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Computer Science is an exciting and rapidly evolving subject that offers excellent employment prospects and well-paid careers. At Kent, we teach you the fundamentals of computer science as well as giving you the opportunity to specialise in an area of your choice.
The School of Computing at Kent is an internationally recognised centre for excellence for programming and has won awards for its Java teaching.
It is also home to authors of leading textbooks, a National Teaching Fellow and two Association of Computer Machinery (ACM) award-winning scientists.
The wide-ranging expertise of our teaching staff means you have the chance to explore a large choice of subjects, from artificial intelligence and computer security to parallel systems and mobile computing.
Our degree programme
Our programme focuses on the technical aspects of computer science. The first language you learn is Java, the standard programming language for many mobile devices and widely used in the industry.
Other areas covered include software engineering, network technology and human-computer interaction. You learn how to develop software, program mobile devices and discover the underlying protocols on which the internet runs.
The programme is flexible; you take a broad range of compulsory modules in your first and second years and can select from a variety of options in your final year of study, so is ideal if you want to keep your options open.
We also offer modules that allow you to gain practical experience. On our Kent IT Consultancy option, you learn how to become an IT consultant, providing computing support to local businesses while earning credits towards your degree.
You can also gain experience in teaching with our Computing in the Classroom module, which gives you the opportunity to apply your knowledge in a school setting.
Year in industry
You spend a year working in industry between your second and final year - we have a Placement Team who can give advice and guidance. All our placements are in paid roles. In previous years, students have worked in a range of large and small organisations including well-known names such as:
- Kent Police
- Morgan Stanley
- The Walt Disney Company.
You can take your work placement abroad. Previous destinations include Hong Kong and the USA.
Spending a year in industry gives you invaluable workplace experience, which greatly enhances your employment prospects and also helps you in your final year at university, allowing you to put your academic learning into a real-world context.
You have the option to take this programme as a three-year degree, without the year in industry. For details, see Computer Science.
You can also take Computer Science as a themed degree – Artificial Intelligence, Consultancy, or Networks. For more details, see Computer Science (Artificial Intelligence), Computer Science (Consultancy), Computer Science (Networks). All of these programmes are also available with a year in industry.
Facilities to support the study of Computer Science include The Shed, the School of Computing's Makerspace, which houses:
- 3D printers
- laser-cutting facilities
- development equipment, including Oculus Rift and Raspberry Pi.
Students also have exclusive access to a computer room and common room, and we run a peer-mentoring scheme.
Computer Science students often take part in TinkerSoc, a student-run 'tinkering' society which meets in 'The Shed', our collaborative workspace. TinkerSoc welcomes all students who like making things.
Whether a member of TinkerSoc or not, you can spend time in The Shed, making, exploring and sharing. In this informal environment you can build physical devices for your coursework, as well as develop your own interests and hobbies.
The School of Computing also hosts events that you are welcome to attend. These include our successful seminar programme where guest speakers from academia and industry discuss current developments in the field. We also host the BCS local branch events on campus.
In addition, you can join the Kent Computing Society, which is run by students and provides networking opportunities with industry professionals as well as access to valuable knowledge and resources to help you develop your skills outside of your course.
Our successful year in industry programmes have allowed us to build up excellent relationships with leading companies such as BAE Systems, Citigroup and The Walt Disney Company.
Think Kent video series
In this lecture, Dr Mark Batty from the School of Computing explores how mathematics can be used to better specify and design computer systems. He makes the case that computer systems should not be built above prose specifications and that a solid basis for computer-system engineering does not exist.
In the National Student Survey 2015, 87% of School of Computing students were satisfied with the overall quality of their course.
The School of Computing at Kent is ranked 3rd in the UK for graduate prospects in The Guardian University Guide 2016, and, in the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education Survey*, 96% of students had found employment or gone on to further study within six months of graduating in 2014.
*conducted by the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA)
The following modules are indicative of those offered on this programme. This listing is based on the current curriculum and may change year to year in response to new curriculum developments and innovation.
On most programmes, you study a combination of compulsory and optional modules. You may also be able to take ‘wild’ modules from other programmes so you can customise your programme and explore other subjects that interest you.
Year in industry
You spend a year working in an industrial or commercial environment between Stages 2 and 3.
Our students go to a wide range of companies including:
- Morgan Stanley.
They have also been to overseas employers in locations including Amsterdam, Hong Kong and the US.
