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#IT-04-05 Understanding Computer Systems

  • Categories IT
  • Duration 12h
  • Total Enrolled 6
  • Last Update September 15, 2020

About Course

Raspberry Pi Foundation


Learn what really happens when you turn a computer on

Understanding how a computer works after you press the power button is key to working with technology effectively. On this course, you will explore what happens inside the machine and learn how computers turn inputs into outputs.

You will learn what the computer operating system does and why you need it. You will also compare software and hardware, understand the importance of the central processing unit (CPU), and address factors that affect computer performance.


Who will you learn with?

James Robinson

James is an experienced Computer Science teacher who runs the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s teacher training Programme called Picademy. He still plays with LEGO and drinks lots of tea.



Who developed the course?

raspberry pi

The Raspberry Pi Foundation works to put the power of digital making into the hands of people all over the world, so they are capable of understanding and shaping our increasingly digital world.




What Will I Learn?

  • Describe the difference between hardware and software
  • Assess the importance of operating systems and virtual memory
  • Describe and compare storage, input, and output devices
  • Discuss factors affecting the performance of a system
  • Identify the functions of the hardware in a computer system
  • Explore different types of software such as application, system, and utility
  • Investigate how devices interact with the operating system and other software

Topics for this course

8 Lessons12h

Booting up?

Learn more about what you'll be learning over the course, and meet our educators and the other participants who will accompany you.
Welcome to the course00:01:09
Meet the team and your fellow learners

What happens when you turn on your computer??

Learn about how the components of a computer work together from the moment you press the “on” button.

Hardware, software and systems?

Explore different types of hardware and software, and consider how they may or may not be appropriate for different types of system.

End of Course?

Congratulations! You have successfully completed the first week of the course!

Student Feedback


Total 4 Ratings

3 ratings
1 rating
0 rating
0 rating
0 rating

Speaker James Robinson is genuine kind speaks with respect and knowledge. Well paced and clearly communicates the information

Computer system is a very complex thing, but listening to this course I think it is very simple, very easy to understand.

This is a great course, for those of you who don't know much about computer engineering, to learn a lot about the inner workings of a computer.

The resources you get are incredibly useful because you're given templates for various obligations you must fulfil to really be data privacy compliant. Sometimes, the slides have extra information to what lecturer is talking about so make sure you read them as well as listen to what he has to say. Parts of lessons are unnecessarily repeated in other ones so it can seem like you're listening to a talking parrot but I guess this approach is useful for people who aren't paying close attention to what is being said.


Material Includes

  • Official Certificate

Target Audience

  • This course is for GCSE computing teachers as well as teachers from other countries at an equivalent level.