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Unit of study_

INFO5990: Professional Practice in IT

Semester 1, 2021 [Normal evening] - Remote

This Unit of Study introduces the students to some of the concepts, standards and techniques associated with the current professional practice in information technology in the business environment. Students will encounter a range of concepts, techniques and professional issues including interpersonal and organisational communication, human resources and conflict resolution, globalisation, professional ethics, social impacts of IT, data security, data quality assurance, system audit, investigative research and project management practice. Practical and real world case studies will be used as part of the learning to enhance the in-class teachings to the needs of industry.

Unit details and rules

Unit code INFO5990
Academic unit Computer Science
Credit points 6
Assumed knowledge

Students enrolled in INFO5990 are assumed to have previously completed a Bachelor's degree in some area of IT, or have completed a Graduate Diploma in some area of IT, or have many years experience as a practising IT professional.

Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator David Lowe,
Lecturer(s) David Lowe,
Tutor(s) Revathi Shinde,
Diviyachouthereyi Kathirgamanaarthan,
Diviyalagsiny Kathirgamanaarthan,
Josh Burridge,
Andrea Stern,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Final exam (Record+) Type B final exam hurdle task Final exam
Final exam
40% Formal exam period 2 hours
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8 LO9 LO10 LO11
Small test Weekly quiz
Weekly quizzes (weeks 2-13).
20% Multiple weeks 12 quizzes x 5 mins
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO9 LO8 LO7 LO5 LO11 LO10 LO6 LO4 LO3 LO2
Assignment group assignment Project (part A)
Team project (project definition)
10% Week 06 500-1000 word
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8 LO9 LO10 LO11
Assignment hurdle task group assignment Project (part B)
Team project (technology analysis)
20% Week 11 2000-4000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8 LO9 LO10 LO11
Assignment hurdle task Project (part C)
Team project (Individual presentation)
10% Week 12 5 min / 5 slides
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8 LO9 LO10 LO11
hurdle task = hurdle task ?
group assignment = group assignment ?
Type B final exam = Type B final exam ?

Assessment summary

Details of each assessment appears in Canvas for the course:

  • Weekly quizzes - 20%. Brief quizzes at the start of each lecture (~6:05-6:10pm) from weeks 2 to 13 (i.e. 12 quizzes). Students are encouraged to complete all 12, but only the best 8 will count (i.e. 2.5 marks/week). The quiz will ask questions on both pre-supplied terms as well as weekly readings.
  • Project - 40%. The project will focus on adopting a new technology into an existing company. Students groups will have to look at existing business processes and how these would be transformed by that technology.
    • Part A – Project definition – 10%
    • Part B – Project submission (group) - 20%
    • Part C - Individual video presentations - 10%
  • Final exam - 40%

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

Mark range


High distinction

85 - 100

Excellent course work


75 - 84

Very good course work


65 - 74

Good course work


50 - 64

Fair course work


0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

For more information see

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.

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 Unit overview & the IT Industry Lecture (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8 LO9 LO10 LO11
Week 02 IT Lifecycle / Team formation Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO9 LO10
Week 03 People and Teams / Project confirmation Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO4 LO7 LO9 LO10
Week 04 Finding/trusting information / Project data sources Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO9 LO10 LO11
Week 05 Project data / Business processes Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO9 LO10 LO11
Week 06 Project scoping and estimation / BPR Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO9 LO10 LO11
Week 07 Quality assurance / Project scoping Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO8 LO9 LO10
Week 08 Testing management / QA Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO8 LO9 LO10
Week 09 Security management / Testing Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO8 LO9 LO10
Week 10 Communication / Security Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO9 LO10
Week 11 Ethics and Regulations / Communications Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO5 LO9 LO10
Week 12 Decision making / Ethics Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO2 LO3 LO4 LO9 LO10
Week 13 Review / Presentations Lecture and tutorial (3 hr) LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6 LO7 LO8 LO9 LO10 LO11

Attendance and class requirements

Attendance at lecture and tutorials is expected.

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

As per course outline

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. demonstrate an ability to construct and present effective written and oral communication appropriate to IT practitioners
  • LO2. analyse and criticise wider issues and problems concerning professional practice in IT
  • LO3. evaluate the impact of information technology on individuals and organisations within our globalised world
  • LO4. demonstrate awareness of and have gained skills in aspects of professional practice including conflict resolution, contract negotiation, team formation, leadership and team dynamics
  • LO5. understand issues relating to ethics and professional responsibility in the IT profession and be able to analyse and resolve ethical dilemmas
  • LO6. understand aspects of intellectual property and its protection
  • LO7. analyse current trends in human resource management in the IT industry
  • LO8. understand issues related to, and select approaches for managing, software testing, data security, data quality, and quality assurance in the IT industry
  • LO9. define the use of IT in different industries
  • LO10. describe and apply skills relating to professional practice in IT project management
  • LO11. select and apply investigative research methods, models and tools to IT professional practice; identify and critique changing information on the area of interest; and interpret the potential validity of results

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
National Standard of Competency for Architects -
Competency code Taught, Practiced or Assessed Competency standard
1.1 T Preparation & endorsement of an agreement between client and Architect. This agreement will clearly communicate terms, services to be provided, and fees appropriate for the scale and type of project.
1.3 T Assessment of project budget and timeframe against project requirements and objectives.
1.4 T Identification of factors that may impact on client project requirements and objectives.
1.5 T Knowledge of different procurement processes available and evaluation of the impact these have on the project.
1.6 T Selection and presentation to clients and relevant stakeholders of procurement method for the project.
1.7 T Preparation of project brief for approval by client and relevant stakeholders.
2.1 T Identification, analysis and integration of information relevant to siting of project.
2.2 T Application of principles controlling planning, development and design for the project site.
2.3 T Evaluation of factors influencing and impacting on project cost.
2.5 T Attainment of approval from client of project budget and timeframe.
2.6 T Preparation and analysis of project development options in response to project brief.
3.1 T Design response integrates the objectives of brief, user intent and built purpose.
4.2 T Evaluation of design options against values of physical, environmental and cultural contexts.

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

The unit structure and assessment has been revised to provide a greater focus on contemporary practice in the IT industry.


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.