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Computer Science for Cyber Security

BSc (Hons)

Key facts


UCAS code

II10

Start dates

September 2020

Location

Wheatley

Course length

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

Part time: 6 years

Department

School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics

Accreditation(s)

We are proud to announce that this course has been awarded provisional GCHQ certification, the gold standard for courses in Cyber Security. NOTE: provisional accreditation is awarded where a course has not yet had students graduating from it. Full accreditation is expected once the first cohort completes next year.

UCAS Tariff Points

112

Overview


Our Computer Science for Cyber Security degree helps you develop your practical expertise. You will gain experience using high-end professional equipment and software tools and learn:

  • computer systems
  • programming
  • networking
  • computer science
  • cyber security
  • operating systems
  • and software development.  

Our state-of-the-art cyber security networking and server laboratories offer excellent facilities where you will:

  • audit existing networks and IT systems for security issues
  • analyse malware
  • design and implement secure software.

You can take a placement year in industry, and you’ll work on a dissertation investigating a current issue or problem in cyber security. You can also study for your CISCO CCNA professional qualifications.

There is a shortage of skilled graduates in Cyber Security and it's regarded as a critical area by business and government. Careers include IT professionals, penetration testers, digital forensic investigators, software developers, systems engineers and technical analysts.

Students working on computers

How to apply


Typical offers

UCAS Tariff Points: 112

A Level: BBC

IB Points: 30

BTEC: DMM

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

Preferred subjects include: a Science subject.

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

Entry requirements

Specific entry requirements

GCSE: Mathematics at grade 4/C minimum and English Language at grade 4/C minimum

If you don't know about Computing already our first year modules will quickly get you up to speed. Any previous experience you have might help you to get started more comfortably but even if you think you know a lot about computing already there will still be many new things for you to learn.

Having an A-level or BTEC Level 3 qualification in a computing-related subject will not exempt you taking any first-year modules, as we want to make sure that we give you a quality introduction to all of the relevant topics.

If you don't have the right qualifications to apply for a place on one of our degree courses, we may be able to consider you for our Computing Foundation course. This course, which lasts one year, is an excellent preparation for any of our computing degree courses.

Please also see the University's general entry requirements.

English language requirements

Please see the University's standard English language requirements.

International qualifications and equivalences

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English requirements for visas

If you need a student visa to enter the UK you will need to meet the UK Visas and Immigration minimum language requirements as well as the University's requirements. Find out more about English language requirements.

International applications

We are keen to consider applications from all parts of the world. If your previous education was not in the UK, please contact us if you would like us to consider your entry qualification.

Pathways courses for international and EU students

If you do not meet the entry requirements for this degree, or if you would like more preparation before you start, you can take an international foundation course. Once you enrol, you will have a guaranteed pathway to this degree if you pass your foundation course with the required grades.

If you only need to meet the language requirements, you can take our pre-sessional English course. You will develop key language and study skills for academic success and you will not need to take an external language test to progress to your degree.

Terms and Conditions of Enrolment

When you accept our offer, you agree to the Terms and Conditions of Enrolment. You should therefore read those conditions before accepting the offer.

Credit transfer

Many of our courses consider applications for entry with credit for prior learning. Each application is individually assessed by our credit entry tutors. 

If you would like more information about whether or not you may be eligible for the award of credit, for example from an HND, partly-completed degree or foundation degree, please contact our Admissions team.

We operate the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). All undergraduate single modules are equivalent to 7.5 ECTS credits and double modules to 15 ECTS credits. More about ECTS credits.

Application process

Full time Home / EU applicants

Apply through UCAS

Part time Home / EU applicants

Apply direct to the University

International applicants

Apply direct to the University

Full time applicants can also apply through UCAS

Tuition fees


Please see the fees note
Home/EU full time
£9,250

Home/EU part time
£750 per single module

Home/EU sandwich (placement)
£1,380

International full time
£14,280

International sandwich (placement)
£4,000

Home/EU full time
£9,250 (subject to agreement by Office for Students)

Home/EU part time
£1,155 per single module

Home/EU sandwich (placement)
£1,380 (subject to agreement by Office for Students)

International full time
£14,800

International sandwich (placement)
£4,000

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees


2019/20
Home/EU full time
£9,250

Home/EU part time
£750 per single module

Home/EU sandwich (placement)
£1,380

International full time
£14,280

International sandwich (placement)
£4,000

2020/21
Home/EU full time
£9,250 (subject to agreement by Office for Students)

Home/EU part time
£1,155 per single module

Home/EU sandwich (placement)
£1,380 (subject to agreement by Office for Students)

International full time
£14,800

International sandwich (placement)
£4,000

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:
+44 (0)1865 483088

Please note tuition fees for Home/EU students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students in line with an inflationary amount determined by government. Tuition fees for International students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students.

