• Offered by Research School of Computer Science
  • ANU College ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science
  • Course subject Computer Science
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Lexing Xie
  • Mode of delivery Blended
  • Offered in First Semester 2016
    See Future Offerings

The goal of this course is to expose students to computational thinking. Computing is transforming business, science and society, making it possible to represent vast amounts of knowledge in digital form (big data) and enabling algorithms to process this knowledge with unprecedented accuracy and speed. Underlying this are the fundamental - and beautiful - ideas of computational thinking: viewing problems and processes through the lens of algorithms and structured data, and tackling complexity through procedural abstractions like iteration and recursion. Students of the course will learn the fundamental skills of applying computational thinking and practical computing, through exploring the impact that computing can have in disciplines such as medical, physical and social sciences. The course offers a breadth and perspective on computing beyond what is provided by focused foundational courses in computer science.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Students of this class will:
  • Understand the essence of computational thinking, and how it is applied in different areas (social science, biology, optimisation, etc).
  • Gain fundamental programming skills, and ability to apply these skills to solve basic and applied programming tasks.
  • Understand how a computer actually works, and apply such knowledge to build a simulated lab-prototype of a computer.

Indicative Assessment

A number of assignments (at least 6).

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


There are 4 contact hours per week (3x1hr lectures, plus 1hr hands-on session). The total workload will be less 10 hours.

Prescribed Texts

No required text. Online articles or book chapters will be given for each week.

Assumed Knowledge

The mathematical background needed for the course is limited: An understanding of basic logic (although this will be covered in the course) and simple algebra and geometry, which all high-school students will have.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2016 $3276
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2016 $4368
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

First Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
4284 15 Feb 2016 26 Feb 2016 31 Mar 2016 27 May 2016 Blended N/A

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