Course Title: Cyber-Physical-Biological Systems: Technology for a Digital World

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Cyber-Physical-Biological Systems: Technology for a Digital World

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


173H School of Health and Biomed


Sem 1 2023

Course Coordinator: Dr Mary Lam

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 7630

Course Coordinator Email:

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

The world is rapidly evolving, leading to new, exciting innovations that present both global and complex challenges. Requiring 21st century solutions, industries have evolved into digital eco-systems. Critically engaging in digital ethical decision making and engaging with transdisciplinary teams and key stakeholders are vital to establishing integrated, evidence-based ecosystems. The health sector has been particularly impacted by rapid digitisation due to the pandemic. This course aims to explore the digital transformation of different ecosystems through the lens of cyber-physical-biological systems, using a systemic approach that considers broad digital technology perspectives on the human, society and the environment. Underpinned by a design thinking framework that is integrated across the curriculum, the course will encourage critique of how individual professions can work together to co-design the global complexity of emerging needs in a digitally transformed ecosystems.  

This course introduces you to cyber-physical-biological systems (CPBS). CPBS consists of the computation, physical, and biological components of systems to build a healthier world. Using person-centred designs, the Internet of Things (IoT) can be applied to the physical and biological world in real-time and simulated environments across different industries. Innovations such as sensors, wearables, artificial intelligence, analytics, robotics, digital twins, and cybersecurity enable data-rich environments to support evidence-informed decision-making processes for business transformation and shaping the digital world.

Through engaging online resources to apply the design thinking approach across several case studies, you’ll examine how cyber-physical-biological systems are developed and applied across different industries. You’ll co-design conceptual innovative cyber-physical-biological systems that are efficient, adaptive, and reliable. You’ll also examine the moral, social, legal, and ethical considerations related to the cyber-physical-biological systems. 

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

A basic understanding of cyber-physical-biological systems, co-designed using a design thinking approach, as applied in contemporary health, science, technology, engineering, and math workplaces and future trends in applications from an inter-disciplinary perspective.

On successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Explain the different components of cyber-physical-biological systems in the context of STEM, design and health.
  2. Analyse current theory and practices relevant to the exploration, design and deployment of  technological or digital health systems from a variety of different discipline lenses.
  3. Co-design using a design thinking approach innovative  technological or digital health solutions for real-world problems and evaluate their effectiveness.
  4. Examine the moral, social, legal, and ethical considerations in the experimentation, design, deployment, and evaluation of innovations for health and other industry contexts.

Overview of Learning Activities

This course follows a modular structure. The course comprises five (5) modules. Modules vary in duration spanning two (2) to three (3) weeks. Three modules are compulsory, and one case study module will be your choice (from a choice of two).   

You’ll analyse the current theories and practices in the field of cyber-physical-biological systems. You’ll work both individually and collaboratively with your peers to analyse and solve real-world problems by designing innovative cyber-physical-biological solutions.

Overview of Learning Resources

Latest digital technologies such as AR/VR and bespoke resources will be used as required and as appropriate. All resources will be provided through Canvas Learning Management System. Links to reference texts available online from the RMIT library as well as relevant internet sites are also provided.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment will be based on both individual and collaborative performance of the tasks.

Note that: This course has no hurdle requirements.

Assessment Task 1: Quiz (Individual)
Weighting 15%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1 and 2

Assessment Task 2: Poster (Individual)
Weighting 25%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2 and 4

Assessment Task 3: Report (Individual)
Weighting 25%
This assessment task supports CLOs 2, 3 and 4

Assessment Task 4: Video presentation (Group)
Weighting 35%
This assessment task supports CLOs 1,2, 3 and 4