more than just technology as we discuss the fields of usability in security, operational security, and cyberphysical systems. At the end of this unit, graduates are prepared for practical demands in their later careers and know how to tackle new, yet unforeseen challenges.

Unit details and rules

Unit code CSEC3616
Academic unit Computer Science
Credit points 6
ELEC5616 or INFO2315 or INFO3616
(INFO1110 or INFO1910) and INFO1112 and INFO1113 and MATH1064
Assumed knowledge


Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Suranga Seneviratne,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Final exam (Open book) Type C final exam Final examination
Open Book examination
55% Formal exam period 1.5 hours
Outcomes assessed: LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7
Tutorial quiz Quiz - 1
In-class quiz covering Week 1-5.
5% Week 06 20 mins in-class quiz
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8 LO9 LO10
Assignment group assignment Assignment 1
An assignment that requires submitting answers and code.
10% Week 07 N/A
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO7 LO10
Assignment group assignment Assignment 2
A report submission analysing papers or security topic + presentation.
10% Week 08 N/A
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO7 LO10
Assignment Assignment 3
An assignment that requires submitting answers and code.
15% Week 11 N/A
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO7 LO10
Tutorial quiz Quiz - 2
In-class quiz covering Week 6-11.
5% Week 12 20 mins in-class quiz
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8 LO9 LO10
group assignment = group assignment ?
Type C final exam = Type C final exam ?

Assessment summary

The unit has three assignments and two in-class quizzes.

Assignment 1 & 3 requires a report + code submission. Assignment 2 is report + presentation.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a high distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

Mark range


High distinction

85 - 100



75 - 84



65 - 74



50 - 64



0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard. It is a policy of the School of Computer Science that in order to pass this unit, a student must achieve at least 40% in the written examination. For subjects without a final exam, the 40% minimum requirement applies to the corresponding major assessment component specified by the lecturer. A student must also achieve an overall final mark of 50 or more. Any student not meeting these requirements may be given a maximum final mark of no more than 45 regardless of their average.

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

This unit has an exception to the standard University policy or supplementary information has been provided by the unit coordinator. This information is displayed below:

According to the university policy. Details will be provided in class, Canvas, and each assignment description.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website  provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.  

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 Introduction to Security Engineering Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO3 LO4 LO6 LO8
Week 02 Usability and Security Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO3 LO5 LO6 LO8
Week 03 Access Control Lecture (2 hr) LO2 LO4 LO6 LO7
Week 04 Symmetric Cryptography Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO4 LO7 LO9
Week 05 Asymmetric Cryptography Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO4 LO7 LO9
Week 06 Hashes, MACs, and Signatures Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO4 LO7 LO9 LO10
Week 07 Authentication, Key Establishment & Distribution Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO4 LO7 LO9 LO10
Week 08 Network Security - Protocols Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO4 LO7 LO9 LO10
Week 09 Network Security - Firewalls Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO4 LO7 LO9 LO10
Week 10 Software Security Lecture (2 hr) LO4 LO6 LO9 LO10
Week 11 Web Security Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO5 LO7 LO8
Week 12 Threat Modelling Lecture (2 hr) LO1 LO2 LO5 LO7 LO8
Week 13 UoS Summary Lecture (2 hr) LO3 LO4 LO6 LO7 LO8 LO10

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. Search and retrieve relevant literature, and put it into the context of a security setup
  • LO2. Communicate the results of a security study to a non-security audience
  • LO3. Identify and understand ethical, legal, and professional issues in security
  • LO4. Recognise flaws in IT systems at the design stage
  • LO5. Demonstrate knowledge of security principles to follow in designing a system, including implications for usability and performance
  • LO6. Apply security principles in design phase
  • LO7. Demonstrate knowledge of how security principles are matched to certain technologies, and the security goals they achieve
  • LO8. Understand the key representatives of security technologies today
  • LO9. Demonstrate knowledge in programming for security (software/communications/network)
  • LO10. Understand common tools to explore a security setup and analyse it.

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

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