Course Title: Develop and use complex spreadsheets

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2016

Course Code: COSC6185C

Course Title: Develop and use complex spreadsheets

School: 650T Vocational Business Education

Campus: City Campus

Program: C4358 - Certificate IV in Business Administration

Course Contact: Sylvia Baroutis

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 5469

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Angelo Sellan

Phone: 9255 5460


Nominal Hours: 50

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites


Course Description

This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to use spreadsheet software to complete business tasks and produce complex documents.

It applies to individuals employed in a range of work environments who require skills in creation of complex spreadsheets to store and retrieve data. They may work as individuals providing administrative support within an enterprise, or may be independently responsible for designing and working with spreadsheets relevant to their own work roles.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

BSBITU402 Develop and use complex spreadsheets


1. Prepare to develop spreadsheet

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Organise personal work environment in accordance with ergonomic requirements
1.2 Analyse task and determine specifications for spreadsheets
1.3 Identify organisational and task requirements of data entry, storage, output, reporting and presentation requirements
1.4 Apply work organisation strategies and energy and resource conservation techniques to plan work activities


2. Develop a linked spreadsheet solution

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Utilise spreadsheet design software functions and formulae to meet identified requirements
2.2 Link spreadsheets in accordance with software procedures
2.3 Format cells and use data attributes assigned with relative and/or absolute cell references, in accordance with task specifications
2.4 Test formulae to confirm output meets task requirements


3. Automate and standardise spreadsheet operation

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Evaluate tasks to identify those where automation would increase efficiency
3.2 Create, use and edit macros to fulfil requirements of task and automate spreadsheet operation
3.3 Develop, edit and use templates to ensure consistency of design and layout for forms and reports, in accordance with organisational requirements


4. Use spreadsheets

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Enter, check and amend data in accordance with organisational and task requirements
4.2 Import and export data between compatible spreadsheets and adjust host documents, in accordance with software and system procedures
4.3 Use manuals, user documentation and online help to overcome problems with spreadsheet design and production
4.4 Preview, adjust and print spreadsheet in accordance with organisational and task requirements
4.5 Name and store spreadsheet in accordance with organisational requirements and exit application without data loss or damage


5. Represent numerical data in graphic form

Performance Criteria:

5.1 Determine style of graph to meet specified requirements and manipulate spreadsheet data if necessary to suit graph requirements
5.2 Create graphs with labels and titles from numerical data contained in a spreadsheet file
5.3 Save, view and print graph within designated timelines

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

Students will use MS Office Excel 2010 for this competency.  Learning activities will include class-based discussions, demonstrations, practical exercises and observations in order to develop competency, including the underpinning skills and knowledge.  In addition to the assessments, formative feedback is provided to students throughout the duration of the course.

Some learning activities will include a self-directed approach.  Self-directed learning refers to organised teacher-directed learning activities that you will undertake independently, either as individuals or with other students.


Teaching Schedule




Topics/Learning Outcomes

Assessment information


4 July

Introduction to the course including:

  • Course requirements
  • Course support documents
  • Blackboard access
  • Accuracy of enrolment
  • Assessment requirements/cover sheets
  • Reminder re plagiarism
  • Reminder re appeals
  • Extensions/resubmissions
  • Feedback in this course
  • Reminder re submission requirements
  • Getting help


Prepare to develop spreadsheet

Occupational health and safety/ergonomics

Electronic file management, backup procedures,  protecting data, using manuals, copyright, work request forms, communication




11 July

Prepare to develop spreadsheet

Spreadsheet design, What makes a good spreadsheet? Spreadsheet documentation, Using spreadsheets to solve problems, Working with scenarios

Section 1:  Borders and shading, Copying and moving data series




18 July

Develop a linked spreadsheet solution

Section 2: Easy functions, Formula Auditing, Help and hyperlinks




25 July

Represent numerical data in graphic form

Section 3: Charts, pie charts, quick charts




1 Aug

Represent numerical data in graphic form

Section 3: Charts, pie charts, quick charts




8 Aug

Develop a linked spreadsheet solution

Section 4: Names, multiple worksheets, linking workbooks, Consolidating data




15 Aug

Develop a linked spreadsheet solution

Section 4: Names, multiple worksheets, linking workbooks, consolidating data




22 Aug

Develop a linked spreadsheet solution

Section 4: Names, multiple worksheets, linking workbooks, Consolidating data





Mid-semester break
29 August – 2 September




5 Sept

Use spreadsheets


Section 5: Functions, data tables, array formulas




12 Sept

Use spreadsheets


Section 5: Functions, data tables, array formulas




19 Sept

Automate and standardise spreadsheet operation


Section 6: Data analysis, data validation, macros, cell protection, templates




26 Sept

Automate and standardise spreadsheeet operation


Section 6, Data analysis, data validation, macros, cell protection, templates




3 Oct





10 Oct


Final portfolio due



17 Oct


Supervised in-class open book demonstration of techniques



24 Oct




31 Oct




Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Tilde skills Develop & Use Complex Spreadsheets 2nd Edition. 978-0-7346-0795-9 May be purchased directly via:


