Computer Science for Cyber Security

BSc (Hons)

Clearing places are available on this course

UCAS code: II10

Start dates: September 2024 / September 2025

Full time: 3 years, or 4 if a work placement is chosen

Part time: 6 years

Location: Headington

Department(s): School of Arts, School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics

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Overview

Cybersecurity is fast-moving and dynamic. It is the place for you if you love logical problem solving. Our Computer Science for Cybersecurity degree offers you the chance to stand out in the industry. We will give you a strong grounding in general computer science, with a specific focus on cybersecurity.

The course is practical. It trains you in how to keep your network safe. As one of the few National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) certified courses, it is well-regarded by industry and government.

As a cybersecurity graduate, you will be in high demand by employers. The shortage of cyber experts – and the rapidly changing nature of the industry – means that some exciting career opportunities await you. And while on the course, why not challenge yourself by training for a Cisco qualification? Doing so will sharpen your skills and prepare you for greater responsibility in the workplace.

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Students working on computers

Why Oxford Brookes University?

  • Excellent reputation

    The Cisco Networking Academy programme is a fantastic optional part of the degree.

  • Supportive environment

    To help you through any challenges, we provide a network of support. This includes peer-assisted learning and methods of work assessment that suit you.

  • Industry links

    Fellows from the Royal Society have input into our course curriculum. We help our students with securing work placements.

  • Optional work placement

    A supervised and supported work placement in the computer industry for 12 months Possible placement organisations include IBM, Microsoft and PepsiCo.

  • Brand new facilities

    All Computing courses are moving from Wheatley Campus to brand new, custom designed buildings at our main Headington site. These buildings are expected to open in September 2024, but as with any large-scale building project those timescales could change. You'll benefit from state-of-the-art facilities and equipment including a VR cave, digital, computing and robotics labs, as well as social learning spaces, teaching rooms and cafe space.

  • Free language courses

    Free language courses are available to full-time undergraduate and postgraduate students on many of our courses, and can be taken as a credit on some courses.

  • Study abroad

    Step out of your comfort zone. Immerse yourself in a new place. See yourself grow. Studying abroad will expand your horizons in wonderful ways.

  • Accreditation(s)

    Certified by the British Computer Society (Full CITP, partial CEng) and awarded The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) certification, the gold standard for courses in Cyber Security.

    • The British Computer Society
    • National Cyber Security Centre certified degree

Course details

Course structure

On this degree, we want to develop your practical skills ao you will learn by doing. In your first year, you will be introduced to a range of computing foundational concepts. These will include an introduction to modern software development, programming, and mathematics for computing.

You will build on these in your second year. You will delve into cybersecurity and operating systems. During your second year, we will encourage and support you to consider doing a work placement. It is a fantastic opportunity to boost your knowledge and skills. 

In your third year, you will be supported with your chosen final project, which is a great opportunity to showcase your learning.

Throughout your degree, you will make use of high-tech equipment. We are committed to investing in our infrastructure to enable you to flourish.

Student replacing a hard drive in a computer

Learning and teaching

This course focuses on the technical aspects of computing and how they relate to cyber security. There is a strong focus on using real world problems to learn the skills and techniques needed. Many of your modules have a large practical, hands-on element to reinforce the taught material.

Lecturers and technicians are approachable and will often help you on a one-to-one basis if you have difficulties.

Formally scheduled teaching includes:

  • lectures
  • tutorials
  • computer labs
  • apprentice mode sessions.

Each 15 credit module has 150 learning hours associated with it. 36 of these hours (3 hrs x 12 weeks) are formally scheduled teaching.

Some of our core programming modules are taught in an apprentice style. This format involves a 3 hour session where:

  • the lecturer gives a short presentation
  • the lecturer works through examples using the technique or concept that you're learning
  • you carry out exercises to practice the technique or concept while the lecturer provides help and feedback.

Assessment

Assessment methods are varied and reflect the development of academic content as the course progresses. From the practical emphasis of some of the early modules to the more conceptual content that you will encounter later in your degree. The modules covering core material are mostly assessed on a combination of coursework only, or coursework and examination.

Study modules

Year 1

Compulsory modules

  • Problem Solving and Programming (30 credits)

    Our goal is to equip you with the skills you need to create computer software. We'll take a thorough approach, helping you learn essential programming skills and gain an understanding of what's needed in the world of computer programming.

    Throughout this module, we'll show you how software development works in real-world applications, from industries to scientific research and business. Dive in and explore the world of computer software development.

  • Computer Science Applications

    We're here to give you a meaningful introduction to key aspects of computer science that will set you up for your future studies. 

