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The complete and authoritative list of the skills covered by the ICDL and the modules into which they are grouped is the ICDL Syllabus. You can download a current copy of the Syllabus from the ECDL Web site by visiting http://www.ecdl.com/main/syllabus.php. For this book, we've relied on Version 4.0 of the Syllabus, which was released early in 2003. You'll find every objective from the Syllabus listed in the applicable chapters.
To read the Syllabus, you'll need the free Adobe Acrobat Reader, which you can download from http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html.
The following sections give you a brief overview of the skills covered by each ICDL module.
Module 1, Concepts of Information Technology, covers general information technology (IT), hardware, and software concepts. You need to be familiar with the main types of personal computer hardware and software, basic networking concepts, and the uses of computers in everyday life to pass this module. Legal, environmental, security, and health issues are included in the Module 1 material. You'll cover this module in Chapter 2.
Module 2, Using the Computer and Managing Files, tests your ability to perform common tasks that are necessary no matter which applications you're using. It includes working with the desktop, icons, and windows ; managing files; avoiding viruses; and sending things to your printer. Chapter 3 covers this material.
Module 3, Word Processing, tests basic word processing skills. You need to know how to create and save files, how to customize settings in your word processor, how to format text and documents, how to insert pictures and tables in a document, and how to print the results. Chapter 4 reviews these skills for you.
Module 4, Spreadsheets, covers basic spreadsheet concepts and uses. You'll be tested on creating and saving files, using formulas, formatting and copying data, working with charts and graphs, and checking and printing the final results. Chapter 5 covers this module.
Module 5, Databases, tests your ability to work with a desktop database application, such as Microsoft Access. The skills in this module include basic database concepts, working with tables and relationships, entering data through forms, retrieving data with queries and searches, and preparing reports on the contents of a database. This module is the subject of Chapter 6.
Module 6, Presentation, lets you demonstrate your competence at preparing presentations on your computer. You need to be able to create a presentation, add and format text and graphics, use various types of formatting, and insert organization charts and graphs. The module culminates with actually giving the presentation. Chapter 7 reviews the skills from the presentation module.
Module 7, Information and Communication, covers common parts of using the Internet and email. Topics include Web browsers; search engines; and sending, reading, and organizing your email. Chapter 8 covers these tasks and others from Module 7.
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