INFS Unit Reviews

INFS1000 – Digital Business Innovation

Unit Coordinator: Barney Tan

As the introductory unit for the BIS major, this subject provides an insight into how information technology guides business operation and management through the integration of people, business processes and systems.

Foundational frameworks, models, and techniques – including Entity Relationship Diagrams (ERDs) and Business Process and Model Notation (BPMNs) – are introduced in this unit and help to understand the nature of BIS in a range of business contexts.

Prohibitions: ISYS1003 or INFO1000

Difficulty: Not difficult

Whilst there is a significant amount of content, the material is not challenging and mostly intuitive. There is a strong focus on the practical application of ERDs and BPMNs students should consolidate their understanding of these concepts. To succeed in this unit students should actively participate in lectures, tutorials and MS Access demonstrations

Things to Consider Before Enrolling:

Team-based learning is a heavy part of this unit with lectures, tutorials and assignments involving group work.

Since this is a core subject, students majoring in BIS must pass this course to fulfil the requirements of the major. INFS1000 is a double pass so, regardless of other assessments, a mark of at least 50% must be scored in the final exam.

In the end half of the semester, the unit becomes more technical with a greater focus on constructing ERDs and BPMNs and learning to use MS Access.

Weekly Group Tasks (10%)

It consists of few relatively easy multiple choice and/or short answer questions relating to the key content covered in the previous week’s lecture.

Mid-term Exam (25%)

This consists of multiple choice and short answer questions. The harder questions are likely to involve constructing an ERD.

Group Project (25%)

Involves creating a logical business idea with group members and demonstrating how the theoretical and technical concepts that have been taught can be applied. Students should note that the required ERD and BPMN model are marked quite harshly, and so students should take particular care when constructing them.

Final Exam (40%)

Consists of multiple choice and short answer questions with a large focus on BPMN construction. Understanding the practical application of content is crucial for doing well.

  • Mid Term Exam
  • Weekly Group Tasks
  • Group Project
  • Final Exam

INFS1020 – Digital Work Environments

Unit Coordinator: Daniel Schlagwein

In this first year unit for the BIS major, students learn what it is like to enter the digital workplace and develop useful skills in data literacy, how to personally brand for job recruitment, and how to communicate in digital channels.

Difficulty: Not difficult

The content itself is not difficult, however, to succeed in this unit, strong critical thinking and being able to apply the main concepts is crucial. Although attending the tutorials are not compulsory, it is recommended as the activities demonstrate the application of key concepts.

Things to Consider Before Enrolling:

Students should choose a group that actively participates in class activities as many tutorials involve team-based learning with the group chosen for the assignment.

Since this is a core subject, students majoring in BIS must pass this course to fulfil the requirements of the major. INFS1020 is a double pass so, regardless of other assessments, a mark of at least 50% must be scored in the final exam.

The individual assignment is also peer marked and this influences the mark attained.

Individual Assignment (15%)

This involves creating a 3 minute video that answers a series of questions. Students should demonstrate self-reflection, critical analysis, creativity and appropriate video techniques (i.e. positioning, lighting, audio and camera quality, etc) to attain a high mark.

Mid-term Exam (20%)

This consists of 30 multiple choice and short answer questions.

Group Project (25%)

This project includes conducting research and providing a digital solution for the client’s issue in the given scenario. This is to be delivered in a 10 minute presentation. After the presentation, the markers can ask impromptu questions so it is important that all team members are familiar with each other’s parts.

Final Exam (40%)

Due to COVID-19, this exam has been modified to an online-submission essay. From when the question is released, there is a limited number of days to complete this task.

  • Mid Term Exam
  • Individual Assignment
  • Group Project
  • Final Exam

INFS2020 – Business Process Modelling and Improvement

Unit Coordinator: Corina Radusecu

INFS2020 is the sequel to the business process modelling concepts introduced in INFS1000.

This unit comprises of a much deeper analysis into the BPM lifecycle and practical application of the Signavio tool to help simulate these business processes. Such practical application is key throughout this unit and requires students to consider the BPM lifecycle holistically in order to build logical simulations.

Students can expect to gain greater insight into how processes can be improved through thorough analysis, redesign and performance measures, and also learn how to identify and mitigate bottlenecks and inefficiencies throughout a business process.

Assumed Knowledge: INFS1000 or INFO1000 or INFO1003 or INFO1903

Difficulty: Intermediate

Since this unit is highly practical, it pays to attend every lecture and learn to apply this knowledge in each assignment. Students will be expected to use the Signavio software, which is a major part of both the individual and group assignments – attending lectures and asking questions during workshops is highly beneficial. For written parts of the unit, students should not solely memorise content as there can be a lot to remember; students should rather learn how to apply main concepts and have a holistic understanding of the BPM Lifecycle.

Things to Consider Before Enrolling:
This unit involves significant practical work in lectures and hence it is highly beneficial to attend every class. Groups should be formed early as the group project is a significant part of the unit and requires substantial time and effort (not a project that should be left to last minute). This is an overall more technical unit compared to some other INFS units, but can be seen as advantageous to learn about especially if learning BPMNs in INFS1000 was of interest.

Textbook: available online via USYD Library
(Recommended but not required) Dumas, M., La Rosa, M., Mendling, J., Reijers, H.A. (2013) “Fundamentals of Business Process Management”, Springer Heidelberg New York Dordrecht London. ISBN: 978-3-642-33142-8. ISBN: 978-3-642-33143-5 (eBook)

Individual assignment (25%)
The individual assignment consists of two parts and a case study. Students should pay particular attention to the case study in order to provide specific answers relevant to the assignment. Both parts will involve the application of knowledge learned in class and the use of Signavio.

