University of Birmingham School of Computer Science
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Programme Specification for the BEng in Computer Science/Software Engineering with an Industrial Year

NOTE: This is a formal specification for the degree programme. If you are not yet a student in the School, you will find more appropriate information on the Undergraduate Admissions pages.

Final Award BEng
Interim Awards None
Programme Title Computer Science/Software Engineering with an Industrial Year
School/Department School of Computer Science
Banner Code 9500
Mode(s) of Study Full-time
Length of Programme 4 years
Total Credits 480
UCAS Code GG46
Awarding Institution The University of Birmingham
Teaching Institution The University of Birmingham
Designed for accreditation by British Computer Society, Institute of Engineering and Technology (formerly Institute of Electrical Engineering) [See Footnote 2]
QAA Benchmarking Groups Computing
Completed by Prof J E Rowe
Date 5 May 2011
Educational Aims of Programme

Within the context of the general Learning & Teaching Aims of the School, this four-year single honours degree programme aims to provide:

  1. Thorough coverage of the core areas of computer science, with a systematic grounding both in its theoretical underpinnings and in practical software development, through a focussed programme offering an extensive choice of advanced and specialist options in the final year.
  2. Flexibility to change programmes after the first year, e.g. to the BSc in Computer Science, or to transfer to the MEng degree of the same name after the second year (subject to performance).
  3. A basis for a career as a software engineer, producing graduates who are equipped to work effectively in a professional capacity, with transferable skills in numeracy, problem-solving, team working and general communication and information technology.
  4. A solid foundation for further study in computing/IT, producing graduates who are self-motivating and are able to take responsibility for their continuing personal and professional development
  5. An accredited degree satisfying the first three years of the academic requirements for Chartered Engineer status.
  6. The vocational aspect of an honours degree in Computer Science is considerably enhanced when students are able to augment their academic study by working in a commercial environment. The integration of an industrial placement of one year's duration in the programme aims to provide the opportunity for a student to: (1) understand how theoretical and academic work completed within the university environment relates to its practical application in the work place; (2) learn how computing professionals operate within a commercial organisation; (3) improve his or her skills of organisation, time management and record keeping over a significant period of work; (4) undertake technical project work in a commercial environment.
Reference Points used to inform Programme Outcomes
Computing Benchmarking Statement, UK-SPEC, Requirements of Accrediting Bodies, the University and School Teaching and Learning Strategies.
Special features of the Programme
None.

 

Programme Outcomes and Learning, Teaching and Assessment Strategies

Knowledge & Understanding

Ref A. Students are expected to have knowledge and understanding of... Teaching, Learning & Assessment Strategies to enable outcome to be achieved and demonstrated
Learning & Teaching Methods Assessment Methods
1 Mathematical, theoretical, scientific and engineering principles and methodologies relating to Computing and computer applications, for use in the analysis and solution of Computing problems and to enable appreciation and understanding of their context and of historical, current and future developments and technologies. Lectures, Tutorials, Exercise classes, Practical work, Independent study Examinations, Coursework
2 Appropriate theory, practices and tools for the analysis and evaluation of computer-based systems and their components, including appropriate analytical and quantitative methods and modelling techniques. Lectures, Tutorials, Exercise classes, Practical work, Independent study Examinations, Coursework, Reports
3 The context of the development of computer-based systems, including commercial and economic aspects, management techniques, relevant legal requirements, professional and ethical issues and the need to promote sustainable development. Lectures, Tutorials, Exercise classes, Practical work, Independent study Examinations, Coursework, Reports
4 The role of computing professionals within a company and the interactions that normally take place with other disciplines. Working in a commercial environment under the supervision of an Industrial Tutor Report
5 The application of technical knowledge in a commercial context at an appropriate level for the student's qualifications. Working in a commercial environment under the supervision of an Industrial Tutor, in particular completing one or more technical projects as required by the company Successful completion of at least 30 weeks of the placement (as determined by the Industrial Tutor and the Academic Tutor), Report
6 The standard of professional presentation and reporting skills required in industry and commerce. Maintenance of a log-book; undertaking presentations and/or making reports as may be required by the company under the supervision of an Industrial Tutor Log-book, Report, Evaluation by the Industrial Tutor and the Academic Tutor

Skills & Other Attributes

Ref B. Students are expected to have attained the following skills and other attributes: Teaching, Learning and Assessment Strategies to enable outcome to be achieved and demonstrated
Learning & Teaching Methods Assessment Methods
1 The ability to analyse, specify, design and construct computer-based systems, by:
  • applying the knowledge and understanding noted above
  • using appropriate information sources to obtain further information where required
  • identifying and understanding a range of relevant issues (e.g. environmental issues, risks, customer and user needs, cost drivers, fitness for purpose)
  • showing creativity and innovation where appropriate
  • making use of appropriate tools
  • documenting all stages of the process
  • employing appropriate management techniques throughout
  • evaluating the outcomes.
Lectures, Tutorials, Exercise classes, Practical work, Projects, Independent study Examinations, Coursework, Reports
2 A professional software engineering ethos, showing commitment to quality, understanding and respecting appropriate legal frameworks, codes of practice and standards, with a responsible, ethical and open-minded attitude to their work. Lectures, Tutorials, Exercise classes, Practical work, Projects, Independent study Coursework, Reports, Examinations, Presentations
3 The ability to work as a computing professional in a commercial environment, demonstrating a professional and responsible attitude. Exposure to normal working practices in a commercial environment, under the supervision of an Industrial Tutor Log-book, Report, Evaluation by the Industrial Tutor and the Academic Tutor
(transferable skills)
4 The ability to work both independently and as an effective team member. Practical work, Projects, Independent study, Working in a commercial environment under the supervision of an Industrial Tutor Coursework, Reports, Presentations, Log-book, Report, Evaluation by the Industrial Tutor and the Academic Tutor
5 The ability to use and apply general IT facilities, including those required for effective information-retrieval. Practical work, Projects Coursework, Reports, Presentations
6 Numeracy, in both understanding and presenting cases involving quantitative or similar formal, symbolic dimensions. Lectures, Tutorials, Exercise classes, Practical work, Projects, Independent study Coursework, Reports, Presentations, Examinations
7 Management of learning and development, including time management, organizational skills, and the ability to pursue independently further professional development. Lectures, Tutorials, Exercise classes, Practical work, Projects, Independent study Coursework, Reports, Presentations

Footnotes

  1. The Learning & Teaching and Assessment Methods above are not intended to be exclusive, but to indicate the main methods in use. Module Descriptions contain more detail.
  2. Whether to award accreditation is a decision made from time to time by a professional body according to criteria which are then current; hence there is no guarantee that the programme will actually be accredited for any particular year of entry by any particular professional body.

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