BSc (Hons)

Computer Systems (Forensic and Security)

Students using laptops
  • UCAS code(s): 351A / GF44
  • Level(s) of study: Undergraduate
  • Study mode(s): Full-time / Sandwich
  • Location: Clifton Campus
  • Starting: September 2018
  • Course duration: 3 / 4 year(s)
  • Entry requirements: More information

This exciting degree starts you on the route to becoming an IT security or digital forensic specialist. By the end of this course you will be able to identify security risks to systems and introduce preventative measures to protect businesses against security threats.

Why choose this course?

This course aims to enable you to identify security risks and preventative measures in technological solutions. You will learn the basic principles and practice of collecting computer data as evidence of computer crime.

You will learn how systems operate in terms of their software and hardware infrastructure. Based on this you will learn how to manage such systems as a system administrator specialising in ensuring security. Your knowledge will be further developed to give you a good appreciation of security issues and the steps organisations need to take to protect themselves from security breaches and crime.

  • This course is accredited by the BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT to Chartered IT Professional (CITP) status.
  • There's an opportunity for a year-long paid work placement and the School has strong links with local industry representatives such as Siemens, Her Majesty's Governments Communications Centre (HMGCC), Experian and Excel.
  • This course shares a common first term with BSc (Hons) Computer Systems Engineering and BSc (Hons) Computer Systems (Networks) providing you with the flexibility to review your pathway once you have started studying.
  • Our student work can be groundbreaking, innovative and consistently attracts industry attention.
  • You will work with our highly regarded academics, who are active in a broad range of research areas, achieving 80% world-leading or internationally excellent research impact (REF 2014).

You may also be interested in:

What you'll study

What's included in the course fees?

Your course fees cover all the facilities and support you need to succeed. This includes the following:

  • You will have access to extensive computing facilities, some available 24 hours a day and including technician support.
  • You will have dedicated online storage to support backup of work.
  • You will have access to Microsoft Academic Alliance membership, which gives you free copies of all Microsoft developer software including operating systems, Visio and Project.
  • As one of our students, you will be able to join the Oracle Academic Initiative as an individual member and get free database software.
  • Students are able to register for a free personal copy of 3D Studio Max.
  • Extensive equipment is available to loan for coursework and project work. For example, you can borrow cameras and phones.
  • We offer extensive free training software including tutorials on 3D Studio Max, Flash, Photoshop, TCP/IP Packet analysis, Java, Javascript, HTML5, and Oracle.
  • Most major software is available across the campus machines, including Adobe Master Collection Suite.

About the Computing and Technology Team

Computing and Technology comprises 35 full-time academic teaching staff. We and our students have excellent support from our four dedicated technicians. We are very proud to have achieved 80% world-leading or internationally excellent research impact (REF 2014).

We have a rich mix of knowledge ranging from software development for different types of system through to hardware aspects such as networking. This involves many uses of computing and considers all aspects including security and management. Our knowledge is built up and maintained through our wealth of industrial experience, our industrial links and our research activity. These are the ingredients for ensuring the relevance and vitality of your course.

Much of our research is internationally recognised, particularly in the areas of Games for Learning and in Security. For example, Prof David Brown leads several projects, funded by the European Union, in games and assistive technology, while Prof Paul Evans’ innovative developments in security are supported by USA Dept of Homeland Security.

We engage fully in our subject area and this engagement feeds directly and indirectly into our teaching. Other examples of our activity are:

  • developing patents e.g. in voice signal processing
  • involvement in the GameCity Festival
  • organising conferences on Interactive Technology and Games and on Intelligent Environments
  • working with local companies on funded projects e.g. enhancing the capability of the press association to search their image database
  • publishing novel findings in research publications on for example financial prediction, mobile communications, detection of human behaviour patterns.

Visit our academic team pages to find out more about our approach to teaching, our partners and research interests.

For information on International student support or to see our academic terms times please visit our International student pages.

Learn a new language

Alongside your study you also have the opportunity to learn a new language. The University Language Programme (ULP) is available to all students and gives you the option of learning a totally new language or improving the skills you already have.

Learning a new language can:

  • enhance your communication skills
  • enrich your experience when travelling abroad
  • boost your career prospects.

Find out more about the ULP.

