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Computing (with Foundation Year)

About this course

Entry year:
Course code:
Tariff points:
Computer Science and Creative Technologies
Foundation Year: City of Bristol College and Years 1 to 3: Frenchay
Four years full-time
Full-time; sandwich
Key fact:
Placements for students come from a host of companies from all over the world. Past students have worked for companies ranging from dynamic start-ups to large corporations such as Intel, the MOD (Ministry of Defence) and CERN.

Page last updated 27 July 2017


Why BSc(Hons) Computing?

Information technology (IT) is now integral to our lives. It helps make scientific breakthroughs and whole sectors of our economy depend on it. Used effectively, IT can transform organisations. This requires professionals with a solid understanding of technology and the environment in which organisations operate. As a result, IT employment is forecast to grow at almost twice the UK average through to 2020. 

Why study this course?

On this course you will learn the fundamentals of computing, how to apply these to practical problems, and how to develop computer software to solve these. You will learn hands-on techniques for programming, system design and system administration. You will learn about computer and network systems, web programming, software engineering and programming using C, C++ and Java. You will develop an awareness of ethical and professional issues, and learn valuable entrepreneurial skills.

During the first year of this course you'll study in City of Bristol College's advanced IT and computing laboratories. You can access UWE Bristol's Frenchay campus and all the facilities and accommodation available to our students. From the second year of your course onwards you'll be based at UWE Bristol's Frenchay campus.

Real world experience

This course is rooted in industry. You will hear from visiting industry professionals and apply learning through hands-on projects solving real-world problems. Depending on where you want to specialise, work placements are available in a choice of organisations.

Where it can take you

On completion of the course, you will have a broad-based knowledge of IT and basic computing skills. This will give you a solid foundation to pursue a successful career in this rapidly growing field.

On graduation, you will be able to analyse and model computing applications in a range of areas. Careers include software engineers, web and software developers, embedded systems, systems designers and administrators and secondary school teaching. There are also careers in technical support for sophisticated computing systems and their advanced applications.

Watch: The learning and teaching experience

Accreditations and partnerships:



You will spend your initial year at City of Bristol College, where studies focus on Programming, Mathematics, Computer Architecture, Internet Systems and Professional and Communication skills. You will also do a programming project.

This course covers a broad spectrum of Computing discipline. It is structured to allow you to select a choice of options from your third year onwards.

Foundation year (Year zero)

  • Professional and Communication Skills
  • Maths for Computing
  • Computer Architecture
  • Information Systems Fundamentals
  • Internet Systems
  • Programming Project
  • Programme Design and Implementation.

You will study the Foundation year alongside students from our other Computer Sciences and Creative Technologies, and so you may be able to transfer to a course in one of these areas at the end of the Foundation year.

The normal expectation is that you must pass all Year zero modules before progressing to Year one.

Year one

The first year of the course concentrates on the foundation and basic skills that will be used at the subsequent levels. You will take the following compulsory modules:

  • Introduction to Databases
  • Web Programming
  • Programming in C
  • Principles of Computing.

Year two

You will take the following compulsory modules:

  • Data, Schema and Applications
  • Internet of Things
  • Operating Systems
  • C++ Development
  • Software Engineering.

You can take an optional placement year. A unique option module, Professional Experience, can be taken during the placement year which contributes to the credits of level three modules.

Final year

You will take the following compulsory modules:

  • Computing Project
  • Ethical and Professional Issues in Computing and Digital Media
  • Requirements Engineering
  • Advanced Databases.

In addition, you will study two of the following optional modules:

  • International Experience or Professional Development
  • Cryptography
  • Advanced Topics in Web-development
  • Mobile Device Development
  • Entrepreneurial Skills
  • Technical Writing and Editing.

The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved, we will inform you.

Learning and Teaching

Much of your learning will be through lectures, tutorials, laboratory work and projects. The module of Professional Skills is designed to enhance your approach to learning.

For more details see our full glossary of learning and teaching terms.


Your work is normally assessed through a mixture of assignments, group work, continuous assessment and examinations, depending on the nature of the subject.

For more details see our full glossary of assessment terms.


Professional accreditation

This course is accredited by the British Computer society (BCS) - the IT industry's professional body.


Students who do a work placement are more likely to graduate with a better degree and get higher quality work on graduation. So as well as helping hone your professional skills, industry knowledge and network, a placement will make you highly employable on graduation.

