Module Identifier MA12810  
Academic Year 2001/2002  
Co-ordinator Mr David Jones  
Semester Semester 2  
Other staff Dr J Basterfield  
Pre-Requisite C grade or better in GCSE Mathematics (or equivalent).  
Course delivery Lecture   20 x 1 hour lectures  
  Practical   11 x 2 hours practicals.  
Assessment Continuous assessment   There will be 3 practical assignments (one on each package). The best 2 of these 3 pieces of work will provide the coursework assessment. Each will contribute 25%.   50%  
  Exam   2 Hours (written examination)   50%  
  Resit assessment   The resit assessment will, at the examining boards discretion, consist of an assignment to be carried out during the long vacation and/or a 2-hour exam.    

General description

Throughout, the emphasis is on the use of the computer system as a tool to facilitate the presentation and analyses of data gained, perhaps, by experiment or field-work. Through familiarity with a variety of packages and their online help systems, students will be enabled to come to terms with a new packages more easily and become aware of their capabilities.


This module provides an introduction to three very different packages: a microcomputer spreadsheet package, a statistics package and a mainframe graphics suite. The packages offer contrasting user interfaces. The philosophy of the course will be to provide students with tools that they can use elsewhere in their studies.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:


1. SPREADSHEET: Overview of spreadsheets; entering and formatting information; formulae and functions; copying cell contents; manipulating a (large) spreadsheet; why spreadsheets?
2. STATISTICS PACKAGE: Overview of the package; some commands; use of the help facility; input of data files; data manipulation and correction; exploratory data analysis.
3. GRAPHICS SYSTEM: Introduction to the system; archiving and printing; data organisation and input; data operators graphs and groups; interpolation; types of map; viewpoint.
4. DEBRIEFING: Some lecture time each week will be devoted to a debriefing on the previous practical.

Reading Lists