The MSc in Software Engineering offers in-depth knowledge on advanced topics in Software Engineering and Computing Science to existing graduates in Computing or a closely-related discipline. This course has been designed to equip students with the necessary skills to find employment as a software developer or system architect in the IT/Computing industry.
Computing Science at Stirling has strong links with industry. Students can get a first hand industrial experience through placements and internships with local enterprises and organisations. More specifically, we offer company-based MSc projects to our students where our students can work with an employer to gain valuable commercial experience. We usually place more than 50% of our students with a company for the MSc project duration. We also regularly invite industry experts to share their expertise with students through seminars and talks.
The course is designed to complement and extend a student’s previous education and experience. As such the course offers a high degree of flexibility.
You will also get prepared for finding and securing a great job after completing this course through an integrated structured personal and professional development programme. This course covers crucial topics such as self-image, body language, interview techniques, assessment centre strategies, conflict resolution as well as CV preparation and job targeting techniques.
This course has been designed to provide up-to-date and in-depth expertise in specialist areas of computing, such as:
- Industry strength Software Engineering approaches
- Mobile Phone Applications
- Enterprise Database Systems including NoSQL systems
- Concurrent and Distributed systems programming including Condor
This course will equip you with the necessary knowledge and expertise to embark on a successful career in the IT and software development industry. Our company sponsored MSc projects will provide an ideal pathway into the industry.
What makes us different?
Entry requirementsAcademic requirements A minimum of a second class honours degree or equivalent in Computing Science/Information Technology. Applicants without these formal qualifications but with significant appropriate/relevant work/life experience are encouraged to apply. INTO University of Stirling offers a Graduate Diploma for those students who do not meet the required criteria for this course. If you successfully complete the Graduate Diploma in Science, Computing and Engineering and meet the required progression grades, you will be guaranteed entry onto year one of this Master's degree.
English language requirementsIf English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:
- IELTS: 6.0 with 5.5 minimum in each skill
- Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): Grade C
- Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): Grade C
- Pearson Test of English (Academic): 54 with 51 in each component
- IBT TOEFL: 80 with no subtest less than 17
Scholarships & fundingPostgraduate Tuition Fee Loan This course is currently approved for PTFL (Postgraduate Tuition Fee Loan) funding from SAAS. Scotland’s Saltire Scholarships Scotland’s Saltire Scholarships (SSS) is a substantial programme of scholarships, offered on a matched funding basis between the Government and Scottish Higher Education Institutions. The scheme offers up to 200 awards, each worth £2000. These are towards the tuition fees, for any one year of study, on an Undergraduate, Masters or PhD course at any of Scotland’s higher education institutions.
Structure and contentThis course comprises two 15-week semesters of taught modules, a winter programming assignment over three weeks in December/January, and the MSc dissertation project over three months at the end. Practical work is a key component in this course. It builds from self-contained tasks in the first semester, over the larger winter programming assignment, to a group project in Semester 2. Finally, the dissertation project (possibly with a company) is the largest piece of work leading to your MSc dissertation. We usually place more than 50% of our students with a company for the MSc project duration. Autumn semester modules:
- Concurrent and Distributed Systems: Discusses how concurrent and distributed systems may be constructed and parallelism in applications is handled.
- Representing and Manipulating Data: This module focusses on technologies such as Python for data manipulation and JSON together with XML and HTML for data representation.
- Relational and non-Relational Databases: This module investigates the difference between SQL and non-relational (NoSQL) databases. It uses technologies such as MongoDB, Cassandra, and Neo4j. You will also learn about using MapReduce on databases.
- Object-oriented Software Design: Focuses on how to analyse and model requirements and develop object-oriented software, through the use of UML and CASE tools
- Mobile Applications and Services: Covers the underlying principles of applications for mobile phones as well as web service provision. This is a very practical module which includes extended project work towards developing a realistic mobile application.
- Cluster Computing: In this module you will learn about the need for distributed data processing and distributed computing across clusters of computers. You will learn about the Hadoop ecosystem, including Pig and Hive, as well as distributing processes using Condor.
