G406 Computer Science MEng Undergraduate 2020
|Professional accreditation||Accredited by the British Computer Society, the Chartered Institute for IT for the purposes of fully meeting the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered IT Professional. Accredited by BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT on behalf of the Science Council for the purposes of partially meeting the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered Scientist.|
|Mode of study||Full Time|
|Typical Offers||A Level|
|Please also check Requirements and Admissions.|
|Contextual Offers||You may be eligible for an offer which is one or two grades lower than our standard entry requirements. Find out more.|
|More information||Still have questions?|
|Download||Download as a PDF|
Our Computer Science degrees balance fundamental knowledge and practical application in order to provide you with both specialised and transferable skills that are greatly valued in the marketplace. The course emphasises from the start both programming and mathematical skills that allow, in the later years engagement through the 'Individual Project' with cutting-edge research being done in the department.
You will undertake five computer science modules, which cover programming, the characteristics of computers and computing systems, and the mathematical foundations of the subject. You will also be introduced to the concept and philosophy of computational thinking and explore cutting-edge technological applications of recent research. You will undertake an elective module, which may be from elsewhere within the Department, Faculty or University. Once you complete your first year you will have had a thorough introduction to the fundamentals of computer science and to the principles, practices and methodologies that make computer science unique to a scientific subject. You will also have had a glimpse at aspects of computer science research that have enabled major technological advances in society.
- Computational Thinking
- Algorithms and Data Structures
- Computer Systems
- Mathematics for Computer Science.
You will study six modules covering a core set of topics. One module Software Engineering (double module) involves a team software development project and enables you to usually work with external organisations and gain practical software development experience. Other compulsory topics include, for example, computer networks, parallel and distributed computing, concurrency, data structures, algorithms and complexity, image processing, different programming paradigms, systems programming, security, aspects of artificial intelligence, and computer graphics. The topics undertaken in the second year prepare you with an excellent grounding in a range of fundamental subjects within computer science, ready for subsequent specialisation in your third year. By the end of the second year, you will be in a position to make informed judgments as to which particular aspects of the subject you might wish to focus on.
- Networks and Systems
- Programming Paradigms
- Software Engineering
- Software Methodologies
- Theory of Computation.
A key element of the third year is the individual project (which is a double module). This is undertaken under the direct supervision of a member of staff and gives you the opportunity to tackle a specific computing task in much greater depth than is possible for other modules. At the end of the project, you will write a technical paper describing your findings. You are given a considerable amount of choice as to the subject of your projects; indeed, you can suggest specific projects yourself. In addition, you get to choose the four other modules that you undertake in the third year.
A range of modules is offered (many reflecting current research interests of staff) for example, previous modules have included: theoretical computer science, software and software systems, computing methodologies, applications and contemporary computer science (with the latter topic engaging with modern research within computer science that is highly relevant to current technological advances and applications). There is also the opportunity to follow specific modules offered such as a module involving the teaching of computer science in schools, giving an early taste of teaching computer science to those interested in pursuing it as a career or on other career pathways where a public understanding of science is required.
You will again undertake a significant individual project (this time a triple module). This gives you the exciting opportunity to take your third-year projects even further, if you wish, possibly so that the resulting research might be published in a journal or at a conference, and possibly as a prelude to a postgraduate degree in Computer Science. However, if you do not wish to continue with the topic of your third-year project, there is the opportunity to do another substantial piece of work in an entirely different area of computer science (again, of your choosing). Just as in the third year, you will get to choose the three other modules that you undertake in the fourth year; again, just as in the third year, there is a range of modules offered, including advanced versions of some of the third-year modules.
We review course structures and core content (in light of e.g. external and student feedback) every year, and will publish finalised core requirements for 2020 entry from September 2019.
Computer Science is an international discipline and living and working in another country is a valuable addition to your CV. We are part of the SOCRATES/ERASMUS and University Exchange programme, which encourages you to study for part of your course in a university worldwide. You can request to transfer onto the MEng Computer Science with Year Abroad (G407) programme at the beginning of your second year and after your second or third year of study in Durham will spend a year studying at another EU or worldwide university, and then return to Durham for your penultimate or final year.
Further information on these study abroad opportunities can be found here
You may be able to take a work placement. Find out more.
Learning and Teaching
Course Learning and Teaching
The course is mainly delivered through a mixture of lectures, practical and problem classes. Typically lectures provide key information on a particular field of study and identify the main areas for discussion and debate among Computer Scientists. You will be introduced to both basic and advanced concepts, techniques and methods in Computer Science through lectures with associated written and multimedia presentations, and your knowledge and understanding are reinforced in practical and problem classes and through summative and formative assignments.
