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Unit of study_

INFO1910: Introduction to Programming (Advanced)

Semester 1, 2020 [Normal day] - Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney

The focus of this unit will cover the ground up programming components necessary for study in the computer science discipline. Students will engage with procedural programming using two related programming languages. Students will further their understanding of internal operations as well as reasoning about processing, memory model and conventional programming practices. As an advanced offering, all the course contents of INFO1110 will be covered and there will be additional teaching materials and assessments.

Unit details and rules

Unit code INFO1910
Academic unit Computer Science
Credit points 6
INFO1110 OR INFO1103 OR INFO1903 OR INFO1105 OR INFO1905
Assumed knowledge

ATAR sufficient to enter Dalyell program, or passing an invigilated programming knowledge test, which will be administered during the O-week, on campus, prior to the commencement of the semester.

Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator John Stavrakakis,
Tutor(s) Alan Robertson,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Final exam Final Exam
Paper examination
50% Formal exam period 2 hours
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO13 LO12 LO11 LO10 LO9 LO8 LO7 LO6 LO5 LO4 LO3 LO2
Small continuous assessment Lab Task
Programming during lab. Weeks 3, 5, 7, 9, 11. Student must bring own PC.
10% Multiple weeks TBA 10 ~ 30 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO13 LO12 LO11 LO10 LO9 LO8 LO7 LO6 LO5 LO4 LO3 LO2
Assignment Online problem
Weeks 2, 4, 6, 8, 10
10% Multiple weeks 1 week
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO6 LO8 LO12
Assignment Assignment 1
10% Week 06 10 working days
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO12 LO7 LO6 LO4 LO2
Tutorial quiz Quiz
Paper quiz
10% Week 08 TBA 30 ~ 60 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO12 LO10 LO8 LO7 LO6 LO3 LO2
Assignment Assignment 2
10% Week 12 10 working days
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO13 LO12 LO10 LO9 LO8 LO7 LO6 LO5 LO4 LO3 LO2

Assessment summary

  • Lab task:  Complete a programming activity based on the tutors direction.  Attendance required during tutorial. To be completed using standard laboratory computer
  • Quiz: Test both knowledge and skills of course materials in the semester thus far. Attendance during tutorial. Pen and paper, no computers to be used.
  • Assignments: Demonstrating programming ability from a given problem description. Produce a set of test cases for a given problem description.
  • Computer Examination: Develop and/or debug a computer program from a description with examples. To be completed using standard laboratory computer. See timetable for time and location of event. The grading process will use a similar, yet different, set of test data for evaluating the correctness.
  • Final Exam: The final exam covers all aspects of the course. Demonstrate knowledge in procedural programming. Reading and tracing through short programs. Writing short programs. Writing test cases and debugging with existing test cases. 

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.

For more information see

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:

Late penalty for any online assessment is 25% per day. - 1 day late, maximum mark is 75% - 2 days late, maximum mark is 50% - 3 days late, maximum mark is 25%

