Course Title: Customise a complex ICT content management system

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2016

Course Code: COSC7368C

Course Title: Customise a complex ICT content management system

School: 650T Vocational Business Education

Campus: City Campus

Program: C5341 - Diploma of Information Technology

Course Contact: Val Christou

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 5076

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Paul Lewis                                 +61 3 9925 1615      

Chandra Nannegari                 +61 3 9925 1657      


Nominal Hours: 80

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 create, and customise, an information and communications technology (ICT) content management system (CMS) powered website using an open source, to meet client requirements.

It applies to individuals working as web developers who have a detailed knowledge of markup languages and their associated standards, and are proficient in server-side language and security techniques. Individuals in this role also have high-level understanding of server functionality.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

ICTWEB507 Customise a complex ICT content management system


1. Analyse the specifications and requirements

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Determine the required functionality of the website, as per the client requirements
1.2 Determine the appropriate server-side language and hosting environment
1.3 Determine additional functionality that the CMS will not be able to handle ‘out of the box’
1.4 Determine the functional requirements of the client’s additional functionality
1.5 Determine any pre-existing restraints that need to be considered when developing the website solution


2. Develop customisation

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Plan and outline, the requirements of the additional functionality
2.2 Create and develop plug-in, extension or new functionality to the CMS to meet client requirements


3. Create a CMS powered website

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Install and configure, the chosen content management system
3.2 Install and integrate, the new CMS functionality


4. Validate and evaluate

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Validate the final website markup against the current website standards
4.2 Validate CMS performance in different browsers, checking compatibility and core CMS functionality
4.3 Validate the developed additional functionality against the client requirements

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

A range of learning activities are planned for this course including self-paced and collaborative classroom based activities.

Learning activities will include laboratory-based sessions on a variety of topics as shown in the weekly breakdown.  Learning activities will generally consist of practical computer exercises based on teacher handouts.  You should attend all sessions.

You will also be expected to undertake work on a small IT project and other activities for homework.

The collaborative classroom based activities will include group discussion, group problem solving activities and opportunities to practice your skills in a simulated/real workplace environment.

We expect you to participate and contribute in all scheduled learning activities.

Teaching Schedule

The Teaching Schedule for this course is as follows:

Induction Session

Prior to training commencement a program level induction session will be conducted that comprises the following:

  • Program overview and requirements
  • MyRMIT/Blackboard
  • Overview of assessment requirements
  • Pre-Training Review including:
    • Recognition of Prior Learning and Credit Transfers
    • Assessment of current skills and knowledge
  • Competency/Grading Criteria
  • Plagiarism
  • Appeals
  • Extensions
  • Feedback
  • Privacy
  • Submission requirements
  • Resubmission policy
  • Where to get support
  • Student responsibilities

The nominal hours associated with this are a guide only and represent the total teaching time and student effort required to successfully complete the course.  This may include not only scheduled classes but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Week Week Commencing Topics Assessment
1 8th Feb 2016


Introduction to the course including:
• Course requirements
• Course support documents
• Course Blackboard access
• Accuracy of enrolment
• Assessment requirements/Cover Sheets
• Reminder re Plagiarism
• Reminder re Appeals
• Extensions/Resubmissions
• Feedback in this courser
• Reminder re submission requirements
• Getting help

Introduction to CMS Websites:
• Course introduction & overview
• Intro to WordPress. Hosting & sub-domains. MySQL GUIs
• Installing WordPress on a commercial host & jupiter server

2 15th Feb 2016

The WordPress Dashboard. Adding Posts. Categories & tags.
Creating simple plugins & themes. PHP hooks. PHP templates.

3 22nd Feb 2016 Adding new Pages. Page templates & comments. Sidebars & widgets.
Managing plugins. Images, gallery plugins & videos
 ASSESSMENT 1 - Project Specifications issued
4 29th Feb 2016

Managing themes. FTP accounts & simple child themes
Managing menus & sub-menu items. Reading settings

5 7th March 2016  Creating a new page template using PHP & CSS coding
Managing users & comments. Adding widgets & Google maps
6 14th Mar 2016
(Labour Day PH
Mon 14th Mar)
Image slider & contact form plugins. Permalinks.
Optimising pages using Yoast SEO plugin.
 ASSESSMENT 1 - Preliminary Website Demonstration / Feedback
7a 21st Mar 2016
(3 days)

Introduction to WooCommerce, including settings & products.
Database & content backups. Hosting managers

 MID-SEMESTER BREAK (24th March to  30th March 2016 inclusive)
7b 28th Mar 2016
(2 days online) 
Introduction to WooCommerce, including settings & products.
Database & content backups. Hosting managers
8 4th April 2016 Final work on travel Website project (on customisations & documentation).
Validation against standards & client requirements. Testing in browsers & devices
ASSESSMENT 1 - Final Website Completion (end of week)
9 11th April 2016 Client requirements for school Website project. Fresh installation of WordPress.
Searching for suitable themes. Responsive themes. WooCommerce themes. Theme options
ASSESSMENT 2 - Project Specifications issued
10 18th April 2016 Using Inspect in Chrome. Customising themes. Processing images with Photoshop or similar. 
Analysis of plugins required to achieve key functionalities for school Website
11 25th Apr 2016
(Anzac Day PH
Mon 25th Apr)
Class work on project. Research on key plugins for Website eg. table plugins, form plugins &
membership plugins
12 2nd May 2016 Class work on project. More work on key plugins. Other useful plugins eg. analytics & caching plugins ASSESSMENT 2 - Preliminary Website Demonstration / Feedback
13 9th May 2016 Class work on project. Admin plugins. Testing in browsers & devices.
Validation against standards & client requirements.
14 16th May 2016 Final class work on school Website project ASSESSMENT 2 - Final Website Completion (end of week)
15 23rd May 2016 

