Ivy Tech Community
College - Warsaw


A+ Core Hardware

   Maps to CompTIA's 2003 A+ Core Hardware Exam     

Course Number CIT 210  11B 063     
Prerequisite(s) CIT 106 Microcomputer Operating Systems     
Program Computer Information Technology    
Division Business Division    
Credit Hours 3    
Contact Hours 3    
Instructor Associate Professor Lauran Sattler    
e-mail Address lsattler@ivytech.edu    
Campus Connect https://cc.ivytech.edu     
Faculty Web http://faculty.ivytech.edu/~lsattler      
Department Web CIS Program-Warsaw    





CATALOG DESCRIPTION: Is one of two courses required to prepare the student to take and  pass the A+ certification exam.  This course deals with A+ core hardware objectives.  The objectives include identification of basic terms, concepts and functions of system modules, and basic procedures for adding and removing field replaceable units.  A review of portable system components, identification of system resources, and other detailed information concerning PC architecture, hardware and standards.  Meeting all course requirements will place the student in an excellent position for taking and passing the CompTIA A+ core hardware certification examination.

MAJOR COURSE LEARNING OBJECTIVES: Upon successful completion of this course the student will be expected to:

1 Identify basic terms, concepts, and functions of system, including how each module should work during normal operations and during the boot process. 
2 Perform basic procedures for adding and removing field replaceable modules for both desktop and portable systems. 
3 Identify available IRQ's, DNA's, and I/O addresses and procedures for device installation and configuration.
4 Identify common peripheral ports, associated cabling, and their connectors. 
5 Use proper procedures for installing and configuring IDE./EIDE devices.
6 Perform proper procedures for installing and configuring peripheral devices. 
7 Identify basic hardware methods of upgrading system performance, procedures for replacing basic subsystem components, and when to use them. 

Recognize common symptoms and problems associated with each module and how to troubleshoot and isolated the problems. 

9 Perform basic troubleshooting procedures and learn how to elicit problems symptoms from customers. 
10 Identify the purpose of various types of preventive maintenance products and procedures and when to use them, including, liquid cleaning compounds and other types of materials. 
11 Be familiar with issues, procedures and devices for protection within the computing environment, including people, hardware, and the surrounding workspace, use of UPS as well as determining the symptoms of power issues.
12 Determine the proper method of storage of components for future use. 
13 Identify potential hazards and use proper safety procedures regarding high-voltage equipment, lasers, power supply, CRT and other potential hazards. 
14 Be  familiar with the reason for the MSDS (material safety and data sheet.)
15 Be aware of ESD, What it can do, how it may be apparent, or hidden, and how to use, the ESD protection devices. 
16 Distinguish between the popular CPU chips in terms of their basic characteristics, including characteristics, size, voltage, speeds, sockets, and brand name. 
17 Identify the categories of RAM (random access memory) terminology, their locations, and physical characteristics, including type, capacity, architecture, standards, and other characteristics (EDO, DRAM, SRAM, SIMM, DIMM, RIMM, etc).
18 Install and remove popular types of motherboards, identify their components, and their architecture (bus structures, chipsets, RAM requirements, and expansion slots). 
19 Identify the purpose of CMOS, what it contains, and how to modify its basic parameters.
20 Identify basic printer concepts of various types of printers (laser, inkjet, dot matrix) their operations and components, including connections (parallel, network, USB, etc.) and configurations.
21 Identify care and service techniques and common problems with primary printer types. 
22 Identify basic networking concepts, installation of NIC cards, common communication protocols, including how a network works.
23 Use and identify network terminology such as bandwidth, topology, connectivity, client server, peer-to-peer, media, OSI and other relevant terms. 

COURSE CONTENT: Topical areas of study include

PC architecture PC hardware terminology
Repair and upgrade techniques and guidelines Basic understanding of printer hardware
PC components PC hardware function

Course Activity Disclaimer
 The instructor reserves the right to alter the type and sequence 
of activities scheduled for this course.


