Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate - Information Technology/Data and Information

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The interchange of the words data and information is widespread, but M150 should help you to develop a clearer understanding of the differences between the two.


  1. Facts, statistics used for reference or analysis.
  2. Numbers, characters, symbols, images etc., which can be processed by a computer.
  3. Data must be interpreted, by a human or machine, to derive meaning
  4. "Data is a representation of information" *
  5. Latin 'datum' meaning "that which is given"
  6. Data plural, datum singular


  1. Knowledge derived from study, experience (by the senses), or instruction.
  2. Communication of intelligence.
  3. "Information is any kind of knowledge that is exchangeable amongst people, about things, facts, concepts, etc., in some context." *
  4. "Information is interpreted data" *


"The word 'data' is a plural Latin word but it is generally used as a singular word in English."

Here are some definitions:

"data n, pl. 1 Facts on which a decision is to be based. 2 Facts to be processed by computer. datum n. (pl. data) item of data"

Reference: Oxford Quick Reference Dictionary and Thesaurus - Oxford University Press


noun 1 facts and statistics used for reference or analysis. 2 the quantities, characters, or symbols on which operations are performed by a computer.

USAGE Traditionally and in technical use data is treated as a plural, as in Latin it is the plural of datum. In modern non-scientific use, however, it is often treated as a singular, and sentences such as data was collected over a number of years are now acceptable.

ORIGIN Latin, plural of DATUM.


noun (pl. data) 1 a piece of information. 2 an assumption or premise from which inferences may be drawn. 3 a fixed starting point of a scale or operation.

ORIGIN Latin, 'something given'."