BEng Computer Systems Engineering

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Key facts

(2014 Research Excellence Framework)

Key facts

This course fully meets the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered IT Professional and partially meeting the academic requirement for a Chartered Engineer.

How do everyday items like cars, mobile phones, games consoles and washing machines work? How can we use computer science to control equipment and machinery in the food and oil industries? On this course you’ll master computer science and discover how to apply it to hardware – including embedded devices, networks and electronics.

If you’re a digital native who already lives and breathes computing, whether it’s through building your own hardware or coding your own apps, this course is for you. You should also be passionate about the contribution computing can and does make to humanity, in everything from arts, culture and entertainment, to business, health, communications, and society as a whole. And you should already avidly follow the exciting developments of the field in the press and on blogs, and be excited about contributing your own ideas and creativity to this always-evolving sector. 

Overview

This degree is highly practical, allowing you to combine your interest in computing science alongside hardware-based subjects such as electronics, embedded devices and networking. Crucially, it will give you the flexibility to deepen your knowledge in specialised areas or explore a broader range of subjects.

You’ll start by mastering computer programming using various languages and on different platforms, giving you a solid grounding in software. You’ll then build on this by focusing on hardware – including looking at computer architectures and networks, not just in PCs but in a range of devices. Underpinning this will be the practical study of electronics, and you’ll develop your skills in circuit design and construction too.

Your final year project will allow you to bring all of this work together to focus on a particular real-world problem.

Course Structure

You’ll start by mastering the core material underpinning computer science. You’ll then specialise in the areas of computer systems engineering that most spark your interest, structuring your degree to suit you.

Year 1

In your first year you’ll get to grip with the fundamentals of computing science with an emphasis on programming. And you’ll study mathematical modules and learn how they’ll be relevant to your future work.

Year 2

In your second year you’ll continue to study core topics in computing science but also look at areas of computer hardware such as architectures, networking and electronics.

Year 3

In your final year you’ll complete an independent project, focusing on your specialist area of computer systems engineering in more depth. For this you’ll receive one-on-one supervision from a member of faculty. The project you choose will depend on our own interests and career aspirations.

You’ll also study advanced subjects such as embedded devices and choose from several optional modules.

Teaching and Learning

Teaching

You’ll learn through a mixture of lectures, seminars and lab classes – where the lab and seminar classes reinforce and expand on the lecture material. And you’ll spend a substantial amount of your time carrying out practical coursework and projects.

You’ll use a variety of programming languages depending on the devices and application areas we’re focusing on. Importantly, you’ll be working with the software and hardware development tools and practices used in the industry right now, building your experience each year. Upon graduation you’ll have the technical ability to develop high quality software and hardware for a range of platforms.

Independent study

Alongside your formal learning, you’ll study independently to gain a deeper appreciation of specialist topics. You’ll build up to your final year project, where you will explore a real-world topic or work on a problem in depth, under the supervision of a member of the faculty. This experience of developing working software and hardware to address real problems is highly valued by employers.

Assessment

You’ll experience a range of assessment methods, depending on module content and learning objectives. These include programming assignments, essays, class tests, problem sheets, laboratory reports, presentations and demonstrations.

Most modules are assessed through a mixture of coursework and exams, while some are entirely assessed by coursework. In your final year, you will be assessed particularly on your understanding and how you integrate knowledge from different areas of the subject.

Optional Study abroad or Placement Year

We also offer BEng Computer Systems Engineering with a Year in Industry if you are interested in spending a year in an industrial placement.

After the course

As a graduate in Computer Systems Engineering you can move on to a broad range of exciting careers or on to further study. With your knowledge of hardware you’ll be well suited for the more practical side of computing or careers in the embedded computing and electronics areas.

Career destinations

Examples of careers that you could enter include:

  • Embedded systems developer
  • Car engine management designer
  • Instrumentation and control engineer
  • Network analyst
  • Communication systems designer
  • Programmer

Course related costs

Please see Additional Course Fees for details of other course-related costs.

Accreditation

This course has been accredited by the British Computer Society for full CITP and partial CEng. Accreditation means that a candidate has fully or partially fulfilled the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered IT Professional (CITP) and Chartered or Incorporated Engineer (CEng / IEng) and / or a Chartered Scientist (CSci) and / or Registered IT Technician (RITTech).

The current period of accreditation is for a five year period, from the 2016 student cohort intake to the 2020 student cohort intake.

We would expect to apply for renewal of accreditation at the end of this period.

Course Modules 2018/9

Students must study the following modules for 100 credits:

Name Code Credits

COMPUTING PRINCIPLES

The module introduces you to the formulations and techniques essential for any degree in computing science.

