CPST 050 - Provincial Computer Studies: Applications

Using a project focus, students learn computer applications and skills to effectively solve problems in academic, work, and personal situations. Instruction includes a minimum of two of the following topics: information technology, publishing/presentation, advanced spreadsheets, database management, networking, programming, graphics, online technologies, and web publishing.


Hours: 120 (Lecture Hours: 40;  Laboratory Hours: 80)


Total Weeks:  20


i.“C” or higher in CPST040 or equivalent; or
ii.“C” or higher in ENGL040 or ENGL11 or equivalent or Provincial Level Placement on the CCP English Assessment; and
”C” or higher in CPST030 or equivalent.


Non-Course Prerequisites:




Course Content:
This computer studies course will cover a minimum of two of the following:
1. Current Technology
2. Publishing
3. Advanced Spreadsheets
4. Database Management
5. Networking
6. Programming
7. Graphics
8. Online Technologies
9. Web Publishing
10. Digital Art and Graphics
As far as possible, this course will be a hands-on, practical application course with a usable product at the end of the project. A project may be done for non-profit groups (newsletters, presentations, web pages, etc.), to help instructors prepare course materials, or (as a last resort) as part of a simulation.


Learning Outcomes:
Because of the wide and ever expanding nature of computing applications, it is both impossible and undesirable to include all outcomes in a single course. A computing studies course at the provincial level will consist of a minimum of two from the following categories.
It is expected that the learner will be able to:
1. Current Technologies
- Search the web efficiently (text, images, videos) for material relevant to a specific inquiry.
- Analyze websites critically for value, accuracy, potential malware, and bias.
- Critically evaluate "crowd sourcing" sites as research tools, e.g. opinions on consumer products, travel, health issues, and political issues.
- Identify privacy & security issues related to social networking and an online presence.
- Effectively communicate with email utilizing: address books, distribution lists, cc: and bcc: fields, attachments, effective subject lines, spam control.
- Identify email examples of phishing and other online fraudulent activity.
- Use folder (directory) management techniques for computer files, email, etc.
- Compare and contrast a variety of techniques, hardware and software that can be used to back-up computer data.
- Describe the importance of operating system and driver patches, and the processes by which these patches are downloaded and installed.
- Describe anti-virus and anti-malware software, virus & malware risks, scheduled scans and automatic updates.
2. Publishing
- Organize and present a variety of text, graphic and other data following appropriate design and layout procedures.
- Demonstrate the use of templates, wizards and other productivity tools.
- Merge documents and integrate tables, charts and graphics.
- Describe the various file formats used for text, graphics and publication files.
- Change file formats where possible.
- Create, modify and manipulate digital graphic images (e.g. scan, draw, paint).
- Retrieve a graphic/animation/sound file.
- Apply correct typographic principles involving font selection, point size, justification, kerning, bullets, headers and footers.
- Generate cross references, footnotes, indexes and tables of contents.
3. Advanced Spreadsheets
- Enter, format and edit data.
- Use and write formulas.
- Create and modify charts.
- Create reports.
- Manage and analyze data.
- Create macros or use a programming language to customize a spreadsheet.
- Design a spreadsheet to analyze, interpret and project outcomes in an applied situation.
4. Database Management
- Design and create flat file and relational databases.
- Maintain and modify the structure of existing databases.
- Correctly formulate queries.
- Create and edit forms.
- Create and edit reports.
- Explain various social and ethical issues involving databases.
5. Networking
- State advantages and disadvantages of using networks.
- Describe different network configurations (LAN, WAN, etc.).
- Describe and diagram different network topologies (point-to-point, star, bus, etc.).
- Describe the advantages and disadvantages of different network data transmission media (twisted pair, coaxial cable, optical fibre, and wireless).
- List and describe common network operating systems and network protocols.
- Describe various server models, including file servers and client/server systems.
- List Internet/intranet similarities and differences.
- Describe management issues, including traffic analysis and security.
6. Programming
- Test, debug, and modify program code.
- Define data types and assign meaningful identifiers to constants and variables.
- Use input statements to access the keyboard and use output statements to display text and graphics.
- Use conditional expressions to alter program flow.
- Use iteration structures to create loops.
- Write simple procedures.
- Write programs to demonstrate mathematical processing and simple character and graphic manipulations.
7. Graphics
- Acquire images using a scanner.
- Operate a digital camera and/or camcorder.
- Describe important specifications of a digital camera, including megapixels, optical zoom and digital zoom -transfer digital pictures to a computer.
- Change the resolution of a digital image.
- Change aspect ratio of a digital image.
- Identify various graphic file formats and perform conversions from one type to another.
- Crop, resize, and rotate a digital image.
- Convert a colour digital image to a greyscale image.
- Adjust brightness and contrast of a digital photograph.
- Apply a variety of filter effects to a digital photograph.
8. Online Technologies
- Develop an online electronic portfolio which contains projects that demonstrate the learner’s proficiency with computer software.
- Describe the concept of cloud computing, and utilize cloud-based applications such as: word processing, spreadsheets, online collaboration, photo-editing, online storage.
- Utilize electronic means for time and calendar management, task (to do) lists, user ID management, notes and bookmark (favourite) synchronization.
- Create and publish a blog, which includes text, pictures, and hyperlinks.
- Add and update an entry on a wiki.
- Create and publish an online video (podcast).
- Describe software that can be used to remotely access another computer.
- Describe the process for setting up a home wireless network, configuring encryption, and having computers connect to the network. - Connect to wireless networks in other locations.
- Describe the benefits of Bluetooth technology, examples of Bluetooth devices, and Bluetooth setup procedures.
- Compare and contrast various mobile computing technologies.
9. Web Publishing
- Create web pages to present text, graphics, and other data using appropriate design and layout.
- Use fonts, font sizes, headings, justification, and tables in a web page appropriately.
- Use both a WYSIWYG editor and an HTML editor in the creation of web pages
- Recognize the various file formats used for text, graphics, sound, and animation.
- Locate and retrieve files (graphics, animations, sounds) from the internet.
- Explain the implications of copyright and copyleft (eg. GNU GPL, Creative Commons, etc.).
- Create hyperlinks on text and graphics.
- Create internal (relative) and external (absolute) hyperlinks in a web page.
- Create a navigation scheme to move between web pages on a web site.
- Use accessibility features (eg. alt text).
- Use meta tags (eg. description, keywords, title).
- Use JavaScript in web pages.
- Use Cascading Style Sheets (CSS).
- Use templates, wizards, and other productivity tool in the creation of web pages.
- Create an image map.
10. Digital Art and Graphics
- Create basic digital shapes.
- Describe the difference between bitmap and vector images.
- Select, move and align objects.
- Transform objects, including rotation, scaling and reflecting.
- Create and format graphic text.
- Position text on a path.
- Create colours and gradients.
- Apply colours and gradients to text and other digital objects.
- Draw straight and curved lines.
- Trace a scanned object or digital photograph.
- Create and manipulate layers.


Grading System: Letters


Passing Grade:  D (50%)


Percentage of Individual Work: 100


Textbooks are subject to change. Please contact the bookstore at your local campus for current book lists.