Project demonstrations (to visiting IT staff & clients in class)

ASSESSMENT 2 - Final Website Documentation due
 16 30th May 2016  Course & assessment feedback.
Re-assessment if required

You will receive feedback two weeks from the due date of each assessment.  If required, resubmissions are due by the end of the following week.

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Plumley, R. (3nd edn, 2015), WordPress 24-hour Trainer, Wiley Publishing (Wrox), ISBN: 978-1-118-99560-0

Please note that this text (e-ISBN: 978-1-118-99639-3) is available free of charge as an EBL e-book via the RMIT Library Website. It will be useful for the first half of the course. The videos accompanying this book are excellent, and are available freely online.


Sabin-Wilson, L (2nd edn, 2013), WordPress Web Design For Dummies, Wiley Publishing (For Dummies), e-ISBN: 978-1-118-54637-6
This text is available free of charge as an e-book via the RMIT Library Website.  It will be useful for the early to middle part of the course, particularly for methods of customisation.

Other Resources

Students may also refer to various Websites, textbooks and e-books as indicated their teacher.


Overview of Assessment

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

Performance Evidence

 Evidence of the ability to:    

  • create a content management system (CMS) powered website, using an open source with additional custom functionality that is not available ‘out of the box’, that meets client requirements
  • perform basic content manipulation tasks in commonly used browsers
  • evaluate content management additional functionality against current programming and security standards
  • customise functionality into a pre-existing core CMS, to fulfil client requirements by programming
  • validate the front-end code markup against standards set by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).

Knowledge Evidence

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

  • analyse and describe, a range of content management systems and their respective functionality
  • explain markup language and their associated standards
  • outline server functionality in relation to the client and business requirements
  • describe and apply, server-side language and security techniques
  • explain the importance of web accessibility.

 Assessment Conditions

Assessment must be conducted in a safe environment where evidence gathered demonstrates consistent performance in conditions that are safe and replicate the workplace. Noise levels, production flow, interruptions and time variances must be typical of those experienced in the website technologies field of work, and include access to:

    • the client requirements, and content
    • a text editor
    • a range of browsers
    • the internet for research, validation of code and programming documentation.

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

Performance evidence

Evidence of the ability to:

  • create a content management system (CMS) powered website, using an open source with additional custom functionality that is not available ’out of the box’, that meets client requirements
  • perform basic content manipulation tasks in commonly used browsers
  • evaluate content management additional functionality against current programming and security standards
  • customise functionality into a pre-existing core CMS, to fulfil client requirements by programming
  • validate the front-end code markup against standards set by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) 

You are required to complete 2 assessments.  You must successfully complete all sections of each task to be deemed competent in this unit.

NOTE:  Details about specific tasks and assessment criteria will be included in the Cover Sheet(s) for each task.

ASSESSMENT 1 - Travel Website Project

For this assessment task you will be required to create a fully customised Website for a travel agent in consultation with a client, in this case your teacher. In particular you will learn some of the key features of WordPress and how a simple site can be planned, configured, developed and tested. You will work individually on this project.

In order to be deemed competent in this task you will be expected to demonstrate proficiency in a variety of areas including the following:

  • Analysing specifications & requirements for a Website
  • Creating a basic WordPress powered Website as per requirements
  • Customising WordPress to further its functionality
  • Validating a Website against current standards, browsers & client requirements

During the course you will develop knowledge and skills in key areas such as Web hosting, WordPress, HTML, CSS, PHP. This will enable you to meet the basic requirements of the client and develop any customisations needed to extend the functionality of the Website.

You will be also be expected to customise your theme’s appearance and employ page templates. This may involve HTML, CSS and PHP coding. Child themes or special plugins will be required.

After creating the initial required pages and menu, you will need to employ a variety of plugins in order to create image galleries, a contact form, a simple shopping cart and implement SEO etc.

Towards the end of the project you will be asked to develop further customisations of your own choice. These will include selecting an attractive and responsive theme and incorporating other useful plugins.

You will be expected to demonstrate your project prior to completion, so that you can receive any necessary feedback.

Once your Website has been completed and validated, any major customisations will need to be documented for assessment purposes. Guidelines will be provided.

