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Course starts: 16 September 2019Apply now
This course is designed to follow on from ICT courses in schools and Sixth Form colleges. Topics include UX design, advanced databases, web and mobile programming and software development. We encourage you to apply for a year-long placement between the second and final years, although it is not compulsory. It’s a great opportunity to get paid to put your learning into practice and to extend your experience.
Teaching methods include lectures, tutorials, seminars and laboratory sessions. We also use the University’s virtual learning environment for group activities, discussions, assignments and links to resources. We encourage you to develop independent study skills as well as to work with other students on the course.
As well as assessments that count towards your degree, there are also on-going assessments for feedback and consolidating your learning. Assessment methods include coursework and exams.
The Computing Integrated Foundation Year includes five modules:
Some modules have prerequisites. Read more about what this means in our Help and Advice article.
Software Development and Theory: Software Engineering, Human-Computer Interaction, Formal Methods
Programming: Microsoft C# .NET and programming for Robots
Database Systems: Database Design, Relational Databases and SQL, Database Integrity and Security, PHP and MySQL
Computer Systems and Networking: Operating Systems, Networks and Computer Architectures
Specialist Mini Project: Showcase your talents through a project in your chosen area of computing. Past projects have included a Facebook app, a hack challenge and the creation of a retro arcade game.
Gain an insight into the various factors, strategies and approaches modern businesses use with digital technologies to support their business.
Some modules have prerequisites. Read more about what this means in our Help and Advice article.
Learn key skills such as self-determination, planning and actioning of goals, time management, independent learning and team working.
Work in a team to undertake a large scale development for a real client or realise an enterprising idea that the group has personally conceived and developed. Learn the principles of software engineering and development in the context of real world and real client needs and demands. Focus on ethics, professionalism and security related issues within the software development and technology management industries.
This module will move beyond the basic object oriented concepts associated with simple classes and objects to cover a series of more sophisticated object-oriented ideas, including ‘inheritance’ and ‘polymorphism’.
Design, develop and manage database systems within organisations. Focus on understanding common relational database theory, analysis, design, development and management processes. Learn to develop databases using SQL within the Oracle environment, before going on to develop extended database functionality including stored procedures, stored functions, cursors and triggers. Gain knowledge of ways in which SQL can be embedded within typical programming languages and systems for developing large scale database applications.
Gain the specialised skills necessary to develop applications for IoT devices within real-world contexts, including the use of robotics and sensors. Focus on programming, network connectivity, configuration and deployment of IoT devices in simulated and practical environments. Use industry-standard tools to acquire, interpret and visualize data retrieved from them. Consider science, HCI and security techniques.
Investigate techniques that organisations use for performing simple data analytics for a range of business applications. Gain an understanding of how analytics can enhance business processes and improve decision making, in areas such as marketing, customer relationships, sales and forecasting.
Undertake advanced study, including a literature review, in order to research and develop to completion a substantial piece of work that demonstrates the range of skills you have acquired. You will also submit a dissertation that describes and evaluates the problem and solution. Past examples include an Android audio application, a Trojan detector and a network monitoring tool.
Learn how traditional and newer data models and database technologies support real-world demands of data. Investigate various data architectures and how they can represent structured and unstructured data in traditional and Big Data systems; methods for designing, developing and maintaining these data systems; and tools for data access and analysis including Data Analytics tools and how they are used in areas such as Data Science.
Understand the principles of Data Science to determine the benefits of utilising Big Data sets in organisational settings. Develop techniques and use tools for Business Intelligence in a variety of contexts, developing management strategies for their use within an organisation. All topics in this module are considered taking into account professional, ethical, social and legal constructs.
Study principles and practices that ensure users gain the most appropriate experience when interacting with computer-based software and hardware systems.
Gain the knowledge and skills that will enable you to explore and exploit business opportunities for software enterprises.
Undertake a work-based placement to support computing in a school or equivalent learning environment.
The Integrated Foundation Year is specially designed to support you where you have just missed the grades required for direct entry onto a three-year degree, or if you have relevant work experience and are now looking to broaden your subject knowledge but want more time to develop study skills before starting your degree.
Entry requirements are provided for guidance only and we may offer you an entrance interview which will help us determine your eligibility for your chosen degree. This enables us to consider making you an offer if you are perhaps a mature student who has been out of education for a period of time, or you have gained significant knowledge and skills through employment rather than traditional education.
Eligible entry qualifications:
1. Normally a minimum of three Level 2 qualifications (NVQ, GCSE or equivalent ), including Maths and English at grade C or above** and a minimum of 40 UCAS tariff points from Level 3 qualifications (e.g. A or AS Levels, BTEC certificates/diplomas, access courses or equivalent)
2. Demonstrable evidence of appropriate knowledge and skills acquired from at least three years of post-school work experience.
Find out how many points your qualifications are worth using the UCAS Tariff calculator.
If you are unsure of whether you think you might be suitable for the course, please contact us!
** If you have studied for a GCSE which has a numerical grade then you will need to achieve a grade 4 or above. Equivalent alternative qualifications are also accepted, such as Level 2 Key Skills in Communication and Application of Number. If you have not achieved a grade C in Maths and English we may be able to work with you to ensure that you are able to gain these in the first year of the course, depending on your experience.
If English is not your first language, please see our English language requirements.
For more information about Integrated Foundation Year programmes, including more detailed module information, please see our Help and Advice articles.
If you join us in September 2019, the foundation year will be £4,500.
For the following three years, the annual fee will be £9,250 but you will receive £1,250 cash-back in the first and final year of the full-undergraduate course.
In addition, you may receive free travel across the Tyne and Wear region and a University of Sunderland StudyPLUS Card loaded with additional offers up to the value of £200, plus a bundle of study skills books worth £80.
If you are a full-time UK student you may be eligible to receive financial support to cover your fee and maintenance loan for the full four years.
Please note, this course is not available to international students.
If you are not sure whether you qualify as a UK, EU or international student, find out more in our Help and Advice article.
Take a look at the Your Finances section to find out about the scholarships and bursaries that may be available to you.
This information was correct at the time of publication.
This course has a strong emphasis on real-world learning that boosts employability and equips you to make a bigger contribution in the workplace.
Sunderland has a good reputation with employers, 93.4% of our graduates are in employment, further study or training within six months of graduating, according to DLHE 2016/17 (based on full-time, first degree, home leavers).
In your final year of the course, you will undertake a major individual project with research-active staff. This adds to your hands-on experience and, in some cases, leads to a job offer that can be taken up as soon as the course ends.
Our graduates have gone on to become web programmers, IT managers, information analysts and software developers. Employers that have taken on our graduates include Sage, British Airways and the NHS. Other graduates have started their own businesses or become software contractors earning over £50,000 a year.
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