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Brockport / Assessment and Testing / Computer Skills

Computer Skills Examination

Taking and passing a computer skills examination is required of all undergraduate students. Successful completion of the exam will fulfill the current computer skills requirement of the General Education program at SUNY Brockport.   

Q. What is the Computer Literacy requirement?
A. Freshmen and transfer students entering The College at Brockport are required to pass the Computer Skills Exam in order to satisfy the computer skills requirement of the General Education program. The examination should be taken and passed within the first year of matriculation.   

Q. What is the purpose of the examination?
A. The intent of this exam is to test basic computer skills, such as word processing, creating PowerPoint presentations, working with spreadsheets, and general information literacy. It is intended to ensure that basic computer competencies or "skills" will be acquired within the student’s first year at SUNY Brockport if students do not have these skills prior to that time. These skills will serve as a foundation for more advanced skills, which might include items such as spreadsheets, databases, image analysis programs, computer graphics, or geographical information systems.  

Q. How do I take the Computer Skills Examination?
A. The examination is a computer-based test that will be administered in multiple testing sessions in the Computer Skills Testing Facility in Room 53, Drake Library. Exams are available throughout every fall and spring semester. Incoming freshmen attending the summer orientation sessions take the exam while on campus for orientation. All other students are able to register for exams during the regular semester by logging on to ANGEL and going to the Computer Skills Exam link in the Exam Registration box.

The exam will take one to two hours to complete. As you enter the room, you will be asked to present a Student Identification Card and will be provided with exam directions.

Q. What computer skills does the examination test?
A. The exam consists of three sections:  

Part I: Word Processing, File Editing Skills, Creating a Presentation, and Working with Spreadsheets  

This section of the exam involves working with several files provided to you. Modifications will be made to the files, after which the files will be saved and submitted. Skills tested in this section are: 

Microsoft Word skills

  • Opening an existing document in Microsoft Word 2010 for editing
  • Working with multiple open documents
  • Using different fonts and sizes
  • Using styles (bold, italic, underline)
  • Using text alignment (left, center, right, justified)
  • Using effects: strikethrough, superscript, subscript
  • Changing margins and line spacing (1, 1.5, 2)
  • Creating hyperlinks
  • Using/Inserting symbols
  • Creating headers and footers
  • Applying borders and shading
  • Setting page orientation
  • Inserting and modifying graphics
  • Using tables and modifying table structure
  • Using page numbers
  • Using normal and hanging indents
  • Creating bulleted lists and/or auto numbered lists
  • Inserting “page” and "section" breaks


  Microsoft PowerPoint skills

  • Understanding PowerPoint window, view, menus, and toolbars
  • Creating and editing a presentation
  • Using design templates and auto layouts
  • Creating a slide show (slide transitions, automatic advance, and continuous loop)
  • Changing the order of slides in a presentation


  Microsoft Excel skills

  • Identifying and selecting cells
  • Entering data and formulas
  • Copying a formula to a range of cells
  • Formatting cells, columns, and rows (e.g., cell width, currency or date format)
  • Using functions (e.g., sum, average, maximum, minimum)
  • Inserting charts


Part II: Information Literacy

This section of the test examines your ability to identify and effectively use information resources. You will demonstrate that you are able to locate and evaluate relevant information and apply it to your research.

Topics from the following list will be covered in this section of the exam.

  • Knowing when to use the Web for research
  • Knowing how to use Web search tools
  • Knowing how to evaluate information found on the Web
  • Knowing proper sources for scholarly information


  Part III: General Vocabulary and Application Knowledge

The final section examines your general computer literacy. If during the exam, you are unsure of an answer, it may be skipped and returned to later. When you have completed this final section, your answers are submitted by clicking the SUBMIT button. Once you have submitted the exam, you cannot change any answers.

Topics from the following list will be covered in this section of the exam.

  • Defining computer vocabulary
  • Using commonly available software
  • Manipulating windows (maximize, minimize, move, resize)
  • Using menus, toolbar buttons, and keyboard shortcuts to work more effectively within each application

When you have completed the Exam, you will submit all files as directed and log off of all programs. You will be notified of your grade by e-mail within a few days of taking the examination.    


Q. How often can I take the Computer Skills Examination?
A. You may take the Computer Skills Examination as often as necessary during any of the scheduled examination times. Students are encouraged to attempt the examination when they feel prepared. There is no penalty for taking the examination more than once. Normally, however, students will pass the examination before the end of their first year at Brockport.


Last Updated 4/24/12