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CSE4900 Introduction to multimedia computing - Semester 1 , 2008

Unit leader :

Grace Rumantir

Lecturer(s) :


  • Grace Rumantir


Welcome to CSE4900 Introduction to Multimedia Computing for semester 1, 2008.  This is an elective unit in the Honours program, GDIT, MIS and related degrees and diplomas.  It is offered to students in the area of information technology with minimal multimedia aspects in the course. It provides an introduction to a broad spectrum of multimedia topics aiming at completing IT graduates or professionals with knowledge of the multimedia aspects of computing. 

Unit synopsis

This unit is an overview of multimedia designed for computing professionals, honours students and recent computing graduates. It provides a broad coverage of multimedia with respect to the technical, application and social areas. Major topics include:

  • Technical aspects of multimedia and web-site construction including HTML, CGI, JavaScript, etc.
  • Tools for creation of graphical and audio content
  • Applications of principles of design to typography, photography, cinematography, music, sound and interactive multimedia
  • Legal issues, usability testing and security
  • Learning outcomes

    At the completion of this unit, students will :

  • acquire the knowledge of the basic technical aspects concerning the presentation of multimedia in the printed and electronic media
  • acquire the knowledge concerning the multimedia industry and the development stages of multimedia products
  • be able to make design suggestions of a basic multimedia product suitable for a chosen medium
  • and students will have developed attitudes that enable them to:

  • appreciate the diverse ways a good multimedia product can be presented on different media
  • follow a methodical way when producing a multimedia product based on their newly acquired appreciation of the need to do so
  • as well as skills to:

  • be able to competently exploit the publicly available modern multimedia technology for their everyday use
  • be able to competently do basic manipulations to a multimedia product
  • and to:

  • be able to justify their approach to the design of a multimedia product
  • be able to appreciate other people's preferences in certain aspects in the design of a multimedia product
  • be able to communication their experience in using and manipulating a multimedia product
  • Workload

    two-hour lecture and a minimum of 10 hours of personal study to work on the weekly assignments

    Unit relationships


    There are no prerequisites for this unit.


    CSE4900 is an elective unit at honours and postgraduate levels within the Faculty of Information Technology

    Continuous improvement

    Monash is committed to ‘Excellence in education' and strives for the highest possible quality in teaching and learning. To monitor how successful we are in providing quality teaching and learning Monash regularly seeks feedback from students, employers and staff. Two of the formal ways that you are invited to provide feedback are through Unit Evaluations and through Monquest Teaching Evaluations.

    One of the key formal ways students have to provide feedback is through Unit Evaluation Surveys. It is Monash policy for every unit offered to be evaluated each year. Students are strongly encouraged to complete the surveys as they are an important avenue for students to "have their say". The feedback is anonymous and provides the Faculty with evidence of aspects that students are satisfied and areas for improvement.

    Student Evaluations

    The Faculty of IT administers the Unit Evaluation surveys online through the my.monash portal, although for some smaller classes there may be alternative evaluations conducted in class.

    If you wish to view how previous students rated this unit, please go to http://www.monash.edu.au/unit-evaluation-reports/

    Over the past few years the Faculty of Information Technology has made a number of improvements to its courses as a result of unit evaluation feedback. Some of these include systematic analysis and planning of unit improvements, and consistent assignment return guidelines.

    Monquest Teaching Evaluation surveys may be used by some of your academic staff this semester. They are administered by the Centre for Higher Education Quality (CHEQ) and may be completed in class with a facilitator or on-line through the my.monash portal. The data provided to lecturers is completely anonymous. Monquest surveys provide academic staff with evidence of the effectiveness of their teaching and identify areas for improvement. Individual Monquest reports are confidential, however, you can see the summary results of Monquest evaluations for 2006 at http://www.adm.monash.edu.au/cheq/evaluations/monquest/profiles/index.html

    Unit staff - contact details

    Unit leader

    Dr Grace Rumantir
    Phone +61 3 990 47268
    Fax +61 3 8622 8999

    Lecturer(s) :

    Dr Grace Rumantir
    Phone +61 3 990 47268
    Fax +61 3 8622 8999

    Teaching and learning method

    The teaching and learning in the unit is structured around lectures and self study/experimentations.  Self exploration of each topic introduced in the lectures through suggested reading materials, use of the internet and other publicly available multimedia facilities is the learning mode of the unit.

    Tutorial allocation

    There are no labs/tutorials for this unit

    Communication, participation and feedback

    Monash aims to provide a learning environment in which students receive a range of ongoing feedback throughout their studies. You will receive feedback on your work and progress in this unit. This may take the form of group feedback, individual feedback, peer feedback, self-comparison, verbal and written feedback, discussions (on line and in class) as well as more formal feedback related to assignment marks and grades. You are encouraged to draw on a variety of feedback to enhance your learning.

