Level 4 Professional Diploma in Education in Computing and IT

Technology dominates the way we live, work, socialise and play – and computing and IT skills are increasingly essential in today's workplace. UKAP diploma gives you an excellent foundation for a wide variety of IT-related careers. Finance, government, business, commerce, public services and the voluntary sector are all critically dependent on computing and IT systems. Whether you want to gain confidence using and managing IT, grasp new opportunities or develop software solutions, there’s a study route for you.

 

Key features of the course

·        A flexible diploma with a choice of routes through

·        Choose options from computer science, digital technologies, software development, solutions development, or networking

·        Enhances your employability

·        Builds a solid foundation for further study.

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This degree has three stages, each comprising 120 credits (equivalent to one year's full-time university study). Stage 1 provides the underpinning knowledge and skills needed for more advanced study at Stages 2 and 3.

If you have little or no knowledge or experience of studying, you may prefer to start your studies with an Access module as an additional preparatory stage.

 

Stage 1 (120 credits)

You’ll gain an understanding of concepts, techniques and issues encountered in computing and IT; covering topics such as programming, networking and operating systems. You’ll also develop key employability skills and study some mathematics – your choice of module will depend on your confidence and experience. By the end of this stage, you’ll have built a solid foundation for further study.

 

Compulsory modules (90 credits)

·        My digital life (BU100)

My digital life takes you on a journey from the origins of information technology through to the familiar computers of today, and on to tomorrow’s radical technologies.

·        Technologies in practice (TB129)

Study three tasters in computing and IT, robotics, networking, and Linux, to develop the skills needed if you are considering future employment in this industry.

Optional module (30 credits)

Select one of:

·        Discovering mathematics (BU103)

·        Essential mathematics 1 (MBT134)

Learning outcomes

The qualification provides opportunities for you to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, qualities, skills and other attributes in the following areas:

 

Knowledge and understanding

On completion of this diploma, you will be able to:

·        demonstrate knowledge and understanding of relevant principles and concepts underlying computing and IT

·        apply correctly common techniques for the design and development of computing and IT systems

·        demonstrate awareness of the range of situations in which computing and IT systems are used and the ways in which people interact with them

·        demonstrate an appreciation of the ethical, social and legal issues that can be associated with the deployment of computing and IT systems.

 

Educational aims

Professionals working in the IT sector bring many different kinds of expertise to their work. The aim of this diploma is to equip you with the knowledge and skills you will need to underpin a career in this sector. As well as developing your knowledge and understanding of the fundamental technologies and techniques, and the issues involved in their application, it will also:

·        prepare you to keep ahead in a rapidly changing subject area by helping you to develop as an independent learner

·        develop relevant skills in communication, numeracy, and collaborative working

·        enable you to apply your learning in your private, social and professional life.

And, depending on the pathway you choose through the diploma, you may gain:

·        practical experience in the use of information and communication technologies

·        an understanding of the types of software and ICT systems that are now being constructed and used, such as distributed internet systems, intelligent systems and databases, and the digital network that underlies the internet itself

·        a grasp of the key concepts of computing and of modern computer systems

·        skills in the main tasks that are carried out as software is built and maintained, such as analysis, design, programming and evaluation.

 

Knowledge and understanding

On completion of this diploma, you will be able to:

·        demonstrate knowledge and understanding of relevant principles and concepts underlying computing and IT

·        apply correctly common techniques for the design and development of computing and IT systems

·        demonstrate awareness of the range of situations in which computing and IT systems are used and the ways in which people interact with them

·        demonstrate an appreciation of the ethical, social and legal issues that can be associated with the deployment of computing and IT systems.

Cognitive skills

On completion of this diploma, you will be able to:

·        apply correctly key computing and IT concepts in a range of contexts

·        apply appropriate techniques and tools for abstracting, modelling, problem-solving, designing and testing computing and IT systems

·        compare and contrast, specifications and implementations of software systems and/or simple hardware systems

·        reflect on what you achieve in your studies, and how you might improve your performance.

 

Practical and/or professional skills

On completion of this diploma, you will be able to:

·        analyse, design, evaluate and/or test information technology systems

·        recognise and record your skills and knowledge to support your personal and/or your career goals

·        plan, monitor and review your progress as an independent learner

·        identify and explain the ethical, social and legal issues that may arise during the development and use of Computing and IT systems

·        use ICT tools and numerical skills, as appropriate, to help you learn effectively.

 

Key skills

On completion of this diploma, you will be able to:

·        communicate information, arguments and ideas effectively, using the styles and language appropriate to your subject, purpose and audience

·        work in a group, communicating effectively in a distance setting where the communication is computer-mediated

·        work independently, planning, monitoring and reviewing your own learning

·        find, assess and use information from a variety of sources, using information technology where necessary

·        use appropriate numerical and analytical techniques to solve problems

·        understand a range of technological problems and apply suitable techniques for solving them.

 

Teaching, learning and assessment methods

You will learn independently, using the following types of material, provided by us:

   printed and online teaching texts

    multimedia packages, on DVD and online

  directed readings from textbooks and papers

     specialised software tools.

We will support your learning with:

·        self-assessment questions and exercises, included in the teaching texts

·        programming tasks, computer-based investigations and open-ended project work

·        feedback and guidance from a tutor; tutorials, revision and day-schools

·        e-mail and computer conferences

·        study guides.

 

We will assess your learning with:

·        tutor-marked assignments

·        multiple-choice computer marked assignments

·        interactive computer-marked assignments

·        formal examinations

·        progress reports.

 

Cognitive skills are promoted in the teaching materials via a range of activities including self-assessment exercises, multi-media tasks and computer-based investigations. They are supported by tutor led discussions and activities at regional tutorials and day schools. Online forums provide an environment for interaction bringing students, tutors and module team members together for critical discussion and guidance. Tutor feedback aids the development of these skills.

Cognitive skills are assessed by questions asking for the application of concepts in new situations, for analysis, for synthesis, etc., (TMAs and examination) and also by more open-ended design, investigative and project activities (TMAs and examinable component).

Key skills are explicitly taught and developed within the teaching materials and are supported by tutor feedback and guidance on TMAs. There is a progressive development of key skills through the levels of the degree.

Key skills are assessed by TMAs, by examinations where practicable and by examinable components.

Practical and professional skills are developed through the teaching materials and are supported by tutor feedback and guidance on TMAs.

Practical skills are assessed by TMAs and examinable components. Some professional skills are developed but not assessed.

 

Credit transfer

If you have already studied at university level, you may be able to count it towards your Open University qualification – reducing the number of modules you need to study. It’s not just study completed at a university that can be considered, you can transfer study from a wide range of professional qualifications as well. A full list of the qualifications and institutions we can consider for credit transfer can be found on our credit transfer website.

You should apply for credit transfer before you register, at least 4 weeks before the registration closing date. We will need to know what you studied, where and when and you will need to provide original evidence of your previous study. We will compare this against the learning outcomes for your chosen qualification and inform you of any award.

 

Entry requirements

None

Study method

 

Distance Learning

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