On completion of this course, you will be knowledgeable and skilled in the efficient design of software and in the modern mathematics that can be applied to all aspects of software design, development and verification. You will also know enough about the hardware to exploit its potential to the full with your designs.
UCAS Tariff - 320 points, from: GCE A and AS-level
Tariff points typically from 3 A-levels together with either 1 AS-level or Extended Project Qualification (typical offer BBC, plus a C in either an AS or EPQ). General Studies/Critical Thinking accepted.
Irish Tariff points from 5 subjects.
Scottish Tariff points from 3 Advanced Highers, plus 1 Higher.
Advanced Diploma Tariff points in Engineering or IT, including an A-level for Additional and Specialist Learning.
BTEC ND DDM in a related subject.
IB Diploma 32 points.
Access: Pass, with Distinctions in 30% of units and Merits in the remainder. For all of the above, 5 GCSEs or equivalent at Grade C or above are also required, to include English and Maths.
The main aim of this course is to enable you to become knowledgeable and skilled in the efficient design of software and in the modern mathematics that can be applied to all aspects of software design, development and verification. You will also learn enough about the hardware to exploit its potential to the full with your designs.
The emphasis in all our degrees is on acquiring a range of knowledge and skills which enable you to design and implement your knowledge creatively and professionally. This is an academic degree which balances theoretical concepts with practical application and information and computer management.
The Level 1 course meets the needs of students from a wide variety of backgrounds and with differing experience in computing. These classes establish a firm foundation for the rest of the degree. You will be introduced to the style and ethos of both the school and the computing profession.
Core material includes foundation units in systems architecture, systems analysis, software development and the relevant mathematics. Level 1 will concentrate on establishing a sound knowledge of key points within the discipline. Although the context and related areas will be identified, they will not be explored or compared in great depth until Level 2.
By the end of Level 1, regardless of your degree programme, you have covered the fundamental concepts of computer science and information systems, with a particular emphasis on programming. For modules see below.
This period consolidates Level 1 learning but more emphasis is placed on judgement and evaluation skills. You will enhance your understanding of: ¦the process of developing large and complex software systems the roles that you might need to adopt and the technologies available to help you control such projects human-computer interface how to develop sound criteria 'user friendliness' and make reliable and repeatable judgements based on them.
You will further specialise in Computer Science. At the end of Level 2, you will have covered systems analysis and design. You will also have studied foundation topics such as logic and compilers. For modules see below.
Level 3 Final year project
You will undertake a substantial individual project where you research a topic in Artificial Intelligence in depth. If you are on a sandwich course it is quite likely that this project will be of interest to your past, and perhaps future employer. This is assessed and is worth a third of your Level 3 marks. In this final year, you will continue to specialise in Artificial Intelligence.
At the same time you will study options which allow you to broaden your understanding of computing and you will begin to address research-level issues in areas such as software engineering, information systems, simulation modelling, digital media and games, network computing. The range of options available is revised each year and reflects the range of specialist interests among our staff.
Current specialisms include:
- eCommerce Component-based design
- Managing information systems projects
- Multimedia information superhighways
- Multimedia information systems
- Developing systems that closely match business and user requirements
- The development of intelligent systems
- Vision and image processing using neural networks
- Self organisation and robotics
- Artificial intelligence
- Simulation modelling to help decision makers
- Business process design
- Digital media
New scheme modules (for first year entrants 2009). Click on links for module information (Word document).
Level 1 Group Project Introductory Programming Data and Information Information Systems and Organisations Logic and Computation
Level 2 Group Project Software Development and Management Usability Engineering Algorithms and their Applications Networks and Operating Systems
Final Year Project in Artificial Intelligence Software Project Management Advanced Topics in Computer Science Artificial Intelligence
Level 3 Options
Digital Media and Games
Teaching and Learning Expert staff
Our courses are taught by an academic staff of more than 50, many with a background in the computer industry. Practically all are involved in the our application-oriented research, which includes information systems, software engineering, knowledge-based systems, and simulation modelling. We take great care to ensure a smooth transition from school or college to university.
Groups of around 12 meet for twice-weekly seminars with a personal group tutor and practical workshops of around 24 are run with the same tutor. This both ensures continuity and allows you, particularly in your first year, to become well acquainted with your tutor.
How many hours study a week will I have?
You will have about 12 hours directed study per week. In addition to this, staff are normally happy to answer queries outside of this time. Students are expected to do an average of 30-35 hours private study a week.
How will I be taught Lectures - These provide a broad overview of key concepts and ideas relating to computer science or information systems. They give you a framework from which to carry out more in-depth study.
Laboratory work - This helps you develop and understand the technical skills for building software using the methods and techniques introduced in lectures. You will do individual work, but a tutor is on hand. He/she may stop the group for discussion on common problems and issues from time to time.
Seminars - You will give presentations, learn key business skills, such as report writing, self-study and evaluation, and crucially, communication skills. Professional Issues Seminars will help you understand the professional context of your academic studies, even if you opt for the three-year course.
Tutorials - In a tutorial you will work on a computing-related problem with guidance from a member of staff. He/she will be on hand to help you with your problems.
One-to-one - In your final year you will normally get one-to-one supervision for your project. You will also be allocated a personal tutor each year who is available to discuss personal or academic problems. If you go on placement you will also have an industrial tutor who will help you set objectives and monitor your progress, and will provide further support if you need it.
Other - Guest speakers from prominent organisations give presentations on relevant business aspects. We host weekly talks on topical computing research issues. If you do work experience, this will also be an important part of your professional development.
Assessment varies from one module to another, and may be based entirely on coursework, entirely on examination or a combination of both. It is equally important for you to learn how to establish your own criteria for assessment and reliably to assess the quality and value of your own work. Overall, the split is usually about 50:50 exam to coursework.
Our graduates have a wide variety of computing, business and technical careers to choose from. In addition to the general analyst/programmer jobs, you may join a consultancy firm, which is often just a first step towards setting up your own business. The major companies within the industry all have openings for well-qualified personnel. Students with ‘sandwich’ experience are particularly in demand for the better graduate appointments. Many also proceed to a higher degree in this discipline.