Software Engineering (3 Years) [BSc]
Software systems are at the heart of all successful modern businesses. These systems are complex and long-lived, and must be robust and adaptable. By studying software design and production techniques on our degree courses, you will be equipped with the skills needed to follow a career specifying and developing such systems.
Software engineering techniques consider the whole lifecycle of an application, from its specification and design, through its implementation and testing, to its maintenance and adaptation. Many different methodologies have been developed for software engineering, a range of which are used in project work, enabling you to understand their properties and the contexts in which they are most appropriate from direct experience.
You can study this course in the following variants:
- SE 3-years BSc - the fastest route to graduation.
- SE 4-years BSc with Industrial Experience - you have a year's placement in industry between study years 2 and 3.
- SE 4-years MEng - designed to fulfill the highest professional requirements and challenge the ablest of students. Includes an 8-week industrial project between study years 3 and 4.
- SE 5-years MEng with Industrial Experience - the same as the 4-year MEng, but you have a year's placement in industry between study years 3 and 4.
UCAS course code: GG6K
Degree awarded: BSc
Duration: 3 years
Typical A level offer: Grades A*AA including mathematics.
Course fees: Tuition fees for home/EU students commencing their studies in September 2018 will be £9,250. Future inflationary increases may also be applied to each subsequent year of your course, subject to government regulations on fee increases. Tuition fees for international students will be £22,000 per annum. For general information please see the undergraduate fees pages.
Scholarships/sponsorships: All new UK/EU (home tuition fee) students, applying for first year entry, who achieve an A*A*A (including A* in mathematics) at the first sitting will be awarded the Kilburn Entry Scholarship worth £1,000. Other UK, European and international qualifications gained by home tuition fee students will also be considered for the award, subject to academic approval.
Number of places/applicants: The School of Computer Science receives in the region of 2000 applications per year for 225 places across our undergraduate degree courses.
Contact telephone: 44 (0)161 275 6124
Software systems are the cornerstones of all modern business. Such systems are often complex and long lived, and must be robust and adaptable. By studying software design and production techniques, this degree programme will equip you with the skills needed to follow a career specifying and developing these systems, and other computer-based solutions.
You will gain not only knowledge and practical experience of the latest technologies, but also a grounding in the underlying principles of the subject. It is this combination of skills that enable our graduates to keep pace with this fast moving subject, and secure financially rewarding careers that can be pursued almost anywhere in the world.
- Examines the fundamentals of the business environments within which complex software systems are deployed
- Students can make course unit choices that allow them to change between the Computer Science, Software Engineering, Artificial Intelligence and Distributed Computing programmes at the end of the first year.
Course units and themes of particular relevance to software engineering include:
- Software Engineering Project.
- Distributed Systems Development
- Information Systems Modelling.
- Specification of Software Systems
- Software Evolution.
- Software Quality.
- Agile Methods.
- Data Integration and Analysis
Employers, from large multinational firms such as EA Electronic Arts , IBM and Microsoft to small local organisations, actively target our students, recognising that Manchester Computer Science graduates are equipped with the skills that enable them to excel in a whole host of positions, including many that are not traditionally associated with computing graduates.
Geraint North: BSc Software Engineering graduate
'The degree programme at Manchester ensured that I built a broad understanding of the fundamental aspects of computer science, which I could apply to any technologies that I would end up working with. The software industry moves so fast that a course that taught only the current hot technologies wouldn't be of much use to you five years down the line. This meant touching on some quite esoteric subjects, even in the first year, such as SML and LISP. Although very few people will find the concepts introduced in these programmes immediately applicable in their future careers, I've found that they taught me some alternative ways of thinking about software problems that have led me to solve them in pretty innovative ways. The effects of this kind of teaching, which gives you the mental tools to solve any problem that you come across lasts much longer than training on the specific tools of the day.'
A level: Grades A*AA including mathematics. This should include Mathematics with a significant pure element (the Use of Mathematics or Core Mathematics does not satisfy this requirement). General Studies is welcome, but is not normally included as part of the standard offer.
The University of Manchester welcomes the provision of unit information where available. Like all other information provided by applicants this may be taken into consideration when assessing your application. Unit grades will not normally form part of an offer conditions.