    It is essential that you take action immediately if you realise that you have a problem that is affecting your study. Semesters are short, so we can help you best if you let us know as soon as problems arise. Regardless of whether the problem is related directly to your progress in the unit, if it is likely to interfere with your progress you should discuss it with your lecturer or a Community Service counsellor as soon as possible.

    Unit Schedule

    Week Topic Key dates
    1 Introduction to Images  
    2 Images, colours and sound  
    3 raster and vector graphics, image compression  
    4 3D motion capture and Algorithms for Animation and Speech  
    Mid semester break
    5 Multimedia techniques  
    6 Intellectual Property: The game development industry  
    7 Multimedia industry and development structures  
    8 multimedia and artificial intelligence  
    9 Overview of Artificial Intelligence in Multimedia  
    10 How Interfaces Affect Users  
    11 Computer Based Training  
    12 Possible Directions for Multimedia Evolution  
    13 Review  

    Unit Resources

    Prescribed text(s) and readings

    Chapman and Chapman, Digital Multimedia, 2nd edition, 2004, Wiley.

    You must purchase this textbook. There will be weekly readings assigned, and much of the coverage of the Unit Test and Exam will be based on the textbook. The old edition of the textbook cannot be used.

    Text books are available from the Monash University Book Shops. Availability from other suppliers cannot be assured. The Bookshop orders texts in specifically for this unit. You are advised to purchase your text book early.

    Recommended text(s) and readings

    Resources will be posted on the unit website in Blackboard

    Required software and/or hardware

    Microsoft Office, WinZip, a contemporary Internet browser (IE or FireFox recommended)

    Equipment and consumables required or provided

    Students studying off-campus are required to have the minimum system configuration specified by the Faculty as a condition of accepting admission, and regular Internet access. On-campus students, and those studying at supported study locations may use the facilities available in the computing labs. Information about computer use for students is available from the ITS Student Resource Guide in the Monash University Handbook. You will need to allocate up to n hours per week for use of a computer, including time for newsgroups/discussion groups.

    Study resources

    Study resources we will provide for your study are:

    Study resources for CSE4900 are:

    The unit's textbook and selected web sites made available through the lecture notes and the unit's web site.

    The unit's web site containing all assignments and lecture notes as well as discussion forum, currently located in MUSO/Blackboard

    Library access

    The Monash University Library site contains details about borrowing rights and catalogue searching. To learn more about the library and the various resources available, please go to http://www.lib.monash.edu.au.  Be sure to obtain a copy of the Library Guide, and if necessary, the instructions for remote access from the library website.

    Monash University Studies Online (MUSO)

    All unit and lecture materials are available through MUSO (Monash University Studies Online). Blackboard is the primary application used to deliver your unit resources. Some units will be piloted in Moodle.

    You can access MUSO and Blackboard via the portal (http://my.monash.edu.au).

    Click on the Study and enrolment tab, then Blackboard under the MUSO learning systems.

    In order for your Blackboard unit(s) to function correctly, your computer needs to be correctly configured.

    For example :

    • Blackboard supported browser
    • Supported Java runtime environment

    For more information, please visit


    You can contact the MUSO Support by: Phone: (+61 3) 9903 1268

    For further contact information including operational hours, please visit


    Further information can be obtained from the MUSO support site:


    If your unit is piloted in Moodle, you will see a link from your Blackboard unit to Moodle at http://moodle.med.monash.edu.au.
    From the Faculty of Information Technology category, click on the link for your unit.


    Unit assessment policy

    To pass this unit, a student must obtain :
    • 40% or more in the unit's examination and
    • 40% or more in the unit's non-examination assessment
    • an overall unit mark of 50% or more
    • Satisfy the lecture attendance requirements (attend at least 10 lectures)
    If a student does not achieve 40% or more in the unit examination or the unit non-examination assessment then a mark of no greater than 44-N will be recorded for the unit.

    Assignment tasks

    • Assignment Task

      Title : Weekly assignments

      Description :

      Ten weekly assignments in total for the semester.   Each assignment will cover the topic covered in the respective weekly lecture. Each assignment is to be submitted via Muso/Blackboard each week. 

      Weighting : 5% each (total 50%)

      Criteria for assessment :

      Due date : Friday 5pm the week following each assignment release date


    • Examination

      Weighting : 50%

      Length : 3 hours

      Type ( open/closed book ) : Closed book

    Assignment submission

    Assignments will be submitted by electronic submission to the unit's Muso/Blackboard website. Do not email submissions. The due date is the date by which the the submission is to be posted.

    Assignment coversheets

    Electronic coversheets are to be submitted with your assignment. These can be obtained from the Assignments page of the unit web site.

    University and Faculty policy on assessment

    Due dates and extensions

    The due dates for the submission of assignments are given in the previous section. Please make every effort to submit work by the due dates. It is your responsibility to structure your study program around assignment deadlines, family, work and other commitments. Factors such as normal work pressures, vacations, etc. are seldom regarded as appropriate reasons for granting extensions. Students are advised to NOT assume that granting of an extension is a matter of course.

