ICT GCSE Lesson Plans

Personal Digital Devices

You need to be able to explain how the use of personal digital devices affects everyday life.

Digital devices allow people to communicate For Leisure For Travel
  • text messages
  • social networking sites
  • IM (instant messaging)
  • MMS Media messages
  • Voice calls
  • Video calls (SKYPE, VOIP)
  • Emails
High definition TV, Stream films, Music, Reading (E Book), Consoles, Digital photos Use deices on the move, GPS (Global positioning System), Tracking cars & vans


Using Digital Devices

Digital devices perform different things with many functions.

Audience & purpose Wants versus needs Important factors to consider
Designs of devices are thought of when you think of whom will be using and how.

e.g. older people need large screens, business person needs qwerty keyboard to write documents faster.

When choosing a digital device its important to weight up the wants  needs.

e.g wide screen but something portable

  1. battery life
  2. weight & size
  3. cost
  4. security
  5. reliability
  6. speed of internet connection & processor
  7. compatibility



Common Features

Processor There is a processor in all digital devices. It controls all functions. There are special micro processors.
Internal memory Memory is needed to store the program instructions and data. This is measured in bytes. **
Digital devices can store data i.e. computer contain high capacity hard disk. These are not portable as they contain moving parts.


Flash Memory This is a type of peripheral that is portable because:

  • It doesn’t lose data when turned off
  • It has no moving parts (solid state)
  • It is removable and can be used to transfer data
Types of flash memory – Secure Digital (SD) card stores up to 4GB
– Micro SD
– SDXC card stores up to 2 TB
– USB flash drive or memory stick stores up to 256 GB
– SDHC (high capacity) stores up to 32GB

**1 byte 1 kilobyte (KB)

= 1000 bytes

1 megabyte (MB)

= 1000

1 Gigabyte (GB)

= 1000 Megabytes

1 Terabyte (TB)

= 1000 Gigabytes

The memory size increases by multiples of 1000


Input & Out Devices

There are 3 types of Peripherals: storage devices, input devices (allow users to give instructions) and output devices allow users to see or hear after it has been processed.

Storage Input Output
Hard drives

SD cards…



Game controller


Docking stations





Digital devices connect to each other and share data.


Data cable connection Most common methods of data cable connection is a USB cable.
Bluetooth Allows wireless communication over short distances. Most devices can now connect to outputs devices such as printers and speakers.
Cloud synchronization Now that people have more wi fi enabled devices services such as I Cloud and drop box allow them to store and access files on a remote server.




Personal Computer

Desktop computers need input & output devices, hard disk drives & optical drives (CD &DVD). Connectivity with USB, blue tooth, HDMI. Easy to upgrade.
Laptops Powered by battery or electric supply. Built in input & output devices. Hard disk drives, optical drives & slots for SD cards. Less easy to upgrade.
Netbook computers Strong & robust. Small & Lightweight. Bootup quickly. Solid state SD cards as storage. No hard drive or optical drives (normally). Designed for internet & “cloud” computing.
Tablet computers Light & portable, battery powered. Touch screen. Virtual keyboards, cameras, designed for playing media & ebooks. Run apps like mobile phones.

This is a list of all the sections we need to cover for the written multiple choice exam. Please go through this section before the next lesson on the 7th December.

Know about different types of ICT systems and be able to give examples of where and how they are used Types of ICT systems: PCs, laptops and other portable devices, main frame and super computers, embedded computers, games consoles

Uses: retail, banking, administration, manufacturing, education, entertainment, communication, number crunching, simulations, modelling, stock control, logistics


Understand that an ICT system is made up hardware and software Hardware Input devices: for example keyboard, mouse, tracker ball, joystick, graphics tablet, scanner, digital camera, webcam, microphone, touch screen, OMR, OCR, bar code scanner, biometric scanner, magnetic stripe reader, chip and pin, sensors

Processing: processor, memory, ROM, RAM


Storage: for example hard disks, optical discs, flash memory, magnetic tape Output devices: for example monitor, printer, plotter, data projector, speakers, control devices


Software Systems software: for example operating system, system software tools Applications software: for example office productivity tools, web authoring, image and sound editing, presentation software, control software, project management software

Understand data storage capacity terminology Storage capacity terms: bit, byte and multiples of these (kb, mb, gb, tb)
Be able to select appropriate ICT systems to meet specified needs User needs: for example business, entertainment, education, communication Hardware: type/speed of processor, amount of memory, capacity of hard drive, external storage devices, type of monitor, type of printer, additional requirements, for example graphics card, sound card

Software: operating system, applications software

Settings: window size, mouse settings, icon size, screen resolution, desktop contrast, sound volume

Other considerations: range of facilities, versatility, speed of transmission, compatibility, performance

Understand that ICT devices can be linked together to form networks Networks: wired, wireless; LAN, WAN
Network components: cable, router, booster, wireless enabled devices (for example wi-fi, Bluetooth), media streaming devices IP address
Understand the benefits of establishing a network Benefits: shared peripherals, shared data, flexible access, media streaming, communication, control of user access rights, centralised administration, simultaneous access to the internet
Understand how data can be secured on a network Network security: log-ins and passwords, firewall, WEP/WPA, encryption, file access rights, transaction logs, backups
Understand requirements for connecting to the internet Hardware: modem, router, gateway, communication link Software: web browser, communication software

Type of connection: broadband, dial-up, wi-fi, VPN

Understand features of common internet services and be able to give examples of their use Sources of services: internet service provider (ISP)

Services: worldwide web, email, news groups, forums, chatrooms, instant messaging, search engines, filter software

Uses: e-commerce, advertising, news, education, entertainment, communication, socialising, customer support, software distribution

Understand the facilities and services available on an intranet Intranet: network of computers within a single organisation Facilities and services: company wide, noticeboards, central repository for information such as staff directory, forms
Understand the impact of ICT on individuals, organisations and society Impact on individuals Positive effects: flexible/mobile working, better access to information and services, new job opportunities, new skills requirements, new ways of learning, wider range of entertainment and leisure opportunities

Negative effects: potential job losses, less social interaction, reduced physical activity

Impact on organisations: improved communication, access to global markets, changes in the way information is managed and used, security issues

 Impact on society: social and moral effects of unrestricted internet access, widening gap between information rich and information poor

Understand legal issues relating to use/misuse of ICT and the constraints placed on individuals Legal issues: data protection, computer crime, fraud, copyright
Know about legal constraints on the use of information Constraints: use of personal data, music downloads, acknowledgement of sources, avoiding plagiarism, getting permission

This section outlines the final part of the written exam and the practical part.