  • Year One

    Foundation in Computing and Technology

    This module has four strands, including programming and technical aspects that introduce you to the fundamentals of writing computer programs, as well as numeracy and website development.

    Systems Programming

    This foundation module in programming explores high-level languages and how to apply them to produce scripts or programs for networking and forensics-related applications.

    Systems Technology

    Learn the key principles, underlying technologies and practical application of computer networks. You’ll be introduced to embedded systems, fundamentals, operation and hardware components.

    Systems Analysis and Design (SAD) with Professional Development

    Introducing you to the fundamental principles of SAD, this module will give you a working knowledge of the key systems, development methodologies, techniques and tools.

  • Year Two

    Network Design and Administration

    Network infrastructure has become key to the effective operation of most organisations. This module will enable you to plan, configure and manage networking solutions to support business needs.

    Computer Security Management

    Learn to manage the security of computer based information and systems within organisations and develop the ability to make informed choices based on business drivers.

    Communications Technology

    Analyse and test communication technology applications and understand their constraints and limitations.

    Distributed Network Architectures and Operating Systems

    Introduction to operating systems running onsingle machines and how they can be put together to form a large scale system comprising of many networked machines.

    Information and Database Engineering

    Understand the nature and application of database management systems and acquire skills for database administration and management.

    Practical Project Management & Professional Development

    Continued professional development and lifelong learning are important to your future career. Through this module you’ll improve your time and project management skills, presentations and report writing.

  • Year Three

    Optional placement year for Sandwich students. Please see our excellent placement opportunities section.

  • Final year

    Project

    Investigate problems in computing, implement solutions, critically evaluate and reflect on your work, and develop your abilities to communicate, self-organise and manage.

    Security Technologies

    Introduces fundamental principles of security and provides you with some core technologies of information security, which are extensively used in both industry and academia.

    Computer Crime and Forensics

    This module covers the types of computer crime and how they occur. It also shows how you can investigate a crime and generate documentary evidence necessary for legal proceedings.

    Wireless and Mobile Communications

    Continuing from Year Two’s Communications Technologies module, you’ll study and examine a range of current and emerging wireless communication systems and their applications.

    Choose one of the following modules:

    Mobile Platform Development

    Gain an awareness of the requirements, capabilities and constraints of a variety of mobile platform technologies and consider how they can be used to build systems which are outside the traditional desktop paradigm.

    Service-centric and Cloud Computing

    Become accomplished in the design and implementation of object-based distributed solutions for building interoperable large-scale applications and analysing the quality of service.

    Business Analysis

    Discover two challenging aspects of implementing distributed computing systems in Service-Oriented Architectures (SOA).

    Information Systems Management

    The aim of this module is to develop an understanding of how to manage the build and deployment of enterprise and Internet information systems in small to medium organisations.

    Communicating Science and Technology

    This final year option module will be of interest to you if you are considering a career in teaching and / or want to develop your portfolio of transferable skills.

    Professional Practice

    A work-based learning module open only to students who don’t take a placement.

Course specification

View the full course specification
Please note that course specifications may be subject to change

How you’re taught

How will I study?

Scheduled contact time in lectures and seminars is around 12 hours per week and these will be held on Clifton Campus. Lectures are spread between various buildings on campus, including Erasmus Darwin and Mary Ann Evans. See Clifton Campus maps and travel information.

You will be assessed on a variety of components including:

  • Coursework and practical (assignments, dissertation, group projects, oral presentations, reports)
  • Written (exams, written tests)

Assessment methods

Year 1 - coursework (83%) and written (17%)

Year 2 - coursework (62%) and written (38%)

Year 3 - coursework (75%) and written (25%)

A placement year may be taken between year 2 and year 3 of study

Contact hours

A full-time student on average can expect to spend 1200 hours a year learning which will typically be broken down as follows:

Year 1 - lectures/seminars/workshops (26%) and independent study (74%)

Year 2 - lectures/seminars/workshops (24%) and independent study (76%)

Year 3 - lectures/seminars/workshops (21%) and independent study (79%)

A placement year may be taken between year 2 and year 3 of study

Careers and employability

Your career development

Nottingham Trent University has an exemplary graduate employment record. As one of our graduates, you will possess a wide range of academic and transferable skills, including investigative and analytical techniques, problem-solving, planning, organisation and communication skills, all of which are invaluable for a number of careers including security analyst, forensic consultant and network administrators

Recent graduates have gone onto work in the following roles and companies:

Many graduates also choose to undertake further study on one of our Masters-level courses or MPhil and PhD research degrees.