Oxford Brookes University intends to maintain its fees for new and returning home and EU students at the maximum permitted level.

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

Financial support and scholarships

For general sources of financial support, see our Fees and funding pages.

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, if any, 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.

Learning and assessment


In Year 1 you will study fundamental concepts in networking, computer systems and computer programming.

You will build on these subjects in Year 2 and your final year. You'll also learn about:

  • cyber security
  • networking
  • operating systems
  • and software development.

There are optional modules in IT management and programming.

In the final year, you will study advanced topics in aspects of cyber security, operating systems and networking. Central to your final year is a major project that allows you to try out your knowledge and skills on a real-life problem of your choice. It will also give you the opportunity to enhance your networking skills.

Student replacing a hard drive in a computer

Study modules

Year 1

Compulsory modules

Professional Software Design

An introduction to modern software development practices

Computer Systems

An introduction to core computing concepts such as binary, how key hardware components function, and logic

Understanding Programming (double)

An introduction to programming

Introduction to Object Oriented Programming

Object oriented programming

Discrete Mathematics

Basic maths for computer scientists

Basic Communications and PC Networking

Basic PC networking following the CISCO CCNA 1 syllabus

Introduction to Networks

An introduction to networks and networking following the CISCO CCNA 2 syllabus

Year 2

Compulsory modules

Current Research

A review of current research issues in computer science

Foundations of Computation

An introduction to notions of computation, computability, automata, and related topics

Foundations of Security

Core concepts in cyber security

Network Technologies

Key concepts in local area networks, following the CISCO CCNA 3 syllabus

Professional Issues and Computer Risks

Professional issues in computer science

Requirements Specification and Software Design

A study of the principles, methods and techniques for the analysis of automated information systems

Software Development with C and C++

An introduction to C and C++ programming

Systems Programming

Writing systems level code in C

WAN Technologies

Key concepts in wide area networks, following the CISCO CCNA 4 syllabus

Optional modules

Business Intelligence Programming

Foundations of Business Analytics

Further Object Oriented Programming

Advanced object oriented programming

Systems Administration

The design, implementation, and maintenance of an IT network

Year 3 (optional placement year)

Optional modules

Optional Work Placement Year (includes a Placement Search and Preparation module in your second year)

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

Operating Systems Principles

Theory of Operating Systems

Secure Programming

The design, implementation, and maintenance of secure software systems

Low Level Tools and Techniques

Assembler programming and malware analysis

Dissertation in Computer Science for Cyber Security (double)

A project in the area of cyber security.

Optional modules

Network Security (alt-compulsory: choose at least 1)

Network security theory and practice following the CISCO CCNA Security syllabus

Network Systems Management (alt-compulsory: choose at least 1)

Advanced systems administration techniques and IT management and governance

Communicating and Teaching Computer Science

Working in schools to help teach computer science

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

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 used on this course

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 Abroad


You may be able to go on a European or international study exchange while you are at Brookes. Most exchanges take place in the second year. Although we will help as much as we can with your plans, ultimately you are responsible for organising and funding this study abroad.

After you graduate


Career prospects

Training for several professional networking qualifications, operated under the Cisco Networking Academy programme, is an optional part of this degree programme. Obtaining these qualifications, which are recognised worldwide, represents an important step towards a lucrative career as a networking professional.

On registering for training under the networking academy scheme you will be given access to extensive, professionally developed on-line learning facilities, including network simulation tools, testing and feedback systems. The training is incorporated as an optional integral component of the degree course.

It is no longer acceptable to develop, and deploy, IT systems and software without significant consideration of security issues and the UK Government's National Security Council identifies cyber-attack as one of the 4 highest priority risks for the UK. In particular, they highlight the lack of computer science graduates, with the necessary skills in cyber security, as a serious concern for both government and industry, with demand far outstripping supply. Our degree in Computer Science for Cyber Security is designed to help address this need. Potential careers in this area include careers such as IT security professionals, penetration testers, digital forensic investigators, software developers, systems engineers, technical analysts, IT managers, and consultants.

Further study

World-class research and superb links with industry come together to make Oxford Brookes one of the best places in the UK to study technology at postgraduate level, whatever your subject interest.

Our courses, taught by leading academics with active research programmes, are designed to meet the needs of modern industry. And our location in Oxford places us at the heart of one of Europe's biggest concentrations of high-tech businesses - opening up opportunities for research collaboration and employment.

Learn more about our postgraduate courses.

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.

Information from Discover Uni


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.