'Big Data' phenomenon is an emerging force in the global business world. It is characterised by five Vs: Volume, Velocity, Variety, Veracity and Value. It increasingly makes data sets too large to store and analyse beyond the ability of traditional relational database technology. This unit (NIT2202) provides fundamentals related to the technology and the core concepts behind big data problems, applications, and systems. It provides an introduction to the most common open-source software framework to increase the potential for data to transform our world. Students will develop comprehensive understanding of the challenges that organisations are facing for managing 'Big Data' and the technological solutions for efficient and strategic decision making.

Unit details

Online Real Time
Study level:
Credit points:
Unit code:


NIT1102 - Introduction to Programming or

NIT1201 - Introduction to Database Systems

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Analyse and illustrate Big Data challenges to the business world;  
  2. Explain the impact of Big Data's five V's (volume, velocity, variety veracity and value) using real world examples;  
  3. Apply architectural components and programming models of commonly used Big Data;  
  4. Create a technological solution using open-source software framework.  


Melbourne campuses

Students studying under the VU Block Model.

Assessment type Description Grade
Test Test 1 (1 hour theoretical knowledge test) 20%
Test Test 2 (1 hour theoretical knowledge test) 20%
Laboratory Work Practical Lab work 30%
Case Study Group assignment and presentation 30%

Other locations

Assessment type Description Grade
Test Knowledge Test (1 hour) 25%
Laboratory Work Weekly Practical Lab Work 25%
Examination Final Written Examination (3 hours) 50%

Required reading

Big data fundamentals: Concepts, drivers & techniques
Erl, T., Khattak, W., & Buhler. P. (2016)
Prentice Hall: Boston, MA

Hands-On Data Science with Anaconda
Yan, Y. & Yan, J. (2018)
Packt Publishing.

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

VU takes care to ensure the accuracy of this unit information, but reserves the right to change or withdraw courses offered at any time. Please check that unit information is current with the Student Contact Centre.