Software Engineering at University of St Andrews - UCAS

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Course summary

The MSc in Software Engineering is an advanced research-led course in the study of software engineering, developing students' knowledge and skills in software reuse, agile development, software architecture and critical systems engineering.


Compulsory modules: 1. Object-oriented modelling, design and programming 2. Software engineering principles 3. Software engineering practice You will also take one or both of: 1. Critical systems engineering 2. Software architecture Optional modules: The following modules are optional for Computer Science programmes. Not all combinations of modules will be available for all programmes, and some modules are subject to pre-requisites being satisfied. Students choose three or four optional modules. In the 'Additional optional' lists, students can only take up to two of the modules in each list. Here is a sample of optional modules that may be offered. 1. Artificial Intelligence Practice 2. Artificial Intelligence Principles 3. Data-Intensive Systems 4. Human Computer Interaction Principles and Methods 5. Information Visualisation 6. Interactive Software and Hardware 7. Knowledge Discovery and Datamining 8. Language and Computation 9. Principles of Computer Communication Systems 10. User-Centred Interaction Design Additional optional modules: Students may take up to two of the following: 1. Advanced Communication Networks and Systems 2. Computer Architecture 3. Computer Graphics 4. Computer Security 5. Concurrency and Multi-Core Architectures 6. Constraint Programming 7. Distributed Systems 8. Logic and Software Verification 9. Programming Language Design and Implementation 10. Video Games Students may take up to two of the following: 1. Database Management Systems 2. Information Security Management 3. Web Technologies Dissertation Project: During the second semester, students work with staff to define and agree upon a topic for the extended project, which they will work on during the final three months of the course, and which culminates in a 15,000-word dissertation. Dissertation projects may be group-based or completed individually (students are assessed individually in either case). The dissertation typically comprises: a review of related work the extension of existing ideas or the development of new ideas software implementation and testing analysis and evaluation. Students are required to give a presentation of their work in addition to the written dissertation. Each project is supervised by one or two members of staff, typically through regular meetings and reviews of software and dissertation drafts. If students choose not to complete the dissertation requirement for the MSc, there is an exit award available that allows suitably qualified candidates to receive a Postgraduate Diploma instead, finishing the course at the end of the second semester of study.

Assessment method

Most modules are assessed through practical coursework exercises and examinations. All students will be required to complete a Post Entry Language Assessment (PELA) on arrival at the University of St Andrews. Based on their performance in this assessment, students will be advised to attend targeted support sessions during the year to improve language and academic skills. This assessment is required, but will not count towards the final degree classification.

Entry requirements

A 2.1 Honours undergraduate degree in Computer Science. If you studied your first degree outside the UK, see the University's international entry requirements.

English language requirements

For the current English Language requirements please visit the English language requirements for postgraduate students on the University of St Andrews website.

English language requirements for postgraduate students

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

No fee information has been provided for this course

Additional fee information

For the most current information on course fees please visit

Sponsorship information

Carnegie-Cameron bursaries; entrant accommodation bursary; Formula Santander Postgraduate scholarship; recent graduate discount; Thomas and Margaret Roddan Trust bursary; SAAS postgraduate funding.

Software Engineering at University of St Andrews - UCAS