Systems And Networks COMPSCI4043

  • Academic Session: 2019-20
  • School: School of Computing Science
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: No
  • Available to Erasmus Students: No

Short Description

To introduce the structure and function of computer systems, in particular:

To introduce the concept of representation of data.

To provide a general understanding of what computers are and how they work.

To provide background helpful for better understanding the behaviour of programming languages, compilers, and operating systems.

To convey understanding of descriptions of computer systems and projections of future trends.

Timetable

Two one-hour lectures, one-hour tutorial, one-hour lab session per week.

Requirements of Entry

None

Excluded Courses

None

Co-requisites

None

Assessment

Examination 80%, coursework 20%

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? No

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

 

The coursework cannot be redone as it is impossible to generate an equivalent piece of coursework which replicates the original one because of the follow-up work which was done subsequent to the original submission.

Course Aims

To introduce the structure and function of computer systems, in particular:

To introduce the concept of representation of data.

To provide a general understanding of what computers are and how they work.

To provide background helpful for better understanding the behaviour of programming languages, compilers, and operating systems.

To convey understanding of descriptions of computer systems and projections of future trends.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of the course students will be able to:

1. Describe the main components of a computer system;

2. Describe the concepts of digital representation, bits and words;

3. Work with the binary and two's complement representation of numbers and convert between these and decimal numbers;

4. Explain how the behaviours of signed and unsigned operations are caused by the underlying representation;

5. Describe of how basic control constructs and algorithms are translated to machine language;

6. Compare critically two machine architectures at the instructions set level;

7. Describe the central functions of an operating system;

8. Describe how virtual memory works, together with its benefits and limitations;

9. Describe how end systems and routers are connected in the Internet;

10. Explain the main levels of abstraction in computer networks.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least one assessed exercise.