The balance of these types of activities changes over the course of the degree, as you develop your knowledge and the ability as an independent learner. In Year 1 you will take five core Computer Science modules which are 10 hours a week of lectures, and five, two-hour practicals each week. You will also study an elective module selected from those offered by any Board of Studies across the University. Outside timetabled contact hours, you are also expected to undertake your own independent study to prepare for your classes and broaden your subject knowledge.
The balance starts to shift in the Year 2 as you develop your abilities as an independent learner. Lectures, typically 12 hours a week, still play an important role in supporting you in developing your knowledge and skills. Associated with the lecture series you normally attend six, two-hour practical classes a week. This move towards greater emphasis on independent learning continues in the third year with the basic material and techniques learned throughout Year 1 and 2 being applied and extended with material in Year 3 being at a much more advanced level.
Some Year 3 teaching is research-led and reflective of not only the research expertise of academic staff at Durham, but also cutting-edge advances in the industry. You will typically have eight hours a week of lectures and depending on your choice of modules can have two hours of problem classes or practicals a week. You will undertake an individual project which is a detailed study of a particular area resulting in a significant piece of independent research. This project gives you the opportunity to pursue a chosen topic under the supervision of a member of academic staff with whom you will typically have a minimum of 11 hours of one-to-one supervisory meetings across the academic year. You will normally attend five hours of workshops which prepare you for this work.
Year 4 involves an even more significant amount of self-study than in Year 3. Again, you are expected to drive your own learning and your progress is monitored and supported by 11 hours of individual project supervision for your research and development advanced project, and approximately eight hours of problem classes associated with each chosen module. Less emphasis is placed on supervised practical work but this reduction of supervised learning time enables you to better direct and evaluate your own learning. Learning at this level is geared towards critical, independent and innovative thinking.
Throughout the course, you will have access to an Academic Adviser who will provide you with academic support and guidance. Typically you will meet with your adviser once or twice per term, in addition to which all members of teaching staff have weekly office hours when they are available to meet with students on a ‘drop-in’ basis.
Subject requirements, level and grade
A level offer – A*AA Including Mathematics.
BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma/OCR Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma – D*DD and Mathematics A level at grade A (or equivalent) is required.
IB Diploma score – 38 With 766 in higher level subjects, including Mathematics.
In addition to satisfying the University’s general entry requirements, please note:
- We welcome applications from those with other qualifications equivalent to our standard entry requirements and from mature students with non-standard qualifications or who may have had a break in their study. For more information contact our Admissions Selectors
- If you do not satisfy our general entry requirements, the Foundation Centre offers multidisciplinary degrees to prepare you for a range of specified degree courses
- If you are an international student who does not meet the requirements for direct entry to this degree, you may be eligible to take an International Foundation Year pathway programme at the Durham University International Study Centre
- We are pleased to consider applications for deferred entry.
Science A levels
Applicants taking Science A levels that include a practical component will normally be required to take and pass this as a condition of entry. This applies only to applicants sitting A levels with an English examination board.
English Language requirements
Please check requirements for your subject and level of study.
How to apply
Information relevant to your country
Fees and Funding
Fees and Funding
Full Time Fees
|EU Student||£9,250.00 per year|
|Home Student||£9,250.00 per year|
|Island Student||£9,250.00 per year|
|International non-EU Student||£25,800.00 per year|
The tuition fees shown for home and EU students are for one complete academic year of full time study and are set according to the academic year of entry. Fees for subsequent years of your course may rise in line with an inflationary uplift as determined by the government.
The tuition fees shown for overseas students are for one complete academic year of full time study, are set according to the academic year of entry, and remain the same throughout the duration of the programme for that cohort (unless otherwise stated).
Please also check costs for colleges and accommodation.
Scholarships and funding
Open Days and Visits
Open days and visits
Pre-application open day
Pre-application open days are the best way to discover all you need to know about Durham University. With representatives from all relevant academic and support service departments, and opportunities to explore college options, the open days provide our prospective undergraduates with the full experience of Durham University.
Please see the following page for further details and information on how to book a place: www.durham.ac.uk/opendays
Discover Durham Tours
Discover Durham tours offer a brief introduction to the University. The tour begins at one of our undergraduate colleges, where you will receive an introductory talk from a member of college staff, followed by a tour of the college by current students.