Be able to select and use appropriate sources of ICT based and other forms of information which match requirements ICT-based: CDs, DVDs, text messages, podcasts, web logs, web-based reference sites

Others: newspapers, books, images, maps, conversations

Be able to select information that matches requirements from a variety of sources and evaluate fitness for purpose Fitness for purpose: recognise intention and authority of provider, currency of the information, relevance, bias
Be able to use appropriate search techniques and queries to locate and select relevant information Techniques: multiple search criteria, quotation marks, search within results, relational operators, logical operators, ‘find’ or search tool including wildcards



Be able to select and use software applications to meet needs and solve problems Software applications: word processing, spreadsheet, database, graphics, web authoring, presentation, audio and video editing software
Be able to enter, organise, develop, refine and format information, applying editing techniques to meet needs Organise: structure of information, document layout, headings, sub-headings, lists, tables, use of templates Edit: highlight, drag and drop, find, replace, undo, redo, templates
Be able to use appropriate page layout Layout: columns, margins, header, footer, portrait, landscape, page breaks, page numbering
Be able to enter and format text and tables to maximise clarity and enhance presentation Format text: bullets, numbering, sub-numbering, alignment, tabs, line spacing, colour, font, style, size,

Format tables: horizontal and vertical text alignment, merge and split cells, gridlines, borders, shading


Be able to obtain, insert, size, crop, alter and position images Images: clipart, photographs, scanned images, borders


Be able to enter, format, develop and analyse numerical information Data types: text, number Format: currency, %, number of decimal places, date, time, text wrap, row height, column width, gridlines, merged cells, cell borders Formulae: single operator, formulae with multiple operators, absolute and relative cell referencing Functions: SUM, AVG, IF THEN Additional features: linked tables, macros

Graphs and charts: pie chart, bar chart, single line graph, scattergram, appropriate format, titles, axis labels, legends


Be able to enter, organise and sort structured information Data types: logical/Boolean, alphanumeric/text, numeric (real and integer), date Structure: record, field, table, primary key/key field, related tables

Validation: range check, presence check, type check, length check Sort: single field, multiple fields, ascending/descending order Input: tables, forms

Search: single criterion, multiple criteria, search within results, relational operators, logical operators

Output: report, mail merge documents


Be able to bring together and organise different types of information to achieve a purpose Types of information: image, chart, text alignment, captions

Organise: text wrap, use of text boxes, behind, in front, grouping, animation, slide transition

Purpose: poster, newsletter, web page, leaflet, multi-media presentation

Be able to work accurately and proofread, using software facilities where appropriate for the task Software facilities: spellcheck, grammar check, print preview
Be able to produce information that is fit for purpose and audience using accepted layouts and conventions as appropriate Layouts: letter, memo, report, newsletter, leaflet, poster, web page, information sheet, multimedia presentation Conventions: salutation, complimentary close on letters, page numbers, headers and footers on reports, columns, date, issue number on newsletters


Know how to create, access, read and respond to email and other ICT-based communication Email: open, read, reply, forward, to, cc, bcc, add and open attachments
Be able to evaluate the effectiveness of solutions Effectiveness: assessing fitness for purpose, suggesting improvements


Be able to select and use interface features and system facilities effectively to meet needs Interface features: desktop, windows, dialogue box, menu, sub-menu, toolbar, scrollbar, drag and drop, zoom, minimise, maximise

System facilities: template, wizard

Be able to manage files and folder structures to enable efficient information retrieval Folders: create folders and sub-folders, name appropriately
Understand the need to create a safe working environment Health issues: ergonomic furniture, adjustable seating, appropriate lighting, taking breaks, wrist rests and other

Safety issues: arrangement of hardware and cables, avoid hazards

Understand potential risks to data and personal information Risks: accidental deletion, deliberate damage, for example viruses, unauthorised access
Understand methods available to secure data and personal information Data security: create backups, keep copies safe, keep password/PIN secret, regularly change password

Virus protection: use virus-checking software, treat files from unknown sources with caution

Prevention of unauthorised access: for example firewalls, encryption, adware, spyware

Understand the need to stay safe and respect others when using ICT-based communication Staying safe: avoid inappropriate disclosure of personal information/disclosure to unauthenticated sources, avoid misuse of images, use appropriate language, respect confidentiality, use copy lists with discrimination, use social networking sites with caution

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Below are 2 previous test papers for the ICT G.C.S.E exams.  We have already gone through one of the papers in the last lesson but please go over it again and give your answers. Answer the other question paper in your note books and we will go through all the answers in class.

May 2014

May 2015

We will be going through the 2 exam papers (see Dec 21st 2016)  in the lesson and making a short list of learning topics to go over for the following lesson on the 18th Jan 2017.

This lesson we will be revising topics which students have not understood or needs further explanation.  This is an opportunity for the students to list anything they have not understand from past lessons.

Mock examination – This is moved to next week.

Mock examination

Mock exam results