This programme of study is intended primarily for graduates from any non-computing background to obtain fundamental knowledge and understanding of a range of core subjects in Computing. The overall aim of education is to either equip the graduates who want to develop their careers in their own areas of speciality with additional understanding, awareness and skills of IT and Computing, or help those who want to change their careers into IT and Computing. The programme can also serve as a pre-requisite for advanced master programmes in Applied Computing at Buckingham.
Graduates who successfully complete the programmes are eligible for entry into the MSc in Innovative Computing degree programme.
The Graduate Diploma programme consists of 7 taught modules and an individual project. On completing the programmes, you will be able to understand:
- the role that computers and networked systems play in the modern world. - the essential knowledge and skills in programming together with relevant structures and concepts to create such systems. - fundamental concepts and principles of databases, networking, object-oriented programming, web design and human-computer interaction. - advanced applications including data mining, multimedia, interactive computer graphics, and security systems. - ethical, professional, social and legal issues in exploiting computing technology in practice.
The programme will also help you to develop skills in:
- Computing and web application - Web design - Programming and problem-solving for large scale or mobile applications - Database and software development - Developing usable GUIs - Computer graphics - Computer network issues
Our modules include a mixture of formal lectures, tutorial classes and practical classes. At the start of each module you will be given an up-to-date module outline and reading list. Most modules will provide two or three hours of lectures each week to introduce you to the basic concepts and techniques. These will be supported by lecture notes or handouts.
Lectures are supported by weekly tutorial classes, usually one hour in length, which are held in small groups so that all students can benefit from individual attention. You will be expected to prepare for these classes, for example by attempting a set of exercises or by reading a case study.
Many of our modules have supervised practical classes in the computer laboratories in which you can apply and practise the techniques you have learnt in the lectures. These practical sessions are usually two or three hours long.
You will also be expected to study on your own, using the library for reading research and the computer laboratories to improve your practical skills.
Course material is also available on the University’s own Virtual Learning Environment. This allows students to download lecture notes, submit assignments and share resources in an electronic forum both within the University’s computer network and remotely.
Students may take the diploma over 9 (April start) or 12 (January start) months. The course is also available on a part-time basis over two years (starting in January).