Five academic subjects at grades A and B, or grades 6 and 7 in the newly reformed GCSEs in England, including
- Mathematics (please note we do not accept Applied GCSE Mathematics courses e.g. WJEC Mathematics - Numeracy)
- Two science subjects from Computer Science, Physics, Chemistry, Biology or Science and Additional Science.
International Baccalaureate: 38 points overall, with 7,6,6 in Higher Level subjects, including Mathematics.
Irish Leaving Certificate: Grades H1 in five higher level academic subjects, including Grades H1 in higher level mathematics and applied mathematics.
Scottish Advanced Highers:
We normally require grade A in Highers Mathematics and grades AAAB in four further Highers subjects with a scientific bias. The Highers must be taken in one sitting.
Three Advanced Highers at grades ABB, including Advanced Highers Mathematics. Two Highers in different subjects can replace one of the other two Advanced Higher subjects.
English Language not taken at Higher/Advanced Higher must have been achieved at SCQF level 5 (minimum National 5 grade C / Intermediate 2 grade C / Standard Grade 3). If a physical science has not been taken at Higher/Advanced Higher we require TWO science subjects at SCQF level 5 (minimum National 5 grades AB / Intermediate 2 grades AB / Standard Grade Credit level)
Welsh Baccalaureate: The University welcomes and recognises the value of the Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate Skills Challenge Certificate and this can be used in combination with two A level subjects including mathematics. Our A level entry requirements are grades A*AA including mathematics and the Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate Skills Challenge Certificate can be used to replace one of the other two A levels.
European Baccalaureate: An average of 85% including a minimum of 85% in mathematics studied for at least 5 periods per week and assessed by a final written examination. A scientific bias to the specialist subjects studied.
AQA Baccalaureate: The University welcomes and recognises the value of the AQA Baccalaureate, but offers will be conditional on the A level subjects within the qualification rather than the overall Baccalaureate award.
Other international entry requirements:
We accept a range of qualifications from different countries. Detailed information on our international entry criteria is available on the School of Computer Science Website
For general requirements not listed above see Accepted entry qualifications from your country
BTEC Extended Diploma:
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma
We consider the National Extended Diploma for entry provided it is in IT or Engineering with grades DDM in combination with a grade A* in A level Mathematics or with alternative grades DDD in combination with a grade A in A level mathematics.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma
We consider the National Diploma for entry provided it is in IT or Engineering with grades DD in combination with a grade A* in A level Mathematics or an alternative of grades D*D in combination with a grade A in A level mathematics.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Foundation Diploma
We consider the National Foundation Diploma for entry in any subject provided it is in combination with two A levels including Mathematics. Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full National Foundation Diploma with grade M plus two A levels at grades A*A including Mathematics or an alternative of grade D in combination with grades AA at A level including Mathematics.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate
We consider the National Extended Certificate for entry in any subject provided it is in combination with two GCE A levels including Mathematics. Our A level entry requirements are grades A*AA including mathematics and the full National Extended Certificate can be used to replace one of the other two A levels.
OCR National Extended Diploma (18 units):
Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Diploma (CTEC)
We consider the Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma for entry provided it is in IT or Engineering with grades DDM in combination with a grade A* in A level Mathematics or with alternative grades DDD in combination with a grade A in A level mathematics.
Cambridge Level 3 Technical Diploma (CTEC)
We consider the Cambridge Technical Diploma for entry provided it is in IT or Engineering with grades DD in combination with a grade A* in A level Mathematics or an alternative of grades D*D in combination with a grade A in A level mathematics.
Cambridge Level 3 Technical Foundation Diploma (CTEC)
We consider the Cambridge Technical Foundation Diploma for entry in any subject provided it is in combination with two A levels including Mathematics. Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Cambridge Technical Foundation Diploma with grades MM plus two A levels at grades A*A including Mathematics or an alternative of grades DM in combination with grades AA at A level including Mathematics.
Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Certificate (CTEC)
We consider the Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate for entry in any subject provided it is in combination with two A levels including Mathematics. Our A level entry requirements are grades A*AA including mathematics and the full Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate can be used to replace one of the other two A levels.