    Throughout this module, you'll get hands-on experience with important topics like software engineering management, networking, cyber security, and a taste of Artificial Intelligence. 

    By weaving together the fundamental principles of these subjects, we aim to help you grasp the core concepts in these three areas and empower you to apply your skills in more advanced studies.

  • Object Oriented Programming

    In this module, we'll delve into the principles of designing, testing, and implementing object-oriented programs. One exciting aspect of this module is that you'll get to put these programming principles into practice by working on software development projects. Learning by doing is the best way to solidify your skills.

    By the end of this module, you'll have gained the skills and knowledge needed to become a skilled and confident software programmer. You'll be ready to tackle real-world programming challenges with proficiency.
     

  • Foundations of Computing Systems

    Welcome to this module where we'll dive into the fascinating world of computer hardware and software systems. Throughout our journey, we'll equip you with the fundamental understanding you need to navigate this intricate landscape.

    You'll learn how computers store and process information, which is like deciphering the language of computers. It's an essential skill for anyone looking to work with software and hardware.

    By the end of this module, you'll have established a strong foundation in the inner workings of the machine. This knowledge is the bedrock upon which software development and interacting with computer architectures are built. It's the first step on your journey to becoming a proficient computer scientist.

  • Mathematics For Computing

    In this module, we'll break down those intimidating mathematical ideas into understandable parts. We'll explore its structures and show how they play a crucial role in various computing applications.

    We won't just stick to theory. Our aim is to help you see the real-world relevance of mathematics in the field of computing. You'll discover how these mathematical ideas are applied to solve practical problems.

    By the end of this module, you'll have a much clearer understanding of the mathematical foundations of computer science and how they're used in the world of computing.

  • Professional Programming Practice

    You'll get hands-on experience using essential professional tools like IDEs (Integrated Development Environments), debuggers, and version control software. Think of these tools as trusty companions in the programming world.

    We'll also guide you on how to structure and organise your program code. This is crucial for making your code easy to understand and ensuring its correctness. We'll show you best practices.

    By the end of this module, you'll be equipped with the basic skills and tools needed to be a pro programmer. 

Year 2

Compulsory modules

  • Software Development with C and C++

    In this module, you’ll be equipped with the skills to become a coding wizard. You'll start by unravelling the intricacies of C programming. You'll build a solid foundation in this language, understanding its fundamentals and getting comfortable with its syntax.

    We'll then introduce you to some of the most essential features of C++. This is where you'll learn how to design top-notch programs and practise the art of coding like a pro.

    By the time you complete this module, you'll be well-prepared to write your own programs in C and C++. 
     

  • Applied Software Engineering

    In this module, we'll dive into some cool stuff like modern human-computer interactions, human-robot connections, and virtual reality interfaces. By the end, you'll be all set to use these skills in today's exciting world of development.

    We'll also check out Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, which will give you a chance to put what you learn into real-world action. But we won't leave out the classics – we'll dig into traditional computer interfaces and physical robots too.

    We'll also chat about how these advances affect society and the ethics behind them. It's like a roadmap for you to evaluate and apply your newfound knowledge.
     

  • Foundations of Security

    You'll dive into the realms of information, computer, and network security. Where you’ll unlock the secrets of how computer systems can be safeguarded from digital threats.

    We're going to dig into the ethical and professional dimensions too. Because in the world of cybersecurity, it's not just about coding and firewalls; it's also about making the right decisions and understanding the broader implications.

    By the end of this module, you'll not only know how to secure a modern networked computer system, but you'll also be equipped to assess its security level.
     

  • Switching and Routing Principles

    We'll unravel the intricate layers of the TCP/IP model. To reveal the core of networking knowledge. You'll also delve into various address resolution protocols. They connect devices in a network, and you'll understand how they play a vital role in making communication happen.

    You will then explore the fundamentals of network security. It's all about safeguarding the digital realm, and you'll soon be equipped with the practical and theoretical knowledge you need to succeed.
     

  • Foundations of Computation

    You’ll explore logical and mathematical concepts that form the foundation of computation theories. 

    Ever wondered why some problems seem much tougher than others? We'll help you grasp the idea that certain problems are inherently more challenging (in a precise way), and some problems can't be solved at all.

    Additionally, we'll dive into the essential concepts of formal languages and automata. These concepts are like the building blocks of programming languages, and you'll gain practical skills in working with them.
     

  • Enterprise Engineering

    Our mission is to help you foster an entrepreneurial mindset. We'll do this by delving into the world of enterprise and entrepreneurship, specifically in the realm of new venture creation on a global scale. 

