Below is this year’s WAEC syllabus for Computer Science. Note that this syllabus is for both Internal and external candidates.
PREAMBLE for Computer Science
This examination syllabus is developed from the National Curriculum for Senior Secondary School Computer Studies. It highlights the scope of the course for Computer Studies examinations at this level. Its structuring revolves around conceptual approach. The major thematic areas considered in the entire syllabus include:
- Computer fundamentals and evolution
- Computer hardware
- Computer Software
- Basic Computer Operations
- Computer Applications
- Managing Computer files
- Developing Problem-solving skills
- Information and Communication Technology
- Computer ethics and human issues
Each thematic area forms a concept which is further divided into sub-concepts. This examination syllabus is not a substitute for the teaching syllabus. Therefore, it does not replace the curriculum.
OBJECTIVES for Computer Science
The objectives of the syllabus are to test candidates’ understanding, knowledge and acquisition of
basic concepts of computer and its operations;
manipulative, computational and problem-solving skills;
application of software packages;
operation of computer – related simple devices;
on-line skills and their applications;
safe attitudes and good practices on effective use of computer;
potential for higher studies in Computer related areas.
EXAMINATION SCHEME for Computer Science
There will be three papers, Papers 1, 2 and 3, all of which must be taken. Papers 1 and 2 shall be a composite paper to be taken at one sitting.
Paper 1: will consist of 50 multiple-choice objective questions all which are to be answered in 1 hour for 25 marks.
Paper 2: will consist of five essay questions. Candidates will be required to answer any three in 1 hour for 30 marks.
Paper 3: will test actual practical skills of school candidates and knowledge of practical work for private candidates. It will consist of three questions to be answered in 2 hours for 45 marks.
DETAILED SYLLABUS | TOPIC CONTENT NOTE
Computing Devices I (Pre-computing age- 19th century) Features , components and uses of early computing devices:
Slide Rule ;
Charles Babbage’s analytical engine;
Hollerith Census Machine;
Contribution of each of the founder of these devices to modern computers.
Trend of development in computing devices from one to the other.
Computing Devices II (20th century to date) Features, components and uses of:
-Laptop and Notebook computers
-Palmtop. Sizes and basic components should be considered in a comparative form.
FUNDAMENTALS OF COMPUTING
Overview of Computing System – Definition of a Computer;
– Two main constituents of a Computer
– Classification and examples of hardware and software.
– Functional parts of a computer
Characteristics of Computers
– Electronic in nature;
– Interactive etc.
Differences between hardware and software should be treated.
Data and Information – Definition and examples of data and information;
Differences between data and information.
COMPUTER ETHICS AND HUMAN ISSUES
Security and Ethics
Sources of security breaches:
Virus, worms and Trojan horses;
Poor implementation of network;
Poor implementation or lack of ICT policies;
Carelessness- giving out personal and vital information on the net without careful screening.
Hackers, spammers etc.
Definition and effects of viruses and worms should be treated
Definition of hackers and spammers should be treated Preventive measures
Use of antivirus software e.g. Norton, McAfee, Avast, etc
Use of firewall;
Exercising care in giving out vital and personal information
Proper Network Implementation and Polies
Using sites with web certificates
Exercising care in opening e-mail attachments
-Copyright (software copyright)
-ownership right to
-Privacy of audio and video software
Explanation of firewall is required
Definition of encryption should be treated
Definition and examples of input devices
The use of keyboard, mouse, scanner, joystick, light pen, etc
Classification of keys on the keyboard into Function, Numeric, Alphabetic
-Features, function and operation of the mouse
-Differences in keyboard, mouse, light pen and scanner
Output Devices -Definition and examples
-Output devices: monitor, printer, speaker, plotter – Type, features and uses.
-Differences between input and output devices
-Similarities and differences in inkjet, laser and line printer
Examples and types of printers and monitors should be treated.
Central Processing Unit Components of C.P.U.: Arithmetic and logic unit, control unit
Function of ALU and Control Unit Combination of the CPU and Memory Unit as system unit should be mentioned.
Memory Unit Types of Memory Unit: Primaryand Secondary memory
-Components of Primary memory unit: ROM and RAM
Differences and uses of ROM and RAM
Examples of Seconadry memory devices: floppy disk, hard disk, compact disk(CD), flash disk, digital-video-disk(DVD)
Unit of storage in memory devices: bits, nibble, bytes, kilobytes, megabytes, gigabytes, terabytes
Interconversion of unit of storage.
-Comparative study of auxiliary storage devices in respect of their size, speed and technology
Physical identification of RAM and ROM devices required.
