Course Syllabus

Welcome to PRDV003: Word Processing Using Microsoft Word

Specific information about this course and its requirements can be found below. For more general information about taking Saylor Academy courses, including information about Community and Academic Codes of Conduct, please read the Saylor Student Handbook.


Course Description

This course is designed for the novice who has little or no word processing experience; it provides an introduction to word processing. In it, you will explore word processing skills while also learning to create a basic business letter and a business memo.


Course Introduction

This course is designed for the novice who has little or no word processing experience. This software program referred to and used in this course is Microsoft Word. However, if you do not have a subscription to the Microsoft Office programs, you may still take this course. You can download a 30-day trial of Microsoft Office, for free, at this link:

You may also use another word processing software of your choice. For example, Google Docs is available to anyone with a Gmail account, which you may create for free here:

Last, remember that most colleges, universities, and some public libraries offer public computer stations with at least one word processing program ready for you to use.

This course will introduce you to the Home Ribbon and the File Ribbon. A "ribbon” is a toolbar interface on which you will find tools to change the appearance of your document. The tools within each ribbon are put into different groupings, based on their functionality. Some ribbons appear only when certain objects are used or selected. For example, a Picture Tool Format Ribbon will appear once a graphic has been inserted through the Insert Ribbon.

Home and File are the most commonly used Ribbons. You will work with these Ribbons and Commands from the Font and Paragraph groupings to create, save, and print a block style business letter and a block style business memo.

This course is comprised of the following units:

  • Unit 1: Introduction to Ribbons
  • Unit 2: Creating a Block Style Business Letter
  • Unit 3: Creating a Block Style Business Memo


Course Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • demonstrate how to use the various Print and Save commands;
  • identify and use the basic formatting tools from the Font and Paragraph groupings on the Home ribbon;
  • explain how and when to use font styles like bold, italics, and underline in a block style business memo;
  • create, format, save, and print a basic business letter and a business memo;
  • identify the parts of a block style business letter and a block style business memo; and
  • identify the parts of the ribbon in Microsoft Word.

Throughout this course, you'll also see related learning outcomes identified in each unit. You can use the learning outcomes to help organize your learning and gauge your progress.


Course Materials

The primary learning materials for this course are readings, lectures, video tutorials, and other resources.

All course materials are free to access, and can be found through the links provided in each unit and subunit of the course. Pay close attention to the notes that accompany these course materials, as they will instruct you as to what specifically to read or watch at a given point in the course, and help you to understand how these individual materials fit into the course as a whole. You can also access a list all of the materials used in this course by clicking on Resources in the course's "Activities" menu.


Evaluation and Minimum Passing Score

Only the final exam is considered when awarding you a grade for this course. In order to pass this course, you will need to earn a 70% or higher on the final exam. Your score on the exam will be tabulated as soon as you complete it. If you do not pass the exam on your first attempt, you may take it again as many times as needed, following a 7-day waiting period between each attempt. Once you have successfully passed the final exam you will be awarded a free Saylor Certificate of Completion.

There are also 3 unit assessments and other types of quizzes in this course. These are intended to help you to gauge how well you are learning and do not factor into your final course grade. You may retake all of these as many times as needed to feel that you have an understanding of the concepts and material covered. You can locate a full list of these sorts of assessments by clicking on Quizzes in the course's "Activities" menu.


Tips for Success

PRDV003: Word Processing Using Microsoft Word is a self-paced course in which you the learner determines when you will start and when you will complete the course. There is no instructor or predetermined schedule to follow. While learning styles can vary considerably and any particular student will take more or less time to learn or read, we estimate that the "average" student will take 4 hours to complete this course. We recommend that you work through the course at a pace that is comfortable for you and allows you to make regular (daily, or at least weekly) progress. It's a good idea to also schedule your study time in advance and try as best as you can to stick to that schedule.

Learning new material can be challenging, so below we've compiled a few suggested study strategies to help you succeed:

  • Take notes on the various terms, practices, and theories as you read. This can help you differentiate and contextualize concepts and later provide you with a refresher as you study.
  • As you progress through the materials, take time to test yourself on what you have retained and how well you understand the concepts. The process of reflection is important for creating a memory of the materials you learn; it will increase the probability that you ultimately retain the information.
  • Although you may work through this course completely independently, you may find it helpful to connect with other Saylor Academy students through the discussion forums. You may access the discussion forums at
  • If you are still struggling with keyboarding, make sure you find a keyboarding program you can practice every day for a short time, 15-20 minutes. Accuracy is more important to start with, and speed will come naturally with time. Keyboarding skills are a necessity; the more you type, the better you will get.


Technical Requirements

This course is delivered fully online. You will be required to have access to a computer or web-capable mobile device and have consistent access to the internet to either view or download the necessary course resources and to attempt any auto-graded course assessments and the final exam.

  • To access the full course including assessments and the final exam, you will need to be logged into your Saylor Academy account and enrolled in the course. If you do not already have an account, you may create one, free of charge, here. Although you can access some course resources without being logged into your account, it's advised that you log in to maximize your course experience. For example, some of the accessibility and progress tracking features are only available when you are logged in.

For additional technical guidance check out Saylor Academy's tech-FAQ and the Moodle LMS tutorial.



There is no cost to access and enroll in this course. All required course resources linked throughout the course, including textbooks, videos, webpages, activities, etc are accessible for no charge. This course also contains a free final exam and course completion certificate.

Last modified: Thursday, May 9, 2019, 1:43 PM