The University of Liverpool online MSc in Advanced Computer Science consists of four core modules and four elective modules. Core modules provide a solid foundation and insights into the latest research in algorithms and intelligent systems. Elective modules enable you to tailor the focus of your degree with a range of advanced topics in cyber security, big data analytics and software engineering.
In addition, your Professional Portfolio of Evidence will allow you to gather solutions-based artefacts to demonstrate your strategic mindset and showcase your growth and decision-making skills to employers.
The first module takes 10 weeks. Each subsequent module lasts eight weeks.
To lay the foundation for successful study, and provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the key concepts associated with the computing environment.
Start your personal and professional journey with this on-boarding module where you will be introduced to the online learning environment. The module provides a critical "state-of the-art" review of the domain of information technology (IT). It is designed to offer a wide-ranging understanding on topics such as software engineering, cyber security and big data analytics. By completing the module, you will have a comprehensive global view of the current IT landscape in the context of both commercial and non-commercial enterprises. The module blends both theory and practice, so that a solid foundation is provided for future study.
To provide a comprehensive understanding of the role and importance of algorithms in solving computational problems, and the types of algorithms that are in common use. You will have an opportunity to design, implement and develop new algorithms.
This module explores the role and importance of algorithms, their use to solve a computational problem and the process of designing algorithms where no suitable existing algorithm is available. Students will also learn to analyse algorithm behaviour, correctness and complexity - based on both time and memory requirements. This module is designed to provide in-depth knowledge in a range of significant algorithms that are in common use and are of historical significance within the IT industry - including sorting algorithms, searching algorithms, graph algorithms and path finding algorithms. The material taught in the module is programming language independent, algorithms will be represented using pseudo code which students will be able to implement in their preferred programming language.
To provide a comprehensive understanding of intelligent systems techniques. You will evaluate modern techniques and tools used to develop and deploy artificial intelligence and machine learning.
This module introduces students to emergent areas of intelligent systems. You will have an opportunity to gain a critical understanding of machine learning techniques, knowledge representation, neural networks, fuzzy logic and evolutionary techniques. You will be presented with real world problems and have the opportunity to apply intelligent systems techniques to provide solutions to these problems.
To offer students the opportunity to consider and understand the professional and ethical issues arising in the use of IT systems. You will explore legal and social issues that computing professionals may encounter and develop key management skills required for effective utilisation and operation of IT.
To function effectively, professional IT practitioners need not only the appropriate technical knowledge, skills and experience, but also a broad understanding of the context in which they operate. IT professionals must understand the relationship between technological change, society and the law, and the powerful role that computers and computer professionals play in a technology driven society. This module provides students with the knowledge that allows IT professionals to be: capable in their chosen professional areas, operate effectively in work and community situations, be aware of their environments and have a complete and critical understanding of the Legal, Social, Ethical and Professional Issues (LSEPI) that are material to the IT industry.
This programme allows you to choose four elective modules. We’ve defined some suggested subject areas for you, but don’t let these groups restrict your choice. You can combine expertise from all areas by selecting modules from any subject area.
This programme allows you to choose four elective modules.
To provide students with a comprehensive understanding of big data tools and techniques, related issues, and the different kinds of big data ecosystems that can be used to support advanced data analytics.
This module will consider big data management frameworks in general, but with a focus on the Hadoop open-source data storage and processing platform and its underpinning sub-systems. It also provides you with a critical awareness of how big data systems support data-driven decision making.
To provide students with a comprehensive overview of advances in cloud computing and the possibilities it has unleashed.
Cloud computing is an important new paradigm in information technology that provides a basis for a new wave of technology developments. Cloud computing embodies advances in computing, networking, and storage technologies which individually and collectively include major hardware and software breakthroughs. These include computer virtualisation, distributed and replicated storage, and software-based networking. Cloud computing motivates further technology advancement and changes how modern IT infrastructures are built and evolved. There is a growing demand for specialists with strong technical background and deep knowledge of cloud computing technologies.
To provide students with a detailed understanding of the concepts of data mining, including the processes involved and the tools and techniques commonly used.
During this module, you will be provided the opportunity to apply the tools and techniques of data mining to a variety of example data sets. This is intended to give you a critical insight into their operation, and an understanding of when and where such tools and techniques can best be applied. You will also be given the chance, using the ‘R’ programming language, to implement several different kinds of data mining algorithms to gain a comprehensive understanding of their operation.
To introduce students to the concepts and challenges of creating data warehouses, and how data visualisation tools can be used to ‘tell a story’.
By taking this module, you will gain practical experience of how to create data warehouses using data from multiple sources. It will also introduce you to best practices in data visualisation and data storytelling, using state-of-the-art data visualisation technology. The module is intended to help you understand the approaches and benefits of data warehousing, and how to quickly gain and communicate insights into the data stored in data warehouses using data visualisation techniques.
To provide students with an insight into how predictive analytics can be used to help organizations and their customers make better decisions.
Completing this module is designed to give you a comprehensive understanding of how results from predictive analytics can be used by organisations to grow their customer base and run operations more efficiently. This module is oriented towards practical applications of predictive analytics.
To develop the knowledge and skills required to design and implement modern database systems. You will have an opportunity to compare established relational database paradigm with emerging alternative approaches to hone your critical evaluation and analytical skills.
Data is the life blood of an organisation, this module covers key areas such as requirements, design, implementation, security, performance and scalability in creation of database systems. Through a hands-on approach and practical project, you’ll have an opportunity to design and build database systems using latest database technologies.
To develop skills to manage software projects successfully from inception to close. You will explore leading industry methodologies, how to create a strong communication plan and how to best monitor and control projects.