CMP-4002B

20

DATABASE SYSTEMS

This module is based on the relational model and will introduce you to important aspects of databases, database manipulation and database management systems. You will explore the tools and methods for database design and manipulation as well as the programming of database applications. You will use a modern relational database management system to gain practical experience. You will also develop programming experience using SQL, and using a high level programming language to write applications that access the database.

CMP-4010B

20

PROGRAMMING 1

Gain a solid grounding in the essential features of object-oriented programming, using a modern programming language such as Java. This module is designed in such a way that you are not expected to have previously studied programming, although it's recognised that many students taking the module will have done so to some extent.

CMP-4008Y

20

SYSTEMS DEVELOPMENT

The complexity of Computer Based Systems, appropriate development approaches, and their inherent activities will be discussed using case studies and guest speakers where appropriate. Emphasis will be placed on the processes involved with systems requirements, creative designs, and careful development, in a professional manner, ensuring that issues such as project management, safety, security and data protection are taken into account. The module will include a number of modelling techniques to support the systems development process. These will be put into practise during the group exercise that will run throughout the semester. There are also opportunities for you to hone your transferable skills through literature searching, report writing, seminar discussions and presentations.

CMP-4013A

20

WEB-BASED PROGRAMMING

In this module you will be introduced to some of the tools used for web development. You will then build a substantial dynamic web site using HTML, CSS, Javascript and a high level language. An understanding of the underlying mechanisms of the technologies used in the Internet and World Wide Web is essential for any computing science student. Therefore, in the latter part of the module you will learn about these technologies and undertake a practical approach to exploring them. You will learn about issues of information systems security at all stages but also in dedicated sessions. In the final element of the module you will study multi-media issues in web based systems.

CMP-4011A

20

Students will select 20 credits from the following modules:

Students will be advised as to which of CMP-4004Y and CMP-4005Y is most appropriate for their course of study.

Name Code Credits

MATHEMATICS FOR COMPUTING A

The module is designed to provide you with sufficient understanding of basic algebra, if you have not studied A Level Mathematics. it will give you confidence to embark on the study of computing fundamentals. Various topics in discrete and continuous mathematics which are fundamental to Computer Science will be introduced to you.

CMP-4004Y

20

MATHEMATICS FOR COMPUTING B

This module is designed for you if you have an A level (or equivalent) in Mathematics. It will provide you with an introduction to the mathematics of counting and arrangements, a further development of the theory and practice of calculus, an introduction to linear algebra and its computing applications and a further development of the principles and computing applications of probability theory. In addition, 3D Vectors are introduced and complex numbers are studied.

CMP-4005Y

20

Students must study the following modules for 100 credits:

Name Code Credits

ANALOGUE AND DIGITAL ELECTRONICS

A practical introduction to electronics, this module is structured to consider analogue electronics and digital electronics in turn. Topics you'll cover include passive and active components, including op-amps, transistors, logic gates, flip-flops and registers. Circuits you'll study include amplifiers, oscillators, modulators, combinational and sequential logic and state machines. You'll spend much of your time doing practical work - underpinned by lectures - where you will build prototypes circuits, as well as designing and building Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs).

CMP-5027A

20

ARCHITECTURES AND OPERATING SYSTEMS

Study the organisation of system software and the underlying hardware architecture in modern computer systems. The role of concurrent operation of hardware and software components is emphasised throughout this module. Central concepts are reinforced by practical work in the laboratory. The architectures portion of the module focuses on the components of a processor, including the registers and data path, and you will explore concepts such as instruction fetch cycles, instruction decoding and memory addressing modes. The operating systems component focuses on how the system software manages the competing demands for the system hardware, including memory management and disc and processing scheduling.

CMP-5013A

20

DATA STRUCTURES AND ALGORITHMS

The purpose of this module is to give you a solid grounding in the design, analysis and implementation of algorithms, and in the efficient implementation of a wide range of important data structures.

CMP-5014Y

20

NETWORKS

Explore how networks are designed and implemented to provide reliable data transmission. You'll take a layered approach to the study of networks, with emphasis on the functionality of the OSI 7 layer reference model and the TCP/IP model. You'll examine the functionality provided by each layer and how this contributes to overall reliable data transmission that the network provides, with a focus on the practical issues associated with networking such as real-time delivery of multimedia information (e.g. VoIP) and network security. Labs and coursework are highly practical and underpin the theory learnt in lectures.

CMP-5037B

20

PROGRAMMING 2

This is a compulsory module for all computing students and is a continuation of the Programming 1 module. It contains greater breadth and depth and provides students with the range of skills needed for many of their subsequent modules. We introduce C in order to improve your low level understanding of how programming works. We recap Java and deepen your understanding of the language by teaching topics such as nested classes, enumeration, generics, reflection, collections and threaded programming. We cover C++ and conclude by introducing C# to highlight the similarities and differences between languages.