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 1. Introduction to the unit; 2. Fundamental concepts; 3. First program Lecture (1 hr)  
Programming basics Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 02 1. Data types; 2. Variables, operators and expressions Lecture (1 hr)  
Data types, expressions and variables Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 03 Control flow: Branching and loops Lecture (1 hr)  
Conditionals and loops Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 04 1. Addressable memory; 2. Arrays; 3. Collections; 4. Testing Lecture (1 hr)  
Defining and iterating arrays, collections of objects Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 05 1. Functions; 2. Basics of program design process, documentation and style; Lecture and tutorial (2 hr)  
Tuples, functions and classes Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 06 1. Files and basic input/output; 2. Exception handling; 3. Adv. reference semantics (ONLINE) Lecture and tutorial (2 hr)  
1. Working with file input and output; 2. Exceptions Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 07 1. Testing; 2. Software design process; 3. Adv. reference types and basic I/O (ONLINE) Lecture and tutorial (2 hr)  
Writing tests and testing programs Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 08 1. Programming idioms; 2. Adv. More on references and testing (ONLINE) Lecture and tutorial (2 hr)  
Searching collections and error handling Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 09 1. Modular programming; 2. Defining datatypes using aggregate structures; 3. Adv. defining and using types (ONLINE) Lecture and tutorial (2 hr)  
Creating and working with aggregate data structures and their operations Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 10 1. Idioms 2; 2. Testing and Debugging; 3. Adv. understanding function calls (ONLINE) Lecture and tutorial (2 hr)  
Test driven development and debugging Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 11 1. Recursion; 2. Adv. inheritance (ONLINE) Lecture and tutorial (2 hr)  
Reading, writing and tracing recursive code Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 12 1. Data types and multidimensional arrays; 2. Adv. recursion (ONLINE) Lecture and tutorial (2 hr)  
Defining and application of multidimensional arrays Computer laboratory (2 hr)  
Week 13 1. Course review; 2. Final examination overview Lecture (1 hr)  
Revision Computer laboratory (2 hr)  

Attendance and class requirements

The course website on will contain information, including important announcements. Teaching staff will be communicating to all students and it is considered part of the course. Students are expected to regularly visit this website to know these announcements and information concerning format and schedule of assessment.

Attendance requirements for assessments: Failure to attend the scheduled time and location will result in a grade of zero, unless special consideration is granted.

The pass requirement for this course is:

  • At least 50% in the written examination to qualify for a pass in this course, AND
  • At least 40% in all other assessments that are not the final examination, AND 
  • At least 50% final mark overall

About the seminar:

  • Attendance is not compulsory
  • It will not contain new content needed to complete this course
  • Seminar has value to those who need more help with reviewing material and programming exercises

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.

Required readings

All readings for this unit can be accessed through the Library eReserve, available on Canvas.

  • Robert Sedgewick, Kevin Wayne, Robert Donder – Introduction to Programming in Python: An Interdisciplinary Approach. Pearson Higher Ed USA, 2015. 9780134076430
  • Brian W. Kernighan and Dennis M. Ritchie – The C Programming Language. Prentice Hall. 1988. 0-13-110362-8

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. employ programming style conventions for writing consistently readable code
  • LO2. design and construct new functionality to existing procedural program or function
  • LO3. compose a structured algorithmic design to solve the descriptive problem specification
  • LO4. compose an entire procedural program from descriptive problem specification
  • LO5. translate general programming problems between two distinctly differing procedural programming languages
  • LO6. demonstrate an understanding of programming principles, data types, variables and operators, control-flow: simple statement, sequence, if-then-else, while, functions: stack, input/output, reference memory model
  • LO7. compose, analyse and trace procedural code, scoping/variable lifetime, memory of the stack, references and globals, data types, operations on data types
  • LO8. construct code cliches for input and manipulating arrays, including maximum, minimum, search or traverse, with actions on each element for counting or summation
  • LO9. construct and assess code for recursively-defined numerical functions, and for recursively described array manipulations
  • LO10. apply testing methods and assess programs through debugging, write a set of tests for a small program or function
  • LO11. explain compilation process and debugging mechanism
  • LO12. use standard library functions
  • LO13. explain processing, memory and internal operations of procedural programming

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.

Students are now introduced to C programming much sooner.

Every week students must:

  • Read the required sections of literature
  • Attend and take notes for the Live lecture (Mondays)
  • Watch and take notes for the Online lecture (via Canvas website)
  • Watch and take notes for the Advanced Online lecture (via Canvas website)
  • Complete the Online problems (as required)
  • Prepare for the Lab by reviewing reading, lecture and lab questions 
  • Attend and participate in weekly Lab with tutor(as timetabled)


  • Students should ask questions on
  • Students are encouraged to attend and/or watch the OPTIONAL seminar (Tuesday morning)


The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.