BSc Computer Science with Digital Technology Partnership

Undergraduate degree course in Computer Science with Digital Technology Partnership BSc:

The University of Birmingham and PwC have worked together to offer a traditional university degree combined with practical work based technology projects and industry experience.  This Level 6 degree apprenticeship is one of a kind and tuition fees are full paid for by PwC, as well as students receiving a monthly salary. 

Computer Science & PwC – Degree Apprenticeship Live Q&A
Monday 25 September 2017,  from 17:00

Join staff from the School of Computer Science, and colleagues from PwC, online to ask any questions you have about this new and exciting programme here at Birmingham.  Learn more

Computer Science is a dynamic discipline. What began with the curiosity of only a handful of academics has blossomed into a field with an impact on our lives that would have astonished many pioneers. In the past 50 years computers have contributed to numerous advances in almost every field, yet developments still show no sign of slowing.

Applications for this programme will be simultaneously considered for a salaried apprenticeship position with PwC.

Applicants who meet the academic requirements for Computer Science degrees who are not offered an apprenticeship position will be made an offer of a place for our G400 BSc Computer Science programme

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Do you want a traditional university degree, but would like to start earning a salary now? Do you have a strong work ethic and can be disciplined with your study? Do you want to start your technology career with a leading employer?

If you answered yes to any of these questions then this new and exciting degree could be right for you. This four-year programme, designed in partnership with PwC will allow you receive an outstanding education from one of the UK's top ten Computer Science departments, whilst also gaining work experience with PwC's Tech teams during placements.

On these placements you will get to work with some of the biggest brands in the world, and the work itself can often be front page news. You will spend your first and second year at University, undertaking placements at PwC outside of term-time and your whole third year will be spent working at PwC, before you return to University for your fourth year.

You will experience university life and study alongside work experience and skills training.

  • Work experience with a leading organisation: You will be employed full-time by PwC and earn a competitive salary.
  • A degree from a highly ranked university: The University of Birmingham is a top 100 global university and Computer Science is ranked 8th in the UK.
  • A job offer: PwC will offer you a graduate job at the end of the degree programme providing you meet their performance criteria.

All of your University tuition fees are fully funded by PwC, and as a PwC employee, you’ll receive a salary each month

First year

In your first year you gain a firm foundation in programming, plus the principles of data structures and algorithms; artificial intelligence; and relevant logic and mathematics. Our main teaching language is Java, a language widely used in enterprise systems, but you will also learn functional programming, which is a style of programming with a deep connection to logic. You will also spend a third of your time on business-related subjects.

Second year

In your second year you move on to study enabling technologies and their application. You will learn about a wide range of subjects from the mathematics for modelling and decision making which underpins much of modern machine learning, to systems-level programming, networks, and cyber security. Your programming repertoire will be broadened by exposure to the C programming language plus further functional programming. You will also be taught professional software engineering techniques and apply them to develop a large team project in Java such as a multiplayer networked game.

Third year

In your third year you will undertake a full year in industry with PwC.

Fourth year

In your final year you have freedom of choice to specialise in particular areas of computer science. The choice available covers computer graphics, computer security and verification, theoretical computer science, human-computer interaction, artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics, computer vision, and teaching computer science. You also spend one-third of your time on a final degree project. This includes writing a large piece of software or doing a major piece of research, and brings together all of the computer science skills you have acquired.

Placements

During your placements you will be productively employed and play an active, and valued, part on project teams and will make meaningful contributions to fee earning client projects. You will be equipped with the opportunity to apply your learning in a challenging but fully supported environment. PwC has a client base ranging from local to multinational and global companies, across all sectors and industries.

You will be fully supported when on placement with PwC, you will have a dedicated people manager, buddies, mentors, a dedicated development team, and will still be able to access all of the University support systems too.

Alongside developing your technical skills through your placements with PwC you will develop a combination of interpersonal skills (eg rapport building, behavioural styles, working in a team and networking) and consulting skills, (eg models of consulting, distinctive business advisor, change management and analytical skills) embedding the PwC Experience.

Download the BSC Computer Science with digital technology partnership brochure (pdf 440 KB) for additional information. Additional information can be found in the Computer Science undergraduate brochure (pdf 12 MB).

Why study this course

Computer Science is a dynamic discipline. What began with the curiosity of only a handful of academics has blossomed into a field with an impact on our lives that would have astonished many pioneers. In the past 50 years computers have contributed to numerous advances in almost every field, yet developments still show no sign of slowing.

Computer Science now forms the nucleus of a new mathematical science of information processing and communication. Future changes in computing technology will depend on advances in this science. You will learn about all kinds of computational systems, their theory, design, development and application. This includes programming languages, software engineering, artificial intelligence, operating systems, databases, nature-inspired computation, concurrent computing, robotics and the theory of computation. The degree incorporates concepts from fields as diverse as mathematics, engineering, linguistics and psychology.

