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This programme is designed for people who wish to gain an understanding of principles and practice of PC Technology and undertake diagnostics and fault finding. No prior knowledge is required except computer literacy skills.

The course is divided into modules as follows:

1. Introduction to PC Hardware
2. Operating System
3. An Introduction to the Internet
4. PC Hardware Components
5. Input/Output Devices
6. Diagnostics and Fault Finding
7. Data Communications & an Introduction to Networks
8. Case Study

The PC masterclass course comes with a comprehensive software library

Students may study over any timescale of up to one year. To complete the course will take in the region of 100-120 hours of study.

Your study pack contains everything required to complete your course and no further purchases are necessary.

This course is assessed through a series of tutor marked assignments. No attendance at an exams centre is required.


The course is accredited at level 2 by ASET, a leading awarding body recognised by the UK Qualifications and Curriculum Authority.

Students receive tutor support for a full one year from registration plus unlimited access to the student helpline during working hours.





The course is organised into a series of individual lessons, each with its own practical exercises and assignments, which are briefly described as follows.


Lesson 1 - Introduction to PC Hardware

This lesson is designed to provide you with an overview of the development of computer technology from its inception more than 50 years ago to today’s powerful desktop systems. You will learn the basics about the major components of a computer system and how they combine to provide a cohesive system capable of processing millions of instructions per second. You will also learn about the main components of Microsoft’s Windows operating system.


The following topics are covered by this lesson:

·         A short history of the computer

·         Computer numbering Systems

·         PC hardware components overview

·         The role of computer operating systems

·         Introducing the Windows operating system

·         Lesson Review/Assignments.



Lesson 2 - Operating System

This lesson introduces you to the major Windows Operating System functions (including Windows 95/98/NT/ME/2000/XP) and is suitable for novices and experienced users alike.


The main topics covered are:

·         The function of an Operating System

·         A History of Windows, Installing the Windows Operating System

·         Windows overview and glossary

·         The Start Menu and Task Bar

·         The Desktop and Clipboard, Windows Explore

·         The Programs Menu

·         The Windows Control Panel

·         Windows Accessories

·         the Microsoft Network and Dial-up Networking

·         Setting up Printers

·         Lesson Review/Assignments.



Lesson 3 – An Introduction to the Internet

On completion of this lesson, you will understand the terminology of the Net and be aware of both its history and its current status; you will learn about some of the basic web page design principles and be introduced to HTML, the language of the Internet.






The main topics covered include:

·         Getting started and installing your software

·         Getting connected to the Internet

·         Choosing the right Internet Service Provider

·         Setting up and registering your own Website

·         A guided tour of the Internet

·         An Introduction to Internet Explorer

·         Email with Outlook Express

·         An Introduction to HTML

·         An Introduction to Microsoft’s FrontPage

·         Lesson Review/Assignments.



Lesson 4 – PC Hardware Components

This lesson describes the individual components of a Personal Computer, identifying each component and discussing its function and connections in a precise but simple style avoiding the usual jargon found in most textbooks and hardware manuals.


The following components are described in detail:

·         The power supply

·         The motherboard and its on-board components

·         Processors, RAM (Memory)

·         Data Storage Devices

·         Parallel and serial interfaces

·         Video, Graphics and Sound Cards

·         Lesson Review/Assignments.



Lesson 5 – Input/Output Devices

This lesson is designed to provide you with a thorough briefing on the principles of Input and Output Devices and Other External Devices.


The following topics are covered:

·         Modems

·         Monitors

·         The Keyboard and Mouse

·         Other Peripheral Devices

·         Lesson Review/Assignments.



Lesson 6 – Diagnostics and Fault Finding

This lesson takes you step-by-step through the fault finding procedures required to diagnose a range of problems and solutions connected with a faulty PC; all you need is a screwdriver and perhaps a little help from your Course Director! The detailed yet simple instructions, together with close-up photographs and drawings take you through each procedure. 


The following topics are covered:

·         Important safety information

·         PC case layout and I/O device connections

·         Identifying the key Motherboard components

·         Dealing with boot failure

·         Diagnosing hard disk drive problems

·         Diagnosing floppy disk drive problems

·         Creating a boot disk

·         Diagnosing CD-ROM problems

·         Windows operating system problems

·         System diagnostic tools

·         The “Snooper” System Information Utility

·         Diagnosing printer problems

·         Other useful diagnostic tools

·         Hardware and software conflicts

·         Preventative maintenance procedures

·         Lesson Review/Assignments.



Lesson 7: Data Communications & an Introduction to Networks

This lesson will look at how different data types (voice, data, image and video) is transmitted using technology and the various transmission media required to perform the data transfer, as well as the fundamentals to data communication and cost.


The main topics covered include:

·         Data transmission

·         Fundamentals of Data Communications

·         Asynchronous and Synchronous Communications

·         Transmission Efficiency

·         An Introduction to Networks

·         Ethernet Alternative Network Technologies

·         Lesson Review/Assignments.



Lesson 8: Case Study

This lesson comprises of a practical assignment designed to test your understanding of the entire course.



The PCmasterclass course comes with a comprehensive software library which includes:


Anti Virus Personal Edition, Acrobat Reader 5.05, Internet Explorer 6, Winzip 8.1, Photoshop 6.0 (Trial), Ultimate Paint 1.91, Modem Booster 3.0, Modem Doctor 2.0, Active Backup Expert Pro, Bonzai System Checker, File Revival 1.0, Registry First Aid 2.5, Tweak UI, Advanced Startup Manager 1.4 + Much Much More.



Advantages of this distance learning course:
  • Home Study: you declare when you study, no need to attend class at fixed times and fixed dates. Your study hours fit around you!
  • We will post all the beautifully printed course materials to you. Everything is written in a clear and easy-to-understand format.
  • Start this course anytime of the year! No need to wait until the new academic year starts. Enroll today so soon you'll start improving your CV or re-skill for your new career.
  • Create your own study routine, learn at your own pace, complete your course as quickly or slowly as your circumstance dictate.
  • Your home learning is totally supported by experienced tutors who guide, encourage and assess your progress. You will not be alone because all our tutors are friendly and approachable.


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Questions about this course? Contact Student Support / Course Advisors

Enrol by phone: call 0845 65 22 187 quote course code 199

Enrol by post: print this postal form.

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