Paper 1

Theory 1 hour 45 minutes

70 marks

Questions are based on sections 1–11 of the subject content. Candidates answer all questions on the paper.

Externally assessed

50% of the AS Level

25% of the A Level

Candidates should be able to:

1.1 Data, information and knowledge

• define data, clearly identifying that data has no meaning

• define information and show how data can become information through context and meaning

• define knowledge and understand that information becomes knowledge when human experience is applied

1.2 Sources of data

• define static data and give an example

• define dynamic data and give an example

• compare the use of static information sources with dynamic information sources

• define direct and indirect data source

• understand the advantages and disadvantages of gathering data from direct and indirect data sources

1.3 Quality of information

• understand how accuracy, relevance, age, level of detail and completeness of the information can affect its quality

1.4 Coding, encoding and encrypting data

• describe the coding of data (including: M for male, F for female) and more intricate codes (including:

clothing type, sizes and colour of garment)

• discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the coding of data

• evaluate the need for encoding data and analyse the different methods that can be used to encode data (including: codecs)

• define encryption and describe different methods of encryption (including: symmetric, asymmetric, public key, private key)

• evaluate the need for encryption and how it can be used to protect data such as on a hard disk, email or in HTTPS websites

• discuss encryption protocols (including: the purpose of Secure Socket Layer (SSL)/Transport Layer Security (TLS) and the use of SSL/TLS in client server communication)

1.5 Checking the accuracy of data

• define validation and analyse a range of validation methods (including: presence check, range check, type check, length check, format check and check digit, lookup check, consistency check, limit check)

• define verification and analyse verification methods (including: visual checking and double data entry)

• explain the need for both validation and verification

• define proof reading