Course Title: Network Access Systems

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Network Access Systems

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


125H Electrical & Computer Engineering


Sem 1 2006,
Sem 1 2007,
Sem 1 2008,
Sem 1 2009,
Sem 1 2010,
Sem 1 2011,
Sem 1 2012,
Sem 1 2014,
Sem 1 2015,
Sem 1 2016


City Campus


172H School of Engineering


Sem 1 2019,
Sem 1 2020,
Sem 1 2021,
Sem 1 2022,
Sem 1 2023

Course Coordinator: A/Prof. Mark A Gregory

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 3243

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 10.08.16

Course Coordinator Availability: Email for appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

This is an introductory course. A general knowledge of the Internet, Internet Protocol and general networking concepts would be beneficial. 

Course Description

Network Access Systems connect customers to the digital network by utilising communication and network technologies including optical fibre, copper, wireless and satellite. Customers access the Internet over Network Access Systems. This course will cover Network Access Communication issues such as network architecture, design, material, performance analysis and growth areas. It will also provide an understanding of bandwidth vs quality trade-offs for Network Access communication modes. The course covers the National Broadband Network technologies including GPON, HFC, VDSL2, 4G LTE, Wi­Fi, and satellite.

The course objectives are to provide you with broad knowledge of the technologies covering the customer to service provider digital network connection and to provide you with knowledge of the component parts of a Network Access System including customer premise equipment, the digital local loop and network management. The converged digital network provides challenges today. The connection of customer and service provider is the area where the majority of activity occurs in the digital network. You will also gain an understanding of fundamental operating principles and how to configure equipment in several common scenarios found in industry today.

This course includes a Work Integrated Learning (WIL) experience in which your knowledge and skills will be applied and assessed in a real or simulated workplace context and where feedback from industry and/or community is integral to your experience. WIL activities include simulations and projects using industry technology, equipment and processes.

Please note that if you take this course for a bachelor honours program, your overall mark in this course will be one of the course marks that will be used to calculate the weighted average mark (WAM) that will determine your award level. (This applies to students who commence enrolment in a bachelor honours program from 1 January 2016 onward. See the WAM information web page for more information.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes for BH072 Bachelor of Engineering (Computer and Network Engineering)(Honours) for students who commenced their program prior to 2023:

1.3 In-depth understanding of specialist bodies of knowledge within the engineering discipline.

2.1 Application of established engineering methods to complex engineering problem solving.

2.2 Fluent application of engineering techniques, tools and resources.

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes for BH072 Bachelor of Engineering (Computer and Network Engineering)(Honours) for students who commenced their program in 2023:

  • PLO1: Demonstrate an in-depth understanding and knowledge of fundamental engineering and scientific theories, principles and concepts and apply advanced technical knowledge in specialist domain of engineering.
  • PLO2: Utilise mathematics and engineering fundamentals, software, tools and techniques to design engineering systems for complex engineering challenges. 
  • PLO4: Apply systematic problem solving, design methods and information and project management to propose and implement creative and sustainable solutions with intellectual independence and cultural sensitivity.

On completion of this course you should be able to:

  1. Explain network access systems including GPON, HFC, VDSL2, 4G LTE, Satellite, Wi­Fi and the operation and management of these systems.
  2. Design network access systems for a given application.
  3. Maximise throughput over the digital local loop by applying the common processes and techniques.
  4. Apply intelligent control mechanisms using network services.

Overview of Learning Activities

In this course you can expect the following experiences and evaluation processes:

  • Workshops: Technical material will be addressed in Workshops. Specific reading will be assigned each week for preparation for the following week. Attendance at workshops is compulsory as there will assessment tasks carried out during the workshop sessions.
  • Assignment: Designed to allow you to explore aspects of the subject in depth. The assignment is assessed to determine a grade.
  • Supervised Laboratories: Technical skills and understanding will be addressed in supervised laboratories. You should review lecture material and assigned reading in preparation for laboratories. Attendance at the laboratory sessions is compulsory. Laboratories are assessed to determine a grade. 
  • Unsupervised Laboratories: Provide the opportunity to develop and reinforce the understanding and skills you are attempting to acquire.
  • On-call Consultation: To assist understanding and provide opportunity for two-way feedback.
  • Problem Sheets: To assist you in testing your understanding. Problem sheets are not assessed.
  • Final Assessment: Summative assessment designed primarily to determine a grade.

Overview of Learning Resources

The course learning resources include material that will be utilised in workshops and laboratories. You will be able to access the learning material online and to prepare for sessions by reading the learning material and by carrying out research using the RMIT library resources.

Overview of Assessment

This course has no hurdle requirements.

Assessment consists of activities and quizzes carried out in workshop, tutorial and laboratory sessions. The course assessment includes a final assessment.

The assessment and learning outcomes for this course equivalent across all locations and modes of delivery.

Assessment Tasks:

Assessment Task 1: Workshop activities and quizzes
Weighting: 25%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1,2,3,4
Feedback is provided after every activity and includes how the assessment was carried out, marks allocated, and answers.

Assessment Task 2: Laboratory activities and quizzes
Weighting: 25%
This assessment task supports CLO 1,2,3,4
Feedback is provided after every activity and includes how the assessment was carried out, marks allocated, and answers.

Assessment Task 3: Project
Weighting: 35%
This assessment supports CLOs 1,2,3,4
Feedback is provided during week 12 and marks allocated are provided in week 14.

Assessment Task 4: Final Assessment
Weighting: 15%
This assessment supports CLOs 1, 2, 3, 4
Feedback is provided during week 14.