Course Title: Issues in e Business

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Issues in e Business

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


620H Business IT and Logistics


Sem 1 2006,
Sem 2 2006,
Sem 2 2008,
Sem 2 2009,
Sem 2 2010

Course Coordinator: Ian Storey

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925-

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 108.17.69

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

INTE2047, E-Commerce Technology 1 or equivalent and ISYS2047, Application Development 1 or equivalent.
ie students should have:

  • A thorough knowledge of HTML concepts, tags and structures.
  • A good understanding of key Internet protocols and E-Commerce concepts.
  • A good basic knowledge of SQL commands.
  • Some prior programming experience preferably with Visual Basic, which is the language used in this course (or Java or C#).

IMPORTANT NOTE: This course [including Lab class] begins in WEEK1 of semester and all students MUST attend this week

Course Description

Offers a first hand experience of some key E-Commerce technologies. The emphasis will be on using Microsoft ASP.NET, database connectivity (ADO.NET), XML and Web services to create E-Commerce sites.
Teaching takes place via a combination of lectures, tutor-led laboratory sessions and self-paced building of a realistic fully-featured interactive E-Commerce site.
The focus is on the technology issues but some lectures also review key e-business aspects (eg security, payment systems, architectures, B2B, customer-service and e-business models). Most of the coding will be in ASP.NET using VB.NET but there may also be brief references to C#.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

Key capabilities developed or enhanced will be:

  • Working in a team to a timeline - to design, implement and test an IT project (in this instance an E-Commerce project)
  • Develop ICT Technical Skills - Ability to adapt and enhance existing VB.NET/ASP.NET code for web page design.
  • ICT Strategic Skills - Understanding of key e-business concepts and architectures.

Upon completion of this course students will be able to:

  • Utilise .NET related technologies for creating interactive (dynamic) web content, with special emphasis on ASP.NET coding, connecting to databases and XML/Web Services
  • Work as a member of a team - implement key components of an E-Commerce system including interactive server side (i.e. dynamic) components, such as shopping cart and payment components.
  • Provide technical input into the development of a business strategy for E-Commerce, apply E-Commerce models (eg B2B, B2C, C2C) and appreciate their differences and similarities; also to help evaluate alternative E-Commerce designs, architectures, security systems and other infrastructure options.

Overview of Learning Activities

Wherever possible the course activities have been designed to encourage students to be active participants in the learning process. The more active and involved students are, the more they will gain from the subject.
The teaching will be a combination of:
* lectures that cover a range of theoretical and practical issues (technical and business related),
* hands-on laboratory sessions – tutors will closely interact with students with the aim of developing skills by using specific E-Commerce related technologies; primarily Microsoft ASP.NET, ADO database connectivity and SQL, XML/SOAP.
* tutor-assisted group activity which encourages interaction and further develops technical and team skills via an specific assignment that involves building an interactive on-line E-Business application. This task will involve using various tools.

Topics for lectures will be based on the following list (NB not all topics can be included each time and given the dynamic nature of E-Commerce this list will continue to evolve):

Quick review of HTML, Web Forms, hidden fields, CSS, HTTP, Client side Java Script [with examples].
The .NET Framework - languages, CLR, MSIL, class libraries (namespaces), Developing an and deploying applications; components, bin folder, Visual Studio.Net
Basics of ASP.NET - history, Server-side web design with ASP.NET & VB.NET,
Web forms, HTML controls and various types of so called Server controls, User controls, Custom Controls & validation controls
Background on VB.NET; commenting code, looping, branching, Classes, arrays etc
Key concepts; managing state( viewstate and PostBack), basic object concepts, Response, Request, Page, Session, Application & ServerUtility objects, cookies.
Linking to Databases - ADO.NET, linking to MS Access, review of basic SQL & (briefly) stored procedures, ADO connections, commands, data binding, Datasets, DataReaders, binding to dataGrids, and repeating controls (dataList and Repeater), using XML in ADO.NET.
Using ASP.NET for creating core elements of an E-Commerce application - catalogue, , searching, shopping cart, check-out, product favourites, handling & tracking orders and payments, remote administration , automated email, reporting, self-service, dynamic FAQ, on-line chat, ratings, etc
Separating code from content; More OO concepts, creating business objects, writing files with ASP,
Debugging techniques eg using Try catch and Trace
Planning for eBusiness - key business issues; Review of E-Commerce models - B2B, B2C, C2C Value Chain Model, Pipelines, E-Business strategic issues re-engineering.
Potential of XML & Web Services; Architectures; Site design principles and ways to gain competitive advantage.
Creating and managing dynamic and interesting content, site usage analysis & logs
More on Web Services in practice, XML and associated technology - Schemas, XSL, SOAP, UDDI, WSDL, XML data binding. Example of using ASP.NET to develop a Web Service.
Caching for performance, and configuring ASP.NET, Web.config, global.asax,
Managing the development process for group assignment; milestones etc
Techniques for interacting with customers; CRM, ASP code for letting customers track their orders, subscription based sites, using email from ASP..
ASP.NET Security, working with credit cards, payment gateways and technologies, administering site, login, logout, securing web services

Overview of Learning Resources

Prescribed Text:   To be announced

Some additional ASP.NET & XML/Web Services reference texts:
• **Payne, Chris (2002) Teach Yourself ASP.NET in 21 Days, SAMS, 1st or 2nd Ed Anderson, R., Francis B. et al (2002) Professional ASP.NET 1.0 Special Edition, Wrox, ISBN: 0764543962 
• **Chappell, David (2002) Understanding .NET: A Tutorial and Analysis, Addison Wesley Professional; ; 1st ed,
• **Hurwitz, D. and J. Liberty (2003). Programming ASP.NET 1.0. Sebastopol CA, O’Reilly & Assocs
• **Kittel, M. A., & LeBlond, G. T. (August 2004). ASP.NET1.0 Cookbook: O’Reilly.
• **Short, S. (2002). Building XML Web Services for the Microsoft .NET Platform, Microsoft Press.
• Putz, J. (2005). Maximizing ASP.NET 1.0 : Real World, Object-Oriented Development. Upper Saddle River, Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional.

Note ** indicates that the book is available on-line in the RMIT library Safari collection

Web design and HTML Revision texts:
• Castro E. (2004) HTML 4 for the World Wide Web, 4th or later Edition, Peachpit Press.
• Nielsen, Jakob, M Tahir (Nov 2001) Homepage Usability: 50 Websites Deconstructed Pearson Education; 1st edition

Some general E-Business texts for reference:
• Chaudhury, A. and Kuilboer J-P. (2002) E-Business & E-Commerce Infrastructure: Technologies Supporting the E-Business Initiative: McGraw-Hill Education, Boston
• Kalakota R & Robinson M (2000) e-Business 2.0- Roadmap for Success II: Addison & Wesley, Reading Mass, 2nd Ed
• Treese, G. W. and Stewart L. C. (2002) Designing Systems for Internet Commerce, 2nd Ed, Addison-Wesley.
• Turban E., Lee J., King D & Chung H. M. (2002) E-Commerce - a Managerial Perspective: 2nd Ed, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River
• Schneider, Gary & Perry, James (2000) Electronic Commerce: Course Technology, Cambridge.
• On-line webcasts at
eg Best Practices for Microsoft ASP.NET Development etc
• There are some video instruction tapes in RMIT business library on ASP.NET etc

Overview of Assessment

To be announced