The year in industry forms an integral part of your degree and constitutes 10% of your final grade. Assessment comprises an employer evaluation, a reflective report and a logbook/portfolio.
Although it is your responsibility to find a suitable placement, the School of Computing’s dedicated Placement Team will help to identify suitable opportunities, assist with your application and prepare you for interviews.
To automatically progress onto the year in industry, you must pass Stage 2 at the first attempt. If you fail, you must pass the first resit opportunity in the August of the same year. Students who do not obtain a work placement will have their registration changed to the equivalent three-year programme without a year in industry.
Teaching and assessment
Most modules run for a single 12-week term, and are usually a combination of lectures, seminars, private study and practical sessions. Assessment is by a combination of coursework and end-of-year examination and details are shown in the module outlines on the web. Project modules are assessed wholly by coursework.
The programme aims to:
- provide a programme that attracts and meets the needs of those contemplating a career in computing and those motivated primarily by an intellectual interest in computer science
- be compatible with widening participation in higher education by offering a wide variety of entry routes
- provide knowledge and understanding of the principles of computer science
- provide computing skills that will be of lasting value in a field that is constantly changing
- offer a range of options so students can match their interests and study selected areas of computing in more depth
- provide teaching informed by current research and scholarship, which requires students to engage with work at the frontiers of knowledge
- develop general critical, analytical and problem-solving skills that can be applied in a range of computing and non-computing settings
- provide both a broad overview of the subject and enable specialisation in selected areas
- offer several themed pathways that build on the core modules allowing students to pursue particular interests.
Knowledge and understanding
You gain knowledge and understanding of:
- hardware – the major functional components of a computer system
- software – programming languages and practice; tools and packages; computer applications; structuring of data and information
- communication and interaction – basic computer communication network concepts; communication between computers and people; the control and operation of computers
- practice – problem identification and analysis; design development, testing and evaluation
- aspects of the core subject areas from the perspective of a commercial or industrial organisation.
You develop intellectual skills in:
- modelling – knowledge and understanding of the modelling and design of computer-based systems including the trade-off involved in design choices
- reflection and communication – presenting rational and reasoned arguments succinctly to a range of audiences
- requirements – identifying and analysing criteria and specifications appropriate to specific problems and planning strategies for their solution
- criteria evaluation and testing – analysing the extent to which a computer-based system meets the criteria defined for its current use and future development
- methods and tools – deploying appropriate theory, practices and tools for the specification, design, implementation and evaluation of computer-based systems
- professional responsibility – recognising and being guided by the professional, economic, social, environmental, moral and ethical issues involved in the sustainable exploitation of computer technology
- computational thinking – demonstrating analytical ability and its relevance to everyday life
- apply some of the intellectual skills outlined above from the perspective of a commercial or industrial organisation.
You gain subject-specific skills in:
- design and implementation – specifying, designing, and implementing computer-based systems
- evaluation – evaluating systems in terms of general quality attributes and possible trade-offs
- information management – applying the principles of effective information management, information organisation and information retrieval skills to information of various kinds, including text, images, sound, and video
- tools – deploying the tools used for the construction and documentation of software, with particular emphasis on understanding the whole process involved in using computers to solve practical problems
- operation – operating computing equipment and software systems effectively
- applying some of the subject-specific skills outlined above from the perspective of a commercial or industrial organisation.
You gain transferable skills in:
- teamwork – working effectively as a member of a development team
- communication – making succinct presentations to a range of audiences about technical problems and their solutions
- information technology – effective use of general IT facilities; information retrieval skills
- numeracy and literacy – understand and explain the quantitative and qualitative dimensions of a problem
- self management – managing your own learning and development, including time management and organisational skills
- professional development – appreciating the need for continuing professional development.
Our graduates have gone on to work in:
- software engineering
- mobile applications development
- systems analysis
- web design and e-commerce
- finance and insurance
Recent graduates have gone on to develop successful careers at leading companies such as:
- BAE Systems
- The Walt Disney Company
Help finding a job
Employers are always keen to employ graduates with experience of the workplace, so your year in industry gives you a real advantage when it comes to starting your career.
The University has a friendly Careers and Employability Service, which can give you advice on how to:
- apply for jobs
- write a good CV
- perform well in interviews.
You can gain commercial experience working as a student consultant within the Kent IT Consultancy. You can also gain teaching experience by taking the Computing in the Classroom module.
