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Computing and Information Technology - BSc (Hons)

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The multidisciplinary BSc(hons) Computing and Information Technology degree will equip you with the technical and managerial skills you will need to embark on a successful IT career....

  • Level Undergraduate
  • Study mode Full Time
  • Location City Centre
  • School School of Computing and Digital Technology
  • Faculty Faculty of Computing, Engineering and The Built Environment

This course is:

Available with Professional Placement year

Open to International Students

Overview

The multidisciplinary BSc(hons) Computing and Information Technology degree will equip you with the technical and managerial skills you will need to embark on a successful IT career. You will use industry-standard equipment and labs and have the chance to put your academic learning into practice during an optional placement year, all of which will prepare you for a computing career with a range of companies. We are also an academy with leading industry names such as Microsoft, Cisco and the Linux Professional Institute providing access to additional industry certifications during your course. Your curriculum is supported by a range of leading industry partners to ensure it continues to be relevant and employment focused.

Throughout your computing degree, you will be supported by expert teaching staff, many of whom have worked in the field of computing, are active in transformational research and are continually innovating with industry partners to achieve success.

STEAMhouse building exterior

Introducing STEAMhouse

STEAMhouse is a centre for technology, innovation, creative thinking, prototyping and business development. Our brand new £70 million pound building is the new home for the School of Computing and Digital Technology.

Find out more

This course is open to International students.

What's covered in this course?

This course is for you if you want to combine a highly rigorous academic qualification with real-life practical work experiences, enabling you to put your learning into innovative practice. 

You'll be based at our  City Centre Campus, where you'll use dedicated, industry-standard facilities to research and work on enterprise software and virtual environments to develop business solutions and real-time systems.

You will develop the strategic mindset to address global challenges; the kind that that businesses and communities face on a day-to-day basis to maintain their digital infrastructure. You'll have access to virtual learning environments, as well as networking, electronic, enterprise systems and business intelligence laboratories.

We are preparing you for the workplace. You'll learn computing and information technology skills that are needed to design, develop, operate and maintain effective systems.  Your knowledge of the application of computing to provide IT solutions will evolve on a daily basis, and we will ensure you are able to innovate in order to deliver business value and sustainable solutions.

Studying computing with us puts you at the heart of an exciting, innovative community. Part of your first-year assessment will involve taking part in our annual Innovation Fest, where students get together to solve society’s problems with creative technology. Previous projects have included medical assistance drones, accessible gaming controllers, and smart housing solutions. The event brings together students, academics and industry guests, so it’s a great way to have fun, build experience and network, and win prizes! 

It's not just about academic and technical knowledge – we'll also help to develop your personal skills so that you can work effectively as a team member and problem solve at the highest level. This will not only enhance your employability levels, it will make you stand out from the crowd. 

Throughout your computing degree you'll be supported by expert teaching staff, many of whom have worked in the field, are active in research and are continually innovating with industry.

Professional Placement Year

This course offers an optional professional placement year. This allows you to spend a whole year with an employer, following successful completion of your second year, and is a great way to find out more about your chosen career. Some students even return to the same employers after completing their studies.

If you choose to pursue a placement year, you will need to find a suitable placement to complement your chosen area of study. You will be able to draw on the University’s extensive network of local, regional, and national employers, and the support of our Careers teams. If you are able to secure a placement, you can request to be transferred to the placement version of the course.

Please note that fees are payable during your placement year, equivalent to 20% of the total full-time course fee for that year.

Accredited By

This course is accredited by:

  • Athena Swan Bronze Award

Within the course there were excellent opportunities to develop myself both professionally and personally. You get a great deal of support outside of lectures – I really enjoyed the campus environment, which is a modern building and just a short walk from the city centre. It has a wide range of resources, which includes hundreds of computers and also a large networking area with both physical and virtualised networking environments. Scott Brant, infrastructure and enablement consultant at Britvic

Why Choose Us?

