My best and worst IT lessons #1: VBA conundrum

My best and worst IT lessons #1: VBA conundrum

Working together as equals can produce excellent results. Image from CC0

I thought it might be interesting and helpful to share some of my best and worst experiences of teaching ICT or Computing. The Visual Basics for Applications (VBA) story I am about to relate definitely ranks as one of the best and most enjoyable.


I was teaching Year 10 (15 year-olds) and I set them the following problem:

Imagine you have been commissioned to set up a system for a clothes shop. The way the system works is that if a person spends over £100, they get free delivery. From time to time the shop runs a special offer, like buy one item and get the second at half price. Sometimes the company has to re-order stock too, so it has stuff on the shelves!

Your job is to set up a system that can handle these requirements. You can use whatever application you like: a flat file database, relational database, spreadsheet, Visual Basic, or VBA. You have 2 hours to complete the work.

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Terry Freedman is an independent educational ICT consultant with over 35 years of experience in education. He publishes the ICT in Education website and the newsletter “Digital Education."