University of Portsmouth

Cyber Security and Forensic Computing University of Portsmouth Degree level: Undergraduate

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Course summary

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Overview

Do you have the ability to join the front line in defending computer networks from cyber attacks? Or are you interested in ethical hacking to probe the digital defences of major corporations?

On this BSc (Hons) Cyber Security and Forensic Computing degree course, you’ll turn your tech talent into a professional qualification, armed with a toolkit of knowledge and skills to tackle the toughest digital security challenges.

This degree could lead to a career in law enforcement or British Intelligence. You’ll be qualified to take on roles in cyber security, cryptography and forensic investigation.

Accredited by:

This course is accredited by the British Computer Society, fulfilling academic requirement for CITP (Chartered Information Technology Professional).

  • 100% Overall student satisfaction (NSS, 2018)

  • 95% Graduates in work or further study (DLHE, 2017)

What you'll experience

On this degree course, you'll:

  • Build sought-after technical and investigative skills to break down security systems, and expose gaps in security when they occur

  • Learn to identify cyber intruders, recommend security fixes, and stop hackers in their tracks

  • Understand how to investigate cybercrime for the Police and the steps needed to take a case through to court

  • Spend plenty of time in our high-powered computer labs, getting to grips with the latest tools and techniques

  • Be taught by staff with years of experience and expertise in computer security, with teaching informed by up-to-date research into the latest advancements in forensic computing

  • Apply your skills to practical problems as part of the department’s partnership with charities, local and global organisations

  • Take advantage of opportunities to put your skills to work through our close relationship with the Hampshire Police High Tech Crime Unit

  • Design and develop software, hardware and networks, in fields such as digital forensics and artificial intelligence

  • Pick the brains of visiting speakers, who are experts in the forensic and cyber security field

Software and equipment you can use includes:

  • a mobile computing lab to develop Android and iOS apps

  • a pervasive computing lab for high-performance computing

  • a usability lab including state-of-the-art eye tracking equipment

  • Linux and Windows systems

  • a forensics lab with professional-standard forensic tools

Careers and opportunities

Police investigations and civil disputes increasingly involve investigations of computer systems, mobile phones or other information devices. So there's lots of demand for professionals in the field.

When you complete the course, you could work in private and public companies in areas such as law enforcement, cyber security and computer forensics. You'll also be able to register as a Chartered IT Professional (CITP).

What jobs can you do with a Cyber Security and Forensic Computing degree?

Roles our graduates have taken on include:

  • security architect

  • penetration tester

  • cyber security analyst

  • forensic investigator

  • eDiscovery examiner

  • software developer

You'll get advice and support from our Careers and Employability service throughout your studies, and for 5 years after you graduate.

"I chose the University of Portsmouth because of the feel of it and how friendly the staff were. I also love how hands-on it is and how much I actually get to do!" Alex Jarvis, Forensic Computing Student

Course details

Modules

Year 1

Core modules in this year include:

  • Architecture and Operating Systems
  • Core Computing Concepts for Cyber Security and Forensic Computing
  • Cyber Security and Forensic Computing
  • Networks
  • Programming

Year 2

Core modules in this year include:

  • Ethical Hacking
  • Forensics Fundamentals
  • Forensic Investigations
  • Operating Systems and Internetworking
  • Virtualisation and Cloud Computing

Optional modules in this year include:

  • Cyber Law Governance and Human Rights
  • Data Structures and Algorithms
  • Learning from Experience
  • Life Computing
  • Network Servers and Services

Placement year (optional)

At the end of your second year of study, you can do an optional placement year in the UK or overseas. This gives you experience in the field, helping to boost your skills and career prospects with real-world experience.

Previous students have secured placements in roles such as cyber specialist, forensic investigator and cyber security analyst at organisations such as: Deloitte, The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL), Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ).

We’ll help you secure a work placement that fits your aspirations. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year.

