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European Computer Driving Licence

Module 1

Module 1 - Basic Concepts of Information Technology
The following is the Syllabus for Module 1, Basic Concepts of Information Technology (IT), which is the basis for the theoretical test. The module consists of eight categories and the test will contain questions from all of the categories.
Module Goals Module 1 - Basic Concepts of Information Technology, requires the candidate to know about the basic physical make-up of a personal computer and understand some of the basic concepts of Information Technology (IT) such as data storage and memory, the context for computer-based soft-ware applications in society, and the uses of information networks with-in computing. The candidate shall also appreciate how IT systems are found in everyday situations; and how personal computers can affect health. The candidate shall be aware of some of the security and legal issues associated with computers.
Category Knowledge Area Ref. Knowledge Item
1.1 Getting Started 1.1.1 Hardware/Software Information Technology Understand the basic concepts of hardware, software and Information Technology (IT).
1.1.2 Types of Computer Understand and distinguish between main-frame computer, minicomputer, network computer, personal computer, and laptop computer in terms of capacity, speed, cost, and typical users. Understand the terms intelligent and dumb terminal.
1.1.3 Main Parts of a Personal Computer Know the main parts of a personal computer: the central processing unit (CPU), the hard disk, common input/output devices, types of memory, removable storage devices such as diskette, zip disc, CD-ROM etc. Understand the term peripheral device.
1.2 Hardware 1.2.1 Central Processing Unit Understand the term central processing unit (CPU) and know what the CPU does - calculations, logic control, immediate access memory etc. Know that the speed of the CPU is measured in megahertz (MHz).
1.2.2 Input Devices Know some of the main devices for inputting data into a computer such as mice, keyboards, trackballs, scanners, touchpads, light pens, joysticks etc.
1.2.3 Output Devices Know the most common output devices for displaying the results of processing carried out by a computer, e.g. various visual display units (VDU's), screens or monitors, printers such as those commonly available, plotters, speakers, speech synthesisers etc. Know where and how these devices are used.
1.3 Storage 1.3.1 Memory Storage Devices Compare the main types of memory storage device in terms of speed, cost and capacity e.g. internal/external hard disk, zip disk, data cartridges, CD-ROM, diskette etc.
1.3.2 Types of Memory Understand different types of computer memory: e.g. RAM (random-access memory), ROM (read-only memory). Understand when they are used.
1.3.3 Measuring Memory Know how computer memory is measured; (bit, byte, KB, MB, GB). Relate computer memory measurements to characters, fields, records, files and directories/folders.
1.3.4 Computer Performance Know some of the factors that impact on a computer's performance, e.g. CPU speed, RAM size, hard disk speed and capacity.
1.4 Software 1.4.1 Types of Software Know the meaning of the terms; operating systems software and applications software. Understand the distinction between them.
1.4.2 Operating System Software Understand the main functions of an operating system. Understand the term Graphical User Interface (GUI) and give examples. Be aware of the main advantages of using a GUI interface.
1.4.3 Applications Software List some common software applications together with their uses, e.g. word processing applications, spreadsheets, database, payroll, presentation tools, desktop publishing and multimedia applications.
1.4.4 Systems Development Understand how computer-based systems are developed. Know about the process of research, analysis, programming and testing often used in developing computer-based systems.
1.5 Information Networks 1.5.1 LAN and WAN Know the definitions of local area networks (LAN) and wide area networks (WAN). Know about the advantages of group working and sharing resources over a network.
1.5.2 The Telephone Network in Computing Understand the use of the telephone network in computing. Understand the terms Public Switched Data Network (PSDN), Integrated Service Digital Network (ISDN), satellite communications. Understand the terms fax, telex, modem, digital, analogue, baud, (measured in bps - bits per second).
1.5.3 Electronic Mail Understand the term electronic mail and know the uses of e-mail. Understand what is needed to send and receive e-mail. Detail some of the information and communications technology (ICT) equipment needed to use e-mail.
1.5.4 The Internet Know what the Internet is. Understand the concept of the Internet and some of its main uses. Understand the economics of Internet mail systems relative to other mail delivery methods. Know what a search engine is. Understand the distinction between the Internet and the World Wide Web (WWW).
1.6 Computers in Everyday Life 1.6.1 Computers in the Home Know some of the uses of the PC at home e.g. hobbies, household accounts, working from home, projects and homework, using e-mail and the Internet.
1.6.2 Computers at Work or in Education Know the uses of office applications; give examples of the types of computer-based systems used in business, industry, government and education. Be aware of where a computer might be more appropriate than a person for carrying out a task and where not.
1.6.3 Computers in Daily Life Be aware of the uses of computers in every-day life e.g. in supermarkets or libraries, at the doctor's surgery, the use of smart cards, etc.
1.7 IT and Society 1.7.1 A Changing World Understand the terms Information Society and Information Superhighway. Know some of the implications of the Year 2000 issue (Y2K). Understand the concept of Electronic Commerce
1.7.2 A Good Workspace Understand what elements and practices can help create a good working environment e.g. frequent breaks away from the computer, appropriate positioning of screens, chairs and keyboards, provision of adequate lighting and ventilation.
1.7.3 Health and Safety Be aware of Health and Safety precautions when using a computer like ensuring that power cables are safely secured, and that power points are not overloaded. Know about injuries common in a bad working environment e.g. repetitive strain injury (RSI), eye strain caused by screen glare, problems associated with bad posture.
1.8 Security, Copyright and the Law 1.8.1 Security Know about the purpose and value of backing store of computer files to removable storage devices. Know how to protect a personal computer against intrusion. Know about privacy issues associated with personal computers, e.g. protecting the computer, adopting good password policies. Know what happens to your data and files if there is a power cut.
1.8.2 Computer Viruses Understand the term virus when used in computing. Be aware how viruses can enter a computer system. Understand the dangers of downloading files onto your computer. Know about some anti-virus measures.
1.8.3 Copyright Understand software copyright and some of the main security and legal issues associated with copying, sharing and lending diskettes. Understand some of the implications of transferring files across a network. Understand the terms shareware, freeware, and user licences.
1.8.4 Data Protection Act Know the Data Protection Act in your country. Understand the implications of the Data Protection Act. Describe some of the uses of personal data.

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