Delivery and assessmentStudents will learn about advanced topics in software engineering through lectures, tutorials and practical sessions. Lectures involve the whole class, while tutorials and practicals are for small groups. Practical work is a key component in our degrees, and provides the opportunity for hands-on experience. It builds from self contained tasks in the first semester, over a larger programming assignment in the winter break to a group project in Semester 2. Finally, the dissertation project is your largest single piece of work leading to your MSc dissertation. After two semesters of classes you will embark on a three-month project working on your dissertation topic. At the end of the project you will write up your findings as your MSc dissertation. For the MSc projects, we will make a number of industrial placements (usually unpaid) available through the Making the Most of Masters scheme (www.mastersprojects.ac.uk). These will be offered to the best students in the class. Other project suggestions both from external bodies and from within the University are also offered. Furthermore, students' own ideas for projects are encouraged and welcomed.
StrengthsHands on experience & industrial placements Practical work is a key component in our degrees, and provides the opportunity for hands-on experience. It builds from self-contained tasks in Semester 1, over a larger programming assignment in the winter break to a group project in Semester 2. Finally, the dissertation project is your largest single piece of work leading to your MSc dissertation. After two semesters of classes you will embark on a three month project working on your dissertation topic. At the end of the project you will write up your findings as your MSc dissertation. For the MSc projects, we will make a number of industrial placements available. We usually place more than 50% of our students with a company for the MSc project duration. Stirling is also partner in the Making the Most of Masters initiative, which organises company lead MSc projects. Other project suggestions both from external bodies and from within the university are also offered. Furthermore, students' own ideas for projects are encouraged and welcomed. Computing Science at the University of Stirling supports the Scottish e-Placement project which provides short and long term (1-year) placements with Scottish high-tech companies. These placements typically are paid and thus a good way of gaining commercial experience and helping with your living expenses. At Stirling, computing students are prepared for the employer based MSc projects and the workplace more generally through an integrated structured personal and professional development programme called ‘Lift-Off’. This programme covers crucial topics such as self-image, body language, interview techniques, assessment centre strategies, conflict resolution as well as CV preparation and job targeting techniques. You may graduate with the Postgraduate Diploma after two semesters, or you may continue with a three-month project and dissertation to qualify for the award of the MSc degree.
Career opportunitiesThe MSc in Software Engineering will greatly enhance the employment prospects of students. As a graduate of Software Engineering, you will be in demand in a range of sectors including health, IT software organisations, service enterprises, engineering and construction firms as well as in the retail sector. Stirling computing graduates have a good track record in finding well-paid jobs. Previous students have been very successful in obtaining suitable employment in a considerable diversity of posts – with small companies, with major international organisations including Accenture, IBM, HP, Yammer, Google, Microsoft, Reuters and major financial institutions such as HBOS, as well as with Local Authority and Government bodies. A number of graduates of the MSc Software Engineering have continued their studies towards a PhD. Common job profiles of our graduates are:
- As a Systems Analyst, you will work on solving computer problems. This might involve adapting existing systems or using new technologies designing a new software solution In doing so, you will design software, write code, and test and fix software applications. You might also be involved in providing documentation for users. Typically you would work as part of a larger team.
- IT Consultants closely work with clients (often at the clients premises) and advise them on how to use computer technology and applications to best meet their business needs. You will work with clients to improve their efficiency of using computer systems. This may involve the adaptation/customisation of software applications, or the development of custom applications for the specific needs of the customer. As well as technical duties, you may be involved in project management.
- Applications Developers translate software requirements into programming code, and will usually specialise in a specific area, such as computer games or web technology. Often developers work as part of a larger team. You may be in charge of developing a certain component or part of a larger application.
This school offers programs in:
Cost & Fees
- Overseas £14,600
- Home/EU £4,600
From 2016/7 onwards, the fees for all taught postgraduate courses are to be held at the level set upon entry.
Please note there is an additional charge for the conferral of your degree. This will be charged at the rate applicable when you complete your studies.
Last updated January 16, 2017