Richard Hodgson
BSc (Hons) Computer Systems (Forensic and Security)

"I thoroughly enjoyed the Computer Systems (Forensic and Security) course at NTU. It not only offered an excellent range of practical forensic content and security theory, but also offered education in a much wider set of computer systems skills, that have made me highly employable."

Excellent placement opportunities

After the second year, you will have the opportunity to undertake a years’ work placement in industry. This will give you the chance to gain vital experience and put your knowledge into practice. Recent placement salaries have ranged from £12,000 to £30,000 and many students impress their placement employers so much they are offered jobs upon graduation.

Our students have secured work placements in companies and in roles such as:

Entry requirements

What are we looking for?

  • A-levels – BBC including an IT, Maths or Science subject grade B; or
  • 112 UCAS Tariff points from three A-levels or equivalent qualifications, including an A-level grade B equivalent in an IT, Maths or a Science subject; or
  • BTEC Extended Diploma grades DMM (including relevant IT, Maths or Science modules); and
  • GCSE English and Maths grade C / 4.

Applicants without A-levels will have their qualifications assessed for subject compatibility. We also consider equivalent qualifications and combinations. Please see UCAS Course Search for more details.

What are we looking for?

  • A-levels – BBC including an IT, Maths or Science subject grade B; or
  • 112 UCAS Tariff points from three A-levels or equivalent qualifications, including an A-level grade B equivalent in an IT, Maths or a Science subject; or
  • BTEC Extended Diploma grades DMM (including relevant IT, Maths or Science modules); and
  • GCSE English and Maths grade C / 4.

Applicants without A-levels will have their qualifications assessed for subject compatibility. We also consider equivalent qualifications and combinations. Please see UCAS Course Search for more details.

International qualifications

We accept qualifications from schools, colleges and universities all over the world for entry onto our UG and PG degrees. If you’re not sure how your international qualification matches our course requirements please visit our international qualifications page.

English language entry requirements

If English is not your first language you need to show us that your language skills are strong enough for intensive academic study. We usually ask for an IELTS test and we accept some alternative English language tests.

Help and support

If you have any questions about your qualifications or about making an application to the University please contact our International Team for advice.

How to apply

Ready to join us? Then apply as soon as you can. Just click the Apply button at the top of the page and follow the instructions for applying. Make sure you check the entry requirements above carefully before you do.

Writing your application and personal statement

Be honest, thorough and persuasive in your application. Remember, we can only make a decision based on what you tell us. So include all of your qualifications and grades, including resits or predicted grades.

Your personal statement is a really important part of your application. It’s your chance to convince us why we should offer you a place! You’ve got 4,000 characters to impress us. Make sure you use them to show how your skills and qualities are relevant to the course(s) you’re applying for. For more hints and tips, take a look at our page on how to write a good personal statement.

Keeping up-to-date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

You can get more information and advice about applying to NTU on our Your Application page. Good luck with your application!

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

You can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year. If you are applying to more than one UK university you must apply through UCAS.

Apply as early as you can so that you have time to prepare for your studies.  If you need a visa to study here you need to plan this into your application.

Keeping up-to-date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

Good luck with your application!

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

Further information on how to apply

Need help with your application?
For admissions related enquiries please contact us:
Telephone: +44 (0)115 848 4200

Fees and funding

Once our 2018/19 fees have been set, they will be available on our fees and funding pages.

Getting in touch

For more advice and guidance, you can contact our Student Financial Support Service on telephone +44 (0)115 848 2494.

While we aim to keep any extra study costs to a minimum, please see our page on additional costs and optional extras to find out about any additional expenses you may incur on your course.

We offer prestigious scholarships to new international students holding offers to study at the University.

While we aim to keep any extra study costs to a minimum, please see our page on additional costs and optional extras to find out about any additional expenses you may incur on your course.

Still need help?

Science and Technology course enquiries
+44 (0)115 848 8351