Meet the robots:

Modules

Year 1

The following must be taken:

  • Programming in Java - 20 credits
  • Mathematical Foundations of Computer Science - 20 credits
  • Artificial Intelligence - 20 credits
  • Logic and Computation - 20 credits
  • Data Structures and Algorithms - 20 credits
  • Business Organisation and Management - 10 credits
  • Introduction to Financial Analysis - 10 credits

Year 2

The following must be taken:

  • Software Engineering - 20 credits
  • Systems Programming in C/C++ - 20 credits
  • Advanced Functional Programming - 20 credits
  • Mathematical Modelling and Decision Making - 20 credits
  • Security and Networks - 20 credits
  • Team Project - 20 credits

Year 3

The following must be taken:

  • Placement Year - 120 credits

Year 4

The following must be taken:

  • Computer Science Project - 40 credits

You are able to choose from a range of optional 20 credit modules, depending on your area of interest. Please note there will be a compulsory Business School module in the final year - details to be confirmed.

  • Teaching Computer Science in Schools - 20 credits
  • Computer Graphics - 20 credits
  • Security of Real-World Systems - 20 credits
  • Theoretical Foundations for Security - 20 credits
  • Human-Computer Interaction - 20 credits
  • Complex Adaptive Systems - 20 credits
  • Programming Language Principles, Design and Implementation - 20 credits
  • Advanced Networking - 20 credits
  • Machine Learning and Intelligent Data Analysis - 20 credits
  • Intelligent Robotics - 20 credits
  • Computer-Aided Verification - 20 credits
  • Computer Vision and Imaging - 20 credits
  • Language and Cognition - 20 credits
  • Individual Study - 20 credits

Please note: The modules listed on the website for this programme are regularly reviewed to ensure they are up-to-date and informed by the latest research and teaching methods. Unless indicated otherwise, the modules listed for this programme are for students starting in 2018. On rare occasions, we may need to make unexpected changes to compulsory modules; in this event we will contact offer holders as soon as possible to inform or consult them as appropriate.

Fees and funding

Applicants admitted to this programme will be simultaneously employed as apprentices by PwC. No fees are payable.

Applicants not selected for an apprenticeship position but who meet the academic requirements for our standard BSc Computer Science programme (G400) will be offered a place for G400. Standard fees will be payable.

Entry requirements

Number of A levels required:
3
Typical offer:
2018 entry: AAA with A Level Mathematics grade A
Required subjects and grades:
Grade A in A Level Mathematics. If you are taking any reformed science A levels, which include Biology, Chemistry and Physics taught from 2015, you must pass the practical element.

General Studies or Critical Thinking are not accepted.

Additional information:

Supplementary Application Form and Assessment Centre: 

You will also be required to complete a supplementary application form which will be sent to those applicants who meet our academic requirements. Suitable applicants will also be invited to an assessment day, which gives you the opportunity to find out more about the programme and the placements with PwC. You will also get the chance to tour our campus, meet our students, academic staff and colleagues from PwC.

The assessment days will be jointly delivered by PwC and Birmingham and take place between October – March at the University of Birmingham. Applicants must successfully pass the day before an offer can be made. You will receive the offer via UCAS.

International Baccalaureate Diploma: 

6, 6, 6 required at Higher Level (including 6 in Mathematics), with a minimum of 32 points overall. We also require 5 in Standard Level English. 

BTEC 

2018 entry:

 BTEC Extended Diploma/Diploma qualifications will only be considered if accompanied by A Level Mathematics
Grades: D*D* plus A Level Maths at grade A
 BTEC Subsidiary Diploma will be considered in combination with Grades AA in two A levels including Mathematics.
Grades: D* plus Grade A in A Level Mathematics and Grade in another acceptable A Level

 Typical offer grades are for guidance only, other qualifications are considered – learn more about entry requirements.

International students:

This programme is only available to EEA nationals due to funding regulations. Non-EEA nationals may apply for any of our other Computer Science programmes.

Depending on your chosen course of study, you may also be interested in one of our foundation pathways, which offer specially structured programmes for international students whose qualifications are not accepted for direct entry to UK universities. Further details can be found on Birmingham International Academy web pages.

How to apply

Apply through UCAS at www.ucas.com.
Learn more about applying.

 

You will also be required to complete a supplementary application form which will be sent to those applicants who meet our academic requirements. Suitable applicants will also be invited to an assessment day, which gives you the opportunity to find out more about the programme and the placements with PwC. You will also get the chance to tour our campus, meet our students, academic staff and colleagues from PwC.

The assessment days will be jointly delivered by PwC and Birmingham and take place between October – March at the University of Birmingham. You will receive the offer via UCAS.

You will be taught by a mixture of professors, doctors and postgraduates, thereby receiving a rich diversity of academic knowledge and experience.You can find out more about the members of staff in the School of Computer Science here where you can read about their qualifications, publication history and specific areas of interest.

 

What you can expect
Depending on the programme, the modules you select, and the number of optional help sessions you choose to take part in, each week you will have between:

Year 1: 15 and 25 hours of lectures, labs and tutorials, with lecturers available to provide additional help outside those hours. During your first year it is important that you have a smooth transition into University. You will be able to talk to your tutors about this and discuss if there are particular areas where you need support.
Year 2: 13 and 22 hours of lectures, labs and tutorials, with lecturers available to provide additional help outside thos hours.
Year 3: 9 and 20 hours of lectures, labs and tutorials, with lecturers available to provide additional help outside those hours.
Year 4 - MEng programmes only: 7 and 18 hours of lectures, labs and tutorials, with lecturers available to provide additional help outside those hours.