Year 3

Core modules in this year include:

  • Malware Forensics
  • Security and Cryptography

Optional modules in this year include:

  • Advanced Networks
  • Final Year Study Project
  • Individual Project (Engineering)
  • Practical Data Analytics and Mining
  • Security Management

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional modules may not run every year. If a module doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

Assessment method

You’ll be assessed through:

  • critical evaluation essays
  • written exams
  • research projects
  • mini projects
  • presentations

You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.

You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.

The way you’re assessed may depend on the modules you select. As a guide, students on this course last year were typically assessed as follows:

  • Year 1 students: 27% by written exams and 73% by coursework
  • Year 2 students: 52% by written exams, 3% by practical exams and 45% by coursework
  • Year 3 students: 30% by written exams and 70% by coursework

Professional bodies

Professionally accredited courses provide industry-wide recognition of the quality of your qualification.

  • BCS - The Chartered Institute for IT

How to apply

Application deadlines

If your application is completed by the following date, it’s guaranteed to be considered:

15 January

*If you apply after this deadline, universities or colleges don’t have to consider your application if they’ve filled their spaces, so the sooner you apply, the better!

Application codes

You will need these codes when you add a choice to your application.

You are viewing a course summary page, please select a course option to see the application codes

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1
  • Year 2
  • Year 3

Entry requirements for advanced entry (i.e. into Year 2 and beyond)

We welcome applications for advanced entry. If you’d like to apply for advanced entry, you need to select the required year when you complete your UCAS application.


Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

Qualification Offer Further information
UCAS Tariff 104 - 120 points 104-120 points to include a minimum of 2 A levels, or equivalent, including an A Level in a relevant subject.
A level 104-120 Tariff points to include a minimum of 2 A levels, including an A Level in a relevant subject.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (first teaching from September 2016) DMM - DDM Must be in a relevant subject
Access to HE Diploma 106-122 Tariff points from the Access to HE Diploma (Technology based).
Cambridge International Pre-U Certificate - Principal Cambridge Pre-U score of 44-50, to include a Pricipal Subject in a relevant subject.
GCSE/National 4/National 5 3 GCSEs at grade C or above to include English and Mathematics/3 GCSEs at grade 4 or above to include English and Mathematics.
International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme 25 points 25 points from the IB Diploma, to include 3 Higher Level subjects, with one relevant subject at Higher Level.
Leaving Certificate - Higher Level (Ireland) (first awarded in 2017) H3, H3, H3, H4, H4 - H3, H3, H3, H3, H3 To include a Higher Level in a relevant subject.
Scottish Advanced Higher 104-120 Tariff points, including an Advanced Higher in a relevant subject.


English language requirements

Test Grade Additional details
Cambridge English Advanced Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) taken after January 2015. An overall score of 169 with no component score less than 162.
Cambridge English Proficiency Cambridge English: Proficiency (CPE) taken after January 2015. An overall score of 169 with no component score less than 162.
IELTS (Academic) 6.0 English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.
PTE Academic 54.0 An overall score of 54 with a minimum of 51 in each skill.
TOEFL (iBT) 79.0 79 with a minimum of 18 in Reading, 17 in Listening, 20 in Speaking and 17 in Writing.
Trinity ISE Pass Trinity College Integrated Skills in English (ISE) Level III with a Pass in all 4 components

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

Channel Islands £9,250 Year 1
EU £9,250 Year 1
International £16,400 Year 1
England £9,250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9,250 Year 1
Scotland £9,250 Year 1
Wales £9,250 Year 1

Additional fee information

Home/EU/Islands Year in placement/industry £925 Year abroad of a language course £925. For further fee information please see https://www.port.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/undergraduate-fees-and-student-finance International (Non-EU) Year in placement/industry £2,500 Year abroad of a language course £2,500. For further fee information please see https://www.port.ac.uk/study/international-students/funding **Fees are accurate at the time of publishing and are subject to change at any time without notice. Fees may also go up in later years, in line with inflation.**

Provider information

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University of Portsmouth
University House
Winston Churchill Avenue
Portsmouth
PO1 2UP


Course contact details

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University Admissions Centre

023 9284 5566