You graduate with a solid grounding in the fundamentals of computer science and a range of professional skills, including:
To help you appeal to employers, you also learn key transferable skills that are essential for all graduates. These include the ability to:
- think critically
- communicate your ideas and opinions
- analyse situations and troubleshoot problems
- work independently or as part of a team.
You can also gain extra skills by signing up for one of our Kent Extra activities, such as learning a language or volunteering.
Our Computer Science degree has full Chartered IT Professional (CITP) accreditation from BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT.
Of Computer Science students who graduated from Kent in 2015 and went into employment, 95% found professional jobs (DLHE).
According to Which? University (2017), the average starting salary for graduates of this degree is ‘high’ at £27,000.
Year in Industry was a huge opportunity to gain real-life experience, travel abroad and most likely secure a job offer.Paul Wozniak Computer Science with a Year in Industry
The University will consider applications from students offering a wide range of qualifications. Students offering alternative qualifications should contact us for further advice.
It is not possible to offer places to all students who meet this typical offer/minimum requirement.
New GCSE grades
If you’ve taken exams under the new GCSE grading system, please see our conversion table to convert your GCSE grades.
|Qualification||Typical offer/minimum requirement|
Mathematics grade C
|Access to HE Diploma||
The University will not necessarily make conditional offers to all Access candidates but will continue to assess them on an individual basis.
If we make you an offer, you will need to obtain/pass the overall Access to Higher Education Diploma and may also be required to obtain a proportion of the total level 3 credits and/or credits in particular subjects at merit grade or above
|BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (formerly BTEC National Diploma)||
Distinction, Distinction, Distinction
34 points overall or 16 points at HL including Mathematics 5 at HL or SL, or Mathematics Studies 6 at SL
The University welcomes applications from international students. Our international recruitment team can guide you on entry requirements. See our International Student website for further information about entry requirements for your country.
If you need to increase your level of qualification ready for undergraduate study, we offer a number of International Foundation Programmes.
Meet our staff in your country
For more advise about applying to Kent, you can meet our staff at a range of international events.
English Language Requirements
Please see our English language entry requirements web page.
Please note that if you are required to meet an English language condition, we offer a number of 'pre-sessional' courses in English for Academic Purposes. You attend these courses before starting your degree programme.
General entry requirements
Please also see our general entry requirements.
The 2017/18 tuition fees for this programme are:
For details of when and how to pay fees and charges, please see our Student Finance Guide.
UK/EU fee paying students
The Government has announced changes to allow undergraduate tuition fees to rise in line with inflation from 2017/18.
In accordance with changes announced by the UK Government, we are increasing our 2017/18 regulated full-time tuition fees for new and returning UK/EU fee paying undergraduates from £9,000 to £9,250. The equivalent part-time fees for these courses will also rise from £4,500 to £4,625. This was subject to us satisfying the Government's Teaching Excellence Framework and the access regulator's requirements. This fee will ensure the continued provision of high-quality education.
For students continuing on this programme, fees will increase year on year by no more than RPI + 3% in each academic year of study except where regulated.*
The University will assess your fee status as part of the application process. If you are uncertain about your fee status you may wish to seek advice from UKCISA before applying.
Fees for Year Abroad/Industry
As a guide only, UK/EU/International students on an approved year abroad for the full 2017/18 academic year pay an annual fee of £1,350 to Kent for that year. Students studying abroad for less than one academic year will pay full fees according to their fee status.
Please note that for 2017/18 entrants the University will increase the standard year in industry fee for home/EU/international students to £1,350.
General additional costs
Kent offers generous financial support schemes to assist eligible undergraduate students during their studies. See our funding page for more details.
You may be eligible for government finance to help pay for the costs of studying. See the Government's student finance website.
The Government has confirmed that EU students applying for university places in the 2017 to 2018 academic year will still have access to student funding support for the duration of their course.
Scholarships are available for excellence in academic performance, sport and music and are awarded on merit. For further information on the range of awards available and to make an application see our scholarships website.
The Kent Scholarship for Academic Excellence
At Kent we recognise, encourage and reward excellence. We have created the Kent Scholarship for Academic Excellence. The scholarship will be awarded to any applicant who achieves a minimum of AAA over three A levels, or the equivalent qualifications (including BTEC and IB) as specified on our scholarships pages.
The scholarship is also extended to those who achieve AAB at A level (or specified equivalents) where one of the subjects is either Mathematics or a Modern Foreign Language. Please review the eligibility criteria.