The University of Southampton

A-Level Computer Science Logic and Arithmetic Kit

This initiative has been developed in partnership with the UK Electronics Skills Foundation (UKESF), and with the sponsorship of organisations including the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE).

A-Level Computer Science Logic and Arithmetic Kit

The Logic and Arithmetic kit incorporates core electronics concepts suitable for A-level Computer Science students, in particular covering aspects of Boolean operations, logic gates and base 2 (binary) number systems.

The kit is split into two sections: 'Logic' and 'Arithmetic', with Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) used to indicate logic states throughout.

The kit is currently not available to purchase, but limited numbers are being provided to schools for free. Schools/colleges interested in receiving kits, or organisations interested in sponsoring the scheme, can join our mailing list to find out more.

We are building teaching resources around these boards. If you would like to contribute resources, please contact us.

UK Electronic Skills Foundation
The IET
Institution of Mechanical Engineers

Logic Section

Logic boards

This can be used to explore Boolean operations and logic gates, and to implement simple logic functions and circuits. The board has three switchable logic inputs, a range of different logic gates (AND, OR, NAND, NOR, XOR, NOT), and three logic outputs. Orange LEDs indicate the state (logic 0 or 1) of the individual inputs and outputs of every gate.

Arithmetic Section

Arithmetic

This provides an 8-bit two’s complement adder/subtractor circuit, offering the ability to perform A+B or A-B (where A and B are 8-bit binary numbers). This can be used to experiment with unsigned and signed binary arithmetic, as well as offering a different way to observe and understand binary number systems. This can even be extended to a 9-bit adder circuit, by using the Logic Section of the kit to implement a Full Adder.

Troubleshooting

If the Logic and Arithmetic board does not work, first of all:

  • Check the power is switched on; the power LED will be lit. If the power LED does not light, replace the battery (rechargeable batteries are fine) and remove all wires and jumpers from the board.
  • Ensure you do not directly connect "logic 0" to "logic 1".

If the kit still does not work then please email us.

About The Team

The A-Level Computer Science Logic and Arithmetic Kit has been created by the following team from the University of Southampton and UK Electronics Skills Foundation:

Dr Geoff Merrett

Geoff is an Associate Professor and Director of Outreach and Recruitment in ECS, and has led on the development of the A-Level Computer Science kit.

Dr Alex Weddell

Alex is a Lecturer in ECS, and is leading on professional development activities using the A-Level Computer Science kit.

Dr Daniel Spencer

Daniel is a Lecturer in ECS, and part of the team developing the A-Level Computer Science kit.

Stewart Edmondson

Stewart is the CEO of the UK Electronics Skills Foundation, and has led on securing funding to get the kits into schools.

Contact Us

For information on when kits are available, and other developments in the project, please join our mailing list.

For any other enquiries, or to contribute resources, please email kits@soton.ac.uk.

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