  • Brand new facilities at STEAMhouse - This state-of-the-art building is the new home for our Computing courses. Based at our expanding City Centre Campus, this unique centre will give you access to outstanding facilities and teaching spaces, as well as opportunities to collaborate with people and businesses across multiple sectors and work on real industry-based projects.
  • Accredited course - This course is accredited with Partial CEng by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET)
  • Gain professional body qualifications - Work towards Microsoft, Cisco, Linux and Oracle certificates
  • Strong partnerships with industry - Including Microsoft, DELL-EMC, IBM, Co-Op, Santander UK, Conway Packaging Services (CPS) 
  • International opportunities - Participate in renowned international programmes  and competitions. You will have the opportunity to create a start-up business using ideas spawned during your course

Open Days

Join us for an on-campus Open Day where you'll be able to learn about this course in detail, chat to students, explore our campus and tour accommodation. In the week before the event, we’ll post you an event programme to plan your day and find your way.

Next Open Day: 29 June 2024

Book Now

Entry Requirements

These entry requirements apply for entry in 2024/25.

All required qualifications/grades must have been achieved and evidenced at the earliest opportunity after accepting an offer to help confirm admission and allow for on-time enrolment. This can also include other requirements, like a fee status form and relevant documents. Applicants can track their application and outstanding information requests through their BCU mySRS account.

Essential requirements

112 UCAS tariff points

Please note: If you qualify for our BCU Accelerate scheme, you could receive an offer that is two grades below our normal entry requirements. Find out more about BCU Accelerate.

If you have a qualification that is not listed, please contact us.

Fees & How to Apply

Please select your student status to view fees and apply
  • UK Student
  • International Student

UK students

Annual and modular tuition fees shown are applicable to the first year of study. The University reserves the right to increase fees for subsequent years of study in line with increases in inflation (capped at 5%) or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament. View fees for continuing students.

Award: BSc (Hons)

Starting: Sep 2024

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees

International students

Annual and modular tuition fees shown are applicable to the first year of study. The University reserves the right to increase fees for subsequent years of study in line with increases in inflation (capped at 5%) or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament. View fees for continuing students.

Award: BSc (Hons)

Starting: Sep 2024

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees
  • Full Time
  • 3 years
  • £16,085 in 2024/25

Access to computer equipment

You will require use of a laptop, and most students do prefer to have their own. However, you can borrow a laptop from the university or use one of our shared computer rooms.

Printing

You will receive £5 print credit in each year of your course, available after enrolment.

Field trips

All essential field trips and associated travel costs will be included in your course fees.

Access to Microsoft Office 365

Every student at the University can download a free copy of Microsoft Office 365 to use whilst at university and for 18 months after graduation.

Key Software

You will be able to download SPSS and Nvivo to your home computer to support with your studies and research.

Key subscriptions

Subscriptions to key journals and websites are available through our library.

Microsoft Certifications (optional)

The exams required to gain Microsoft Office (MOS), Microsoft Technical Certification (MTC) and Microsoft Technical Associate (MTA) certifications are currently free for our students. We also provide free self-paced resources and access to practice exams via dedicated Moodle pages. Find out more about the exams available, and the objectives covered.

Certification training (optional)

Training is provided by the University to prepare you for the Linux Professional Institute (LPI) and CISCO Certifications without any extra costs. For certification costs, please see information below.

Project materials (mandatory)

This course includes project work that requires you to develop and produce a portfolio or collection. You'll be expected to provide the materials for use in your individual major projects; costs will vary depending on the materials selected.

Excess printing (optional)

Once you have spent your £5 credit, additional printing on campus costs from 5p per sheet.

Books (optional)

Some modules may suggest that you purchase a key textbook. All module key texts will be in the University library, but in limited numbers. Many students choose to purchase a copy.

Placement expenses (optional)

If you choose to undertake a placement, you'll need to budget for accommodation and any travel costs you may incur whilst living or working away from home.

Linux Professional Institute (LPI) Certification (optional)

Students wishing to gain certification will need to purchase an exam voucher in order to sit the exam required for certification. The cost of a voucher for students at the University is normally around £50 (around 50% of the normal price). The exam is sat on campus.

