COMP SCI 7081NA - Computer Systems

Ngee Ann Academy - Trimester 2 - 2014

Information storage representation, Memory organisation and hierarchy, Processor fundamentals, assembler programming, assembler operation, subroutine calling mechanisms, linking/loading, Input-output and device controllers, requirements for supporting an operating system and device drivers.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code COMP SCI 7081NA
    Course Computer Systems
    Coordinating Unit Computer Science
    Term Trimester 2
    Level Postgraduate Coursework
    Location/s Ngee Ann Academy
    Units 3
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Cruz Izu

    The course coordinator is Dr Cruz Izu

    The local lecturer is   Dr Lye, Kong Wei

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

    Course is taught in 4 intensive weekends, Fridays from 19:00 pm to 22:00 pm and Saturdays 13:00 to 19:00 pm. 

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    After completing this course you will be able to:
    1. Explain how a program is stored in computer memory.
    2. Explain how a computer executes a program.
    3. Translate high-level language constructs into machine instructions.
    4. Explain how programs are stored in object-files.
    5. Explain how Input/output is implemented on a computer, and describe some basic I/O devices
    6. Explain the operation of basic software tools such as assemblers, locators, and linkers.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Knowledge and understanding of the content and techniques of a chosen discipline at advanced levels that are internationally recognised. 1 to 6
    The ability to locate, analyse, evaluate and synthesise information from a wide variety of sources in a planned and timely manner. 3 to 6
    An ability to apply effective, creative and innovative solutions, both independently and cooperatively, to current and future problems. 3 to 6
    Skills of a high order in interpersonal understanding, teamwork and communication. 1 to 6
    A proficiency in the appropriate use of contemporary technologies. 2,5,6
    A commitment to continuous learning and the capacity to maintain intellectual curiosity throughout life. 1 to 6
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    There is no required textbook. Comprehensive lecture notes (300+ pages) are available online from the course website as a PDF file.
    All software tools will be accessible via the course website.
    Online Learning
    There is an online forum, managed by Moodle. A link to Moodle appears on the subject web-page. We will use the Moodle forum to announce all changes to the course, exercises, and tutorials. You are therefore strongly advised to read all mail that comes from this source — do not ignore it!
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    The course will be taught using a variation of team-based learning, with lecture/demonstration sessions interspersed with quiz/question time sessions. There will also be tutorial classes, and practical exercises. Students are expected to read the course notes before and after the lectures, and to actively participate in class activities, as well as attempting tutorial questions before they tutorial time.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    Students are expected to attend all scheduled classes. In addition to the schedule contact hours, students are expected to spend 3-6 hours  before/after each weekend intensive   reading annd reviewing the lecture material. Besides, they will need 3-5 hours per week working on their assignment work.
    Learning Activities Summary
    Below is the list of topics from the course notes in the order they will be covered 
    • 1,2,3 Intro, review of 1 and 2, DLX machine
    • 3.1 to 3.5 DLX processor
    • 3.6, 4.1 to 4.5 DLX Assembly code techniques
    • 5.1, 5.2, 6.1 Assembler, directives, loading
    • 7.1, 7.2, 8.1 Simple subroutines, Low level I/O
    • 3.7, 3.8 Pass 1 review, More DLX Load/store, shift
    • 4.6 to 4.8 Multiplication, arrays, records and pointers
    • 7.3 to 7.5 Calling convention, nested calls
    • 5.3, 5.4 Basics of translation, more directives
    • 5.5 Relocatable assembly
    • 6.2 Relocation process
    • 8.2 to 8.4 I/O overview, Programmed I/O, Shared memory
    • 8.5 DMA, Pass 2 review
    • 3.9, 3.10, 4.10 DLX encoding and multiway branches
    • 5.6 Linkable assembly
    • 6.3, 6.4 Linkers and relocaters
    • 7.6, 7.7 Recursion and stacks
    • 7.8 to 7.10 Parameter passing using stack, Review
    • 3.11 Exceptions
    • 4.13, 8.6 Circular buffer and Interrupts
    • 14 Intel Architecture
    • 13 Memory Hierarchy
    • 15 Processor design and Instruction sets
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary

    No information currently available.

    Assessment Detail

    No information currently available.


    No information currently available.

    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.