Computer Applications | Syllabus

For a printer-friendly summary of the course information, click on this Course Description document.

The effective use of computers involves applying knowledge of software applications to problems in the real world. In this course, we will not only learn how to use these tools, but will also apply them to a practical project. The course activities will proceed along two parallel tracks.

In the project track, you will choose a real-world project or client to focus on. This might be a small startup company, a club or group, a nonprofit organization, a band or theater company, etc. You will prepare a series of documents related to the project, including a written proposal, financial analysis, marketing materials, website, and presentation.

In the tools track, you will learn how to use the essential software applications that enable you to prepare the required documents for the project. These include the Microsoft Office tools Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher, and Access. In addition to the project documents, you will develop a personal resume and portfolio.

There will be a series of short assignments, typically one per week during the semester. Assignments will be due the following Monday, but you will have time during class to work on them, in order to use the computers and required software. At the end of the course, we will share our project work with each other, practicing giving short presentations to the class.

Each week, we will spend approximately two days on the project track and two days on the tools track, typically with one day of lecture or demo and one day of lab work for each. Fridays will be reserved for other activities such as guest speakers, discussions or debates about topical issues in technology and culture, or project work sessions.

Here is a chart of the course schedule that will will follow during the semester.

For a printer-friendly version of the schedule chart, click on this Course Schedule document.