Introduction to Quantum Computing & Quantum Cryptography - COMP8220

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2024 to 2025
Spring Term 7 15 (7.5) Carlos Perez Delgado checkmark-circle


This module will give students an overarching introduction to quantum information processing (QIP). At the end of the course the students will have a basic understanding of quantum computation, quantum communication, and quantum cryptography; as well as the implications to other fields such as computation, physics, and cybersecurity.
We will take a multi-disciplinary approach that will encourage and require students to engage in topics outside of their core discipline. The module will cover the most essential mathematical background required to understand QIP. This includes: linear algebra, basic elements of quantum theory (quantum states, evolution of closed quantum systems, Born's rule), and basic theory of computing. The module will introduce students to the following theoretical topics: quantum algorithms, quantum cryptography, quantum communication & information. The module will also address experimental quantum computation & cryptography.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 22
Private study hours: 128
Total study hours: 150

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods
2 hour written exam (60%)
Two take-home exercise worksheets (20% and approximately 15 hrs each)

Reassessment methods
Like for like.

Indicative reading

Phillip Kaye, Raymond Laflamme, and Michele Mosca. 2007. An Introduction to Quantum Computing. Oxford University Press, Inc., New York, NY, USA. ISBN 0198570007
Scott Aaronson. Quantum Computing since Democritus. 2013. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780521199568
Nielsen, M.A. and Chuang, I.L. Quantum Computation and Quantum Information. 2010. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780511992773

Learning outcomes

8. The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
8.1 Demonstrate a systematic understanding of underlying concepts, tools, and techniques relating to quantum information processing and quantum technologies.
8.2 Demonstrate a critical awareness of quantum computing algorithms and their applications.
8.3 Creatively apply the basic tools and techniques of quantum computation and quantum information in a problem-solving scenario
8.4 Properly assess the impact of quantum technologies on science, computer security, and every-day life.
8.5 Understand how different physical systems can be used, experimentally and in practice, to represent quantum information for the purposes of computation and/or cryptography

9. The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be:
9.1 Able to exploit library and online resources to support investigations.
9.2 Able to apply mathematical techniques where appropriate.
9.3 Able to apply appropriate scientific principles and methodology.
9.4 Able to deal with highly inter-disciplinary concepts and apply the tools of diverse fields to solving problems


  1. Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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