This unit has been designed to enable learners to use number systems, graphical and numerical methods, vectors, matrices and ordinary differential equations to analyse, model and solve realistic engineering problems. Learners will use estimation techniques and error arithmetic to establish realistic results from experiments and general laboratory work. They will then consider the conversion of number systems from one base to another and the application of the binary number system to logic circuits. Complex numbers and their application to the solution of engineering problems are also studied. Learners will look at the use of graphical techniques together with various methods of numerical integration (for example Simpson’s rules) and estimation (for example Newton-Raphson). They will then go on to analyse and model engineering situations using vector geometry and matrix methods. Finally, learners will study both first and second order differential equations and their application to a variety of engineering situations dependant upon the learner’s chosen discipline.

Organisations of all sizes, structures and aims can benefit from the opportunities made available by the intelligent application of communication based technologies and there will always be a need for practitioners who have a good understanding of those technologies. E-Commerce has become a vital part of an organisation’s ability to reach out to the marketplace and position itself to maximise commercial returns on investment.

Poor choices of technology and processes will result in poorly managed opportunities which could lose business, market position and profitability. Learners will investigate the values of business skills by exploring current, topical examples of e-Commerce practices. Learners will consider how to design an e-Commerce solution to the best advantage of the organisation and its stakeholders (for example employees, suppliers and customers). Learners will explore current legislation concerning e-Commerce based trading, organisational responsibilities and finance/payment systems.

The first part of the unit considers the structure and aims of organisations to better understand how they could benefit from an e-Commerce structure. Then follows an opportunity to investigate and evaluate the impact of e-Commerce systems on organisations and their stakeholders. Once these areas have been studied the learner will be in a position to examine the process of the development of an e-Commerce presence followed by the opportunity to design an e-Commerce system.

The internet has emerged as a dominating area of IT development. The ever-expanding applications within the global community that communicates, trades and exchanges information (seamlessly) has meant that the Internet and its associated technologies is a rapidly growing and changing area that requires in-depth knowledge as well as a wide range of skills. These web technologies have also been used to develop e-Commerce, intranet, extranet and social networking systems to meet the needs of modern businesses and associations.

Learners should already be familiar with website design and management, and will be able to apply their own web development skills to this unit. Learners will enjoy extending their web-development skills by understanding the concepts of web-based applications using server-side technologies. This unit takes client-side web-development one step further by introducing server-side application development. This unit focuses on server-side technologies and how server-side scripting can be used to create sophisticated web-based applications.

Learners will understand the concepts of web-based applications using one or more different server-side scripting languages, such as ASP, JSP and PHP. Many web-based systems also include database systems, which enables data to be processed dynamically. Learners will gain experience of developing web-enabled database systems, using SQL statements combined with server-side scripts to manage the process of information.

Learners will develop skills in specific techniques and also able to select when and where they are most appropriate, basing this decision on client and user needs. They will also ensure that their applications comply with the relevant legislation and guidelines

An understanding of database tools and technologies is key to many of today’s industries. Database systems are predominant in the world of IT, and continue to demand more complex data structures and interface, as applications get increasingly sophisticated. Databases provide the infrastructure to many organisations, and they offer support to key business applications and information systems. The most common database model used commercially is the relational one. The aim of this unit is to provide a knowledge and understanding of database systems including design principles, practical implementation and development skills for both the system designer and software engineer. The importance of structured query languages should be stressed, in terms of how they can be used to manipulate data and how they are used for a variety of tasks including querying and report writing. On completion of this unit the learner should be able to understand, design, query and implement a database(s). Learners will also have a theoretical insight into the requirement for designing a database that meets a given user or system requirement and that is functional, user friendly and robust.