MSc in Computing

The Open University

Program Description

MSc in Computing

The Open University

MSc in Computing

With the ability to carry out an independent research-based project, backed up with a wide range of industry relevant modules, the MSc in Computing allows you to showcase your abilities. You start by studying taught modules, either taking a flexible route so you can choose from our wide choice of industry relevant modules or following a more focused route in a specialist area. You then complete the MSc with a research module which enables you to demonstrate your knowledge and skills in the computing field. This provides you with an excellent platform for further research studies.

Designed for those with a bachelors degree in computing or a related discipline, or who have extensive industrial experience in this area, this qualification brings together theory and practice and allows you to draw on your own background and experience. With the aim of developing a professional approach to the study and application of computing this qualification incorporates study and transferable skills applicable to your employment and continuing professional development.

This MSc Computing also offers you the opportunity to specialise either in information security and forensics, or in software engineering. The title of your qualification will reflect this: MSc in Computing (Software Engineering) or MSc in Computing (Information Security and Forensics). Whichever study route you choose, you begin by studying a taught module component, followed by a research project. For the specialist routes you are required to study a project topic in the specialist area.

The taught modules component of the flexible route allows you to choose four 30-credit modules from our computing and related curriculum. Designed to meet the varied requirements of industry, this route allows you to choose the relevant modules for your specific career needs.

If you follow either of the specialist routes you must complete two compulsory modules, and two optional modules from the remaining computing and related curriculum. The compulsory modules are intended to give you in-depth, specialist knowledge in these areas, while the optional modules allow you to focus on additional knowledge and skills for your chosen career.

Educational aims

The MSc in Computing is an intensive programme of study designed specifically for graduates of computing and related disciplines, and for those with appropriate industrial experience. The qualification enables you to develop your knowledge and skills in computing and to promote a professional attitude to the application of those skills.

The qualification will:

  • give you the knowledge and skills necessary to become an effective professional in the computing industry.
  • develop your abilities in the critical evaluation of the theories, practices and systems used in a range of areas of computing.
  • provide you with selected specialised areas of study so that you can experience and develop the frontiers of practice and research in focussed aspects of computing and its application.
  • encourage you, through the provision of appropriate educational activities, to develop study and transferable skills applicable to your employment and your continuing professional development.

In addition, if you are following a specialist pathway your qualification will:

  • enable you to develop a deeper understanding of a specialist area of computing
  • enable you to contribute to future developments in the field
  • provide the opportunity for you to develop and apply research skills, focused on a substantial practical project.

Teaching, learning and assessment methods

You will learn independently, using online teaching texts; multi-media packages on CD DVD and the Web; directed reading from textbooks and academic and industry papers and specialised software tools.

We will support your learning with:

  • self-assessment questions and exercises
  • computer-based investigations, tasks and activities, and open-ended
  • project work
  • feedback and guidance from tutors and other subject specialists
  • computer conferences and other online forums
  • study guides, information and guidance packs.

We will assess your learning using some or all of the following:

  • interactive computer marked assignments (iCMAs)
  • tutor-marked assessments (TMAs)
  • formal examinations
  • end of module assessments (EMAs)
  • progress and project reports.

There will be opportunities for you to:

  • apply your learning in practical contexts, for example by reflecting on your own engagement with computing systems in a home, work or social setting
  • engage with fellow students, tutors, subject practitioners and academic specialists in online group and small group events
  • engage with research papers and industry white papers at the forefront of the discipline
  • gain exposure to the professional and employability discussions that are shaping the computing profession.

Cognitive skills are developed via a range of activities including self-assessment exercises, multi-media tasks, tutor-led discussions, and the exploration of open and complex problems. Tutor-mediated online activities and student and tutor conference facilities provide an environment for critical discussion and peer interaction. Tutor feedback on formal exercises aids the development of these skills.

Cognitive skills will be assessed by addressing problems requiring investigation, analysis and synthesis. These will be examined in TMAs and examinations, and TMAs and the project will offer opportunities to demonstrate integration of knowledge and skills from a range of topics.

Key skills are taught and developed throughout the teaching materials; supported by tutor feedback and guidance around formal activities and assessed exercises.

You will undertake both direct and self-selected reading, and there is progressive development of your engagement and use of these materials.

Various types of assessment questions, project reports and some open-ended activity progress reports will be used to formally assess the skills taught.

Practical and professional skills will be taught and developed throughout the qualification, with support from tutors and subject specialists. TMA, EMA and project progress and final reports will included assessment points related to practical and professional skills.

You will be supported in developing a style of independent learning and reflective practice that encourages a professional engagement with the computing discipline, encompassing professional codes of conduct and legal, social and ethical concerns. Some aspects of professional practice will be taught and developed but may not be assessed.

The University wishes to emphasise that, while every effort is made to regularly update this site, the material on it is subject to alteration or amendment in the light of changes in regulations or in policy or of financial or other necessity.

Career impact

The modules in the postgraduate computing programme are for professional computer specialists, engineers, technical managers and scientists who need to update their skills and knowledge in specific areas, and gain recognised qualifications to develop their careers. They have been developed to combine theoretical and practical aspects of computing, to enable you to become an effective professional in the computing industry.

In addition they aim to encourage you, through the provision of appropriate educational activities, to develop study and transferable skills applicable to your employment and your continuing professional development.

Read more about this programme on the Open University website here

This school offers programs in:
  • English
The Open University
Duration & Price
This course is Online
Start Date
Start date
Aug. 2018
1 - 3 years
Part time
Full time
Contact school
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United Kingdom - Milton Keynes, England
Start date: Aug. 2018
Application deadline Contact school
End date Contact school
Aug. 2018
United Kingdom - Milton Keynes, England
Application deadline Contact school
End date Contact school