The MSci (Hons) in Computer Science is a five-year Integrated Masters course run by the School of Computer Science. The course is designed to ground you in both the theory and practice of computer science. You will learn to think and solve problems logically, understand the fundamental principles of how computing systems work, and be exposed to significant new technologies as well as teamwork.
In the first two years, you will learn the basic concepts behind computer science and several different programming languages.
Alongside Computer Science, in the first year of your studies you will be required to study at least one additional subject. In the second year, you can continue with this other subject or focus entirely on Computer Science. Find out more about how academic years are organised.
In third year, you will be introduced to Turing machines, non-determinism and pushdown automata, followed by study of decidability, simulation and the Halting problem.
The foundations of logic that are relevant to computer scientists will also be covered, with an emphasis on automatic reasoning and decidability, including propositional and predicate calculus, various proof techniques and Goedel’s incompleteness theorem.
You will apply software engineering concepts and practices to a substantial software engineering project as part of a team. This project runs through both semesters in third year and will prepare you for the workplace, where collaboration with others is essential.
In fourth year, you will choose options from Honours and Masters-level classes. In fifth year, you will spend one semester of your final year dedicated to undertaking a major software engineering or research project under the guidance of an individual supervisor. You will also be able to take a number of modules at Masters level, providing advanced training in computer science. Topics may include:
- language and computation
- software engineering practice
- critical systems engineering
- software architecture
- human computer interaction principles and methods
- interactive software and hardware
- data-intensive systems
- machine learning
- data ethics and privacy
- information visualisation.
The University of St Andrews operates on a flexible modular degree system by which degrees are obtained through the accumulation of credits. More information on the structure of the modules system can be found on the flexible degree structure webpage.
All Honours students have the opportunity to attend a reading party in their third year. The reading party takes place in a large country house in the Highlands where students will spend three days giving presentations, taking part in outdoor and indoor activities, and socialising with peers and staff.
Find out more about studying computer science at St Andrews.