This two-year master’s programme Computer Science offers stimulating, significant and innovative research at an internationally renowned institute and combines theoretical, experimental and applied approaches.
The two-year master’s programme in Computer Science offers six specialisations which combine excellent theoretical teaching with possibilities for applied work with industrial relevance. This is achieved by intensive collaboration with companies at the Leiden Centre of Data Science. Course themes include topics such as Evolutionary Algorithms, Neural Networks, Databases and Data Mining, Swarm-Based Computation, Bayesian Networks, Multimedia Systems, Embedded Systems and Software, Advanced Compilers and Architectures, Bio-Modeling and Petri Nets.
Read more about our Computer Science programme.
Find more reasons to choose Computer Science at Leiden University.
The programme is open for students with an internationally recognized bachelor’s degree in computer science or equivalent. You will be trained as an independent researcher, equipped with the necessary skills to advance your career as a computer scientist.
Read more about the entry requirements for Computer Science.
What is great about this computing master’s course is the flexibility it offers you – the direction you take is entirely up to you. You can design your programme from a huge range of subjects. Choose those that are most relevant to you and build a bespoke course that enhances your career opportunities and progression.
This course prepares you for a wide range of careers in the computing industry. Whether you are a graduate looking at the first step on the career ladder or a current employee looking to turn your industry experience into qualifications, this course is flexible enough to meet your needs. It is ideal if you already work in the field of computing and want to develop new skills, and equally relevant if you are a recent graduate wanting to develop the technical knowledge and understanding to progress to your chosen career.
There are three routes you can choose from to gain an MSc Computing:
This course both develops your knowledge to the forefront of computing and your intellectual ability for abstract analysis and synthesis at the level for postgraduate research. It produces graduates who can make reasoned, critical decisions for selecting or implementing appropriate computer-based solutions. It also produces graduates with sufficient technical and inter-personal skills to make an immediate contribution to major projects at the leading edge of computer applications. We encourage enterprise and progression towards further research including MPhil and/or PhD. You acquire a range of practical, professional and transferable skills.
and five optional modules
Modules offered may vary.
How you learn
Lectures are used to introduce and develop material, with research issues and recent developments included as appropriate. Subjects are explored in depth via tutor-led seminars, practical workshops, individual or group research and contribution to discussion forums.
Lectures, discussion seminars and online discussions are used to develop intellectual skills. Directed self study and research are used in many modules to develop your critical evaluation skills.
Lectures, including presentations from guest external practitioners, are used to deliver relevant subject-specific content. Practical work includes case studies from real scenarios and the development of significant computer applications.
Development of transferable skills, self-managed learning and professional development are core themes throughout the programme. Methods include group-based activities and discussions, self-directed learning and research, and tutor-led workshops.
How you are assessed
Most learning outcomes are assessed by individual coursework, including case studies, essays and the development of computer applications, with critical evaluation of processes or products, and evidence of research into a specified area. Some learning outcomes are assessed by group work. The School of Computing is very experienced in assessing group work with a research profile in that area. The assessment starts with a group, with a clear emphasis on process as well as product, but proceeds to individual assessment of each student by a variety of means.
Other assessments include individual portfolios of technical work and presentations to tutors of research findings. Assessment of a significant computer application, plus group work, is used as the vehicle for assessing planning and self-management. Other assessments of transferable skills include oral presentations and the development of portfolios of work to a professional standard.
From the beginning of your programme, we prepare you for a career in industry. In addition to your taught classes, we create opportunities for you to meet and network with our industry partners through events such as our ExpoSeries, which showcases student work to industry. ExpoTees is the pinnacle of the ExpoSeries with over 100 businesses from across the UK coming to the campus to meet our exceptional students, with a view to recruitment.
There are a number of internship options, including:
Ideal for you if you are a professional with a background in computer engineering, communication systems or electronic/electrical engineering, and provides you with the skills and knowledge needed to move into computer networking. It is particularly useful for people working in companies that rely on constant innovation in electronics, computer engineering and communications.
