Computer Forensics and Cybersecurity
We introduce the key principles and concepts underpinning the discipline. This includes a blend of both theoretical and practical skills aimed to be applicable to both criminal and civil investigations. By developing a problem-solving approach based on first principles and the scientific principles of hypothesis testing, you will be equipped with the skills to operate as an effective forensic practitioner following industry best practice across multiple jurisdictions.
Computer systems examines the underlying fundamentals of computer system’s operations, including the number systems they use, how computer processors operate at a simple level and the relationship between different hardware components.
The Computing Professional
This module introduces students to the variety of roles there are in computing and some of the key skills required to work in those areas. You will also start to think about the ethical issues in the field of computing and start to develop their own ideas of appropriate responses to these. You will also start to look at some of the non-technical skills that are involved in computing: team work, presentation and research.
Introduction to Programming
This is the first module of programming in the degree and teaches students who may have no prior programming experience some of the fundamental concepts in the area. You will work with two different programming languages – for example to develop Android apps using MIT App Inventor and traditional applications in the C# programming language.
Principles of Software Development
We look at the basic ideas of software engineering – the processes that should be followed to go through to develop software solutions. You will also study the basic concepts of standard algorithms and data storage and the mathematics required to support this area.
Transfer and Trace Materials
This module develops your understanding of the wide range of physical evidence and intelligence which can be recovered to show that a particular person is connected to a digital device, computer or workstation by means other than assumed ownership or through analysis of data within it. You will learn the underlying theories, such as Locard’s Exchange Principle and the notion of uniqueness and individualisation.
This module introduces you to the concepts, practices and issues of ensuring computer systems are kept secure. You will be introduced to the common approaches to attacking systems and some mechanisms that help protect them.
Computer Law and Ethics
The Computer Law and Ethics module looks at the laws that apply especially to computer systems and their users. A largely UK centred approach is taken looking at such laws as the Data Protection Act and the Computer Misuse Act how these have been applied in practice and how they might apply in the future.
The computer networks module introduces you to the theories and practical deployment of computer networks to enable more than one computer to communicate to share both data and processing. Students will be introduced to the OSI and TCP/IP models of network operation.
Data Recovery and Analysis
This module looks at the principles of computer architecture, operating systems and networking, and how this information relates to the recovery and analysis of data. You will use commercial, open source and free tools to develop techniques used in data recovery. You are also equipped with the necessary skills to identify, examine and present digital evidence for use in legal proceedings.
Developing Database Systems with SQL
This module looks at the concepts and theories behind the use the relational database model and how this is practically implemented in the Oracle Relational Database Management System using the SQL language. Oracle is the world’s most popular database management system by market share.
Research methods looks at how we can research new areas in computing. You will be given a range of tools to glean data, such as interviews, questionnaires and experimentation. You will also be given the analysis tools to make sense of the data collected, such qualitative and quantitative statistics. By the end of the module you will have produced a fully articulated research proposal.
This module is the culmination of your learning experiences on the entire course. You will, under the guidance of a supervisor, undertake a piece of focussed research. This will build on work completed elsewhere on the course by an in-depth study of one aspect of such work or by the exploration of a new area.
Digital Forensics and Ethical Hacking
This module provides you with the opportunity to develop knowledge and skills in digital forensics and in ethical hacking. From a digital forensics perspective, it provides you with the knowledge to professionally, systematically and impartially approach the identification, preservation, recovery and analysis of all relevant evidence from digital devices using appropriate tools and techniques. From a computer security perspective, you will have the opportunity to develop theory and practice in ethical hacking through the examination of the principles, theories and technical skills required in ethical hacking and the design of countermeasures.
Ethical and Professional Computing
This module deepens the understanding of how ethics and professional codes of conduct may affect what a computing professional will do and how they approach it. You will look at a number of issues and use an evidence-based approach to consider the alternative choices that would be open to a person working in the computing field.
Recent Advances in Computer Networks
The computer networks module introduces you to the theories and practical deployment of computer networks to enable more than one computer to communicate to share both data and processing. You will be introduced to the OSI and TCP/IP models of network operation.
Likely optional modules
Advanced Database Development with Oracle
This module deepens your knowledge of database development, following on from Developing Database Systems with SQL, giving you a greater understanding in order to maximize the benefits of using a Database Management System.
Cryptology is the study of codes and ciphers. These are highly important in the computer environment to protect information from malicious attack or unintended release. You will study the operation of modern computer-based ciphers and other cryptographic mechanisms, which when combined can form protective protocols for a number of computer and everyday problems.
Forensic Intelligence Modelling
This module provides you with an understanding of the potential of intelligence systems within the forensic investigation process, and the application of modelling techniques for crime scene reconstruction. The intelligence systems are not just employed by investigators in a ‘reactive’ manner, for example, in the use of DNA databases but increasingly more proactively. Modelling is used to derive testable hypotheses for events before, during and after a crime and is often based upon principles from the physical sciences.
This module looks at the operation and underlying operations of the operating system in the use of modern, large-scale computer systems. You will gain an understanding of how resources are managed by the operating system by looking at these in theory and the actual operation of an operating system, such as Windows and Linux.
Placement in Industry or Commerce (Subject to Approval)
The placement module is a flexible module that allows you to gain experience and put your knowledge into practice outside the university classroom setting. This can be done over the summer before their third year of study as a block of work, during your third year on a given number of hours each week, or some combination in agreement with the organisation and University.
You will be required to: pass all your second year modules of study at first attempt; have a good overall average and must gain your placement place to be eligible to take this module. You will be given assistance in identifying and applying for placements.