WAEC Computer Studies Syllabus 2021/2022 | See Concentrated Topics Here

Filed in Past Questions by on February 23, 2021

WAEC Computer Studies Syllabus 2021/2022 | See Concentrated Topics Here

WAEC Computer Studies Syllabus 2021 is Out: The Computer Studies 2021/2022 West African Examination Council (WAEC) Syllabus is aimed at preparing candidates for the Board’s examination.

WAEC Computer Studies Syllabus 2021/2022 | See Concentrated Topics Here

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 that is further divided into sub-concepts. This examination syllabus is not a substitute for the teaching syllabus. Therefore, it does not replace the curriculum.


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.


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.

1. Computer Evolution

Computing Devices I (Pre-computing age- 19th century) Features, components, and uses of early computing devices:

Contribution of each of the founders 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:
-Desktop Personal
-Laptop and Notebook computers
-Palmtop. Sizes and basic components should be considered in a comparative form.

2. Fundamentals of Computing 

Overview of Computing System – Definition of a Computer;
– Two main constituents of a Computer
Computer hardware;
Computer software
– Classification and examples of hardware and software.
– Functional parts of a computer

Characteristics of Computers

– Electronic in nature;
– Accuracy;
– Speed;
– 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.

3. 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

Legal Issues

-Copyright (software copyright)
-ownership right to
-Privacy of audio and video software
-Cyber crimes
-identify theft;
-internet fraud

Explanation of firewall is required

Definition of encryption should be treated

4. Computer Hardware

Input devices
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
-Cursor keys
-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: Primary and Secondary memory

-Components of Primary memory unit: ROM and RAM
Differences and uses of ROM and RAM
Examples of Secondary 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.

5. Computer Softwares

System Software

Operating System
Definition and types of software
System software
Application 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
MS Windows
MS-DOS etc

Examples of Translators
(v) Examples of Utility
Anti-virus etc

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
Common Application
Packages and their
Word processing(MS Windows)
Spreadsheet(MS Excel)
Database(MS Access)
Packages for spreadsheet purpose
Accounting software
Payroll program
Banking software
Education management software
Statistical packages
Hospital management software Differences between user application program and application packages are required

6. Computer Application

Word Processing
Definition and examples of word processing and word processor
-MS Word

a. Features of Word Processing Programs in General.

Application areas of Word Processing programs
-Education, etc.
(iv) Features of MS Word

b. Steps in Activating and Exiting MS Word

Basic operations in MS Word
– Edit
– Save
– Close
(vii) Further operations
in MS Word

-use of different types and sizes of fonts
-spell checking
-file merging, etc

Definition of each operational term is required.


(i) Definition and examples of spreadsheet program
-MS Excel
-Autocad, etc
(ii) Feature of spreadsheet program
(iii)Application areas of Spreadsheet programs:
-Student result, etc
(iv)Features of MS Excel Environment
-status bar
-menu bar
-formula bar, etc
(v)Definition of basic
terms in MS
-cell ranges

(vi)Data types in Excel

(vii)Basic operation in
-Data Entry

(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

7. Pie Chart, Histogram, Bar Chart, etc

Database (i)Definition of database and database packages

(ii)Examples of database packages
-Dbase IV,
-MS Access
-Oracle, etc

(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 a Database

-Define the structure
-Indicate field type(numeric, character, data, text, etc)
-Enter data
-Save data

(vii)Basic operations on already created database.

-inserting, etc

8. Graphics

(i)Definition of Graphics
(ii)Examples of Graphics
-Harvard graphics
-Coreldraw, etc

(iii)Features in activating
and existing

(iv)Simple design using
-Business card
-School logo
-National flag
-Invitation card
-Certification, etc

9. Presentation Package

(i)Definition of presentation
(ii)Examples of the presentation package
-MS PowerPoint, etc
(iii)Features of PowerPoint environment
(iv)Steps in activating and exiting PowerPoint

(v)PowerPoint operation
-create new
-insert pictures, text,
-animated contents
-add a new slide
-save presentation
-run a slide show
-print presentation
-close presentation

10. Managing Computer Files

Concept of Computer Files

Handling Computer Files

(i)Definition of some terms
-computer file
-data item

(ii)Types of data item
(iii)File structure organization (Data item—a record—file—database)

(iv)Types of file organization

(v) Methods of accessing

(vi) File classification
-master file
-transaction file
-reference file

(vii)Criteria for
classifying files:
-nature of content(program and data)
-organization method
-storage medium

(i)Basic operation on computer files

(ii) Effect of file insecurity
-data loss
-data corruption
-data becomes unreliable

(iii)Causes of data loss
-inadvertent deletion

(iv)Methods of file security
-use of backup
-use of antivirus
-proper labeling
of storage
devices, etc

(v)Differences between computer files and manual files
(vi)Advantages of computer files
-more secure
-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.