CMP-5015Y

20

Students will select 20 credits from the following modules:

Name Code Credits

APPLIED STATISTICS A

This is a module designed to give students the opportunity to apply statistical methods in realistic situations. While no advanced knowledge of probability and statistics is required, we expect students to have some background in probability and statistics before taking this module. The aim is to teach the R statistical language and to cover 3 topics: Linear regression, and Survival Analysis.

CMP-5017B

20

GRAPHICS 1

This module will provide you with an introduction to the fundamentals of computer graphics. You will gain a strong foundation in computer graphics, focusing on 2D graphics, algorithms and interaction. You need to have a good background in programming to take this module. OpenGL is used as the graphics API with examples provided in the lectures and supported in the laboratory classes.

CMP-5010B

20

SOFTWARE ENGINEERING 1

Software Engineering is one of the most essential skills for work in the software development industry. You will gain an understanding of the issues involved in designing and creating software systems from an industry perspective. You will be taught state of the art phased software development methodologies focusing on the activities of initial class model design to actual operational software systems. These activities are complemented with an introduction into software project management and development facilitation.

CMP-5012B

20

Students must study the following modules for 40 credits:

Name Code Credits

COMPUTING PROJECT

This module will give you experience of independent project work through the development of research and application involving a significant amount of computing science knowledge and skills, for example, in design/implementation of algorithms, software, or hardware systems. It will also provide, via the lecture programme, a primer on the law, ethical and professional behaviour, project management, reporting and other aspects of being a computer scientist. You will be allocated a supervisor and will be expected to work closely with him or her on a mutually agreed project.

CMP-6013Y

40

Students will select 40 credits from the following modules:

Name Code Credits

AUDIOVISUAL PROCESSING

This module explores how computers process audio and video signals. In the audio component, the focus is on understanding how humans produce speech and how this can be processed by computer for speech recognition and enhancement. Similarly, the visual component considers the human eye and camera, and how video is processed by computer. The theoretical material covered in lectures is reinforced with practical laboratory sessions. The module is coursework only and requires you to build a speech recogniser capable of recognising the names of students studying the module using both audio and visual speech information.

CMP-6026A

20

GRAPHICS 2

Explore the fundamentals of 3D geometric transformations and viewing using OpenGL and learn the theory and implementation of fundamental visibility determination algorithms and techniques for lighting, shading and anti-aliasing. You'll study 3D curves and fundamental geometric data structures, as well as considering the issues involved with modern high performance graphics processors.

CMP-6006A

20

SOFTWARE ENGINEERING 2

In taking this module you will learn about the issues and techniques involved in and maintaining industrial software development and evolution. You will learn about a range of advanced software engineering topics, such as: reverse engineering to understand legacy software, refactoring, design patterns to improve the design of software systems, using third party software components, designing secure systems, and design for maintainability. In the practical work for the module you will use a range of tools and techniques appropriate for developing contemporary industrial software. You will be developing your existing good programming and software engineering skills to prepare you for working with industrial software.

CMP-6010A

20

Students will select 40 credits from the following modules:

Name Code Credits

COMPUTER VISION

Computer Vision is about "teaching machines how to see". You will study methods for acquiring, analysing and understanding images in both lectures and laboratories. The practical exercises and projects that you undertake in the laboratory will support the underpinning theory and enable you to implement contemporary computer vision algorithms.

CMP-6035B

20

ELECTRICITY GENERATION AND DISTRIBUTION

This module is highly practical and will allow you to study how electricity is generated and how it is distributed to users. The first part studies DC and AC electricity and looks at how RLC circuits behave through complex phasor analysis. The second part will give you the chance to study electricity generators, beginning with magnetism and Faraday's Law. Synchronous and asynchronous generators are studied along with application to conventional power stations and to renewable generation (e.g. wind). You'll also look at transformers and transmission lines with a view to distribution of electricity. Voltage conversion methods such as the rectifier, buck and boost converters are examined and finally electricity generation through solar is covered. Your lab classes will build on material from lectures which in turn forms the basis for coursework.

ENG-6001B

20

EMBEDDED SYSTEMS

Embedded processors are at the core of a huge range of products e.g. mobile telephones, cameras, passenger cars, washing machines, DVD players, medical equipment, etc. The embedded market is currently estimated to be worth around 100x the 'desktop' market and is projected to grow exponentially over the next decade. This module will help you to build on the material delivered in the Architectures and Operating Systems module to consider the design and development of real-time embedded system applications for commercial off the shelf (COTS) processors running real-time operating systems (RTOS), such as eLinux.

CMP-6024B

20

GRAPHICS 1

This module will provide you with an introduction to the fundamentals of computer graphics. You will gain a strong foundation in computer graphics, focusing on 2D graphics, algorithms and interaction. You need to have a good background in programming to take this module. OpenGL is used as the graphics API with examples provided in the lectures and supported in the laboratory classes.

