You will need a bachelors degree (or equivalent) in computing or a related discipline, or relevant industrial experience. If you do not hold a degree, we would expect you to complete our Postgraduate Certificate in Computing (K22) before embarking on this MSc.
Your spoken and written English must be of an adequate standard for postgraduate study. If English is not your first language, we recommend that you will need a minimum overall score of 6 and minimum score of 5.5 in each of the four components: reading, writing, speaking and listening under the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Please see the IELTS website for details.
For the flexible route you can tailor your study choices to fit with your interests and study goals. We recommend that you begin with one of the modules in the first list of options. You should also be aware that some modules in the qualification are intended to be studied in sequence (see specialist pathway information below). You will complete your MSc with a 60-credit project component.
For the specialist MSc in Computing (Software Engineering), you will study the two compulsory 30-credit modules Software development (M813) and Software engineering (M814) combined with a further 60 credits from a choice of optional modules. You should study and pass M813 before M814, but you can study the optional modules at any time within the six-year time limit for the qualification. Additionally, you require a further 60 credits from the final project component.
For the specialist MSc in Computing (Information Security and Forensics) you will study the two 30-credit compulsory modules Information security (M811) and Digital forensics (M812) combined with a further 60 credits of study from a choice of optional modules. You should study and pass M811 before M812, but you can study the optional modules at any time within the six-year time limit for the qualification. Additionally, you require a further 60 credits from the final project component.
There are two project options available; both provide an excellent platform for further research studies.
In the 30-credit module, The MSc professional project (T847) you act as an ‘informed investigator’, designing, conducting, analysing and reporting on your chosen research project, applying relevant conceptual, theoretical and methodological material at all stages of your work. You will be expected to carry out your research in a rigorous fashion and to an appropriate academic standard. Spanning only six months, this project module provides a challenging but valuable opportunity to engage in – and learn from – a research scenario, in what is likely to be a ‘professional’ employment-related setting, of your own choosing.
In the 60-credit module, Research project (T802) you will design a research proposal by identifying and developing a research problem relevant to your MSc. Your research will involve a literature review, original data collection, data analysis and the drawing of conclusions. You will then communicate the outcome of your research by writing up and submitting your dissertation. During your study you will investigate in depth an issue or problem of professional relevance to you and which may also be of relevance to an organisation such as an employer, institution or public body.
Time limit – this MSc in Computing can be completed within three years, but for those requiring a more flexible timescale a maximum of six years is permitted.
You should note that the University’s unique study rule applies to this qualification. This means that you must include at least 60 credits from OU modules that have not been counted in any other OU qualification that has previously been awarded to you. Note, in particular, you can only count the credit from one of the following modules towards a single qualification: Research project (T802) or MSc professional project (T847).