11. Basic Computer Operations

Booting and shutting down the process

Computer Data Conversion

(i) Description and types of booting process

(ii)Types of booting process
-cold booting
-warm booting

(iii)Steps involved in :
-booting a computer;
-shutting down a computer

(iv)Identification of
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:
-bus speed;
-bus width.
Difference between cold and warm booting should be treated

Fetch-execute cycle is not required

12. Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

Communication Systems

(i)What‘ICT’ acronym stands for.

(ii) Types of ICT
-Data Network
-Information Systems
-Satellite Communications

-Examples of Broadcasting
-Radio broadcasting
-Television broadcasting
-Satellite system
-Examples of Telecommunication
-Public Switched Telephone Network(PSTN)-Landline
-Mobile phone systems
-Circuit Switched Packet
Telephone System(CSPT)
-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:
-Video conferencing
-Information search, retrieval and archival.

(ii)ICT based gadgets and their operations
-Mobile phones
-Fax machines
-Automated Teller
-Dispensing machines
-Point of Sale
– Automated Cash Register(ACR)
-Radio sets
-Television sets, etc

13. Internet

(i)Definition of Internet and some Internet terms:
-Website, etc

(ii)Types of internet browsers
-Internet explorer
-Netscape navigator
-Cometbird, etc

(iii)Features of Internet browsers:
-Title bar
-Menu bar
-Address bar, etc

(iv)Types of Internet services
-Electronic mail (e-mail)
-e-mail discussion group
-Instant messaging
-File Transfer
-Chatting, etc

14. Electronic Mail

(i)Definition of electronic mail

(ii)E-mail Services:
-sending/receiving e-mail
-chatting, etc
(iii)Steps involved in
creating e-mail
(iv)Steps involved in
opening mailbox
(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 of 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
(iv)Network devices
-Network Interface
(v)Advantages of
(i)What is the ‘W.W.W.’
acronym stands for
(ii)Brief history of W.W.W.
(iii)Basic terminologies:
-protocol, etc
(v)Uses/benefits of www
(vi)Navigating through
websites www.waeconline.org
(vii)Difference between
e-mail and website
address features:
e.g.www.waeconline.org and [email protected]
(viii)Software for web
– etc

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
and Connector
-Cables:Power cables
Data cables
– Printer
Cable,universal serial
bus(USB), monitor
cable, serial cable
-Connectors: Male and
Identification of different Network Cables Connectors should be treated

15. Developing Problem – Solving Skills

Programming Language(PL)

(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,
(iv)Advantages and
disadvantages of ML,
LLL and HLL.

(b)High Level
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.

(c)Algorithm and

(d)BASIC Programming

(i)Definition of :
Algorithm and
(ii)Functions of
(iii)Characteristics 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 a given programming problem

(i)What BASIC acronym stands for
(ii)BASIC characteristics
(iii)Types of data

(iv)BASIC Statements
(v)Arithmetic operators(-,+,*,/)
(vi)Arithmetic Expressions
(vii)Evaluation of Arithmetic expressions
(viii)Simple BASIC Programs

(ix)Running Simple Programs

(i)Built-in functions in BASIC

(ii)BASIC Notation of
-(a+b) +c/sind
-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
-DIM Statement
-FOR – NEXT statement
-WHILE-END statement
(v)Defining one-dimensional array, using DIM statement.

(vi)Operating on Array elements
-Input of array
-Output of array
-Arithmetic operations on array
(vii)Write BASIC
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
-Preliminary study
-Investigate study
-Study review
(iv)Description of each
stage of
system development
(v)Diagram of system

Cycle (i)Definition of program

(ii)Characteristics of a Good Program


(iii)Precautions in developing a program

-Be stable, steady
and patient
-No step skipping
-Follow order of

(iv)Steps involved in program development

-Problem definition
-Problem analysis
-Flow chatting
-Desk checking
-Program coding

(v)Description of each of
stages in program

(vi)Examples of :

-Compiled program
Flow diagram on how a compiler and interpreter works is required

List of Facilities and Major Equipment/Materials Required:

  1. Computer set
  2. Laptops
  3. Scanners
  4. Printers
  5. Fax Machine
  6. GSM Phone
  7. Memory chips
  8. Hard disks
  9. Flash drives
  10. Internet connectivity
  11. DVD
  12. Compact disks
  13. Cables (power and data)
  14. Word processing packages, database package, BASIC program and

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