Run by School of Computer Science and Electronic Engineering
10 Credits or 5 ECTS Credits
Overall aims and purpose
This module will enable learners to develop a sound understanding of the essential hardware and software components of a computer system, using the PC architecture exemplar.
Through a range of practical and research exercises the respective roles of hardware and software plus their interaction are explored.
● Overview of computer systems: identification, purpose and functionality of key components and computer architecture
● Memory concept and functionality, types of and protected and virtual aspects
● Data representation, in memory, numbering systems and consideration of data transfer rates
● Overview, identification and functionality of key types of I/O to include peripherals
● Overview of connectivity to include internal buses (PCI), external buses (USB) and networking (ADSL, Ethernet etc.)
● Overview of operating systems: identification, purpose and functionality of key components within a modern operating systems and the use of Microsoft OS and Linux as exemplars.
● Resource Management and concept of sharing
● Device Management to include device drivers, dumb and smart peripherals
● Memory Management including virtual memory and addressing
● File Management for local and remote files
The student’s understanding of the knowledge and skills base developed through this module is sound and practical, evidenced by the effective application of theory linked to practice. At this level, the student has demonstrated a good understanding of theory and practical concepts for the module.
The work should be of a good standard but may have missed some opportunities to improve in some areas. The student has demonstrated personal responsibility for the nature and quality of outputs and has required a minimal degree of tutor support.
The student’s understanding of the knowledge and skills base developed through this module is limited, evidenced by the narrow application of theory linked to practice. At this level, the student has demonstrated limited understanding of hardware and operating systems concepts.
The work should be of a satisfactory standard but may have significant shortcomings in some areas. The student has included the relevant background information in both a written and practical context but may not have offered them in an efficient manner leaving the final understand with areas to improve.
The student’s understanding of the knowledge and skills base developed through this module is excellent, evidenced by the thorough application of theory linked to practice. At this level, the student has demonstrated a clear understanding of the theory and practical concepts.
The work should be of an excellent standard overall. The written work will be correct on the whole and the student has included background information, referenced appropriately to cover the required outcomes. The student has demonstrated a high degree of personal responsibility for the nature and quality of outputs and has worked autonomously throughout.
In the context of the computing industry provide evidence of an ability to:
- Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the principles and concepts of Computer Systems and hardware architecture.
- Analyse how elements of a system meet requirements
- Demonstrate an understanding of the functionality and architecture of an operating system.
Teaching and Learning Strategy
- Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
- Numeracy - Proficiency in using numbers at appropriate levels of accuracy
- Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
- Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
- Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
- Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
Clements, A., 2006. Principles of Computer Hardware . Oxford University Press.
Englander, I., 2014. The Architecture of Computer Hardware, Systems Software & Networking: An information technology Approach . Wiley.
Galvin, P & Gagne, G & Silberschatz, A., 2012. Operating System Concepts. 9 th Ed. International Student Version.
Hennessey, J & Patterson, D., 2013. Computer Organisation and Design: The Hardware / Software Interface , Morgan Kauffman Series.
Courses including this module
Compulsory in courses:
- H300: BSc Applied Software Engineering (Degree Apprenticeship) year 1 (BSC/ASE)