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Software Engineering BSc

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  • Entry requirements
    We operate a common admissions policy across all our single-honours degrees. We recommend that applicants should be studying a set of A-levels including some scientific, mathematical or technical content. However, we make no specific subject requirements. Applicants will be judged not just on expected grades, but on a wider profile to assess potential for success. Our typical conditional offer for GCE/AVCE is 300 UCAS tariff points excluding key skills and General Studies (eg BCC plus extra AS at grade C). Science, technology and mathematics subjects are preferred, and at least one such subject should be offered We welcome the BTEC National Diploma (typical offer DMM) in relevant subjects and the International Baccalaureate (28 IB points). Overseas, other UK qualifications and relevant work experience will be considered on the basis of equivalence to our A-level intake.
  • Academic Title
    Software Engineering BSc
  • Course description
    Professional recognition

    This course is recognised by the British Computer Society for exemption from their professional examinations and offers a pathway to Chartered status.

    Are you interested in programming and software development?

    Software development is a central activity in the IT industry and there is demand for computing professionals who can develop dependable software systems to deadline and within budget.

    A degree in Software Engineering provides specialist focus on the programming and development of large, complex software, with an emphasis given to systems in which failure may involve significant financial loss, or even loss of life.

    You will gain:

        * essential skills in programming and software development
        * expertise in the latest methods and frameworks for specifying and implementing large scale systems
        * paid experience of software development in the IT industry

    Whilst at City, you will

        * acquire expertise in a variety of computing technologies including specialist methods and tools for implementing mission-critical software
        * gain paid experience of real industrial software development projects
        * acquire the skills needed to communicate your knowledge to non-technical personnel and clients

    This degree is suitable for you if:

        * you want to be taught by researchers and practitioners with an international research reputation (ranked in the world’s top 20 for software engineering by the Journal of Systems and Software)
        * you want to be involved in the development and management of large, complex, mission-critical software
        * you aspire to a successful career in software development

    Course content

    This degree is part of the computing undergraduate programme, the common structure is described below. Specialist topics covered include:

        * Software measurement, to rigorously measure and manage the quality of software
        * Formal methods to prove whether or not a program will work using mathematics
        * Requirements engineering, to ensure that developers capture what the end-user really wants

    Our degrees are challenging, intensive and require commitment and motivation. In return you will receive a thorough, interesting and well-regarded education taught by highly-motivated experts. This will give you an excellent start to your career in the IT industry.

    The structure of your degree is based around three parts, each corresponding to one year of a three-year degree. Commonality is emphasised as far as possible, allowing you maximum flexibility to change your degree course once registered.

    A one-year placement can be taken between the second and final year. Alternatively, you can choose the Professional Pathway route, where Parts II and III are spread over three years whilst you work part time on a placement - see the section on Placements and the Professional Pathway for details.

    Part I: Foundations
    You will gain a firm foundation in computing in the following modules:

        * Programming in Java
        * Software Engineering
        * Systems Architecture
        * Databases
        * Mathematics for Computing
        * Business and Organisations

    Communication and professional development skills, essential for a successful career in IT, are also covered.

    The first year is identical for all our courses, allowing you ample time to make an informed choice of which computing degree to study.

    Part II: Core knowledge and skills
    You will learn the core knowledge and skills needed in the IT profession, including topics such as:

        * Object-Oriented Analysis and Design
        * Networks and Operating Systems
        * Research and Professional Issues
        * A team project, a quarter of your second year, plays an important role in developing your team-working skills in a software development environment
        * Depending on your course you will take either Human-Computer Interaction (Business Computing and Information Systems) or Data Structures and Algorithms (all others).

    You will also study two modules relevant to your specialism, such as functional programming for computer science, or organisational behaviour for business computing. This is described further in the specific course entries.

    Part III: Advanced topics
    The centrepiece of final year is your individual project; this will demonstrate to employers that you can apply your knowledge and devise a novel solution to a problem. Your project may be undertaken in conjunction with one of our research groups in artificial intelligence, human-computer interaction or software engineering. Alternatively, you may undertake your project with the company you worked for whilst on placement.

