Computer Science has rational thinking at its core; combining human and computer intelligence to provide intelligent solutions to problems. Choosing to study International A-level Computer Science can open doors to various career opportunities in data science, web development, product management and software development, or prepare you for higher education at university.
In this engaging online computer science course, you’ll study communication and Internet technologies, software development, artificial intelligence, data representation and much more. As you study, you’ll develop key skills such as abstraction, decomposition and algorithmic thinking.
What you will learn
Unit 1 - Information Representation
Binary Number System
Binary Coded Decimal
Bits, Bytes and Binary
Analogue and Digital Sound
Unit 2 - Communication and Internet Technologies
Wireless Networking, CSMA and SSID
Structure of the Internet
Packet Switching and Routers
Client-Server and Peer-to-Peer
Client Server Model
Unit 3 - Hardware
Computers and their components
Creating logic circuits
Interpreting the results of a truth table
Unit 4 - Processor Fundamentals
Central Processing Unit
The Fetch-Decode-Execute Cycle
Unit 5 - System Software
Operating systems (OS)
Programming language classification
Unit 6 - Security, Privacy and Data Integrity
MALWARE – malicious software
Unit 7 - Ethics and Ownership
Ethics and ownership
The rise of artificial intelligence
The Computer Misuse Act 1990
Data Protection Act (1998)
Copyright, Designs and Patents Act (1998)
Introduction to software licences
Unit 8 - Databases
Flat file databases
Relational database model
Database Management Systems (DBMS)
Data Definition Language (DDL) and Data Manipulation Language (DML)
Common data types
Unit 9 - Fundamental Problem Solving - Algorithm Design and Problem Solving
Abstraction and decomposition
Solving logic problems
Unit 10 - Fundamental Problem Solving - Data Types and Structures
Data Types and Records
Searching and sorting algorithms
Files and Exception Handling
Abstract Data Types (ADT)
Unit 11 - Fundamental Problem Solving - Programming
Complex Boolean Expressions
The CASE Statement
Unit 12 - Fundamental Problem Solving - Software Development
Program Development Life Cycle
The Waterfall Model
Iterative and Rapid Application Development
Program Testing and Maintenance
Unit 13 - Advanced Theory - Data Representation
User Defined Data Types
File Organisation and Access
Floating-Point Numbers, Representation and Manipulation
Precision and Normalisation
Unit 14 - Advanced Theory - Communication and Internet Technologies
the TCP/IP Model
Unit 15 - Advanced Theory - Hardware and Virtual Machines
Processors, Parallel Processing and Virtual Machines
Comparing RISC and CISC
Boolean Algebra and Logic Gates
De Morgan’s Laws
Unit 16 - Advanced Theory - System Software
Purposes of an Operating System
IO Device Management
Unit 17 - Advanced Theory - Security
Encryption Protocols and Digital Certificates
Types of Encryption
The Electronic Communications Act (2000)
Unit 18 - Advanced Theory - Artificial Intelligence
Unit 19 - Computational Thinking and Problem Solving
Abstract Data Types
Big O Notation
Unit 20 - Further Programming
Imperative (High Level) Programming
Files Processing and Exception Handling
Inputs and Outputs
Cambridge Assessment International Education (CAIE) is the world’s largest provider of A-level courses and GCSE courses, qualifications and exams, delivering assessments to over 8 million learners in over 170 countries.
Recognised through UCAS
This course carries UCAS points. This means that it can be used to gain direct access to University courses and other Higher Education, through the UCAS system.
After completing the course, you will be awarded the qualification: A-level Computer Science, issued by CAIE (Cambridge Assessment International Education. This syllabus (9618) has been selected specifically because it is best suited to distance learning. Your certificate will be identical to that issued in any other school, college or university.
How is this course assessed or examined?
You can enrol now for A-level Computer Science examinations for Summer 2024.
You will be expected to complete three standard A-level Computer Science written exams and one practical exam:
Paper 1: 1 hour 30 minutes, 25% of A-level, 75 marks.
Paper 2: 1 hour 30 minutes, 25% of A-level, 75 marks.
Paper 3: 2 hours 30 minutes, 25% of A-level, 75 marks.
2 hours 30 minutes, 25% of A-level, 75 marks.
As part of the practical exam, you will submit complete program code and evidence of testing and will be required to use either Java, VB.NET or Python programming languages.
In order to study this course, you will need to have achieved a maths GCSE or the equivalent. If you wish to study computer science at a degree level, then you’ll need to combine this qualification with A-level maths, as this is a requirement at many universities. It is a difficulty level three: the equivalent difficulty of an A-level or BTEC, usually suitable for most learners of all ages.
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