Other Resources

Overview of Assessment

In order to achieve competency in this unit, you must provide:

Performance Evidence

  • follow organisational and safe work practices including:
  • ergonomic requirements
  • energy and resource conservation techniques
  • adhere to organisational requirements for:
  • ensuring consistency of style, design and layout
  • saving and printing documents within designated timelines
  • naming and storing documents
  • adhere to identified or task requirements when producing documents including:
  • editing macros and automating some tasks
  • using appropriate templates
  • creating graphs to represent data
  • resolve issues by referring to user documentation and online help
  • use appropriate data storage options
  • evaluate tasks to improve efficiency
  • apply knowledge of functions and features of contemporary computer applications
  • communicate with relevant personnel

Knowledge Evidence

To complete the unit requirements safely and effectively, the individual must:

  • explain advanced functions of spreadsheet software applications
  • describe impact of formatting and design on presentation and readability of data
  • explain organisational requirements for ergonomics, work periods and breaks, and conservation techniques.

Assessment Conditions

Assessment must be conducted in a safe environment where evidence gathered where evidence gathered demonstrates consistent performance of typical activities experienced in the information and communications technology – IT use field of work and include access to:

  • organisational policies and procedures
  • relevant workplace documentation and resources
  • industry software packages and user instructions.

You are advised that you are likely to be asked to personally demonstrate your assessment work to your teacher to ensure that the relevant competency standards are being met.


Feedback will be provided throughout the semester in class and/or online discussions.  You are encouraged to ask and answer questions during class time and online sessions so that you can obtain feedback on your understanding of the concepts and issues being discussed. Finally, you can email or arrange an appointment with your teacher to gain more feedback on your progress.

You should take note of all feedback received and use this information to improve your learning outcomes and final performance in the course. 

Assessment Tasks

There are two assessment tasks for this course.  You must demonstrate competency in both tasks to be deemed competent for this course.

TASK 1:  Portfolio of Evidence - Due as set out in the teaching schedule in this guide

You will produce a 'portfolio of evidence' which will consist of five spreadsheets produced by you.  This portfolio of evidence should demonstrate your competency across the five elements of competency required for this unit, together with the performance and knowledge evidence as detailed in the National Competency information above.  (Further details will be provided in the Assessment Record and Cover Sheet which will be available in your Program Blackboard Shell.)

TASK 2: In-class open book assignment/demonstration of techniques/test - Due as set out in the teaching schedule in this guide

The final in-class open book assessment will be taken under supervised conditions.  This assessment will cover all topics/elements of competency/performance criteria covered in class in the previous 14 weeks.  (All topics to be demonstrated in this assessment can be found in your textbook.)

Submission requirements

You should:

Ensure that you submit assessments on or before the due date

Always retain a copy of your assessment tasks

When you submit work for assessment at RMIT University you need to use a cover sheet that includes a declaration and statement of authorship.  You must complete, sign and submit a cover sheet with all work you submit for assessment, whether individual or group work.  On the cover sheet you declare that the work you are presenting for assessment is your own work.  An assignment cover sheet for submission of each assessment task is available on Blackboard.

Each page of your assessment should include a footer with your name, student number, the title of the assessment, unit code and title and page numbers.  "For example, Julie Macpherson, 324567, Task 2 OHS2345C Ensure a safe workplace, page 1 of 10.

Late Submission Procedures

You are required to submit assessment items and/or ensure performance based assessment is completed by the due dates.

If you are prevented from submitting an assessment item on time, by circumstances outside your control, you may apply in advance to your teacher for an extension to the due date of up to seven calendar days.

More information:

Form to use:

Where an extension of greater than seven days is needed, you must apply for special consideration.  Applications for special consideration must be submitted no later than two working days after the assessment task deadline or scheduled examination.

More information:;ID=g43abm17hc9w (unresolved)

Form to use:

Resubmissions (VET Programs):

If you are found to be unsuccessful in a course Assessment Task you will be allowed one resubmission only.  Your teacher will provide feedback regarding what you need to do to improve and will set a new deadline for the resubmission.  The highest grade you will receive if your resubmission is successful is "CAG".

If you are still not meeting the assessment requirements you must apply to your program manager in writing outlining the steps you will take to demonstrate competence in your course.  Your submission will be considered by the Program Team and you will be advised of the outcome as soon as possible.

Adjustments to Assessment

In certain circumstances students may be eligible for an assessment adjustment.  For more information about circumstances under which the assessment arrangement might be granted please access the following website:

More information:

Marking Guide (Competency)

You must demonstrate that you have all the required skills/knowledge/elements in the unit of competency you are studying.

You will receive feedback on each assessment tasks that will inform you about your progress and how well you are performing.

Marking Guide (Grading)

After achieving competency we then grade your performance in the unit and you will achieve one of the following grades:

Final Grades table

CHD Competent with High Distinction

CDI Competent with Distinction

CC Competent with Credit

CAG Competency Achieved - Graded

NYC Not Yet Competent

DNS Did Not Submit for Assessment



Assessment Matrix

Course Overview: Access Course Overview