Computer networks currently provide the infrastructure for most, businesses, educational institutions, retailers, manufacturers and public services. Many companies rely increasingly on computer and network engineering, which is now a global discipline.
This course is hardware and software based, and examines the design, specification, and integration of current and next generation computer and communications network technologies.
This course provides an opportunity for you to
You may wish to expand your current knowledge and expertise if you already have computer networking skills or possibly move into a new area of engineering and have the necessary entry requirements for this course.
This programme is CEng accredited by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and fulfils the educational requirements for registration as a Chartered Engineer when presented with an CEng accredited Bachelors programme.
Full time – September start – typically 12 or 18 months
Full time – January start – typically 12 or 18 months
Part time – September start – typically 36 months
Part time – January start – typically 36 months
The course is based around two main themes, communication and networks, and computer engineering. You study eight modules plus a major project.
Communications and network modules
At least three from
Computer engineering modules
At least three from
Up to two from
Project (equivalent to four modules)
You undertake a major project under the supervision of a tutor.
By final examination, coursework and project reports
Information technology, communications, computer networks and electronics are among some of the fastest growing areas of the economy. By completing this course, you gain a thorough understanding of computer networking systems with the knowledge and expertise to enable you to apply your skills within many areas of industry, or take up a position in higher education or research.
The fields of graphics, vision and imaging increasingly rely on one another. This unique and timely MSc provides training in computer graphics, geometry processing, virtual reality, machine vision and imaging technology from world-leading experts, enabling students to specialise in any of these areas and gain a grounding in the others.
Graduates will understand the basic mathematical principles underlying the development and application of new techniques in computer graphics and computer vision and will be aware of the range of algorithms and approaches available, and be able to design, develop and evaluate algorithms and methods for new problems, emerging technologies and applications.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of four core modules (60 credits), four optional modules (60 credits) and a research project (60 credits).
Students must choose a minimum of 15 and a maximum of 30 credits from Group One options. Students must choose a minimum of 30 and a maximum of 45 credits from Group Two options.
Group One Options (15 to 30 credits)
Group Two Options (30 to 45 credits)
Please note: the availability and delivery of optional modules may vary, depending on your selection.
All students undertake an independent research project related to a problem of industrial interest or on a topic near the leading edge of research, which culminates in a 60–80 page dissertation.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures and tutorials. Lectures are often supported by laboratory work with help from demonstrators. Student performance is assessed by unseen written examinations, coursework and a substantial individual project.
Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Computer Graphics, Vision and Imaging MSc
Graduates are ready for employment in a wide range of high-technology companies and will be able to contribute to maintaining and enhancing the UK's position in these important and expanding areas. The MSc provides graduates with the up-to-date technical skills required to support a wealth of research and development opportunities in broad areas of computer science and engineering, such as multimedia applications, medicine, architecture, film animation and computer games. Our market research shows that the leading companies in these areas demand the deep technical knowledge that this programme provides. Graduates have found positions at global companies such as Disney, Sony and Siemens. Others have gone on to PhD programmes at leading universities worldwide.
Recent career destinations for this degree
UCL received the highest percentage (96%) for quality of research in Computer Science and Informatics in the UK's most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF2014).
Our graduates have some of the highest employment rates of any university in the UK. This degree programme also provides a foundation for further PhD study or industrial research.
Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
UCL Computer Science contains some of the world's leading researchers in computer graphics, geometry processing, computer vision and virtual environments.
Research activities include geometric acquisition and 3D fabrication, real-time photo-realistic rendering, mixed and augmented reality, face recognition, content-based image-database search, video-texture modelling, depth perception in stereo vision, colour imaging for industrial inspection, mapping brain function and connectivity and tracking for SLAM (simultaneous localisation and mapping).
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
The following REF score was awarded to the department: Computer Science
96% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.