CISCO Certification (optional)

If you wish to take the exam required for CISCO certification, you will need to pay to take the exam(s) required. Currently, students who achieve over 70% in the Cisco CCNA 3, or CCNA Security finals (depending upon which degree you study) will receive a 50% discount from Cisco for the cost of the exams. The CCNA Routing and Switching exam currently costs $325-$330. The CCNA Security is currently around $465.

Accommodation and living costs

The cost of accommodation and other living costs are not included within your course fees. More information on the cost of accommodation can be found in our accommodation pages.

Guidance for UK students

UK students applying for most undergraduate degree courses in the UK will need to apply through UCAS.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.

Applying through UCAS

  1. Register with UCAS
  2. Login to UCAS and complete your details
  3. Select your course and write a personal statement
  4. Get a reference
  5. Pay your application fee and submit your application

Guidance for International students

There are three ways to apply:

1) Direct to the University

You will need to complete our International Application Form and Equal Opportunities Form, and submit them together with scan copies of your original academic transcripts and certificates.

2) Through a country representative

Our in-country representatives can help you make your application and apply for a visa. They can also offer advice on travel, living in the UK and studying abroad.

3) Through UCAS

If you are applying for an undergraduate degree or a Higher National Diploma (HND), you can apply through the UK’s Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).

You can request a printed form from your school or nearest British Council office. You will be charged for applying through UCAS. Birmingham City University’s UCAS code is B25 BCITY.

Personal statement

UK / EU students are required to submit a personal statement as part of their application for this course.*

The personal statement gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

  • Course choice - Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?
  • Career plans - If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.
  • Work experience - Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.
  • School or college experience - Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.
  • Non-accredited skills or achievement - eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Worried about Personal Statements?

If you've got no idea where to start or just want to check you're on the right track, we’ve got expert advice and real examples from our students to help you nail your personal statement. You can even download our ultimate personal statement guide for free.

Get personal statement advice

*Non-EU students are not required to submit a personal statement when applying for this course.

Course in Depth

Year One

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits).

Year Two

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits).

Professional Placement Year (Optional)

In order to qualify for the award of BSc (Hons) Computing and Information Technology with Professional Placement Year or Integrated Masters of Science Computing and Information Technology with Professional Placement Year, a student must successfully complete all of the modules listed as well as the following Level 5 module.

Final Year

In order to complete this course, you must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits).

Download course specification

Download now

You'll be assessed in a number of different ways during your course. These will include continuous assessment, in-class tests, examinations, laboratory exercises, group and project work. This will enable us to appraise your all-round ability and it also gives you the best opportunity to excel.

Your final assessment is based on 24 per cent written exam, 68 per cent course work and 8 per cent practical exam.

Attendance requirements

There are 30 attendance weeks in each academic year.

A typical week on this course will include 12 hours of contact time over three or four days, plus self study time.

Student stories

Pioneering facial recognition cane

The ‘XploR’ mobility cane – developed by ICT students Steve Adigbo, Waheed Rafiq and Richard Howlett – uses smartphone technology to recognise familiar faces from up to 10 metres away. The cane also features GPS functionality to aid navigation.

The device will guide users towards friends and family members using an ear piece and audio guidance, with the information being relayed through Bluetooth technology.

Student stories Sadia Ali

Graduate Application Support Analyst

Graduate Sadia worked part-time for the University as a Laboratory Demonstrator during her final year. Currently she is working full-time as a Graduate Application Support Analyst and has big plans for the future.

Trips and visits

All new students have an industrial visit as part of their induction programme; last year students visited Bletchley Park, the home of Alan Turing, the famous wartime code breaker.

Athena Swan Bronze Award
Athena Swan Bronze Award

We have successfully secured the Athena SWAN Departmental Bronze Award recognising a commitment to gender equality.

The Athena Swan Charter is a framework which is used across the globe to support and transform gender equality within higher education (HE) and research.

Employability

Enhancing your employability skills

Our course is designed to equip you with in-depth, first-hand practical expertise as well as providing a rigorous academic understanding of your subject.

