INFO5993: IT Research Methods (2014 - Semester 1)

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Unit: INFO5993: IT Research Methods (6 CP)
Mode: Normal-Day
On Offer: Yes
Level: Postgraduate
Faculty/School: School of Information Technologies
Unit Coordinator/s: Dr. Taheri, Javid
Professor Zomaya, Albert
Session options: Semester 1, Semester 2
Versions for this Unit:
Campus: Camperdown/Darlington
Pre-Requisites: None.
Brief Handbook Description: This unit will provide an overview of the different research methods that are used in IT. Students will learn to find and evaluate research on their topic and to present their own research plan or results for evaluation by others. The unit will develop a better understanding of what research in IT is and how it differs from other projects in IT. This unit of study is required for students in IT who are enrolled in a research project as part of their Honours or MIT/MITM degree. It is also recommended for students enrolled or planning to do a research degree in IT and Engineering.
Assumed Knowledge: None.
Lecturer/s: Professor Zomaya, Albert
Dr. Taheri, Javid
Timetable: INFO5993 Timetable
Time Commitment:
# Activity Name Hours per Week Sessions per Week Weeks per Semester
1 Seminar 2.00 1 13
2 Independent Study 10.00 13

Attributes listed here represent the key course goals (see Course Map tab) designated for this unit. The list below describes how these attributes are developed through practice in the unit. See Learning Outcomes and Assessment tabs for details of how these attributes are assessed.

Attribute Development Method Attribute Developed
Sound knowledge of fundamental evaluation approaches of research in IT Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 4)
Searching library web site, domain-specific databases and internet for academic literature Information Seeking (Level 4)
Developping effective written and oral communication skills Communication (Level 4)
Development of research skills, literature search, research methods specific to IT and understanding of ethical practice in academia Professional Conduct (Level 4)

For explanation of attributes and levels see Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table.

Learning outcomes are the key abilities and knowledge that will be assessed in this unit. They are listed according to the course goal supported by each. See Assessment Tab for details how each outcome is assessed.

Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 4)
1. Knowledge of major approaches used in IT research and ability to apply one or more to own project
2. Ability to plan a program of research in IT
3. Ability to perform a critical evaluation of research work
Information Seeking (Level 4)
4. Ability to retrieve academic literature on a specific topic and identify top journals, conferences, research groups on this topic
Communication (Level 4)
5. Ability to produce a literature survey for a field of IT research
6. Ability to write and present a research proposal
Professional Conduct (Level 4)
7. Understanding of ethical practices and copyrights
8. Ability to read research literature and understand how the described work fits into one or more research approaches
9. Understanding of the nature of IT research and how research is evaluated
Assessment Methods:
# Name Group Weight Due Week Outcomes
1 Database Search Results No 5.00 Week 4 1, 4, 5, 8,
2 Presentation of a research paper No 15.00 Week 4 3, 8, 9,
3 Literature Review and Outline of Research No 35.00 Week 8 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9,
4 Write your own paper and review others` No 45.00 Week 11 3, 5, 6, 9,
Assessment Description: A1 (5%): Database Search Results

A2 (15%): Presentation of a Research Paper

A3 (35%): Literature Review (25%) and Outline of Research (10%)

A4 (45%): Write your own paper (30%), and review others’ (15%)
Grading:
Grade Type Description
Standards Based Assessment Final grades in this unit are awarded at levels of HD (High Distinction), D (Distinction), CR (Credit), P (Pass) and F (Fail) as defined by University of Sydney Assessment Policy. Details of the Assessment Policy are available on the Policies website at http://sydney.edu.au/policies . Standards for grades in individual assessment tasks and the summative method for obtaining a final mark in the unit will be set out in a marking guide supplied by the unit coordinator.
Policies & Procedures: IMPORTANT: School policy relating to Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism.

In assessing a piece of submitted work, the School of IT may reproduce it entirely, may provide a copy to another member of faculty, and/or to an external plagiarism checking service or in-house computer program and may also maintain a copy of the assignment for future checking purposes and/or allow an external service to do so.

Other policies

See the policies page of the faculty website at http://sydney.edu.au/engineering/student-policies/ for information regarding university policies and local provisions and procedures within the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies.

Note that the "Weeks" referred to in this Schedule are those of the official university semester calendar https://web.timetable.usyd.edu.au/calendar.jsp

Week Description
Week 1 Introduction to Research Methods Part 1
Week 2 Introduction to Research Methods Part 2

Literature Review and Search
Week 3 Writing a literature review

Writing a thesis research proposal
Week 4 Student Presentation (Assignment 2)
Assessment Due: Database Search Results
Assessment Due: Presentation of a research paper
Week 5 Easter Monday (public holiday)
Week 6 Student Presentation (Assignment 2)
Week 7 Evaluation Methods (I)
Week 8 Evaluation Methods (II)

PhD

Optimization
Assessment Due: Literature Review and Outline of Research
Week 9 Evaluation Methods (III)
Week 10 IP Law

Industrial Research and Development
Week 11 Student Presentation (Assignment 4)
Assessment Due: Write your own paper and review others`
Week 12 Student Presentation (Assignment 4)
Week 13 Student Presentation (Assignment 4)

Course Relations

The following is a list of courses which have added this Unit to their structure.

Course Year(s) Offered
Bachelor of Computer Science and Technology (Honours) 2013, 2014
Software 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Software Engineering / Arts 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Software Engineering / Commerce 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Software Engineering / Medical Science 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Software Engineering / Project Management 2012, 2013, 2014
Software Engineering / Science 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Graduate Certificate in Engineering 2011
Graduate Diploma in Engineering 2011
Master of Information Technology 2014
Bachelor of Information Technology (Computer Science) 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Information Technology (Computer Science)/Arts 2012, 2013, 2014
Information Technology (Computer Science) / Commerce 2012, 2013, 2014
Information Technology (Computer Science) / Medical Science 2012, 2013, 2014
Information Technology (Computer Science) / Science 2012, 2013, 2014
Information Technology (Computer Science) / Law 2012, 2013, 2014
Bachelor of Information Technology (Information Systems) 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Information Technology (Information Systems)/Arts 2012, 2013, 2014
Information Technology (Information Systems) / Commerce 2012, 2013, 2014
Information Technology (Information Systems) / Medical Science 2012, 2013, 2014
Information Technology (Information Systems) / Science 2012, 2013, 2014
Information Technology (Information Systems) / Law 2012, 2013, 2014
Master of Information Technology Management 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

Course Goals

This unit contributes to the achievement of the following course goals:

Attribute Practiced Assessed
Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 4) Yes 22%
Information Seeking (Level 4) Yes 6%
Communication (Level 4) Yes 48.5%
Professional Conduct (Level 4) Yes 23.5%

These goals are selected from Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table which defines overall goals for courses where this unit is primarily offered. See Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table for details of the attributes and levels to be developed in the course as a whole. Percentage figures alongside each course goal provide a rough indication of their relative weighting in assessment for this unit. Note that not all goals are necessarily part of assessment. Some may be more about practice activity. See Learning outcomes for details of what is assessed in relation to each goal and Assessment for details of how the outcome is assessed. See Attributes for details of practice provided for each goal.