Course Syllabus Course Outline Interesting Web Links

Business Science Math & Technology Division
Germantown Campus
CA106 – Computer Use and Management


John Coliton

Acrobat Version


HT 423 (240-567-6947)

Fall, 2008 –CRN 21813

Office Hours*:

Monday: 2:30 – 3:30 p.m.

HT 138 – M//W/F 9:00 a.m. – 9:50 a.m.


Wednesday: 2:30 – 3:30 p.m.

Department Phone: 240-567-7722


Thursday: 12:30 –1:30 p.m.




* I will be either in HT423 (my office) or HT230 (computer lab) for office hours

Course Description

An introduction to computers, operating systems, and Internet basics. Topics include file and hard drive management, customizing the Windows environment, transferring data between applications, installing and running hardware and software, utilizing e-mail, and effectively finding, using, and downloading information, software, and research materials from the Internet. Assessment levels: EL 103/EN 002, RD 099/103. Three hours lecture each week.

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, the student should be able to:

Development and Enhancement of Non-technical Skills


Speak and write about the topics in this course with confidence and proficiency
Apply critical thinking tools to a variety of scenarios related to the topics in this course

Hardware and software basics


Identify the microcomputer, its components, and their basic functions.
Identify the types and uses of software.

Operating systems basics


Explain the need for an operating system and its major functions.
Identify, compare and contrast the use of a text-based operating system and a graphical user interface (GUI).

Operating System Interfaces


Demonstrate the use of graphical user interface and explain similarities and differences

Windows environment


Navigate, manage and customize the Windows environment

File management


Format disks, manage files, backup files, organize files, compress files, locate files and access files

Data exchange


Transfer data among Windows applications

Accessory Programs


Utilize the accessories available with Windows

Internet Basics


Define what is needed to access the Internet.
Describe how the Web works.
Demonstrate how e-mail works and how to attach files to e-mail messages.
Identify the different types of search engines and utilize them appropriately.
Identify the basic principles of networking.
Define domain names and IP addresses.



Demonstrate how electronic mail works.
Demonstrate sending attachments and scanned graphics.
Define anti-spam software.

Social issues and the Internet


Analyze the social impact of the Internet including privacy, censorship, fraud, copyright, security, viruses, firewalls, cookies, and other related topics.

Introduction to HTML


Use a text editor(Notepad/Simple Text-Mac) to create a single page, HTML document that contains text and headers (<html><head><title><body><p><h1>).
Define graphic formats for the Web.
Perform file transfer.
Upload files over the Internet using FTP.
Download and install software from the Internet.
Define freeware, shareware, and what should and should not be downloaded from the Internet.

Course Materials

The text is: “New Perspectives: Microsoft Windows XP Professional for Power Users – Update Edition” by Harry Phillips is available in the bookstore. Additionally three floppy disks will be required to save projects.

Attendance Policy

“Students are expected to attend all class sessions. The instructor may drop the student from the class in cases involving excessive absences. ‘Excessive absences’ is defined as one more absence than the number of classes per week during a fall or spring semester;,”  2007-2008 College Catalog – page 59. For this course excessive absences are four or more.

Important Dates

The last day to drop the class with a refund is: September 9, 2008
The last day to change to audit is: September 23, 2008
The last day to drop a class without a grade is: September 23, 2008
The last day to drop a class with a grade of “W” is: November 18, 2008

Cancellation of Class or Altered Opening/Closing Times

If inclement weather forces the College or any campus or College facility to suspend classes or close, public service announcements will be provided to local radio and television stations as early as possible. Unless you hear an announcement that classes are cancelled or the College is closed, you should assume classes will be held. The College makes its decision to close independently of Montgomery County Public Schools.