It is this combination that will help you to stand out when you look to enter the workplace and why our graduates are very highly sought-after.

We maintain very close links with business and industry to ensure that your studies are always relevant, up-to-date and meet the exact needs of the current marketplace.

You'll develop key academic and technical skills that will demonstrate your ability to understand concepts, principles and theories of complex network technologies, and that will show your understanding of how ICT infrastructure systems for business are designed and implemented.

Recent graduates have gone on to work with first-class organisations such as Hewlett Packard, Bell Microsystems, BT, Cisco, Deloitte, Ericsson, Philips, IBM, Intel, Siemens, Nokia and Capgemini.

Placements

You will have the opportunity for work-based learning, either in the form of a professional or innovation project. This is a negotiated competitive placement pathway in the second year where you will be able complete 60 credit modules whilst employed or starting-up a business.

We aim to have you employer-ready by the time you graduate, and as part of your course you have the option of undertaking an industrial placement after the second year of study.

If you decide to do this, it will extend the duration of your BSc (Hons) course to four years.

Thanks to our excellent partnerships and working relationships with some of the UK's leading companies, you have the chance of undertaking a high quality industrial placement with leading organisations such as the Bank of England, Cisco Systems, IBM, 3M, Airbus or CapGemini.

Placements will also provide you with an opportunity to develop your practical expertise, earn money and try out a potential career path.

International

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

Our international students

Our School is particularly popular with students from China. Students are attracted by our strong industry links and our relationships with Chinese universities where we regularly visit and provide induction and preparation activities.

Facilities & Staff

[00:00:02] Speaker 1 Hello and welcome to the computing tour for Birmingham City University.

[00:00:05] I'm Alex, a second year Computer Science student sitting here today, and I'll be taking you around the facilities here at BCU.

[00:00:11] Right now we're in STEAMhouse. If you're coming on to a computing course, you may be spending time here doing your Innovation Fest project, where you'll be presenting your project that you worked on to industry professionals. So STEAMhouse is a £72 million conversion of the old bike factory that used to be here.

[00:00:31] This is one of the larger learning spaces that we have here at STEAMhouse, completely built around computing. The entire building is modular. All these walls can be opened up and these classes can be made gigantic.

[00:00:43] So here's another space here at STEAMhouse for, sort of like, breakout rooms or for independent learning places you can go as a group to work on projects. To the left of us, there is the business space where visitors come in and they can work on projects there and also allows for students and staff members to integrate with the tech industry. If you'd like to learn more about STEAMhouse, the video link in description. And now I'm going to take you over to Millennium Point.

[00:01:13] Here we are at Millennium Point. This is the level four project space, the space you'll be using in term time to work on things such as the Innovation project. It is also the home of the Maker's Lab, which I'll be showing you in a little bit. It's a completely transformative and modular space.

[00:01:28] Recently, Birmingham City University has spent six and a half million pounds in revamping their Millennium Point building. It's also the area where we will be holding industry events. One of the things that I want to show you very quickly is the Lapsafe here. So Birmingham City University has one of the largest collections of Lapsafes in Europe. And they're not just here in the Millennium Point building. There's also ones over in Parkside and Curzon as well as STEAMhouse. You're allowed to take a laptop out if you haven't got one personally, and you can use it while you're at university for about six or so hours at a time. We also not only have Windows laptops, but also MacBooks.

[00:02:10] So here we are in the Makers Lab, and this is where you'll be spending time as a first year student working on the Innovation facilities there. Basically, this is where the magic happens, right? So in this room is a bunch of component parts and things to work with your systems such as 3D printers.

[00:02:24] So what you can do is you build a schematic up in the software. We send it to the machines and they can print out component parts for your project. It's also a bunch of different other components here at the university that it offers to students that they can use for their projects, such as Arduino, Mark Controllers, and Raspberry Pi is sort of like the heart of your system. You write some code, you flash onto the microcontroller, then it can control the system that you've attached it to. Over here, we've also got a bunch of component parts even using such as light sensors and motion sensors and buttons and keypads and things like that as well.

