Learning
Computing

Why Study Computing?

The ubiquity and rapid pace of developments in digital systems, and the increasing availability of digitised data and information are having major influences on many aspects of society and the economy. This study equips students with the knowledge and skills to be discerning users of digital systems, data and information and creators of digital solutions. They are equipped to apply new ways of thinking as well as technical and social protocols when developing intellectual and social capital.

VCE Computing supports students to participate in a globalised society and economy as they learn how to exploit the capabilities of digital systems and manage risks when communicating and collaborating with others locally and globally. The study provides students with practical opportunities to create digital solutions for real-world problems in a range of settings, developing an essential tool set for current and future learning, work and social endeavours.

VCE Computing provides a pathway to further studies in areas such as computer science, information systems, business, systems engineering, robotics, linguistics, logistics, database management and software development, and to careers in digital-technologies based areas such as information architecture, web design, business analysis and project management.


Structure

At Emmaus College four units of the study are offered:

Unit 1: Computing

Unit 2: Computing

Unit 3: Informatics

Unit 4: Informatics

Each unit deals with specific content and is designed to enable students to achieve a set of outcomes. Each outcome is described in terms of key knowledge and skills.


Unit 1: Computing

In this unit students focus on how data, information and networked digital systems can be used to meet a range of users’ current and future needs. In Area of Study 1 students collect primary data when investigating an issue, practice or event and create a digital solution that graphically presents the findings of the investigation. In Area of Study 2 students examine the technical underpinnings of wireless and mobile networks, and security controls to protect stored and transmitted data, to design a network solution that meets an identified need or opportunity.

They predict the impact on users if the network solution were implemented. In Area of Study 3 students acquire and apply their knowledge of information architecture and user interfaces, together with web authoring skills, when creating a website to present different viewpoints on a contemporary issue.

When creating solutions students need to apply relevant stages of the problem-solving methodology as well as computational, design and systems thinking skills.

Area of Study 1

Data and graphic solutions\

Outcome 1

On completion of this unit the student should be able to acquire, secure and interpret data, and design and develop a graphic solution that communicates the findings of an investigation.

Area of Study 2

Networks

Outcome 2

On completion of this unit the student should be able to design a network with wireless capability that meets an identified need or opportunity, explain its configuration and predict risks and benefits for intended users.

Area of Study 3

Collaboration and communication

Outcome 3

On completion of this unit the student should be able to design and develop a website collaboratively with others that presents an analysis of a contemporary issue and the team’s point of view on the issue.


Unit 2: Computing

In this unit students focus on data and how the application of computational, design and systems thinking skills support the creation of solutions that automate the processing of data. In Area of Study 1 students develop their computational thinking skills when using a programming or scripting language to create solutions. They engage in the design and development stages of the problem-solving methodology. In Area of Study 2 students develop a sound understanding of data and how a range of software tools can be used to extract data from large repositories and manipulate it to create visualisations that are clear, usable and attractive, and reduce the complexity of data. In

Area of Study 3 students apply all stages of the problem-solving methodology to create a solution using database management software and explain how they are personally affected by their interactions with a database system.

Area of Study 1

Programming

Outcome 1

On completion of this unit the student should be able to design working modules in response to solution requirements, and use a programming or scripting language to develop the modules.

Area of Study 2

Data analysis and visualisation

Outcome 2

On completion of this unit the student should be able to apply the problem-solving methodology and use appropriate software tools to extract relevant data and create a data visualisation that meets a specified user’s needs.

Area of Study 3

Data management

Outcome 3

On completion of this unit the student should be able to apply the problem-solving methodology to create a solution using database management software, and explain the personal benefits and risks of interacting with a database.


Unit 3: Informatics

In Informatics Units 3 and 4 students focus on data, information and information systems. In Unit 3 students consider data and how it is acquired, managed, manipulated and interpreted to meet a range of needs. In Area of Study 1 students investigate the way organisations acquire data using interactive online solutions, such as websites and applications (apps), and consider how users interact with these solutions when conducting online transactions. They examine how relational database management systems (RDBMS) store and manipulate data typically acquired this way. Students use software to create user flow diagrams that depict how users interact with online solutions, and acquire and apply knowledge and skills in the use of an RDBMS to create a solution.

Students develop an understanding of the power and risks of using complex data as a basis for decision making. In Area of Study 2 students complete the first part of a project. They frame a hypothesis and then select, acquire and organise data from multiple data sets to confirm or refute this hypothesis. This data is manipulated using tools such as spreadsheets or databases to help analyse and interpret it so that students can form a conclusion regarding their hypothesis. Students take an organised approach to problem solving by preparing project plans and monitoring the progress of the project. The second part of the project is completed in Unit 4.

Area of Study 1

Organisations and data management

Outcome 1

On completion of this unit the student should be able to design a solution, develop it using a relational database management system, and diagrammatically represent how users interact with an online solution when supplying data for a transaction.

Area of Study 2

Data analytics: drawing conclusions

Outcome 2

On completion of this unit the student should be able to use a range of appropriate techniques and processes to acquire, prepare, manipulate and interpret complex data to confirm or refute a hypothesis, and formulate a project plan to manage progress.


Unit 4: Informatics

In this unit students focus on strategies and techniques for manipulating, managing and securing data and information to meet a range of needs. In Area of Study 1 students draw on the analysis and conclusion of their hypothesis determined in Unit 3, Outcome 2, and then design, develop and evaluate a multimodal, online solution that effectively communicates the conclusion and findings. The evaluation focuses on the effectiveness of the solution in communicating the conclusion and the reasonableness of the findings. Students use their project plan to monitor their progress and assess the effectiveness of their plan and adjustments in managing the project.

In Area of Study 2, students explore how different organisations manage the storage and disposal of data and information to minimise threats to the integrity and security of data and information and to optimise the handling of information.

Area of Study 1

Data analytics: presenting the findings

Outcome 1

On completion of this unit the student should be able to design, develop and evaluate a multimodal online solution that confirms or refutes a hypothesis, and assess the effectiveness of the project plan in managing progress.

Area of Study 2

Information management

Outcome 2

On completion of this unit the student should be able to compare and contrast the effectiveness of information management strategies used by two organisations to manage the storage and disposal of data and information, and recommend improvements to their current practices.

Assessment

Satisfactory Completion

The award of satisfactory completion for a unit is based on a decision that the student has demonstrated achievement of the set of outcomes specified for the unit. This decision will be based on the teacher’s assessment of the student’s performance on assessment tasks designated for the unit.

Levels of Achievement

Units 1 and 2

School based Assessment Tasks and Exams. 

Units 3 and 4

The Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority supervises the assessment of all students undertaking Units 3 and 4.

Percentage contributions to the study score in VCE Information Technology are as follows:

Unit 3 School-assessed Coursework 10%
Unit 4 School-assessed Coursework 10%
School Assessed Task 30%
End-of-year examination 50%