Please note the above data is based on the most common module selections for the each year group and does not include hours for self-study. This data does not include modules taken during a Study Abroad.

How will I be taught?
As a Birmingham student, you are joining the academic elite and have the privilege of learning from world-leading experts in the field of computer science. Throughout your studies, you'll be encouraged to become an independent and self-motivated learner, thriving on challenge and opportunities to think for yourself.

Personal tutor
At the start of your degree, you'll be assigned a Personal Tutor who will remain with you throughout your studies to help you in three important areas: supporting your academic progress, developing transferable skills and dealing with any welfare issues.

Learning settings:

Laboratory-based work is an integral part of our Computer Science degree programme, vital to develop your experimental practical skills and to reinforce concepts introduced in lectures or to explore a particular phenomenon. First-year practical sessions typically last for four hours and increase in length in subsequent years so that you can study more advanced concepts and work more independently.

Lectures take place in our theatres which, as well as the traditional whiteboard and pen, are equipped with the latest technology, including facilities to show movies, animations and molecular graphics, to record lectures and to interact with 'ask the audience' style electronic voting systems.

Small-group tutorials/personal tutorials run alongside the lecture course, addressing any individual problems you may have and allowing you to consolidate lecture material, as well as test your understanding through problem-solving exercises.

Enquiry Based Learning (EBL) is a group activity which requires you to work in a team, with a variety of assessment methods; in either a group or individually, by written reports and sometimes as a presentation. Based on techniques used in research-led organisations like the University of Birmingham, EBL gives you a research-orientated approach to a problem and helps you to gain essential skills that are highly valued by employers.

PwC will offer you a graduate job at the end of the degree programme providing you meet their performance criteria.

The Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survy 2015/16 shows that 94% of our graduates are in graduate-level employment or further study six months after graduation.

Preparing for your career is one of the first things you need to think about when you start university. Our Computer Science graduates can choose from a huge variety of career opportunities, including working with one of the global technology giants, or in other areas of industry and technology. But you'll also be highly sought after by employers in the fields of finance, business, government, teaching and research.

At the University of Birmingham, we also enhance your employability with superb opportunities to gain industry experience, assisting you to secure mentoring opportunities, global internships and placements, from summer jobs to spending a whole year in industry between your second and final study years. This placement year is a chance to earn money and gain real-life experience, allowing you to get involved in serious projects and put into practice the skills and knowledge gained from your degree. It's a great chance to prove your worth and placements often lead to sponsorship and/or the offer of a graduate job.

Whether you have a clear idea of where your future aspirations lie or want to consider the broad range of opportunities available once you have a Birmingham degree, our Careers Network can help you achieve your goal.

Our unique careers guidance service is tailored to your academic subject area, offering a specialised team (in each of the five academic colleges) who can give you expert advice. Once you have a career in your sights, one-to-one support with CVs and job applications will help give you the edge. In addition, our employer-endorsed award-winning Personal Skills Award (PSA) recognises your extra-curricular activities, and provides an accredited employability programme designed to improve your career prospects.

Your Birmingham degree is evidence of your ability to succeed in a demanding academic environment. Employers target Birmingham students for their drive, diversity, communication and problem-solving skills, their team-working abilities and cultural awareness, and our graduate employment statistics have continued to climb at a rate well above national trends. If you make the most of the wide range of services you will be able to develop your career from the moment you arrive.

Career destinations of previous graduates include:

  •  Accenture
  • Goldman Sachs
  • Honda
  • HP
  • IBM
  • Logics
  • QinetiQ
  • Rolls Royce
  • UBS

University Careers Network

Preparation for your career should be one of the first things you think about as you start university. Whether you have a clear idea of where your future aspirations lie or want to consider the broad range of opportunities available once you have a Birmingham degree, our Careers Network can help you achieve your goal.

If you make the most of the wide range of services you will be able to develop your career from the moment you arrive.

Visit the careers section of the University website for further information.

Birmingham has transformed into one of Europe's most exciting cities. It is more than somewhere to study; it is somewhere to build a successful future.

Clubs and societies

The Guild has over 200 Societies, community volunteering groups and associations for you to join; they cover every topic and activity that you can think of - there really is something for everyone.

The Computer Science Society aims to provide a wide range of social and careers activities to enable you to take time out from studying and relax in a friendly atmosphere. You may also be interested in the Autonomous Robotic Club and the Robotics Club.

Accommodation

Coming to Birmingham might be your first time living away from home. Our student accommodation will allow you to enjoy your new-found independence in safe, welcoming and sociable surroundings.

The City of Birmingham

One of Europe's most exciting destinations, Birmingham is brimming with life and culture, making it a wonderful place to live, study and work.

Our students fall in love with the city - around 40% of our graduates choose to make Birmingham their home.