[00:02:59] So we've got a bunch of previous projects here as well. Here's Sign Genie which is a sign language interpreter, you sign in front of it and it will send back the sign language on the screen here. You can find out more about this project in description below, showing you how they built it from start to finish.

[00:03:16] We also have laser cutting services at University, so if you need, you know, a frame cut out for your project, for example, that we've got here, you can use the laser cutter and cut out little component parts that all fit together as a housing for your project. Okay, So now I think we're going to head down to level one, which houses the network labs and the games lab.

[00:03:42] This is one of the games labs here at BCU. This is more of a high spec facility to help with rendering animation and, you know, running the games that you create as a games development students as well as that. We've also got the different component parts. You need to build a project VR here so you can experiment with VR within the game called events such as Games Jam where students from across Birmingham City University come together to create a game within 24 hours or 48 hours and present it to a panel.

[00:04:14] So this is one of our networking labs here at BCU. It is a Cisco networking lab. All the hardware in here is industry standard and the majority of it is Cisco related. This entire room and several other rooms on this floor are complete separate LAN network from the rest of university. And you can, you know, run tests and simulations and try and configure and connect to of computers within the labs. The software that we use here is called Cisco Packet Tracer or Nethercutt. This is what we use to prototype our networks. And then you can actually physically build them using the hardware in the room to see how it works in practice.

[00:04:55] So this is one of our many computing labs here at Birmingham City University at the College of Computing. We have about 20 computing labs here at the University of all kinds of different software. And then depending on the course that you're doing, we have experts here from industry working as lecturers to have that real world experience and incredibly helpful with helping you to complete your coursework as well as get any additional advice and sort of guide you in the right direction.

[00:05:22] This is one of the big open communal spaces where you can come and catch up on work, but New Macs here that you can work on as well as Windows PCs out at the back can also see that there's more lab space here. So if you want to use a laptop, you can get those as well. Along with that, there's also the main I.T help desk here where you can come in and ask questions if you've got any issues.

[00:05:43] That was just a taste of computing at BCU. If you'd like to experience it yourself, come along to one of our Open Days or applicant taster days in the future. As well as if you'd like to know more about the computing experience. You can watch this video right here.

[00:06:03] You still here? Go watch the video.

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities. This course will be taught at Millennium Point at the City Centre Campus.

The course is supported with a wide range of cutting-edge facilities in the City Centre Campus. We have a state-of-the-art computer games technology lab which contains high-performance PCs, Sony PlayStation development kits and a range of industry standard software including Unity, Unreal and a suite of professional Microsoft development tools.

We also have many open access areas where students can study together and even hire out laptops for use in these spaces and others within the university.

Within the University there are many internationally recognised research teams giving you the opportunity to collaborate with them on exciting interdisciplinary projects.

Computer networking

The laboratories are well-equipped for all our computer networking courses, as well as specialist areas for practical work such as voice-over internet protocol (VoIP), forensic and ethical hacking technologies, wireless and mobile technologies and radio frequency identification technologies to name but a few.

Software development and computer programming

There are a number of open access, software development and computer programming laboratories that can be used to develop systems and programmes, including database management systems such as MySQL, to name but a few.

Systems laboratories

Our embedded systems laboratories are used to develop real-time systems, such as specialist hardware training and development resources, and industrial-standard software development and simulation tools. These include microcontroller software and robotics design and development, to name but a few.

Electronic systems

To underpin the basic principles of electronic systems, we have a well-equipped laboratory of general and specialist test and measurement kits, including powered prototyping development boards, dual power supplies, frequency generators and counters and digital multi-meters to name but a few.

Forensic computing

Our successful development of forensic computing has led to a specialist forensics laboratory that is fully equipped with essential hardware and software for this sensitive area of study. The laboratory includes high-spec PCs with built-in multi interface Tableau write blockers, EnCase and FTK computer forensic software and steganography detection and analysis software, to name but a few.

More on our facilities