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CMSY 134 Introduction to Operating Systems - Online

After successful completion of this course, the student will be able to define and explain the purpose of basic MS-DOS Command Line and Windows.  In addition, students will be able to demonstrate proficiency in file management concepts in both MS-DOS and Windows.  This course is designed to meet the needs of students who want to work toward A+ certification.  This course may be completed in fewer than 14 weeks.  All of the work for this course (except tests) may be done outside of class if student has the appropriate operating systems.

Credit                                          1
Prerequisite                                None
Instructor                                   Helen Dignan
Office Technology Classroom     DH 301

Registered Students | Overall Course Objectives | Major Course Topics | Course Format | Orientation | Course Requirements | Texts and Materials |Exams 

Registered Students

Immediately after please go to, choose the semester, and complete the pre-semester notification form.

Overall Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  • Describe the purpose of hardware and software components.
  • Define terminology specific to MS-DOS and Windows.
  • Use internal and external MS-DOS commands.
  • Work with files and directories in MS-DOS.
  • Work with files and folders in Windows.

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Major Course Topics

  • Overview of a Computer System
  • PC System Components
  • Hardware – Motherboard, Hard and Floppy Drives, Monitor, Keyboard, Mouse, CD-ROM
  • Software – OS, DOS, Windows, Application Software, Communications Software
  • Terminology – Default, Drive, Directory (Root, Structure), Wildcards, Files and their Attributes, Filenames
  • MS-DOS Components
  • Internal Commands – DIR, MD, CD, RD, DEL, RENAME, COPY, TYPE
  • Windows  - GUI
  • Help
  • Search
  • Creating Files, Folders, and Subfolders
  • Moving, Copying, Deleting, and Renaming Files and Folders
  • Desktop, Explorer, My Computer, Control Panel, Recycle Bin

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Course Format

  • This course is not self-paced.  However, students may accelerate their pace so that they may finish the course in fewer than 14 weeks.
  • The syllabus lists course requirements.
  • This schedule is posted in the learning management system and is available for students all semester.
  • No on-campus meetings are required.  However, this course does require on-campus attendance for tests.  The tests may be taken during any open hours in the Office Technology classroom.  Please note, however, that all CMSY134 online students are welcome to come to the Office Technology classroom to do classwork and/or to receive personal help from an instructor.
  • Modules contain course instructions.
  • Canvas learning management system is the method of communication. 
  • Real-time chats are not required.

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This course has a mandatory face-to-face orientation held on the Saturday morning prior to the semester start.  Please click on to view the orientation schedules.

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Course Requirements

For complete technical requirements, specific course instructions, and information to help you assess options that best fit your lifestyle and learning style, visit

  • Windows XP and Windows 7
  • Come to the Office Technology classroom to take tests which have deadlines for completion.
  • Complete two homework assignments which have deadlines for completion.

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Texts and Materials Required

Microsoft Windows 2000 MS-DOS Command Line, Brief Enhanced
Phillips and Skagerberg | Course Technology, Cengage Learning, 2003 | ISBN: 978-0-6191-8552-7
Microsoft Windows 7
Barbara Clemens | Course Technology, Cengage Learning, 2010 | ISBN: 978-0-538-75077-6

Four flash drives

Additional textbook information:  Please visit and follow the instructions for selecting textbooks.

Technical Requirements for Online Courses

Review the Technical Requirements link above. The course requires:

  • A Web browser

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For purposes of verification and assessing learning outcomes, this course has three theory exams and three production exams, which have deadlines for completion.  The exams must be taken at the college during any open hours in the Office Technology classroom.    

If you have any questions or comments about this class, please send a message to

Cindy Garnsey,  

Last updated on July 9, 2013
© Howard Community College, 2012

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