School of Computer Science

MEng Computer Science and Software Engineering

Key information

  • UCAS code: GG46 (GG6L five year course with Year in Industry)
  • Institution code: B32
  • Duration of programme: 4 years for MEng Computer Science/Software Engineering; 5 years with Year in Industry
  • Tuition Fee: Information on current undergraduate tuition fees can be found here.
  • Professional accreditation: The MEng degree is recognised by BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT on behalf of the Engineering Council, for the purposes of fully meeting the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered Engineer.
  • Apply online

Contact details

2020 Typical Entry Requirements

A Levels:

  • Number of A levels required: 3
  • Typical offer: A*AA
  • Required subjects and grades: Grade A in A Level Mathematics
  • We also require a Grade C/4 in GCSE English (please see here for information regarding the equivalencies in the new qualification reforms).
  • General Studies or Critical Thinking: Not accepted

International Baccalaureate:

  • 766 required at Higher Level (including 6 in HL Mathematics), with a minimum of 32 points overall
  • We also require 5 in Standard Level English

BTEC qualifications:

BTEC Extended Diploma will only be considered if accompanied by A level Mathematics:

  • D* D* plus A-level Mathematics at Grade A*

BTEC Subsidiary Diploma will be considered in combination with 2 A levels including Mathematics:

  • D* plus A-levels A*A (must include Mathematics)

We also require a Grade C/4 in GCSE English (please see here for information regarding the equivalencies in the new qualification reforms).

Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma:

  • Grade A in A Level Mathematics is required, but Cambridge Technical Introductory Diplomas at Grade D* are acceptable replacements for the remaining A Levels required in our standard offer
  • We also require a Grade C/4 in GCSE English (please see here for information regarding the equivalencies in the new qualification reforms).

Engineering and Physical Sciences Foundation Year and Pathway:

  • UK and EU sudents: The Physical Sciences Foundation Year is designed for UK/EU students who do not have the recommended qualifications for entry into year one of our computer science programmes. Please click here for further information, eligibility and how to apply.

  • International students: Our Birmingham Foundation Academy offers three undergraduate pathways for international students, allowing you to complete a foundation year before entering into a full time undergraduate degree in computer science. Please click here for further information.

Access to Higher Education Diploma:

  • Not accepted

International qualifications and further information:

Additional information

  • Ideally applicants will offer both A Level Mathematics and Computing, which may become a requirement in future years
  • It is desirable, but not essential, to have some experience of writing computer programs
  • This degree can be taken with a Year in Industry and with a Year of Study Abroad


Software engineering now impacts on a wide range of human activity. For example, the increasing use of robotics in surgery relies on the use of computer vision techniques to understand images of internal organs as well as to control the surgeon's tools. Other areas include air traffic control systems, cryptographic systems for banking, satellite control for telecommunications, and of course, the internet.

Software engineering is concerned with how to build the very large software systems that are used throughout commerce and industry. Software engineers are the professionals behind this industry. As a software engineer you would lead the development of these very large systems so that they are delivered on time, within budget, and are both reliable and maintainable. Software engineering covers not only the technical aspects of building these software systems, but also management and teamwork skills.

In this degree, you learn all the fundamentals of computer science, with an emphasis on the skills required for successful software engineers. Our curriculum has been designed to give you a thorough education in the fundamentals of computer science in the first two years, whilst allowing you go deeper into subjects of your choice by choosing from a wide range of optional modules in your third and fourth year.

Graduates from the MEng programme are expected to be the future leaders of the IT industry so you must be academically strong.

First year

In the first year you gain a firm foundation in programming, plus the principles of data structures and algorithms; artificial intelligence; and relevant logic and mathematics. Our main teaching language is Java, a language widely used in enterprise systems, but you will also learn functional programming, which is a style of programming with a deep connection to logic.

Second year

In the second year you move on to study enabling technologies and their application. You will learn about a wide range of subjects from the mathematics for modelling and decision making which underpins much of modern machine learning, to systems-level programming, networks, and cyber security. Your programming repertoire will be broadened by exposure to the C programming language plus further functional programming. You will also be taught professional software engineering techniques and apply them to develop a large team project in Java such as a multiplayer networked game.

Third year

In the third year you have freedom of choice to specialise in particular areas of computer science. The choice available covers computer graphics, computer security and verification, theoretical computer science, human-computer interaction, artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics, computer vision, and teaching computer science.

Fourth year

In the final year modules from our range of Masters programmes will be open to you. You will also undertake a much more in-depth project which involves a major software or research element, and brings together all of the computer science skills you have acquired. Your choice of modules alongside your choice of project will allow you to specialise in a field such as computer security, human-computer interaction, theoretical computer science, robotics or natural computation.

If you are undertaking this degree with a Year in Industry, your third year will be spent working, whilst your fourth and fifth year will be years of study.

Teaching and assessment

Our teaching employs a mixture of lectures, tutorials, exercise classes, practical work, projects, and independent study all aimed at strengthening your understanding by active involvement.

Career opportunities

Graduates from this programme find lucrative employment in highly demanding software engineering posts and in specialist roles as systems analysts, network designers, management consultants, or in a wide range of general management positions.

You can find out more about employability and our strong links with industry here

Course Modules

You can view the modules available in our curriculum here.

Please note: The modules listed on the website for this programme are regularly reviewed to ensure they are up-to-date and informed by the latest research and teaching methods. Unless indicated otherwise, the modules listed for this programme are for students starting in 2020. On rare occasions, we may need to make unexpected changes to core modules; in this event we will contact offer holders as soon as possible to inform or consult them as appropriate. Further information can be found in the programme and modules handbook.