Module Title:Computer Architecture
Credits: 10
NFQ Level:6
Module Delivered In 4 programme(s)
Teaching & Learning Strategies: Students will be assessed by means of Continuous Assessment and Final Examination. The Continuous Assessment component will consist of practical tests and theory tests.
Module Aim: To enable the student to program in assembly and to provide the student with a good knowledge of computer architecture.
Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this module the learner should be able to:
LO1 Program in 80X86 assembly language;
LO2 Pass parameters using the stack;
LO3 Select the appropriate addressing mode to accomplish a given task;
LO4 Interpret logic circuits;
LO5 Describe the workings of computer architecture as addressed in the syllabus;
Pre-requisite learning
Module Recommendations

This is prior learning (or a practical skill) that is recommended before enrolment in this module.

No recommendations listed
Incompatible Modules
These are modules which have learning outcomes that are too similar to the learning outcomes of this module.
No incompatible modules listed
Co-requisite Modules
No Co-requisite modules listed
This is prior learning (or a practical skill) that is mandatory before enrolment in this module is allowed.
No requirements listed

Module Content & Assessment

Indicative Content
Assembly Language Programming
Programming: Generic machine language view; Introduction to microprocessors; 80X86 machine and assembly language programming; Addressing modes. Data representation: Integers, character storage, ASCII, EBCDIC and Unicode; Character I/O; Arrays; Strings. Comparison of assembler and high-level language: Examine assembler versions of simple HLL programs. Stack usage; Subroutines internal & external; Parameter passing.
Computer Architecture
Logic circuits: Gates, adder, latches, memory circuit. Addressing methods review: Register, immediate, direct, register indirect, base plus index, register relative, base relative plus index. Addressing support for high level languages: Activation records; local and non-local data . Computer structure: CPU architecture, fetch execute cycle, buses. Interrupts and interrupt handlers; Vectored interrupts, internal/external h/w interrupts, s/w interrupts, interrupt vector table, ISR. I/O systems: Programmed, Interrupt driven and DMA; DMA controller . CISC and RISC architectures; Acceleration and Concurrency: Pipelining, instruction prefetching, instruction queues, cache memory. Introduction to parallel architectures: Array processors; Multiprocessors; Multicomputers; SISD, SIMD, MISD, MIMD. Fundamentals of current processors. Mobile computing: Typical pipeline on mobile processor;Out-of-order architectures;ARM Big.Little Architecture. Structured assembly programming: lab work augmenting the theoretical aspects.
Assessment Breakdown%
Continuous Assessment50.00%
End of Module Formal Examination50.00%
Continuous Assessment
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Assessment Date
Other In Class and/or In Lab Continuous Assessment 1,2,3,4,5 50.00 n/a
No Project
No Practical
End of Module Formal Examination
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Assessment Date
Formal Exam Formal Final Exam 1,2,3,4,5 50.00 End-of-Semester

ITCarlow reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Module Workload

Workload: Full Time
Workload Type Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload
Lecture 30 Weeks per Stage 3.00
Laboratory 30 Weeks per Stage 2.00
Estimated Learner Hours 30 Weeks per Stage 1.67
Total Hours 200.00

Module Delivered In

Programme Code Programme Semester Delivery
CW_KCSOF_B Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Software Development 2 Mandatory
CW_KCSOF_D Bachelor of Science in Software Development 2 Mandatory
CW_KWCAP_C Higher Certificate in Science in Computing 2 Group Elective 2
CW_KCCOM_C Higher Certificate in Science in Computing (Applications or Programming) 2 Group Elective 1