    As the unit has weekly assignments, it is very important that students budget their time to accomodate this mode of assessment.  Factors such as normal work pressures, vacations, etc. are seldom regarded as appropriate reasons for granting extensions. Students are advised to NOT assume that granting of an extension is a matter of course.

    Requests for extensions must be made to the unit lecturer at least two days before the due date. You will be asked to forward original medical certificates in cases of illness, and may be asked to provide other forms of documentation where necessary.

    Late assignment

    If you believe that your assignment will be delayed because of circumstances beyond your control such as illness you should apply for an extension before the due date. Medical certificates or certification supporting your application may be required. Assignments submitted after the due date may incur a penalty for lateness. An assignment submitted more than seven days after the due date may be given a score of zero. If you anticipate being late then discuss the situation with your unit lecturer as early as possible; your unit lecturer will decide how many marks you will be penalised for each day your assignment is late, and whether or not any extension is warranted.

    Return dates

    Students can expect assignments to be returned within two weeks of the submission date or after receipt, whichever is later.

    Assessment for the unit as a whole is in accordance with the provisions of the Monash University Education Policy at http://www.policy.monash.edu/policy-bank/academic/education/assessment/

    We will aim to have assignment results made available to you within two weeks after assignment receipt.

    Plagiarism, cheating and collusion

    Plagiarism and cheating are regarded as very serious offences. In cases where cheating  has been confirmed, students have been severely penalised, from losing all marks for an assignment, to facing disciplinary action at the Faculty level. While we would wish that all our students adhere to sound ethical conduct and honesty, I will ask you to acquaint yourself with Student Rights and Responsibilities (http://www.infotech.monash.edu.au/about/committees-groups/facboard/policies/studrights.html) and the Faculty regulations that apply to students detected cheating as these will be applied in all detected cases.

    In this University, cheating means seeking to obtain an unfair advantage in any examination or any other written or practical work to be submitted or completed by a student for assessment. It includes the use, or attempted use, of any means to gain an unfair advantage for any assessable work in the unit, where the means is contrary to the instructions for such work. 

    When you submit an individual assessment item, such as a program, a report, an essay, assignment or other piece of work, under your name you are understood to be stating that this is your own work. If a submission is identical with, or similar to, someone else's work, an assumption of cheating may arise. If you are planning on working with another student, it is acceptable to undertake research together, and discuss problems, but it is not acceptable to jointly develop or share solutions unless this is specified by your lecturer. 

    Intentionally providing students with your solutions to assignments is classified as "assisting to cheat" and students who do this may be subject to disciplinary action. You should take reasonable care that your solution is not accidentally or deliberately obtained by other students. For example, do not leave copies of your work in progress on the hard drives of shared computers, and do not show your work to other students. If you believe this may have happened, please be sure to contact your lecturer as soon as possible.

    Cheating also includes taking into an examination any material contrary to the regulations, including any bilingual dictionary, whether or not with the intention of using it to obtain an advantage.

    Plagiarism involves the false representation of another person's ideas, or findings, as your own by either copying material or paraphrasing without citing sources. It is both professional and ethical to reference clearly the ideas and information that you have used from another writer. If the source is not identified, then you have plagiarised work of the other author. Plagiarism is a form of dishonesty that is insulting to the reader and grossly unfair to your student colleagues.

    Register of counselling about plagiarism

    The university requires faculties to keep a simple and confidential register to record counselling to students about plagiarism (e.g. warnings). The register is accessible to Associate Deans Teaching (or nominees) and, where requested, students concerned have access to their own details in the register. The register is to serve as a record of counselling about the nature of plagiarism, not as a record of allegations; and no provision of appeals in relation to the register is necessary or applicable.

    Non-discriminatory language

    The Faculty of Information Technology is committed to the use of non-discriminatory language in all forms of communication. Discriminatory language is that which refers in abusive terms to gender, race, age, sexual orientation, citizenship or nationality, ethnic or language background, physical or mental ability, or political or religious views, or which stereotypes groups in an adverse manner. This is not meant to preclude or inhibit legitimate academic debate on any issue; however, the language used in such debate should be non-discriminatory and sensitive to these matters. It is important to avoid the use of discriminatory language in your communications and written work. The most common form of discriminatory language in academic work tends to be in the area of gender inclusiveness. You are, therefore, requested to check for this and to ensure your work and communications are non-discriminatory in all respects.

    Students with disabilities

    Students with disabilities that may disadvantage them in assessment should seek advice from one of the following before completing assessment tasks and examinations:

    Deferred assessment and special consideration

    Deferred assessment (not to be confused with an extension for submission of an assignment) may be granted in cases of extenuating personal circumstances such as serious personal illness or bereavement. Information and forms for Special Consideration and deferred assessment applications are available at http://www.monash.edu.au/exams/special-consideration.html. Contact the Faculty's Student Services staff at your campus for further information and advice.