  • Preliminary Website Demonstration  (Week 6)
    • Implementation of basic requirements & customisations in WordPress as required
    • Draft versions of individual Web pages & posts as per client requirements
      e.g. home page, contact form, gallery pages & blog posts
    • Comments & widgets displayed as per client requirements with a simple theme
  • Final Website Completion  (Week 8)
    • Final version of the Website, including all required plugins & a fully customised theme
    • Validation of Website against W3C standards, browsers & client requirements
    • Basic documentation highlighting any major customisations

When you demonstrate your Website you will be questioned on key concepts and techniques in using WordPress. You will of course also receive feedback regarding the appearance and functionality of your site, particularly in relation to the initial client requirements. Timely completion of each stage is therefore essential.

ASSESSMENT 2 - Martial Arts School Website Project

Work Integrated Learning (WIL) is the term given to an activity which integrates academic learning with its application in the workplace. This semester, as part of RMIT’s focus on innovation and WIL projects in 2016, you are asked to develop IT infrastructure for a local small business.

For this assessment task in this course you will be required to create a fully-functional customised Website incorporating advanced plugins for a martial arts school in Melbourne, in consultation with key stakeholders, such as your teacher and a real client.

Key stages in the project will include planning, configuring, developing and testing the site using WordPress. You will work in teams on this project. You will be expected to maintain a simple team diary of tasks performed to ensure a fair distribution of workload.

A key source of information will be the existing Website, which will need to be re-produced in the first instance. Documents such as forms and newsletters will be available, along with a number of photos of the school. However you will also need to formulate questions to will need to clarify the requirements.

Different levels of access to the Website will be required by the public, by members and by the site administrator. You will be need to investigate and utilise special plugins, for example to allow the administrator to add members and events to the database.

All of the important elements of functionality will need to incorporated into the project but others, such as a shopping cart, may be included if time permits. It is likely that some adjustments to the scope of the project will need to be made.

You will expected to use SEO techniques to improve Google rankings and test your pages in a variety of browsers and devices. You will also be asked to research a suitable hosting plan, and write clear instructions for the client. Finally you will need to explain how to transfer and how to maintain the site.

Again you will be asked to demonstrate your project prior to completion, so that you can receive any necessary feedback. 

  • Preliminary Website Demonstration  (Week 12)
    • Implementation of basic requirements & customisations in WordPress as required
    • Draft versions of individual Web pages as per client requirements
      eg. home page, contact form & other static pages with images & PDF documents
    • An attractive responsive theme (to be customised)
  • Final Website Completion  (Week 14)
    • Final version of the Website, including all key pages and plugins and a fully customised theme
    • Validation of Website against W3C standards, browsers and client requirements
  • Final Website Documentation  (Due Week 15)
    • The purpose & scope of Website project as per client requirements
    • Any recommendations for suitable domain names and hosting etc
    • Any functionalities beyond the basics which cannot be handled ’out of the box’
    • Any of restraints encountered in developing the Website
    • Any basic requirements for the Website eg required pages, image galleries and forms
    • Any key customisations such as additional forms and a responsive theme
    • Any changes made to default colour schemes, page layout etc in the selected theme
    • How the site was validated against Web standards, client requirements etc
    • How the site was optimised and tested in various browsers and devices
    • Any instructions for the user eg transferring the site and site maintenance in general
    • Any screenshots as required for clarity of presentation

Detailed documentation guidelines will be available midway through the project. It is recommended that each team uses Google Docs for the proposal document. As mentioned above a simple team diary will also be required. It is also important that all team members review one another’s work and learn important concepts and techniques.

Again you will receive feedback relating to the appearance and functionality of the site. It is of course essential that all the requirements of the client are met, where feasible. Therefore it is vital that each stage is completed on time.

Teams may be asked to submit a draft version of their documentation in printout form, and will be expected to submit their final project document on Blackboard.

General Points

  • Each team must maintain a Website, such as a Google Sites Website, with all the relevant material available for the team for the duration of the project.
  • All documents are to be presented in portfolio form ie. a folder of documents submitted on Blackboard.
  • Each document should include a header (eg with the name of the document and team members’ names) and a footer (eg with the date and page number).
  • All team members must sign the assessment cover sheet(s).
  • Soft copies are to be retained by all team members as backups. Google Docs is preferred.
  • RMIT academic discipline procedures will apply in cases of plagiarism. Students should use Turnitin to avoid plagiarism.

Please Note:

To be deemed competent in this course you will be expected to successfully complete all aspects of each of the two assessment tasks (Website projects).

Late submissions of work required for any stage of these assessment tasks will be eligible for grading at CAG (Competency Achieved) level only.

Assessment Matrix

 The Assessment Matrix that maps all assessments to the critical aspects of evidence, skills, knowledge and elements is available from the teacher.

Other Information

Submission Requirements

Assessment tasks need to be submitted via the Learning Hub (Blackboard).

You should:

  • Ensure that you submit assessments on or before the due date. 
  • Always retain a copy of your assessment tasks (hard copy and soft copy).
  • 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 work for assessment is available on blackboard. 
  • Each page of your assessment should include 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 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

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 the circumstances under which the assessment arrangements might be granted please access the following Website:

More Information:;ID=7usdbki1fjf31

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 task 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      Yet Competent
DNS      Did Not Submit for assessment

Further information regarding the application of the grading criteria will be provided by your teacher.

Course Overview: Access Course Overview