In this module provides students with the skills required to manage successful software projects to meet the strategic goals of the organisation. The key topics for managing project scope, budget and schedule will be covered. You will analyse how to best monitor and control projects, as well as how to execute a strong communication plan and evaluate team dynamics for effective team productivity.
To provide foundational skills and knowledge of the software engineering discipline and prepare students for careers in the software engineering industry. You will have an opportunity to gain experience in the use of state of the art software engineering tools and techniques.
This module provides students with a solid foundation of the techniques, technologies and tools of software engineering. Emphasis is on the problem-solving techniques of software engineering and on system architecture that results from applying these techniques. Project management and configuration management issues are also discussed. You’ll have the opportunity to practice many of the software engineering techniques using the most current tools.
To provide a comprehensive understanding of the tools and techniques used in software modelling and design within modern development process. You will have an opportunity to develop a comprehensive understanding of the Object Oriented and Agile software development processes and the opportunity to apply your news skills in practical software engineering scenarios.
This module provides students with detailed modelling and design knowledge used in the modern software engineering industry. You will study a number of software design techniques, including object-oriented design as well as standard notations. You’ll explore agile software development methodologies and life cycles, to cover the development process from feasibility studies through to software implementation.
To provide a comprehensive understanding of the critical specialisation of software quality assurance and testing. You will have an opportunity to develop key skills required its effective practice and in professional roles the field of software engineering.
This module examines software testing and quality assurance practices, both of which can have technical, financial and ethical implications for modern organisations. You’ll explore testing and inspection methods, stress testing techniques, quality management standards, configuration management and more. By the end of the module you will develop a detailed understanding to create successful testing and quality assurance programs to support the needs of a modern software engineering project.
To provide students with an insight into cryptographic algorithms and protocols.
By completing this module, you will acquire a critical understanding of how to use cryptographic algorithms and protocols to solve practical security problems (such as confidentiality, integrity and authenticity). The module also allows you to acquire a systematic understanding of open-source tools to build secure applications, and how best to apply such tools.
To provide students with a deep understanding of the mechanisms and techniques that can be used to prevent, or at least mitigate, cybercrime.
This module considers the motivations for cybercrime, as well as providing a comprehensive understanding of the tools that can be used to prevent it – including the deployment of cybercrime prevention strategies. You will have the opportunity to build an ‘ethical hacking’ environment with which you can experiment. In addition, the module aims to provide you with a hands-on knowledge of cybercrime prevention for application in the workplace.
To give students knowledge of the practice of extracting evidence from computers and digital storage media.
This module provides you with the knowledge that allows you to identify, extract, document, interpret and preserve computer media as digital evidence, as well the understanding of how to analyse the root cause of security breaches. It covers issues including crypto-literacy, data hiding and hostile code.
To provide students with an in-depth understanding of information security concepts and models.
This module provides an insight into information security principles, security policy models/protocols, industry standards for security compliance, and risk assessment. You will acquire a critical understanding of how to use information security techniques to solve practical security problems. You will also have the opportunity to gain skills for designing/implementing security infrastructure and writing security/incident response polices. Practical, extensive, hands-on project work is designed to ensure you are ready to apply in the workplace the knowledge gained in the module.
To provide students with theoretical and practical knowledge of, and insight into the formal, systemic approaches to, cyber security risk management (CSRM).
Threats to information security are becoming more sophisticated. Laws and regulations impose strict CSRM requirements on all enterprises to prevent, or at least limit, the potential of cyber-attacks. This module aims to provide the theoretical and practical knowledge to deliver a formal, systematic and in-depth approach to the application of the concepts, techniques, methods, approaches and processes of CSRM in a pragmatic manner and in the context of enterprises of all kinds.
To promote a broader understanding of leadership and a greater awareness of how leadership choices can impact organisations.
In this module, you will develop a comprehensive understanding of contemporary IT leadership models, as well as knowledge of the role of leadership in shaping IT organisations. You will acquire theoretical and practical knowledge of:
To provide comprehensive knowledge of the strategic importance of IT within organisations.
The module is designed to allow you to acquire a detailed understanding of how technology becomes an enabler for business. You will study how IT strategies support organisational goals, and how they help to create a sustained competitive advantage in business. You will also develop your ability to evaluate IT strategies, and how best to deploy such strategies, in the context of systems or business applications within the IT industry.
To enable students to build a theoretical and practical academic foundation relating to the techniques and challenges of technology innovation and change management.
This module aims to give you a comprehensive understanding of change models and the impact of change related to technology innovation, adoption and implementation. You will gain both the theoretical and practical knowledge required to be able to manage the design and use of technology to foster growth, innovation and change within organisations. The module will also give you a comprehensive understanding of how innovation can act as a change enabler and the importance of building readiness for change within organisations.
To enable students to assess the roles of individuals and teams within organisations so that they can become proficient leaders and managers.
This module is broadly designed to provide the necessary know-how to allow you to manage people operating in a technology-rich environment. As well as the traditional aspects of organisational behaviour, such as individual/team roles, human resource management and change management, you will examine the use of information technology to support managerial functions, including outsourcing, offshoring and other critical issues fundamental to the way contemporary organisations are run.
Students refine their dissertation topic in conjunction with their Personal Dissertation Advisor, an academic supervisor who will provide support throughout the writing process.
The dissertation project module commences with a research methods training component during which students will be given instruction and guidance on the planning and organisation of their work. During the course of the research methods training students will also be expected to start formulating their project. The project itself, following on from the research methods training, will be individually supervised via online communication within the learning platform also used for all other online modules. There is an interim assessment point during the course of the project where students submit their project specification and design. At the end of the project students are expected to submit a dissertation describing their project.
Please note that current scheduling may be subject to change and that we cannot guarantee that all modules will be offered in every calendar year.