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How Computers Work: Demystifying Computation

CO206 Online course

Explore the fundamentals of computing - computer architecture, binary logic, data processing, circuits, and more.

Key stage 3 Key stage 4
Free online course Join now 2 hours per week

On this course, you’ll gain an understanding of how computers work at a fundamental level.

You’ll explore system architecture, along with how computers use binary and logic. Once you’ve examined the von Neumann model of computer architecture and the Fetch-Execute cycle, you’ll learn to build a range of simple circuits for maths, and then simulate various logic gates.

Ultimately you’ll complete the course with an understanding of the processes that underpin every modern computer - from supercomputers to smartphones, and everything in between.

You will:

  • Explore how transistors can act as digital switches and be combined to create logic gates.
  • Produce truth tables for AND, NOT and OR gates, individually or combined
  • Explore how computers use binary arithmetic
  • Explore how logic gates can be combined to produce digital circuits that can perform a calculation
  • Investigate Von Neuman Architecture and the Fetch-Execute cycle

This course is part of the Teach GCSE computer science certificate.

Teach GCSE computer science

Our certified professional development programme will equip you with the subject knowledge and confidence to successfully teach and lead GCSE computer science.

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Also part of Teach GCSE computer science:

An Introduction to Computer Networking for Teachers

Build your knowledge and understanding of computer networks as a computer science teacher

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Design and Prototype Embedded Computer Systems

Discover embedded system design and work your way through the product design lifecycle.

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GCSE Computer Science - developing outstanding teaching

This course helps teachers of GCSE to develop their classroom practice and deliver outstanding teaching of GCSE computer science

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