Simple calculation involving the conversion from a unit to another Size and shape variation of floppy, flask/USB and compact disks should be noted
Logic Circuits -Definition, types and uses of standard logic gate: AND, NOT, OR
Symbols of AND, NOT, OR gates
-Construction of truth table for standard logic gates
-Differences between AND, NOT, OR gates
-NAND and NOR as alternative logic gates should be treated
Construction of Truth Table for NAND and NOR
Construction of a simple comparator with -XOR( Exclusive OR)
-NOR gate Logic equation for AND, NOT, OR gate should be treated.
Uses of logic gates are required.
Simple definition of a comparator is required.
Definition and types of software
(ii) System software and their examples
Operating System e.g. MS Windows
Translator e.g. Compiler
Tools/ Utility e.g. Anti-virus
Examples of Operating System
Examples of Translators
(v) Examples of Utility
Definition, types, examples and function of Operating System
Graphic User Interface(GUI)
GUI (MS Windows, Linux, etc)
Command line (MS DOS, UNIX, etc)
Differences between system and application software is required
Operating systems of phones, ipad and other computerized devices should be treated. E.g. Android, Blackberry, etc.
Differences among the translators should be noted
Differences between GUI and Command line Operating Systems are required.
Application Software Definition and types of application software
Packages and their
Word processing(MS Windows)
Packages for spreadsheet purpose
Education management software
Hospital management software Differences between user application program and application packages are required
Definition and examples of word processing and word processor
Features of Word Processing programs in general.
Application areas of Word Processing programs
(iv) Features of MS Word
Steps in activating and exiting MS Word
Basic operations in MS Word
(vii) Further operations
in MS Word
-use of different Types and sizes of fonts
-file merging, etc
Definition of each operational term is required.
(i) Definition and examples of spreadsheet program
(ii) Feature of spreadsheet program
(iii)Application areas of Spreadsheet programs:
-Student result, etc
(iv)Features of MS Excel Environment
-formula bar, etc
(v)Definition of basic
terms in MS
(vi)Data types in Excel
(vii)Basic operation in
(viii)Arithmetic calculations using formula and built-in function
(ix)Additional operation in Excel
-Drawing charts, etc
Simple calculations with and without built-in function e.g. sum, average, etc
Pie chart, histogram, bar chart, etc
Database (i)Definition of database and database packages
(ii)Examples of database packages
(iii)Basic terms in Database
(iv)Types of database organization methods and their features
(v)Features of database format
-Files designed as tables
-Tables comprise row and columns
-Row containing related information about a record.
-Column containing specific type of information about a field.
(vi)Steps in creating database
-define the structure
-indicate field type(numeric, character, data, text, etc)
(vii)Basic operations on already created database.
(i)Definition of Graphics
(ii)Examples of Graphics
(iii)Features in activating
(iv)Simple design using
(i)Definition of presentation
(ii)Examples of presentation package
-MS PowerPoint, etc
(iii)Features of PowerPoint environment
(iv)Steps in activating and exiting PowerPoint
-insert pictures, text,
-add new slide
-run slide show
MANAGING COMPUTER FILES for Computer Science
Concept of Computer Files
Handling Computer Files
(i)Definition of some terms
(ii)Types of data item
(iii)File structure organisation (Data item—record—file—database)
(iv)Types of file organization
(v) Methods of accessing
(vi) File classification
-nature of content(program and data)
(i)Basic operation on computer files
(ii) Effect of file insecurity
-data becomes unreliable
(iii)Causes of data loss
(iv)Methods of file security
-use of backup
-use of antivirus
(v)Differences between computer files and manual files
(vi)Advantages of computer files
-fast to access,etc
(vii)Disadvantages of computer files
-expensive to set up
-irregular supply of electricity
Differences among the organization methods are required
File processing using BASIC programming is required.
BASIC COMPUTER OPERATIONS for Computer Science
Booting and shutting down process
Computer Data Conversion
(i) Description and types of booting process
(ii)Types of booting process
(iii)Steps involved in :
-booting a computer;
-shutting down a computer
features on a desktop
(i)Definition of registers, address, bus
(ii)Types and functions of registers: MDR, CIR, SCR
(iii)Differences between register and main memory
(iv)Steps involved in how a computer converts data to required information (Input-Process-Output)
(v)Factors affecting speed of data transfer:
Difference between cold and warm booting should be treated
Fetch-execute cycle is not required
INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY(ICT)
(i)What‘ICT’ acronym stands for.
(ii) Types of ICT
-Examples of Broadcasting
-Examples of Telecommunication
-Public Switched Telephone Network(PSTN)-Landline
-Mobile phone systems
-Circuit Switched Packet
-Satellite telephone system
-Fixed wireless telephone system
-Examples of data networks
-Personal Area Network(PAN)
-Local Area Network(LAN)
-Metropolitan Area Network(MAN)
-Wide Area Network(WAN)
-Examples of Information Systems
-Data Processing System
-Global Positioning System(GPS)
Application areas of ICT
(d) Electronic Mail(e- mail)Services
(i)Application Areas of ICT include the following:
-Information search, retrieval and archival.