CMP-5010B

20

Disclaimer

Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules and regular (five-yearly) review of course programmes. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, there will normally be prior consultation of students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff or sabbatical leave. In some cases optional modules can have limited places available and so you may be asked to make additional module choices in the event you do not gain a place on your first choice. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

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Entry Requirements

  • A Level ABB including one from Mathematics, Computing, Physics, Electronics or Economics. All science A levels must include a pass in the practical element
  • International Baccalaureate 32 points including one HL 5 from Mathematics, Computing, Physics, Electronics and Economics and one other HL subject at 5. If no GCSE equivalent is held, offer will include Mathematics and English requirements.
  • Scottish Highers Only acceptable in combination with Advanced Highers
  • Scottish Advanced Highers BCC including one from Mathematics, Computing, Physics, Electronics or Economics. A combination of Advanced Highers and Highers might be acceptable
  • Irish Leaving Certificate AABBBB or two subjects at H1 and four subjects at H2, including one from Mathematics, Computing, Physics, Electronics and Economics
  • Access Course Pass the Access to HE Diploma with Distinction in 30 credits at level 3 and Merit in 15 credits at level 3, including 12 level 3 credits in either Mathematics, Computing, Physics, Electronics or Economics
  • BTEC DDM in an IT, Engineering or science related subject. Public Services not accepted. BTEC and A level combinations are considered - please contact us
  • European Baccalaureate Overall 75% with 70% in one from Mathematics, Physics, Computing, Economics or Electronics

Entry Requirement

GCSE Requirements: GCSE English Language grade 4 and GCSE Mathematics grade 5. GCSE Mathematics grade 4 will be accepted if Mathematics is being taken to A2 Level.

General Studies and Critical Thinking are not accepted 

UEA recognises that some students take a mixture of International Baccalaureate IB or International Baccalaureate Career-related Programme IBCP study rather than the full diploma, taking Higher levels in addition to A levels and/or BTEC qualifications. At UEA we do consider a combination of qualifications for entry, provided a minimum of three qualifications are taken at a higher Level. In addition some degree programmes require specific subjects at a higher level.

Students for whom English is a Foreign language

We welcome applications from students from all academic backgrounds. We require evidence of proficiency in English (including speaking, listening, reading and writing) at the following level:

  • IELTS: 6.5 overall (minimum 6.0 in any component)

We will also accept a number of other English language qualifications. Please click here for further information.

INTO University of East Anglia 

If you do not meet the academic and/or English language requirements for this course, our partner INTO UEA offers guaranteed progression on to this undergraduate degree upon successful completion of a foundation programme. Depending on your interests and your qualifications you can take a variety of routes to this degree:

INTO UEA also offer a variety of English language programmes which are designed to help you develop the English skills necessary for successful undergraduate study:

 

Interviews

The majority of candidates will not be called for an interview. However, for some students an interview will be requested. These are normally quite informal and generally cover topics such as your current studies, reasons for choosing the course and your personal interests and extra-curricular activities.

Gap Year

We welcome applications from students who have already taken or intend to take a gap year, believing that a year between school and university can be of substantial benefit. You are advised to indicate your reason for wishing to defer entry and may wish to contact the appropriate Admissions Office directly to discuss this further.

Intakes

The School's annual intake is in September of each year

Alternative Qualifications

We encourage you to apply if you have alternative qualifications equivalent to our stated entry requirement. Please contact us for further information.

Fees and Funding

Undergraduate University Fees and Financial Support

Tuition Fees

Information on tuition fees can be found here:

UK students

EU Students

Overseas Students

Scholarships and Bursaries

We are committed to ensuring that costs do not act as a barrier to those aspiring to come to a world leading university and have developed a funding package to reward those with excellent qualifications and assist those from lower income backgrounds. 

The University of East Anglia offers a range of Scholarships; please click the link for eligibility, details of how to apply and closing dates.

How to Apply

How to Apply

Applications need to be made via the Universities Colleges and Admissions Services (UCAS), using the UCAS Apply option.

UCAS Apply is a secure online application system that allows you to apply for full-time Undergraduate courses at universities and colleges in the United Kingdom. It is made up of different sections that you need to complete. Your application does not have to be completed all at once. The system allows you to leave a section partially completed so you can return to it later and add to or edit any information you have entered. Once your application is complete, it must be sent to UCAS so that they can process it and send it to your chosen universities and colleges.

The UCAS code name and number for the University of East Anglia is EANGL E14.

Further Information

If you would like to discuss your individual circumstances with the Admissions Office prior to applying please do contact us:

Undergraduate Admissions Office

Tel: +44 (0)1603 591515
Email: admissions@uea.ac.uk

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    Next Steps

    We can’t wait to hear from you. Just pop any questions about this course into the form below and our enquiries team will answer as soon as they can.

    Admissions enquiries:
    admissions@uea.ac.uk or
    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515