E-commerce Code:  22.628    :  6
View general information   Description   Prior knowledge   Information prior to enrolment   Learning objectives and results   Content   View the UOC learning resources used in the subject   Guidelines on assessment at the UOC   View the assessment model  
This is the course plan for the second semester of the academic year 2023/2024. To check whether the course is being run this semester, go to the Virtual Campus section More UOC / The University / Programmes of study section on Campus. Once teaching starts, you'll be able to find it in the classroom. The course plan may be subject to change.
This course on e-commerce teaches a discipline that was born thanks to the development of general-purpose communication networks: the Internet. To study the technology associated with e-commerce, we will work on three main areas:

Firstly, databases. In e-commerce systems, the correct design and management of databases is extremely important, since one of the main characteristics of digital businesses is its high degree of automation. Databases play a key role in the management of information and automation of all kind of processes: purchases, sales, orders, stock management, etc.

Another important part of an e-commerce is the payment system. It is well known that the internet can be an insecure channel for exchanging information and conducting transactions. Therefore, implementing the right payment system and using proper cryptographic mechanisms to protect information is of utmost importance.

Finally, there is a part related to digital contents that is often overlooked, perhaps because it is something that rarely causes problems to final users, or rather, it is perceived as something positive: the fact that digital products and contents can be easily copied with perfect accuracy as many times as necessary. This makes piracy an inherent problem of our digital age. This issue, which often hinders the digitally-enabled sale or distribution of products, is currently generating significant research efforts. The present course will also cover this problem, and we will see different strategies for tackling piracy, along with their strengths and limitations.


You must have passed the “Introduction to Databases” course before you take this course.


You must have passed the “Introduction to Databases” course before you take this course.


The competences developed in this course are the following:

  • Evaluate software solutions and draw up proposals for development projects, taking into account the resources, the available alternatives and the market conditions.
  • Understand the fundamentals of operating systems and computer networks so as to design and develop solutions that take into account each platform's specific features, available and shared resources, and the system's security.
  • Apply specific data processing, storage and administration techniques.
  • Propose and evaluate different technological alternatives for solving a specific software development problem.

From the above competences, this course focuses on  the following learning outcomes:

  • Identify the different systems that make up an e-commerce architecture as well as the different e-commerce alternatives, depending on the participants.
  • Apply the concepts of information security and the techniques available to protect systems in the different areas of e-commerce.
  • Understand the importance of databases as a repository of all the information that a company manages in the e-commerce environment.
  • Identify the two main types of information used in e-commerce applications: the one that refers to the company's sales operations and the one that is useful for decision-making.
  • Differentiate the existing electronic payment systems and recognize what their most important properties are.
  • Apply techniques for the protection of the copyright of electronic products.


Module 1 - Introduction to electronic commerce
  • Basic concepts and e-commerce terminology.
  • The EDI standards.
  • Legal aspects of e-commerce.

Module 2 - Security in electronic commerce
  • Basic concepts of cryptography and information security.
  • Public key cryptography.
  • Security in e-commerce: data, payments and sales.

Module 3 - Information Management
  • Database structure for an e-commerce.
  • E-commerce data analysis.

Module 4 - Electronic payment systems
  • Credit card payments
  • E-wallet systems
  • SMS payments
  • Digital currency

Module 5 - Electronic copyright protection systems
  • Copyright protection of digital content.
  • Image watermarking
  • Video watermarking

Project 1 - Virtual store with basic web technology

Project 2 - Virtual store with Prestashop



Assessment at the UOC is, in general, online, structured around the continuous assessment activities, the final assessment tests and exams, and the programme's final project.

Assessment activities and tests can be written texts and/or video recordings, use random questions, and synchronous or asynchronous oral tests, etc., as decided by each teaching team. The final project marks the end of the learning process and consists of an original and tutored piece of work to demonstrate that students have acquired the competencies worked on during the programme.

To verify students' identity and authorship in the assessment tests, the UOC reserves the right to use identity recognition and plagiarism detection systems. For these purposes, the UOC may make video recordings or use supervision methods or techniques while students carry out any of their academic activities.

The UOC may also require students to use electronic devices (microphones, webcams or other tools) or specific software during assessments. It is the student's responsibility to ensure that these devices work properly.

The assessment process is based on students' individual efforts, and the assumption that the student is the author of the work submitted for academic activities and that this work is original. The UOC's website on academic integrity and plagiarism has more information on this.

Submitting work that is not one's own or not original for assessment tests; copying or plagiarism; impersonation; accepting or obtaining any assignments, whether for compensation or otherwise; collaboration, cover-up or encouragement to copy; and using materials, software or devices not authorized in the course plan or instructions for the activity, including artificial intelligence and machine translation, among others, are examples of misconduct in assessments that may have serious academic and disciplinary consequences.

If students are found to be engaging in any such misconduct, they may receive a Fail (D/0) for the graded activities in the course plan (including final tests) or for the final grade for the course. This could be because they have used unauthorized materials, software or devices (such as artificial intelligence when it is not permitted, social media or internet search engines) during the tests; copied fragments of text from an external source (the internet, notes, books, articles, other students' work or tests, etc.) without the corresponding citation; purchased or sold assignments, or undertaken any other form of misconduct.

Likewise and in accordance with the UOC's academic regulations, misconduct during assessment may also be grounds for disciplinary proceedings and, where appropriate, the corresponding disciplinary measures, as established in the regulations governing the UOC community (Normativa de convivència).

In its assessment process, the UOC reserves the right to:

  • Ask students to provide proof of their identity as established in the UOC's academic regulations.
  • Ask students to prove the authorship of their work throughout the assessment process, in both continuous and final assessments, through a synchronous oral interview, of which a video recording or any other type of recording established by the UOC may be made. These methods seek to ensure verification of the student's identity, and their knowledge and competencies. If it is not possible to ensure the student's authorship, they may receive a D grade in the case of continuous assessment or a Fail grade in the case of the final assessment.

Artificial intelligence in assessments

The UOC understands the value and potential of artificial intelligence (AI) in education, but it also understands the risks involved if it is not used ethically, critically and responsibly. So, in each assessment activity, students will be told which AI tools and resources can be used and under what conditions. In turn, students must agree to follow the guidelines set by the UOC when it comes to completing the assessment activities and citing the tools used. Specifically, they must identify any texts or images generated by AI systems and they must not present them as their own work.

In terms of using AI, or not, to complete an activity, the instructions for assessment activities indicate the restrictions on the use of these tools. Bear in mind that using them inappropriately, such as using them in activities where they are not allowed or not citing them in activities where they are, may be considered misconduct. If in doubt, we recommend getting in touch with the course instructor and asking them before you submit your work.


You can only pass the course if you participate in and pass the continuous assessment. Your final mark for the course will be the mark you received in the continuous assessment.