  • Students failing to log in to elearning and contact their instructor during the first two weeks of the semester will be dropped from the class. 

  • Students who have earned 0% by the mid term will be withdrawn from the class.

  • There are no "attendance" points for this course.  Your grade is a result of skills mastered and work completed.

  • Extensions will only be granted by prior written arrangement and for verifiable medical or family emergencies.


Work improperly named or submitted with errors will be returned for corrections.  It will not be graded.  All work will earn 1 or 0 points.   You will receive an e-mail if work needs to be corrected and resubmitted.  


You must submit the following work.  All work is due by December 15th, 2006.

Read chapters 1-14.  Complete Review Questions located at the end of each chapter.  I have provided masters of the Review Questions on the Assignments page of elearning.   You must include the page number where found your answer.  Submit your completed questions through the Digital Drop Box. .Help using the DDB
Complete Hands-on Projects.  These are the end of chapter projects in your textbook.   Detailed instructions are on the Assignments page of elearning. I suggest that you print this information and refer to it as your work through each project. Submit through the Digital Drop Box.
Complete LabSim sections 0-6 using the LabSim  for A+ Core Hardware software.  This should have come bundled with your book.  There are detailed instruction for submitting the LabSims under Help in elearning.  This will take about 30 hours to complete.
Complete 13 Transcender tests.  Detailed instructions for the testing are on the Testing page of elearning.  This will take about 15 hours.
Complete the 14 Quizzes and Practice Quizzes located on the Testing page of elearning.
Certification Exam Contact your local campus or testing center to schedule testing.  Contact Brenda Strope bstrope@ivytech.edu to obtain a testing voucher number. 

Suggested Submission Schedule

Week Chapter Description
1 How Computers Work,  Labs
2 2 How Hardware and Software Work Together, Labs
3 3 Electricity and Power Supplies, Labs
4 4 The Motherboard, Labs
5 5 Managing Memory, Labs
6 6 Floppy Drives, Labs
7 7 Understanding and Supporting Hard Drives, Labs
8 8 Supporting I/O Devices
9 9 Multimedia Devices and Mass Storage, Labs
10 10 Supporting Modems
11 11 PC's on a Network
12 12 Notebooks, Tablets PC's, PDA's,
13 13 Supporting Printers
14 14 All About SCSI
15   Transcender Review and Certification Exam
16   Transcender Review and Certification Exam


Note: Please be aware of the weight of each course requirement.

Final grades will be a combination of:

1.Chapter Review Questions    15% 
2.Hands-on Projects 20%
3.LabSims 20%
4.Chapter Quizzes 15%
5.Transcender Testing 20%
6.Certification Exam 10%


A   =   90  to 100
B   =    80  to  89

C    =   70  to  79
D    =  60  to  69
F     =   0   to  59





NOTE:  The ISBN for the complete package will be 1-418-85279-1 which is different from the individual ISBN numbers. 


Jean Andrews, A+ Guide to Hardware Managing, Maintaining, and Troubleshooting,
3rd. Ed.
2003  ISBN 1-4188-3561-7

Transcender Test Prep Software 220-301
NOTE:  The Transcender is NOT included with our textbook. 


LabSim for A+ Core Hardware ISBN 0-619-18674-7
Included with your Text

CompTIA A+ Core Hardware Certification exam Voucher (included with your tuition)

Warsaw Book Store sgarthee@ivytech.edu 

On-line book order form



You are required to read and respond to this material. Follow the Course Information link, and complete and submit the Confirmation form.

Help and Information

Assignments are to be submitted thought the Digital Drop Box feature of elearning.  

for using the Digital Drop Box

Campus Connect: https://cc.ivytech.edu

For Campus Connect help go to: http://www.ivytech.edu/sos

For login or password assistance for eLearning contact  lkirkner@ivytech.edu.

For course or content related questions contact your Instructor.