Group project (25%)
The group report will also be based on a case study and application of all knowledge learned throughout the class. It also involves more complex uses of Signavio and students will benefit from having understood and attended all workshops. There is also a poster presentation at the end of the project.

Final exam (50%)
The final exam has both MCQ and short answer questions. There is a heavy focus on the application of content and key concepts learned in class. Students should learn to manage time extremely well in the final exam and keep to answering concisely and accurately.

  • Individual Assignment
  • Group Project
  • Final Exam

INFS2040 – Project Management Foundations

Unit Coordinator: Mike Seymour

INFS2040 is an elective unit within the BIS Major that students can take to learn more about the way projects can shape businesses, the way businesses operate and how they can achieve their end goals.

This unit allows students to delve into the project management lifecycle and the success of project outcomes through exploring a project’s initiation, execution and completion.

Students can gain a greater understanding of the end-to-end activities involved in the area of project management through hands-on project management techniques and learn about the foundational elements surrounding agile project management methodologies. The unit assumes the knowledge gained in INFS1000.

Difficulty: Intermediate

This unit is fairly heavy in content – it will pay to be consistent in revising course material and making sure content is well understood before moving on to new content.

It will also be highly beneficial to attend lectures in order to engage in the interactive group-based activities throughout the seminars; this helps solidify key concepts covered in the unit and may be useful to draw upon when completing assignments.

Things to Consider Before Enrolling:
There is a generous amount of hands-on activities conducted in class. It is beneficial to form groups early to then participate in these activities together. This unit is one of the more content-heavy units that cover Project Management as well as a wide range of other related content. Students interested in Project Management may consider taking this unit.

Mid-term test (20%)
This MCQ exam consists of both easy and difficult questions. Students are encouraged to be familiar with all relevant content.

Group project (30%)
The group assignment consists of two parts: the report and poster presentation. Teams will benefit from starting the report early, having a brief plan and practising their presentations. Team members should also be familiar with each other’s parts of the report and poster.

Final exam (50%)
This involves a set of short answer questions and may involve an unseen case study. Sufficient time should be dedicated to revising all content in order to be comfortable in completing this final exam.

  • Mid Term Exam
  • Group Project
  • Final Exam

INFS2030 - Digital Business Management

Unit Coordinator: Graham Ian Costello

INFS2030 extends on learnings from both INFS1000 of creating a digital business, exploring how digital technologies can be used to create and enhance a business that is viable online.

The unit teaches the reimagination of classic business models and conventions, such as Porter’s generic strategies in digital businesses, and ways to facilitate these into competitive advantages.

Students learn these requirements on a managerial level, including the technological capabilities required to facilitate the success of a digital business in today’s age as well as the digital trends that are affecting this growing area.

Assumed Knowledge: INFS1000 or INFO1000 or INFO1003 or INFO1903

Difficulty: Intermediate

Things to Consider Before Enrolling:
The subject is moderately content-heavy, with many models and theories that are relatively new or untouched by other business units. Pay close attention to the different graphs and models used towards the end of the unit, as they are very informative and applicable to the questions you can get in the final exam. Groups should be formed as early as possible as the group project is a significant part of the unit and requires a substantial amount of time to align everyone’s ideas, especially for a task where you need to pitch a new innovative business idea.

Textbook: none

Mid-term Exam (20%)
There are 10 multiple choice questions based on the first 6 weeks of lecture and tutorial materials.

Group Project and Presentation (25% and 5%)
The project involves creating an innovative digital business idea that can either provide value for B2B or B2C segments. This will be a written component containing the following sections: Value proposition, Porter’s internal and external analysis, value chain analysis, revenue model, marketing strategy, and solution capabilities. The 10-minute presentation will discuss the main findings from your report, supported by a slide deck.

Final Exam (50%)
This exam is a combination of MCQ and short answer questions.

  • Mid-term Exam
  • Group Project and Presentation
  • Final Exam

INFS3080 - Business Information Systems Projects

Unit Coordinator: Mike Seymour

INFS3080 extends on the learnings of concepts learnt from INFS2040 about project management into a more applied form with UI/UX design.

The main difference is the emphasis in defining the scope of a project, where the process of gathering requirements, understanding who your customers are, identifying issues to prototyping a solution is explored in fine-grain details.

This unit will teach you how integral the aforementioned aspects are when planning a project that is impactful in terms of achieving its goals.

Assumed Knowledge: INFS1000 and INFS2040

Difficulty: Difficult

The unit is highly practical, which means you will be required to draw out storyboards and learn new software to help prototype solutions atop of usual consulting skills and work.

Students will be expected to use Adobe Xd, which will be a major part of the group assignment – attending the lecture and asking questions will be integral in doing well.

Things to Consider Before Enrolling:
The course is fun and different to other INFS unit in terms of applications and understanding of UI/UX. It is beneficial to form groups early as learnings from class activities are applicable to requirements in the group project, particularly in the first 5 weeks of the course. Students wishing to understand more on how technology can change a customer’s perception and interaction with brand should consider taking this unit.

Textbook: none

Individual Assignment (20%)
This involves a series of small tasks which require you to apply learnings from lectures on ideating, requirement gathering, storyboarding and designing customer profiles and journeys.

Group Project (40%)
Applying your learnings from the individual tasks, the assignment surrounds generating a digital prototype demonstration to a real-world case. You will be required to use Adobe Xd to create a high-fidelity prototype and present this at the end of the project.

Final Exam (40%)
This involves four short response questions on the applications of the different frameworks learnt throughout the unit.

  • Individual Assignment
  • Group Project
  • Final Exam