    You will also take an advanced module in the area of specialisation of your degree.

    You will also have the opportunity to gain knowledge of your specialism and broaden your education by selecting four modules from our wide range of final year elective modules. Example electives are:

        * Advanced Databases
        * Advanced Music Informatics
        * Bioinformatics
        * Business Engineering with ERP Solutions
        * Business Object Technology
        * Computer Graphics
        * Data Mining
        * E-Commerce
        * Management of IT Strategy
        * Project Management
        * Requirements Engineering
        * Software Agents
        * Theory of Computation

    In addition to the above, you may take up to two of the four elective modules from the specialist modules taken in the second year of the other computing courses.

    Teaching and assessment

    Teaching is a combination of lectures, case studies, seminars, and laboratory sessions. Project and group work aim to develop creativity and problem solving and play a major part of the course. Communication and professional development skills are covered in the first year. Teaching is also supported online by the CitySpace e-learning system.

    Assessment is by examination and coursework though some components, such as the team project, are assessed by coursework alone. A large individual project is undertaken in the final year. Your final degree classification is calculated from your second and final years, with the weighting 40 per cent to 60 per cent.

    Professional placement and study abroad

    Earn while you learn: Placements and the Professional Pathway
    As a computing student at City you have an outstanding opportunity to gain practical experience alongside your studies. Our placement scheme gives you the chance to see for yourself how the technologies you are learning about are being used in organisations, and enables you to develop your technical skills and business knowledge.

    You will normally be paid and your career prospects will be significantly improved. A number of students each year gain graduate employment directly from their placement employer.  There are two types of placement; one year and the Professional Pathway.

    One-year placements
    One-year placements are taken after you have successfully completed the second year of study. You then return to City to finish your degree after the placement.

    Professional Pathway
    The Professional Pathway scheme provides you with relevant work experience alongside your study. You will be a full-time student for one year, then part-time after that, so you will receive substantial employment experience (and earnings) during your studies.

    As a Professional Pathway student you take the same course content and exams as full-time students, but at a slower rate. You attend the University for one day per week, for 45 weeks of the year. You attend lectures and other course components with full-time students. The Professional Pathway takes four years in total.

    Employers will ensure you are available for the designated one day per week you are required to attend the university, and recognise that you need to study in the evenings and at weekends.

    How do I get a placement?

    City has extensive experience in helping students secure placement employment in the IT industry. We begin by teaching you effective communication skills, as well as providing you with facilities to help you to prepare your CV and practice for interviews and psychometric tests. Later on, our dedicated placements service will keep you informed of the available placement opportunities and help you apply.

    What happens on placement?
    You will perform responsible work that will extend your knowledge and let you show future employers what you can achieve. You are likely to perform a range of tasks, for example, programming, user support, systems investigation, analysis and design, documentation, testing, use of packages, data collection or help-desk work. We ensure that you are provided with a planned sequence of learning opportunities and industrial training.

    External recognition
    The high standard of City placements are recognised through the British Computer Society’s Professional Development Scheme (BCS PDS). This gives you a framework for career development planning, which we help you with. Your achievements will be recorded on a Certificate of Graduate Professional Development which shows employers that you have achieved nationally recognised standards of competence in applying IT in the workplace.

    On graduation, if you have completed 12 months or more of full-time placement validated BCS PDS experience at an appropriate level, you are able to apply for British Computer Society membership at Associate grade level. Professional Pathway students may be able to apply for chartered membership of the British Computer Society as soon as they graduate if they have the equivalent of two and a half years full-time validated BCS PDS experience at an appropriate level.

    Overseas students
    Overseas students do not need work permits for placement work where the placement is a requirement of their course. The Home Office allows overseas students to take placement employment on the Professional Pathway scheme without needing a work permit, and without jeopardising their student visa status.

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