Course Title: Advanced Professional Development

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Advanced Professional Development

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


140H Computer Science & Information Technology


Sem 2 2014,
Sem 2 2015,
Sem 2 2016


City Campus


171H School of Science


Sem 1 2019,
Sem 2 2019,
Sem 1 2020,
Sem 2 2020,
Sem 1 2021

Course Coordinator: Prof. Margaret Hamilton

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 2939

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 12.08.38

Course Coordinator Availability: by appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

This course provides a practical and theoretical introduction to what it means to be an IT professional today. You should encounter a range of issues relevant to professional practice in the workplace, as well as an understanding of the wider responsibilities that professionals are called upon to uphold in society. This course covers these topics within a larger societal context of computing to develop an understanding of the relevant social, ethical, legal and professional acumen.

The topics covered in this course include:

  • social implications of computing in a digital world;
  • impact of social media;
  • ethical theories and principles within IT context;
  • IT professional ethics;
  • intellectual property;
  • professional communication;
  • computer crime; and
  • ethics of sustainability (including global social and environmental impacts of computer use and disposal).

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs) for MC061 Master of Computer Science and MC208 Master of Information Technology:

  • Enabling Knowledge:

You will gain skills as you apply knowledge with creativity and initiative to new situations. In doing so, you will:

-- demonstrate mastery of a body of knowledge that includes recent developments in computer science and information technology

-- recognise and use research principles and methods applicable to computer science and information technology. 

  • Critical Analysis:

You will learn to accurately and objectively examine, and critically investigate computer science and information technology (IT) concepts, evidence, theories or situations, in particular to: evaluate and compare designs of software artefacts and IT systems on the basis of organisational and user requirements.

  • Problem Solving:

Your capability to analyse complex problems and synthesise suitable solutions will be extended as you learn to: design and implement software solutions that accommodate specified requirements and constraints, based on analysis or modelling or requirements specification.

  • Communication:

You will learn to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences through a range of modes and media, in particular to: interpret abstract theoretical propositions, choose methodologies, justify conclusions and defend professional decisions to both IT and non-IT personnel via technical reports of professional standard and technical presentations.

  • Teamwork:

You will learn to work as an effective and productive team member in a range of professional and social situations, in particular to: work effectively in different roles, to form, manage, and successfully produce outcomes from collaborative teams, whose members may have diverse cultural backgrounds and life circumstances, and differing levels of technical expertise.

  • Responsibility:

You will be required to accept responsibility for your own learning and make informed decisions about judging and adopting appropriate behaviour in professional and social situations. This includes accepting the responsibility for independent life-long learning and a high level of accountability. Specifically, you will learn to: effectively apply relevant standards, ethical considerations, and an understanding of legal and privacy issues to designing software applications and IT systems

  • Research and Scholarship:

You will have technical and communication skills to design, evaluate, implement, analyse and theorise about developments that contribute to professional practice or scholarship, specifically you will have cognitive skills: to demonstrate mastery of theoretical knowledge and to reflect critically on theory and professional practice or scholarship.

Upon successful completion of this course you should be able to:

  1. discuss social impact and professional issues in the realm of Computer Science and Information Technology (CSIT)
  2. analyse, discuss and evaluate computing practice scenarios including interpreting abstract theoretical propositions/scenarios, choosing methodologies, and justifying conclusions, in both written form and oral presentations using the correct language of the field justifying professional decisions in the technical documentation with appropriate tables, figures, and references
  3. work effectively in a small group of peers to analyse computing practice scenarios, and to assess the work of peers
  4. use research principles and methods to investigate, analyse, theorise and present on new situations in CSIT professional practice
  5. identify, discuss and address intellectual property, privacy and ethical issues that arise in software development applying ethical responsibility to ensure software correctness, reliability and safety
  6. describe and investigate socio-environmental impact of the new technology and develop sustainable systems

Overview of Learning Activities

The learning activities included in this course are:

  • key concepts will be explained in lectures where course material will be presented and the subject matter will be illustrated with case studies, video demonstrations and relevant news items
  • tutorials will cover the practical aspects of the lecture material where the scenario analysis and group discussions; projects and problem solving will provide practice in the application of theory and procedures, allow exploration of concepts with teaching staff and other students, and give feedback on your progress and understanding
  • labs focus on gaining workplace attributes necessary to work in the IT industry, such as interpersonal and communication skills (written and oral), critical reasoning and analytical skills, etc.
  • assignment work requires application of skills such as research, critical analysis, problem solving, active team participation and effective communication
  • private study requires a high level of accountability for your own learning and applying professional judgement, including interpreting course learning materials, and gaining practice at solving conceptual and technical problems.


A total of 120 hours of study is expected during this course, comprising:

Teacher-directed hours (48 hours): lectures, tutorials and laboratory sessions. Each week there will be 2 hours of lecture plus 1 hour of tutorial plus 1 hour of computer laboratory work. You are encouraged to participate during these sessions through asking questions, commenting on the materials based on your own experiences and through presenting solutions to exercises.

Student-directed hours (72 hours): You are expected to be self-directed, studying independently outside class.

Overview of Learning Resources

The course is supported by the Canvas learning management system which provides specific learning resources. See the RMIT Library Guide at

Overview of Assessment

Individual professional skills including report writing and presentation. Group professional skills including business report writing, pitch presentation. Discussion relating to ethical and professional scenarios, including individual and group presentations, and peer assessments.

Assignment 1: Individual Professional Report and Presentation
Weight: 30%

This assessment supports CLOs 1, 2, 3, 6

Assignment 2: Group Business Case and Presentation
Milestone 1: Develop a business plan for an IT product or service
Milestone 2: Prepare a pitch presentation for funding from an IT Entrepreneur.
Weight: 40%

This assessment supports CLOs 1,2,3,4,5,6

Assignment 3: Review Assessments

This assessment include study reviews which come at the end of each section of work covering 4 weeks. They consist of 10 multiple choice quiz questions, a short answer question and an answer in video format about a scenario question.
Weight: 30%

This assessment supports CLOs 1,2,3,4,5,6