    Throughout this journey, you'll put theory into practice. You'll use the principles and practices of enterprise to create, communicate, and assess fresh business ideas and innovative products, all within the IT landscape, guided by business model theory.

    You'll get hands-on experience as you collaborate in a team to design and execute an IT-based innovative product business idea. You'll have to work within set time limits and a budget, which will give you an experience of real-world challenges.
     

  • Systems Programming

    You’ll delve into the realm of systems-level programming. Our aim is to provide you with an in-depth understanding of various crucial aspects of this field, including interprocess communication, low-level networking, and the intricate challenges and practical considerations associated with programming operating system services. 

    You’ll draw inspiration from modern operating systems and teaching OSes to illustrate the concepts we'll cover, and we'll predominantly be employing the C programming language as our primary tool. This module will equip you with the knowledge and skills to excel in the realm of systems-level programming.
     

Optional modules

LAN Techniques

This module is a step towards the Cisco CCNA professional certification. 

In this module, we'll tackle switching concepts, VLANs, and Inter-VLAN routing. You'll get a solid foundation in these key areas. We'll also explore how the Spanning Tree Protocol and EtherChannel are used to make networks more reliable.

You will delve into the Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol and First Hop Redundancy Protocols, helping you understand available and dependable network techniques. 
 

Year 3 (optional placement year)

Optional modules

Work Experience Placement

We encourage you to take a supervised work placement for 12 months between Year 2 and your final year. You will need to apply for your placement yourself; however you will be taught about how to apply for jobs effectively in a second year module, and we have dedicated placements staff to support you with securing a placement. We maintain links with industry and most students who go on placement obtain their position through the Department. More and more students are finding that a placement benefits their final year studies and career prospects. Possible placement organisations include IBM, Ericsson and Cisco. Your tuition fees are reduced for the placement year and the positions are normally paid which should cover your living expenses. Current placement costs are available in the Fees section of this page. Students are responsible for living and travel costs associated with their employment on and as a result, most will live near their placement location.

Year 4 (or year 3 if no placement)

Compulsory modules

  • Computing Project (30 credits)

    Welcome to your individually supervised project! This project is all about diving into an area you're passionate about. You get to pick a topic that aligns with your program of study and tackle a practical issue.

    Think of this project as the grand finale of your course. It's your chance to showcase not only what you've learned but also the breadth and depth of your knowledge in your chosen area of expertise.
     

  • Cloud Computing and Internet of Things

    Immerse yourself in the cutting-edge realms of Cloud Computing and the Internet of Things (IoT). You’ll gain a critical understanding of recent trends and developments, empowering you to design, construct, and evaluate innovative Cloud Computing solutions. Additionally, you’ll delve into the Internet of Things, unlocking insights into its latest advancements and programming frameworks. Furthermore, explore the management of distributed data, privacy, and security considerations.

    By the module's end, you will possess the expertise to critically analyse, design, and evaluate Cloud Computing and IoT solutions. You’ll also develop team working skills by collaborating effectively within groups, applying your knowledge and skills to practical scenarios.
     

  • Secure Programming

    In our lectures, we'll explore the theoretical side of secure software design and implementation. But theory alone won't cut it; we're all about hands-on experience. You'll put what you learn into practice in our laboratory with real-world examples.

    You'll focus on essential design concepts and the typical types of software vulnerabilities you might encounter. While our primary focus will be on C/C++, we'll also touch on other programming languages to give you a well-rounded perspective. You’ll gain practical knowledge for the world of cyber security.
     

  • Malware Analysis

    Explore low-level architectures and systems. In this module, you'll dive deep into the world of low-level programming, equipping you with the tools and techniques needed to create, detect, and defend against malware.

    You'll get to unravel the mysteries of reverse engineering, both at the systems and network levels. This means you'll gain the skills to dissect malware and obtain in-depth insights into how it works. We'll also delve into anti-forensics tools and explore ways to overcome them.
     

  • Principles of Secure Operating Systems and Networks Security

    In this module, you'll unravel the intricacies of operating system design and the secrets of keeping your network secure.You'll kick things off by delving into the fundamental subsystems of a modern operating system. Using examples from popular operating systems, we'll show you how to keep your OS secure. It's all about making sure your computer is a safe place.

    But we won't just focus on your computer; we're also going to explore network security techniques. These techniques are like shields for the devices hosting your operating systems. So you’ll be ready to become a master of both operating systems and network security.
     

  • Routing Techniques and LAN security

    This is a further step towards the Cisco CCNA professional certification. 

    You'll dive into Layer 2 security concepts and get you well-versed in wireless LAN concepts and configuration. It's all about securing and connecting networks effectively. We'll introduce you to routing concepts and walk you through static and default routing configuration. This is the backbone of efficient network communication.