(ii)ICT based gadgets and their operations
-Point of Sale
– Automated Cash Register(ACR)
-Television sets, etc
(i)Definition of Internet and some Internet terms:
(ii)Types of internet browsers
(iii)Features of Internet browsers:
(iv)Types of Internet services
-Electronic mail (e-mail)
-e-mail discussion group
(i)Definition of electronic mail
(iii)Steps involved in
(iv)Steps involved in
opening mail box
(v)Features in an e-mail
address e.g. [email protected]
(vi)Definition and steps
involved in chatting
Definition and description of these terms are required
Knowledge on the operations on these ICT-based gadgets is required.
Demonstration of these terms through Internet access is required
Access Internet through these browsers.
Application of the features of Internet browser window is required
Benefits of Internet to our society should be stressed
Procedure for sending and receiving e-mail is required
(f) Introduction to Worldwide web (W.W.W.) (i)Definition of a Computer Network
(ii)Types of Network
(iii) Network topology
(i)What is the ‘W.W.W.’
acronym stands for
(ii)Brief history of W.W.W.
(v)Uses/benefits of www
e-mail and website
e.g.www.waeconline.org and [email protected]
(viii)Software for web
Differences in the various topologies should be treated
Knowledge of “Bridge” as a networking device is required.
Nigeria’s contribution to www should be mentioned
Use of HTTP and HTML should be mentioned
Visits to these websites are essential
(g) Cables and Connectors (i)Types of Network Cables and
-Cables: Twisted pair,
coaxial, fibre optic,
-Connectors: RJ45, RJ11, T-
(ii)Types of Computer Cables
cable, serial cable
-Connectors: Male and
Identification of different Network Cables Connectors should be treated
DEVELOPING PROBLEM-SOLVING SKILLS
(i) Programming Language: Definition, examples, levels and features:
(ii)Levels and examples of programming language
-Machine Language(ML) ,
-Low Level Language(LLL),
e.g. Assembly Language
-High Level Language(HLL)
e.g. BASIC,C++, FORTRAN, etc.
(iii)Comparison of ML,
disadvantages of ML,
LLL and HLL.
Languages (i) Definition and
(ii)Classification of HLL
-String processing language(SPL)
(iii)Features of BASIC, C, PASCAL, COBOL –
Comparative study Other programming languages such as Java, Python, etc. should be mentioned.
(i)Definition of :
(iv)Writing algorithm for:
-Computing average of a given set of numbers
-Evaluation of equation: y=a(b-c)2/(d+2)
-Computing out the first ten odd numbers, etc
(v)Flowchart symbols: – I/O, Process, decisions, etc
(vi)Use of each flowchart symbol
(vii)Flowchart diagrams for given programming problem
(i)What BASIC acronym stands for
(iii)Types of data
(vii)Evaluation of Arithmetic expressions
(viii)Simple BASIC Programs
(ix)Running Simple Programs
(i)Built-in functions in BASIC
(ii)BASIC Notation of
-ex+y – sin(x+ny), etc
(iii)BASIC program to -find the square root of numbers
-find square root of S, round up to an integer
-find the cosine of known values
-find the tangent of given angles.
-plot sine wave curve
(iv)Additional BASIC Statements
-FOR – NEXT statement
(v)Defining one-dimensional array , using DIM statement.
(vi)Operating on Array elements
-Input of array
-Output of array
-Arithmetic operations on array
program to :
-store a vector of 10
-calculate the mean
of 100 numeric
-calculate area of 10
-Compute the sum of
the first 100 integers
Types of data should be treated
Program to calculate
-Area of triangle
-Area of a rectangle
-Average of 3 numbers,etc
The simple BASIC program developed should be executable on the computer.
Numbers of iterations should not exceed eight (8).
Systems Development Cycle
(i)Definition of system development cycle
(ii)Description of system development cycle
(iii)Stages in system development Cycle
(iv)Description of each
(v)Diagram of system
Cycle (i)Definition of program
(ii)Characteristics of a good Program
(iii)Precautions in developing a program
-Be stable, steady
-No step skipping
-Follow order of
(iv)Steps involved in program development
(v)Description of each of
stages in program
(vi)Examples of :
Flow diagram on how a compiler and interpreter works is required
LIST OF FACILITIES AND MAJOR EQUIPMENT/MATERIALS REQUIRED for Computer Science:
- Computer set
- Fax Machine
- GSM Phone
- Memory chips
- Hard disks
- Flash drives
- Internet connectivity
- Compact disks
- Cables (power and data)
- Word processing packages, database package, BASIC program and