Access to HE Diploma: Applications are considered on an individual basis, e.g. additional educational achievements, life experience and skills. Please contact the University for further information. Our standard academic requirements include 60 credits with 45 at Level 3. Minimum of 40 credits should be with a Distinction grade (15 of which must be in mathematics), plus 15 credits with a Merit grade in a science-related subject. Students are also required to have a grade A in A-level mathematics with a pure element.
Advanced Placement tests: The University welcomes applicants with the AP qualification. Such applications will be considered on an individual basis.
We consider applicants offering Pre-U Principal Subjects, or a mix of Pre-U and A Level subjects, provided a minimum of three distinct subjects, including Mathematics, is taken.
Conditional offers will be set on an individual basis but are likely to include achieving grade D1-D3 in three Principal Subjects including mathematics.
Extended Project Qualification (EPQ): The University recognises the benefits of the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) and the opportunities it provides for applicants to develop independent study and research skills. Although the Extended Project will not be included in the conditions of your offer, we strongly encourage you to provide information about the EPQ in your personal statement and at interview. A number of our academic Schools may also choose to take your performance in the EPQ into account should places be available in August for applicants who narrowly miss the entry grades for their chosen course.
Non-standard educational routes:
If you have followed a non-standard educational route and have been, for example, educated at home, your application will be considered against the standard entry criteria of the course to which you applied. You will be required to demonstrate that you meet the academic entry requirements as specified for the course. We will also require a reference which should be written by somebody who knows you well enough, in an official capacity, to write about you and your suitability for higher education. Please refer to UCAS for further information: UCAS reference guidelines
Other entry requirements:
Return-to-learn students are those who have had a substantial period away from any formal learning. Often such learners have pursued careers or raised a family. The University understands that students come from many different backgrounds, with varying qualifications, careers and skills, but they often bring to their studies a high degree of motivation and experience.
The University recognises that standard selection measures and procedures may not enable these learners to demonstrate fully their suitability for their chosen course. Where appropriate, admissions officers will seek and consider alternative evidence in order to give such learners equivalent consideration. Where they deem this alternative evidence meets entry criteria fully the learner will not be required to meet the standard academic entry requirements.
GCSE English grade C, or grade 4 in the newly reformed GCSEs in England, IELTS 6.5 with no less than 6.0 in individual components, TOEFL 100 ibt with no less than 23 in individual components.
Factors contributing to a successful application include:
- past academic performance;
- predicted academic performance;
- enthusiasm for, and realistic grasp of, chosen degree programme;
- evidence of interpersonal skills and non-academic interests/achievements.
The basis of our offer made will be a combination of information supplied on the UCAS form, your predicted academic performance and performance at interview (where applicable).
All promising applicants who are resident in the UK/EU and who apply before 15th January will be invited to attend an interview.
At Manchester we aim to provide a unique experience. Studying Computer Science with us will give you the chance to follow your academic curiosity and explore a fascinating subject.
A significant amount of your work will be project-based team work, tackling real problems. You will see how computer science is directly applicable to solving problems, across a broad range of areas.
The emphasis throughout is on independent learning, supported by regular meetings in small groups with personal tutors. You receive practical help and support from experienced staff and postgraduates, with leading experts guiding your learning and stimulating your interest. This approach is supported by conventional lectures and comprehensive on-line learning resources. We also provide excellent facilities, including specialist laboratories to support areas such as engineering and robotics.
Course unit choices
- Agile MethodsAgile Methods focus on processes and techniques for managing software projects under challenging conditions. Agile Methods are important because software often has to be developed under pressures of time and in uncertain settings, where more traditional software development techniques have proved to be too cumbersome.
- Rigorous DevelopmentRigorous Development is concerned with techniques for specifying and analysing algorithms and systems, with a view to reaching a level of understanding that enables guarantees to be made about their behaviour. Rigorous Development is important as many applications of computer systems are both complex and safety critical, and thus stand to benefit from a systematic investigation of their properties.
- Software EngineeringSoftware Engineering is concerned with all aspects of software production, from the early stages of requirements gathering, through system design and implementation, to maintenance and evolution. Software Engineering is important because software projects may involve large teams of people, diverse or conflicting requirements, tight timescales and limited budgets.