    Also you’ll look into the world of OSPF routing. You'll learn what it is and how to configure it, adding a powerful tool to your networking arsenal. Finally, you'll unravel the mysteries of Network Address Translation for IPv4. This is a crucial element for making sure data gets to where it needs to go on the internet.
     

  • Enterprise Networks and Network Security Techniques

    This is your final module contributing towards the Cisco CCNA professional certification.  

    You'll dive into network security concepts and learn about access control lists (ACL). It's all about keeping your network secure. You’ll also be introduced to the world of wide area network (WAN) enterprise concepts, as well as virtual private networks (VPN) and Internet Protocol Security (IPSec). You'll understand how to connect large networks securely.

    Then, we'll explore Quality of Service (QoS) concepts and how to provide services effectively. Finally, we'll cover network management, design, troubleshooting, virtualization, and automation. These are essential skills to keep your network running smoothly and efficiently. 
     

Please note: As our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from those shown here. The structure of the course may also mean some modules are not available to you.

Careers

The UK currently lacks enough computer science graduates with the right skills in cybersecurity. That is a challenge for the government and industry. And for our graduates, it is an opportunity. 

On our Computer Science with Cybersecurity course, you will develop vital technical and practical skills, which will enable you to thrive.

Past students have gone on to work for the UK atomic energy authority, Google, and IBM.

Entry requirements

Wherever possible we make our conditional offers using the UCAS Tariff. The combination of A-level grades listed here would be just one way of achieving the UCAS Tariff points for this course.

Standard offer

UCAS Tariff Points: 112

A Level: BBC

IB Points: 30

BTEC: DMM

Contextual offer

UCAS Tariff Points: 88

A Level: CCD

IB Points: 27

BTEC: MMM

Further offer details

We welcome applications from candidates with alternative qualifications, and from mature students.

International qualifications and equivalences

Tuition fees

Please see the fees note
Home (UK) full time
£9,250

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

Home (UK) sandwich (placement)
£1,600

International full time
£16,900

International sandwich (placement)
£1,600

Home (UK) full time
£9,250

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

Home (UK) sandwich (placement)
£1,700

International full time
£17,750

International sandwich (placement)
£1,700

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees

2024 / 25
Home (UK) full time
£9,250

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

Home (UK) sandwich (placement)
£1,600

International full time
£16,900

International sandwich (placement)
£1,600

2025 / 26
Home (UK) full time
£9,250

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

Home (UK) sandwich (placement)
£1,700

International full time
£17,750

International sandwich (placement)
£1,700

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

+44 (0)1865 534400

financefees@brookes.ac.uk

Please note, tuition fees for Home students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students in line with an inflationary amount determined by government. Oxford Brookes University intends to maintain its fees for new and returning Home students at the maximum permitted level.

Tuition fees for International students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students. 

The following factors will be taken into account by the University when it is setting the annual fees: inflationary measures such as the retail price indices, projected increases in University costs, changes in the level of funding received from Government sources, admissions statistics and access considerations including the availability of student support. 

How and when to pay

Tuition fee instalments for the semester are due by the Monday of week 1 of each semester. Students are not liable for full fees for that semester if they leave before week 4. If the leaving date is after week 4, full fees for the semester are payable.

  • For information on payment methods please see our Make a Payment page.
  • For information about refunds please visit our Refund policy page

Additional costs

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course are detailed below.

The most likely extra costs involved in studying this course are computers, books and printing.

You are not required to have your own computer though many students choose to. We have computer rooms available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week on campus, so you should always be able to work if you don't have your own machine. Students who choose to buy a computer are advised to avoid low-end machines since reliability will be important; a budget of around £700 should suffice, although some modules may require use of higher-end hardware which is available on campus. The Department does not provide any Apple MacOS machines and their use is not required, but their use is supported if you wish to bring your own. Linux machines are used on the course and you are advised to choose a machine that will support the use of Linux Virtual Machines. If you wish more detailed advice on machine specifications, the department will be happy to advise.

Most software used on the course is freely available to students. The Department is a member of the Microsoft Imagine scheme, the VMware Academic Program and other programs designed to grant access to professional-grade software tools, which would normally be very expensive, for free.

Your University library membership includes access to an extensive electronic library so in many cases, you will be able to read coursebooks online without extra cost. You can of course buy physical copies of books as well if you wish. Computing textbooks generally vary in price between £20 and £60 depending on the degree of specialism.

Most submission of work for Computing modules is electronic, so there is little need for printing.

Information from Discover Uni

Full-time study

Part-time study

Programme changes:
On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website. For more information, please visit our changes to programmes page.