Our organisational partners often provide placements for students as well as a host of companies from all over the world. Past students have worked for companies ranging from dynamic start-ups to large corporations such as Intel, the MOD (Ministry of Defence) and CERN. Others have taken up teaching placements in secondary schools, or gone to work with their family businesses.


Throughout your course, we arrange optional field trips so you can be inspired and see computing applied in industry.

There's the chance to go on a guided tour of Bletchley Park where Turing and his colleagues helped break the German's Enigma code during World War Two. You can take up the opportunity to attend a guided tour of CERN in Geneva where the Higg's boson was detected using the Large Hadron Collider and other pioneering equipment.

Study facilities

During your initial year, you'll be studying on City of Bristol College, which has extensive computing and IT labs equipped with the latest industry standard software. During this year you'll also have access to all the facilities and accommodation available to UWE Bristol students.

From the next year of your course you'll be able to develop practical skills and bring games to life in our state-of-the-art facilities at UWE Bristol's Frenchay campus:

  • Collaborate and discuss ideas in our lab, which is designed to emulate a real-world software development environment.
  • Create and test software using C, Java and C++ on dedicated servers with Windows, Linux and Unix based operating systems.
  • Develop your web design skills at free Adobe workshops in our multimedia labs.
  • Access UWE's extensive online library and resources with free software, tools and industry journals.

Find out more about the facilities and resources UWE has to offer.

Learn from industry

We arrange regular visits from Industry professionals so you can learn about best practice, recruitment and key industry issues.

Showcase your work

Our students regularly showcase their inventions at UWE Bristol's annual plan + make degree show. Past exhibits include a proprietary network, enabling music streaming and a computer hardware simulator for teaching secondary school students about computer architecture.


Careers / Further study

On graduation, you will be able to analyse and model computing applications in a range of areas. You will also have the technical skills to design, develop, and maintain software including Internet systems, databases, computer networks, and embedded systems.

Career opportunities include software engineers, web and software developers, embedded systems, systems designers and administrators, and secondary school education. There are also careers available in technical support for sophisticated computing systems and their advanced applications.

Award-winning Careers Service

Our award-winning careers service helps you develop your employment potential through career coaching, a vacancy service for internships, placements, jobs, global opportunities, volunteering and community activity plus support for entrepreneurial activity, and access to employer events.

Creating employable students

UWE Bristol places strong emphasis on employability and skills development at every level. Through work placements, volunteering, study abroad and initiatives nurturing talent and innovation, you will have opportunities to gain valuable real world experience, allowing you to graduate with diverse career opportunities and a competitive place in the job market.

Visit our Employability pages to find out about careers, employers, real world experience and what our students are doing six months after graduating.

Be inspired

UWE graduate Benson was snapped up by London-based cloud computing company, Tequila. Watch the film about his story.

Useful links

Prospects - careers in IT and information services


Supplementary fee information

The additional costs listed are those that students could reasonably expect to incur during their studies and are for items not covered by the standard tuition fee.

These could be materials, text books, travel, clothing, software or printing.

For information about funding for undergraduate courses see our funding pages.


Typical offers

  • Tariff points: 72
  • GCSE: For all applicants, Grade C or above, or Grade 4 under newly reformed GCSE grading, in English Language and Grade D or above, or Grade 4 under newly reformed GCSE grading, in Mathematics, or equivalent. Please note the University does not accept Level 2 Key Skills, Functional Skills or Certificates in Adult Numeracy and Literacy as suitable alternatives to GCSEs.
  • A-level subjects: No specific subjects required. Points from General Studies and AS-Level subjects (not taken onto full A-Level) can be included towards overall tariff. You must have a minimum of one A-Level.
  • EDEXCEL (BTEC) Diploma: No specific subjects required.
  • Access: Achievement of the Access to HE Diploma; no specific subjects required.
  • Baccalaureate IB: No specific subjects required.

Entry requirements

The 'Typical offers' information above is only for full-time students entering the foundation year.

We are happy to consider applicants with a mixture of A levels and BTEC qualifications.

We welcome applications from highly motivated students who do not meet the usual entrance requirements given above, but who have gained equivalent knowledge and skills from substantial relevant work or other experience.

Students who expect to achieve a higher tariff score may also be interested in our BSc(Hons)Computing course.

UWE Bristol's International College

International students who do not meet the academic or English language requirements to study this course can qualify by completing preparatory study at our International College.

Please read the general information about entry requirements.

How to apply

Please see the general information about applications.

For further information


UWE Main Campus

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