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BSc (Honours) Computing and IT

Computing and IT skills have become fundamental to the way we live, work, socialise and play. This degree course opens up the world of technology and an array of exciting careers in a wide range of sectors - from finance, government, health, education and the 'Third Sector', to business, gaming and commerce. You may want to become a confident user and manager of information technologies; to administer and manage network or database systems; or to develop new software solutions to meet specific market or organisational needs. The BSc (Honours) Computing and IT offers a variety of study pathways such as networking, professional practice or solutions development, and the opportunity to specialise in software development or digital technologies. If you're currently employed, there are valuable opportunities to incorporate work-related learning that builds on your existing role and equips you for new responsibilities.

Study Mode

Online Education, Distance Learning & External study modes available

Key facts

Code: Q62 Made up of: 360 credits

There are no formal entry requirements to study this degree.

Fees: Our fees depend on where you are ordinarily resident. We have a range of funding options to help you with payment. When you apply to study we will tell you the fee and funding options that are available to you. Before you apply you can read What you can expect to pay.

Career relevance and employability

This degree course is relevant if you already work, or would like to work, with computing and IT systems and are looking for a qualification that gives you a sound grasp of the principles of hardware-based, software-based, or systems-based technologies - along with an ability to apply your knowledge and skills in a broad range of industries and organisations. Depending on your choice of modules, you'll gain a good preparation for employment in software engineering, communications, networks or web technologies.

Designing, developing and deploying IT systems are not solitary activities: they require outstanding teamwork and 'people management' skills, along with knowledge of how businesses and organisations operate. The BSc (Honours) Computing and IT will give you the opportunity to gain experience of working in a team to tackle an appropriate development task. You'll also undertake a project to demonstrate your ability to undertake a substantial piece of work on a topic you've selected.

You'll gain a range of highly valued transferable skills in:

  • communication
  • time management
  • numeracy
  • analysing and solving problems.

Depending on which modules you choose, the degree may help you obtain professional recognition from BCS - The Chartered Institute for IT, a professional body established by royal charter. We will be seeking professional recognition for three pathways through this degree: software development, digital technologies and a path combining both of these.

There's more information about how OU study can improve your employability in the OU's Employability Statement from our Careers Advisory Service. You can also read or download our publication OU study and your career and look at our subject pages to find out about career opportunities.

Educational aims

Professionals working in the IT sector bring many different kinds of expertise to their work. The aim of this degree is to equip you with the knowledge and skills you will need to underpin a career in this sector. As well as developing your knowledge and understanding of the fundamental technologies and techniques and the issues involved in their application, it will also:

  • enable you to keep ahead in a rapidly changing subject area by helping you to develop as an independent learner
  • develop relevant skills in communication, numeracy, and collaborative working
  • imbue the qualities that come with being a graduate in any discipline: specialist knowledge, intellectual self-confidence and independence, analytical ability and the life-long learning skills needed to keep up with fast-changing technologies
  • enable you to apply your learning in your private, social and professional life.

And, depending on the pathway you choose through the degree, you may gain:

  • practical experience in the use of information and communication technologies
  • an understanding of the types of software and ICT systems that are now being constructed and used, such as distributed internet systems, intelligent systems and databases, and the digital network that underlies the internet itself
  • a grasp of the key concepts of computing and of modern computer systems
  • skills in the main tasks that are carried out as software is built and maintained, such as analysis, design, programming and evaluation.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

On completion of this degree you will have knowledge and understanding of:

  • a broad critical understanding of the fundamental principles, concepts and techniques underlying Computing and IT
  • a range of models and languages to support the analysis and design of Computing and IT systems
  • the range of situations in which Computing and IT systems are used, the ways in which people interact with them, and the possibilities and limitations of such systems
  • an awareness of major trends in computing and IT and of the implications of these trends
  • a critical awareness of the ethical, social and legal issues that can be associated with the development and deployment of Computing and IT systems.

Cognitive skills

On completion of the degree you will be able to:

  • apply and critically evaluate key computing and IT concepts in a range of contexts
  • select and apply appropriate techniques and tools for abstracting, modelling, problem-solving, designing and testing computing and IT systems, and be aware of the limitations involved
  • compare, contrast, critically analyse and refine specifications and implementations of software systems and/or simple hardware systems
  • devise and carry out a project in computing and IT that applies and extends your knowledge and understanding, and critically reflect on the processes involved and the outcomes of your work.

Practical and/or professional skills

On completion of the degree you will be able to:

  • analyse, design, evaluate and/or test computing and IT systems, using appropriate simulation and modelling tools where appropriate
  • plan and organise yourself and your work appropriately, including keeping systematic records of work in progress and outcomes
  • demonstrate the ability to undertake ongoing learning in order to keep up to date with computing and IT
  • identify and address the ethical, social and legal issues that may arise during the development and use of Computing and IT systems
  • use appropriate professional tools to support your work.

Key skills

On completion of the degree you will be able to:

  • communicate information, arguments, ideas and issues clearly and in appropriate ways;, bearing in mind the audience for and the purpose of your communication
  • work in a group, communicating effectively in a distance setting where the communication is computer-mediated
  • work independently, planning, monitoring, reflecting on and improving your own learning
  • find, assess and apply information from a variety of sources, using information technology where necessary
  • select and use accurately, appropriate numerical and analytical techniques to solve problems
  • recognise and understand a range of technological problems and select suitable techniques for solving them.

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