NB. Although A level ICT no longer exists, I have left these materials in case they are useful for other courses.

Below is a list of the topics examined by the ICT2 theory paper. By the end of the course, there will be entries in the Materials column for all sections of the course. Note that where there are Word documents and PowerPoint presentations for the same topic, they are not necessarily the same.




Data Capture

Describe methods of data capture and identify appropriate contexts for their use

Understand the concept of data encoding

Data Capture Methods PowerPoint presentation

(Data, Information and Knowledge for encoding)

Validation and Verification

Understand the difference between accuracy and validity

Explain sources of errors and how they could be overcome

Understand the difference between validation and verification

Describe appropriate data validation techniques

Validation and Verification

Organisation of data for effective retrieval

Describe methods of data capture and identify appropriate contexts for their use

Understand the concept of data encoding

Relational databases

Boolean operators (PowerPoint presentation)

You might also like to look at the Databases section of this web-site

Software: nature, capabilities and limitations

distinguish between systems and application software

describe the nature of generic, package and bespoke software

describe the functionality of internet software

describe the features of software that make it appropriate for particular users

explain the technical and human implications of upgrading software

explain the difficulties of thoroughly testing complex software

Software nature & capabilities

Generic software

Object Linking and Embedding (Word)

Upgrading and software evaluation

Manipulation and/or

Describe the different modes of operation: batch, interactive, transaction and real-time, identifying appropriate contexts for use.

Describe the characteristics of processing data in the form of text, pictures, numbers and sound.

Manipulation and Processing - PowerPoint presentation

Modes of Processing - Word document


Describe the need for suitable output formats and orderings to communicate the results of data interrogation and undertake report generation.

This section has been covered implicitly through other sections, including:

Relational databases

Hardware; nature, capabilities and limitations

Decribe the broad characteristics, capabilities and limitations of current input devices, storage devices, communication devices, processing devices and output devices, and identify appropriate contexts for their use

2-7 Nature of Hardware - PowerPoint presentation

2-7 Configurability of Hardware - Word document

Storage Media Comparison

Security of Data

Understand the importance of mechanisms for maintaining security

Understand the difference between privacy and security

Understand procedures to protect against accidental or malicious alteration

Understand the need for regular and systematic backups and procedures for recovery

Security of Data PowerPoint presentation

Security of Data Word document

Network Environments

Describe the characteristics and relative advantages of network and standalone environments

Decribe the difference between a Local area and a Wide area network

Describe the elements of network environments

Network environments

Human/Computer Interface

Understand the need to form an effective dialogue between humans and machines

Explain the need to design systems appropriate to both users and environments

Describe the advantages of common user interfaces

Describe the advantages and limitations of a natural language interface

User Interfaces (PowerPoint presentation)

NB. To move through a PowerPoint presentation that runs in a window (rather than full-screen), you need to use the PgUp and PgDn keys - don't ask me why!