Course Outline

CSC203 Software Defined Networking

Course Coordinator:Abigail Koay ( School:School of Science, Technology and Engineering

2024Semester 2

UniSC Moreton Bay

Blended learning Most of your course is on campus but you may be able to do some components of this course online.

Please go to for up to date information on the
teaching sessions and campuses where this course is usually offered.

What is this course about?


The modern age is built on seamless and seemingly limit-less networks of technology. In this course you will learn how to build, evaluate, and maintain software defined networks (SDN) that make that possible. Covering topics including data and control plane abstraction and virtualization, network extensibility, automation, security, and scalability. You will gain hands-on experience in SDN, network function virtualisation (NFV) and network application development. You will also develop sought after skills applied in cutting edge technologies.

How will this course be delivered?

Activity Hours Beginning Week Frequency
Blended learning
Learning materials – Asynchronous Learning Material 2hrs Week 1 13 times
Tutorial/Workshop 1 – On-campus workshop 2hrs Week 1 13 times

Course Topics

Introduction to and Genesis of SDN

Basic Architecture of SDN

The OpenFlow Specification

Alternative Definitions of SDN

Emerging Protocol, Controller, and Application Models

SDN in the Data Centre and other Environments

Network Functions Virtualisation

Players in the SDN Ecosystem

SDN Use Cases

SDN Open Source

Future of SDN

What level is this course?

200 Level (Developing)

Building on and expanding the scope of introductory knowledge and skills, developing breadth or depth and applying knowledge and skills in a new context. May require pre-requisites where discipline specific introductory knowledge or skills is necessary. Normally, undertaken in the second or third full-time year of an undergraduate programs.

What is the unit value of this course?

12 units

How does this course contribute to my learning?

Course Learning Outcomes On successful completion of this course, you should be able to... Graduate Qualities Completing these tasks successfully will contribute to you becoming...
1 Demonstrate advanced knowledge of networking concepts and practice extended into software defined networking. Knowledgeable
2 Select, develop and adapt programming constructs (built to coding and documentation standards) to create solutions to complex computer networking challenges. Creative and critical thinker
3 Analyse and evaluate ethical, privacy, security and safety concerns in a software defined networking context Ethical
4 Communicate software defined networks through writing reports, design documentation and specifications Engaged
5 Work as part of a team to produce quality computing artefacts and outcomes. Engaged

Am I eligible to enrol in this course?

Refer to the UniSC Glossary of terms for definitions of “pre-requisites, co-requisites and anti-requisites”.


ICT220 and ICT221


Not applicable


Not applicable

Specific assumed prior knowledge and skills (where applicable)

Not applicable

How am I going to be assessed?

Grading Scale

Standard Grading (GRD)

High Distinction (HD), Distinction (DN), Credit (CR), Pass (PS), Fail (FL).

Details of early feedback on progress

Students will complete individual weekly workshop activities under the guidance of the workshop facilitator, providing opportunity for rapid formative feedback throughout the semester. Moreover portions 1 and 2 of Task 1 will be submitted, marked and returned with detailed feedback prior to census date.

Assessment tasks

Delivery mode Task No. Assessment Product Individual or Group Weighting % What is the duration / length? When should I submit? Where should I submit it?
All 1 Portfolio Individual 20%
Less than 200 words per submission
Refer to Format Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All 2 Case Study Group 40%
3000 words
Week 13 Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All 3 Practical / Laboratory Skills Individual 40%
90 minutes
Exam Period Exam Venue
All - Assessment Task 1:SDN Topics and Experiences
In this task, you will complete a number of activities
submitted over the course of the semester to form a portfolio of software defined networking artefacts. These tasks will develop your ability to design, develop, document and debug software defined networking problems and approximate tasks a networking consultant may do in industry.
Product: Portfolio
You will submit weekly responses to stimulus materials provided in the LMS Learning Materials. Activities will include theoretical problem solving as well as programming, debugging and/or documentation to solve a series of small case study problems. Each submission will be the equivalent of less than 200 words of text, code or documentation (note some code or documentation may be supplied).
Due Weeks 3, 5, 7, 9, and 11
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Demonstration of software defined networking concepts
Selection and or development of appropriate programming constructs to create or
correct software defined networking applications
Programming and documentation style
All - Assessment Task 2:Connection Mastery
This task will provide a real-world
experience solving a software defined
networking problem for an industry case
Product: Case Study
You will submit a technical report explaining SDN solutions for a specified industry case study.
Further details will be available on LMS in the assignment specification.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Demonstration of advanced software defined networking concepts
Innovation, creativity and appropriateness of specification, design and solution
Written communication: report, programming documentation and style
2 4
Analysis and evaluation of solutions for societal impact and ethical considerations.
Individual team work and performance (including Peer assessment)
Team organisation
All - Assessment Task 3:SDN Skills Demonstration
The final practical exam will develop your
ability to independently apply your skills
and knowledge to solve familiar problem based questions with confidence within a
set time limit just like a networking
consultant working at a client’s office
Product: Practical / Laboratory Skills
Practical examination composed of a small set of SDN programming and documentation problems that the student must solve. Material based on tutorial activities and lecture
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Demonstration of advanced networking and software defined network concepts
Selection and or development of appropriate programming constructs to create or
correct software defined networking applications
Programming and documentation style

Directed study hours

A 12-unit course will have total of 150 learning hours which will include directed study hours (including online if required), self-directed learning and completion of assessable tasks. Student workload is calculated at 12.5 learning hours per one unit.

