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Computer science courses

Would you like to play a part in the exciting and rapid changes in communication systems that impact on our daily lives? Do cutting-edge technologies such as 3D graphics, virtual reality and artificial intelligence appeal? You’ll learn how computer programmes work, how users interact with them and design new systems using programming languages. Computer science graduates are in demand and you could work for a global technology company or areas such as finance, media or business.

Studying computer science at university

Example course modules

  • Organisational behaviour in practice
  • Principles of programming
  • Data management
  • Mathematics for computer science
  • Languages and computability
  • Fundamentals of design
  • PC technology
  • Image processing
  • Software systems development
  • Human computer interaction

Teaching hours / week

Average for this subject


Average for all subjects

The time you'll spend in lectures and seminars each week will vary from university to university, so use this as a guide.

More on studying and contact hours at uni

Who studies this subject

  • Female : 17%
    Male : 83%
  • Mature : 21%
    School leaver : 79%
  • Full-time : 90%
    Part-time : 10%

What students say about computer science

What you need to get on a course

Subjects you need

A-levels (or equivalent) usually required

  • Maths

Useful to have

  • Computing
  • Further maths
  • Physics
  • Philosophy
  • ICT

Application checklist

Here's a guide to what to expect from the application process - also check individual university entry requirements, as these may differ.

  • January application
  • October application
  • Personal statement
  • Portfolio
  • Interview
  • Entry test
  • Work experience
  • Audition

Personal statement advice

Your personal statement is a core part of your university application, and getting it just right takes time. Before you start work on yours, take a look at our five quick tips on writing a personal statement. We'll help you past that writer's block!

Career prospects

Sources: HECSU & KIS
There are a lot of computing courses out there, and they vary a lot in content, modules and the way they work with employers, so individual courses can have very different outcomes. This is a subject where you really need to get a good grade – unemployment rates for graduates with good grades can be half those of graduates with slightly poorer degree classes. Most students do get jobs, though, and starting salaries are good, particularly in London. If you want to find out more about the prospects for a computer science course at a particular institution, it's a good idea to go on open days and talk to tutors about what previous graduates went on to do.
Professional and accrediting bodies:

Six months after graduating

Typical graduate job areas
  • Information technology and telecommunications professionals

Longer term career paths

Jobs where this degree is useful

  • Software developer
  • Web designer
  • IT support technican

Other real-life job examples

  • Management consultant
  • IT manager
  • Graphic designer

What employers like about this subject

Some of the most popular degrees in the country are focused on computer science so there are a lot of options on offer depending on what you want to study. Subject-specific skills you can learn include different programming languages; construction and maintenance of computer hardware and computer modelling and analysis. In a highly digitised world, there are few employers who don't value computing specialists. Last year, some of the industries that employed the most computer scientists - apart from the many branches of the IT industry itself – included electronics, oil and gas, and printing and publishing.