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Unit of study_

PHYS5020: Computation and Image Processing

Semester 2, 2021 [Normal day] - Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney

In this unit normally undertaken as part of the Masters of Medical Physics degree or the Graduate Diploma in Medical Physics, Monte Carlo modelling of radiation transport is covered, along with the theory of image formation, concepts of computing, numerical methods and image processing, including techniques such as enhancement, registration, fusion and 3D reconstruction, radiomics and an introduction to Machine Learning techniques.

Unit details and rules

Unit code PHYS5020
Academic unit Physics Academic Operations
Credit points 6
Assumed knowledge


Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Annette Haworth,
Lecturer(s) Jonathan Sykes,
Chun-Chien (Andy) Shieh,
John Kipritidis,
Sirisha Tadimalla,
Robert Finnegan,
Peter Lazarakis,
Yu Sun,
Annette Haworth,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Oral exam
hurdle task
Final Exam (Oral)
Final Exam (Oral): Python and radiomics
25% Formal exam period 15 minutes (oral)
Outcomes assessed: LO9
Assignment hurdle task Assignment 1
Assignment 1: Monte Carlo
10% Week 04
Due date: 30 Aug 2021 at 23:59
1 week
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2
Presentation hurdle task In-class assessment (Oral)
In-class assessment (Oral) 1: Physics of MRI
10% Week 05
Due date: 07 Sep 2021 at 14:00
Outcomes assessed: LO11
Assignment hurdle task Assignment 2
Assignment 2: Image processing
10% Week 06
Due date: 13 Sep 2021 at 23:59
1 week
Outcomes assessed: LO3
Assignment hurdle task Assignment 3
Assignment 3: Physics of MRI
10% Week 08
Due date: 04 Oct 2021 at 23:59
2 weeks
Outcomes assessed: LO11
Presentation hurdle task In-class assessment (Oral)
In-class assessment (Oral) 2: e-health
10% Week 10
Due date: 18 Oct 2021 at 09:00
Outcomes assessed: LO7 LO8
Assignment hurdle task Assignment 4
Assignment 4: Image Registration and Image Segmentation
25% Week 11
Due date: 25 Oct 2021 at 23:59
3 - 4 weeks
Outcomes assessed: LO4 LO5 LO6 LO10
hurdle task = hurdle task ?

Assessment summary

  • Lab Quiz/Assignments: These will be based on material presented in practical/virtual labs drawing on material presented in lectures and will be assessed by the respective lab supervisors/lecturers.
  • In-semester test (Oral): will be based on lecture material, and readings and will be assessed by the lecturers.
  • Final Exam: will be based on lecture material, and readings and will be assessed by the lecturers.

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

All assessments are compulsory.

Assessment tasks are intended to allow you to demonstrate what you have learned related to the goals of this unit. They also serve
to encourage you to work with the material but should not dominate your approach to learning. See them as another learning
activity, accompanying and complementing the lectures and labs.

In addition, students in physics must be able to express themselves accurately by clear, efficient use of the English language in
their written work. Spelling, grammar, punctuation and correct use of language will be taken into account when written reports and
examination work are assessed. Students should refer to the University’s WriteSite ( if they are
looking for guidance on grammar and other aspects of academic and professional writing.

Assessment of this unit of study is based on achievement of specific learning objectives as demonstrated in a combination of
assignments, tests, examination and laboratory work. Satisfactory performance in ALL aspects of assessment is necessary to
ensure a pass in this unit. It is expected that a grade of at least 45% in each of the assessments and examination will be achieved
in order to demonstrate satisfactory performance. A combined score of at least 50% is necessary for a pass as indicated in the
section “Assessment Grading” below.

You are responsible for understanding the University policy regarding assessment and examination, which can be found in the
University Policy Register at

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

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at an exceptional standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school.


75 - 84

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at a very high standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school.


65 - 74

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at a good standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school.


50 - 64

Awarded when you demonstrate the learning outcomes for the unit at an acceptable standard, as defined by grade descriptors or exemplars outlined by your faculty or school.


0 - 49

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

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 Monte Carlo methods in medical physics part 1: Fundamentals (PL) Lecture (3 hr) LO1
Week 02 Monte Carlo methods in medical physics part 2: Simulating radiation and particle transport (PL) Lecture (3 hr) LO2
Week 03 Image processing using MATLAB part 1 (AS) Lecture (3 hr) LO3
Week 04 Image processing using MATLAB part 2 (AS) Lecture (3 hr) LO3
Week 06 Research methods part 2 (AH) Lecture (3 hr)  
Week 07 Multimodality image registration (JK) Lecture (3 hr) LO4 LO5 LO6
Week 08 Image segmentation (RF) Lecture (3 hr) LO10
Week 09 e-Health, hospital data management (JS) Lecture (3 hr) LO7 LO8
Week 10 Radiomics part 1: Basic (YS) Lecture (3 hr) LO9
Week 11 Radiomics part 2: Advanced methods (YS) Lecture (3 hr) LO9
Week 12 Professional Development - Meet the Chiefs (AH) Lecture (3 hr)  

Attendance and class requirements

Due to the exceptional circumstances caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, attendance requirements for this unit of study have been amended. Where online tutorials/workshops/virtual laboratories have been scheduled, students are expected to attend and participate at the scheduled time. Penalties will not be applied if technical issues, etc. prevent attendance at a specific online class. In that case, students should discuss the problem with the coordinator.

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 Reading List, available on Canvas.

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 understanding of general properties of Monte Carlo methods and their use in medical physics
  • LO2. demonstrate an understanding of general algorithm for modeling particle transport & how this applies to photons/electrons
  • LO3. demonstrate an understanding of basic analysis and processing techniques for medical imaging using MATLAB, a common programming language in research and clinical environments
  • LO4. demonstrate an understanding of the theory, techniques and applications for image registration in the context of radiotherapy
  • LO5. demonstrate an understanding of the best practice recommendations regarding the validation and quality assurance of image registration for medical images
  • LO6. demonstrate an understanding and analysing of image registration software
  • LO7. demonstrate an understanding of the hierarchy of health information systems from National through state to Local Health District, Hospital and Departmental systems
  • LO8. demonstrate an understanding of basic appreciation for the importance of data security in healthcare
  • LO9. demonstrate an understanding of the basics of Python and use it for the development of a radiomics predictive model using both traditional feature-engineering methods as well as deep learning approaches
  • LO10. demonstrate an understanding of the different methods of medical image segmentation, uncertainties associated with image segmentation in radiotherapy, and practical experience performing image segmentation
  • LO11. Demonstrate an understanding of the physics of MRI

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.

No changes have been made since this unit was last offered.

More information can be found on Canvas site for this unit.

Additional costs

There are no additional costs for this unit.

Site visit guidelines

There are no site visit guidelines for this unit. Please check the Canvas site for this unit.

Work, health and safety

We are governed by the Work Health and Safety Act 2011, Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011 and Codes of Practice. Penalties for non-compliance have increased. Everyone has a responsibility for health and safety at work. The University’s Work Health and Safety policy explains the responsibilities and expectations of workers and others, and the procedures for managing WHS risks associated with University activities.


General Laboratory Safety Rules

  • No eating or drinking is allowed in any laboratory under any circumstances
  • A laboratory coat and closed-toe shoes are mandatory
  • Follow safety instructions in your manual and posted in laboratories
  • In case of fire, follow instructions posted outside the laboratory door
  • First aid kits, eye wash and fire extinguishers are located in or immediately outside each laboratory
  • As a precautionary measure, it is recommended that you have a current tetanus immunisation. This can be obtained from University Health Service:


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

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