What resources do I need to undertake this course?

Please note: Course information, including specific information of recommended readings, learning activities, resources, weekly readings, etc. are available on the course Canvas site– Please log in as soon as possible.

Prescribed text(s) or course reader

Please note that you need to have regular access to the resource(s) listed below. Resources may be required or recommended.

Required? Author Year Title Edition Publisher
Recommended Paul Goransson,Chuck Black,Timothy Culver 2016 Software Defined Networks n/a Morgan Kaufmann
Recommended Guy Pujolle 2020 Software Networks n/a John Wiley & Sons

Specific requirements

Not applicable

How are risks managed in this course?

Risk assessments have been performed for all studio and laboratory classes and a low level of health and safety risk exists. Some risk concerns may include equipment, instruments, and tools; as well as manual handling items within the laboratory. It is your responsibility to review course material, search online, discuss with lecturers and peers and understand the risks associated with your specific course of study and to familiarise yourself with the University’s general health and safety principles by reviewing the online induction training for students, and following the instructions of the University staff.

What administrative information is relevant to this course?

Assessment: Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is the ethical standard of university participation.  It ensures that students graduate as a result of proving they are competent in their discipline.  This is integral in maintaining the value of academic qualifications. Each industry has expectations and standards of the skills and knowledge within that discipline and these are reflected in assessment.

Academic integrity means that you do not engage in any activity that is considered to be academic fraud; including plagiarism, collusion or outsourcing any part of any assessment item to any other person.  You are expected to be honest and ethical by completing all work yourself and indicating in your work which ideas and information were developed by you and which were taken from others. You cannot provide your assessment work to others. You are also expected to provide evidence of wide and critical reading, usually by using appropriate academic references.

In order to minimise incidents of academic fraud, this course may require that some of its assessment tasks, when submitted to Canvas, are electronically checked through Turnitin.  This software allows for text comparisons to be made between your submitted assessment item and all other work to which Turnitin has access.

Assessment: Additional Requirements

Eligibility for Supplementary Assessment

Your eligibility for supplementary assessment in a course is dependent of the following conditions applying:
The final mark is in the percentage range 47% to 49.4%
The course is graded using the Standard Grading scale
You have not failed an assessment task in the course due to academic misconduct

Assessment: Submission penalties

Late submission of assessment tasks will be penalised at the following maximum rate:

5% (of the assessment task’s identified value) per day for the first two days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task
10% (of the assessment task’s identified value) for the third day
20% (of the assessment task’s identified value) for the fourth day and subsequent days up to and including seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task
A result of zero is awarded for an assessment task submitted seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task.
Weekdays and weekends are included in the calculation of days late.

To request an extension, you must contact your Course Coordinator and supply the required documentation to negotiate an outcome.


UniSC is committed to a culture of respect and providing a safe and supportive environment for all members of our community. For immediate assistance on campus contact SafeUniSC by phone: 07 5430 1168 or using the SafeZone app. For general enquires contact the SafeUniSC team by phone 07 5456 3864 or email

The SafeUniSC Specialist Service is a Student Wellbeing service that provides free and confidential support to students who may have experienced or observed behaviour that could cause fear, offence or trauma. To contact the service call 07 5430 1226 or email

Study help

For help with course-specific advice, for example what information to include in your assessment, you should first contact your tutor, then your course coordinator, if needed.

If you require additional assistance, the Learning Advisers are trained professionals who are ready to help you develop a wide range of academic skills. Visit the Learning Advisers web page for more information, or contact Student Central for further assistance: +61 7 5430 2890 or

Wellbeing Services

Student Wellbeing provide free and confidential counselling on a wide range of personal, academic, social and psychological matters, to foster positive mental health and wellbeing for your academic success.

To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email or call 07 5430 1226.

AccessAbility Services

Ability Advisers ensure equal access to all aspects of university life. If your studies are affected by a disability, learning disorder mental health issue, injury or illness, or you are a primary carer for someone with a disability or who is considered frail and aged, AccessAbility Services can provide access to appropriate reasonable adjustments and practical advice about the support and facilities available to you throughout the University.

To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email or call 07 5430 2890.

Links to relevant University policy and procedures

For more information on Academic Learning & Teaching categories including:

  • Assessment: Courses and Coursework Programs
  • Review of Assessment and Final Grades
  • Supplementary Assessment
  • Central Examinations
  • Deferred Examinations
  • Student Conduct
  • Students with a Disability

For more information, visit

Student Charter

UniSC is committed to excellence in teaching, research and engagement in an environment that is inclusive, inspiring, safe and respectful. The Student Charter sets out what students can expect from the University, and what in turn is expected of students, to achieve these outcomes.

General Enquiries

  • In person:
    • UniSC Sunshine Coast - Student Central, Ground Floor, Building C, 90 Sippy Downs Drive, Sippy Downs
    • UniSC Moreton Bay - Service Centre, Ground Floor, Foundation Building, Gympie Road, Petrie
    • UniSC SouthBank - Student Central, Building A4 (SW1), 52 Merivale Street, South Brisbane
    • UniSC Gympie - Student Central, 71 Cartwright Road, Gympie
    • UniSC Fraser Coast - Student Central, Student Central, Building A, 161 Old Maryborough Rd, Hervey Bay
    • UniSC Caboolture - Student Central, Level 1 Building J, Cnr Manley and Tallon Street, Caboolture
  • Tel:+61 7 5430 2890