If the College opens or closes at a time when more than 50% of a class period will be missed, that class will be cancelled for the day.  For example, if the College is closing at 5:00 p.m., a class that begins at 4:45 p.m. would not meet. If less than 50% of a class will be missed, that class will meet for the remaining portion of its regularly scheduled time.  For example, if the College opens at 11:00 a.m., a class that begins at 10:55 a.m. will meet, starting at 11:00 a.m. For the most up-to-date information regarding College openings, closings, or emergencies, all students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to sign up for email and text alerts via the Montgomery County MC ALERT at

Disability Support

Any student who may need an accommodation due to a disability, please make an appointment to see me during my office hours. A letter from Disability Support Services (R-CB122; G-SA175; or TP-ST120) authorizing your accommodations will be needed. Any student who may need assistance in the event of an emergency evacuation must identify to the Disability Support Services Office; guidelines for emergency evacuations for individuals with disabilities are found at:   

Student Conduct

The student code of conduct is outlined on pages 17 - 19 of the 2008-2009 Student Insider’s Guide. In part it states “The College believes in the premise that students are adults who are responsible for their own actions and who should be free to pursue their educational objectives in an environment that promotes learning, protects the integrity of the academic process, and protects the College community.”

Grading Policy and Procedure

Grading is based on position papers, homework assignments, a term project, and two tests. The position papers will be short summaries (1 page) recapping what was discussed by a guest speaker. The homework may be started in class if time permits, but will be completed outside of class time, and will require the book to be completed.  Homework will be assigned on Fridays and is typically due the following Wednesday at the beginning of class. Homework submitted late (even five minutes) will be accepted for half its potential value. Late work will not be accepted after the last class of the semester. The term project will require accounting for the guest speakers positions, doing additional research, ad suggesting if and when the college should adopt the Windows Vista operating system. The midterm and final will be drawn from the reading and lecture material and are open book. Make-up exams are not typically granted without a bona fide reason for missing the exam (court date or military service are examples). This class may be audited (taken without the expectation of a grade) with my permission and the proper form submitted to the records office. Someone who audits the class is still expected to participate in class and complete all projects.

The grading is allocated as follows:

Homework Assignments (6 @ 15 pts. each)
Position Papers (6 @ 10 pts. each)
Term Project
Total Points:

The following distribution of points will be used to determine final grades:

A     = 360  -    400  (90 - 100%)
B     =  320  -    359 (80 - 90%)
C     = 280  -    319 (70 - 80%)
D    = 240  -    279 (60 - 70%)
F     = 0      -    239 (0 - 60%)

Lecture Topics and Schedule of Reading Assignments

Day Reading Topic
9/3 ITE1 - 32 Introduction and Essential Computer Concepts
      • Get the book and 3 diskettes
9/8 Chpt. 1 Windows XP Operating System
9/15 Chpt. 2 Customizing Windows XP

• hmwk. #1 – Chapter #2, Case Problem #3 – due 9/24
Changed to Case Problem #2 with modifications

9/22   Internet and Email Basics
9/29 Chpt. 3   Windows XP File Systems
      • hmwk. #2 – Chapter #3, Case Problem #3 – due 10/6
10/6 Chpt. 4 Creating and Customizing Shortcuts
      • hmwk. #3 – Chapter #4, Case Problem #2 – due 10/22
10/13   Review and Midterm Exam
10/20 Chpt. 5 Using OLE Technologies (revised schedule)
      • hmwk. #4 – Chapter #5, Case Problem #4 – due 10/29
10/27 Chpt. 7 Optimizing Disks
      • alternate hmwk#3 assignment - Chapter #7, Case Problem #4 - due 11/7
11/3   Introduction to HTML
11/10 Chpt. 8 Safeguarding Your Computer
      • hmwk. #5 – Chapter #8, Case Problem #4 – due 11/19
11/17 Chpt. 9 Using Troubleshooting Tools
      • hmwk. #6 – Chapter #9, Case Problem #3 – due 12/3
11/24   Review Term Project
12/1 Chpt. 12 Installing and Troubleshooting Hardware
12/8   Installing and Troubleshooting Hardware (con’t.)
12/17   Final Exam (Wednesday 12/17 – 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.)