School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics

BSc (Hons) Computer Science with Foundation Year

UCAS tariff 32 - 48
UCAS course code I101
Institution code P60
Duration 4 years (+ optional placement)
Course type Full-time
Location Plymouth

Technology has revolutionised the way we live, build, work, shop, learn and even access medical care. On this forward-looking degree, you’ll get hands-on skills across a range of topics including coding, algorithms, database and software development, cyber security, networks and social, legal and ethical aspects of IT.

You will study advances in new technologies such as artificial intelligence, automation, virtual reality and smart devices for our homes. Enhance your CV with a work placement with well-known brands and industry leaders such as the BBC, the Met Office, Microsoft, the National Physical Laboratory or Nestlé to open up a wide range of career possibilities.

Computer Science with Foundation Year
Careers with this subject

It used to be considered its own industry. As we enter a fourth industrial revolution, computing is going to be impacting every part of society and feeding into every industry.

Nathan Clarke, Professor of Cyber Security & Digital Forensics

Keeping pace with emerging and evolving technologies is one of our biggest challenges. Artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality, blockchain, robots and drones, the list goes on. New and optimised technologies and systems will continue to shape a modern and progressive society.

Our aim is to set you up with the skills and mindset to thrive in your career, even if your job doesn't exist yet.

What can you do with a computing degree?

Key features

  • Learn core skills
    The foundation year will introduce you to how computers and electronic systems operate. You will write computer programmes and develop a foundational understanding of software development.
  • Make use of cutting-edge facilities
    When our new engineering and design facility is launched, students in engineering, science and the arts will have access to a range of specialist equipment and innovative laboratories.
  • Progress to a full degree
    Complete the foundation year and progress to one of our computing degrees:

BSc (Hons) Computer Science

BSc (Hons) Computer Science (Software Engineering)

BSc (Hons) Computer Science (Cyber Security)

BSc (Hons) Computer Science (Games Development)
Course details
  • Foundation year

  • During this foundation year, we'll introduce you to how computers and electronic systems operate. You will write computer programmes and develop an understanding of software development. An individual project is designed to help you progress to the computing degree you want to study. Provided you achieve a pass level of 50 per cent or above, you can progress to the first year of any of our computing degrees.

    Core modules

    • Mathematics for Computing (MATH054)

      This module builds from basics the foundations of mathematics to approximately GCSE grade C. It then broadens out to cover a range of topics suitable for computing students which will enable them to progress to their chosen degree path with confidence.

    • Data Mining and Algorithms (MATH057)

      This module provides the basic skills required to discover patterns in data. Students will learn how to solve problems by analysing data. The course provides essential tools, techniques and algorithms for finding and describing structural patterns. Students will learn to extract useful information from the raw data and communicate their conclusions through analysis of examples. Topics studied will be: summary statistics; random behaviour; probability distributions; inference, optimisation and modelling.

    • Robotics (ROCO051)

      The module introduces basic electronics with applications to control of robotics. Lectures, laboratory measurements and practical construction experience underpin the learning. Lecture materials have a close link with practical works in the laboratory.

    • Computing Project (SOFT050)

      Each student will undertake a project relevant to their chosen degree programme with the agreement of the module leader.

    • Computer Programming (SOFT051)

      This module introduces students to fundamental computer programming concepts, which allow information to be stored, processed and presented. It includes fundamental aspects of web-application development, persistent data storage, user-interface design, and the use of an integrated development environment. As mathematical computation is becoming increasingly sophisticated, it is important that mathematicians can effectively deal with computer programming.

    • Topics in Computer Science (COMP0001)

      Students on this module will be introduced to a range of cutting-edge topics in Computer Science, from the underpinning specialisms at the University. An industrial focus will show how computing is used in the real world. Students will gain experience in both written and oral presentation of their work. 

Every undergraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the course aims, the course structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest course structure and may be subject to change:

BSc Computer Science With Foundation Year Programme Specification 6584

The modules shown for this course are those currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new modules. Please note that programme structures and individual modules are subject to amendment from time to time as part of the University’s curriculum enrichment programme and in line with changes in the University’s policies and requirements.

In light of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the changeable nature of the situation and any updates to government guidance, we may need to make further, last minute adjustments to how we deliver our teaching and learning on some or all of our programmes, at any time during the academic year. We want to reassure you that even if we do have to adjust the way in which we teach our programmes, we will be working to maintain the quality of the student learning experience and learning outcomes at all times.
Entry requirements

UCAS tariff

32 - 48

Applicants exceeding our entry requirements may be eligible for an offer under our Computing Excellence Scheme.

A minimum of 2 A levels. Excluding general studies.

18 Unit BTEC National Diploma/QCF Extended Diploma: PPP
12 Unit BTEC National Certificate/QCF Diploma: MP

BTEC National Diploma modules
If you hold a BTEC qualification it is vital that you provide our Admissions team with details of the exact modules you have studied as part of the BTEC. Without this information we may be unable to process your application quickly and you could experience significant delays in the progress of your application to study with us. Please explicitly state the full list of modules within your qualification at the time of application.

All Access courses: pass Access course (any subject) including GCSE English and mathematics grade C/4 or above or equivalent.

T level: Pass. Any subjects related to science, engineering, IT or Health.

International Baccalaureate: 24 overall – English and mathematics must be included.

mathematics and English at grade C/4 or above.

Mature students with appropriate work experience are encouraged to apply. For those who do not meet the requirements, please enquire for further details.

We welcome applicants with international qualifications. To view other accepted qualifications please refer to our tariff glossary.

Fees, costs and funding
Student 2022-2023 2023-2024
Home £9,250 £9,250
International £14,600 £16,300
Part time (Home) £770 £770
Full time fees shown are per annum. Part time fees shown are per 10 credits. Please note that fees are reviewed on an annual basis. Fees and the conditions that apply to them shown in the prospectus are correct at the time of going to print. Fees shown on the web are the most up to date but are still subject to change in exceptional circumstances. More information about fees and funding.

Additional costs

This course is delivered by the Faculty of Science and Engineering and more details of any additional costs associated with the faculty's courses are listed on the following page: Additional fieldwork, equipment and graduation costs.

How to apply

All applications for undergraduate courses are made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). 

UCAS will ask for the information contained in the box at the top of this course page including the UCAS course code and the institution code. 

To apply for this course and for more information about submitting an application including application deadline dates, please visit the UCAS website.

Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via our how to apply webpage or email

<p>Computing student coding</p>

Progress to the full BSc (Hons) Computer Science degree

Build on your knowledge by studying a full range of computer science topics, including artificial intelligence and machine learning. Work on individual and group projects and graduate with a large portfolio of evidence for potential employers.

BSc (Hons) Computer Science >

  • @ We ranked 26/106 for student satisfaction in the 2022 National Student Survey
  • @ Our computing courses have all been re-accredited by the BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT
  • @ In the latest REF (Research Excellence Framework) almost 90% of our research was rated internationally recognised or world leading

New engineering and design facility

"The building will provide a state-of-the-art setting to inspire the engineers and designers of tomorrow, making it the ultimate place to bring together students, academics and industry in an environment that not only benefits them but also society as a whole." – Professor Deborah Greaves OBE
Situated on the western edge of our city centre campus, the landmark new facility will provide a home for the School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics and additional space for the School of Art, Design and Architecture.
<p>New Engineering and Design Facility</p>

Research-informed teaching

Foundation-year teaching staff

*These are the latest results from the National Student Survey. Please note that the data published on Discover Uni is updated annually in September.