Electronics and Computer Science (ECS), University of Southampton

Electronics and Computer Science (ECS)

MSc Computer Science

Computer science drives the fundamental technologies of today’s connected world. Take your place to set the agenda for tomorrow’s ever-changing digital future.


This umbrella programme allows you to choose modules from our more specialist programmes in Artificial Intelligence, Cyber Security, Signal Processing, Software Engineering, and Web Science & Technology.  In semester 1, you can cover the foundations of a number of these specialist areas, and for your other taught subjects you can choose specialist modules to deepen your understanding of one or more of these areas.

Your programme leader and personal tutor will help you to make an appropriate selection based on your background and interests.

To Apply

You can apply for the programme through the University of Southampton's online postgraduate application system. For more background and detailed information, see How to Apply

Programme Structure

Twelve months, full-time.

You will be assigned a project supervisor and project area or topic to work on.  Before the start of the project you will learn about appropriate research methods and prepare an extended project brief and review of the relevant literature.  In the summer, following your second semester examinations, you will undertake the main work of the project, which you write up as an extended report or dissertation of up to 15,000 words or 60 pages. 

Key Facts

  • We are in the top 10% in the UK for the volume and quality of our Computer Science research (REF 2014)
  • 100% of our Computer Science research impact is world-leading or internationally excellent (REF 2014)
  • We are ranked in the UK top ten for Computer Sciences by the 2016 Guardian and Times / Sunday Times Good University Guides
  • Southampton is ranked in the top 51-100 universities for Computer Science in the 2015 QS World Rankings
  • Southampton University has pioneered many of the most important advances in computer science and web technology of the past 10 years

Topics may include

Agile and Object Oriented Development; Applications of Security in IT; Aspect Oriented Programming and Program Generation; Computer Vision; Cryptography; E-Business Strategy; Enterprise Web Development; Evolution of Complexity; Formal Design of Systems; Hypertext and Web Technologies; Intelligent Agents; Machine Learning; Robotics; Safety Critical Systems; Semantic Web Technologies; Social Networking Technologies; Software Project Management and Quality Assurance; Web Development; Web Services.

Entry requirements

Honours Degree:

Our normal entry requirement is an upper second-class honours degree or higher (or equivalent) in computer science. Good degrees in related subjects such as physics or engineering may be considered provided you also have significant programming experience.

English Language Requirements:

If English is not your first language, you will be required to pass an approved English test. We normally ask for IELTS 6.5 overall with at least 6.0 in each competency. For information on other accepted English language tests, please visit www.southampton.ac.uk/admissions_language.

International Qualifications:

We welcome applications from international students. For information on applying, visit the International Office website.

Selection Process:

All individuals are selected and treated on their relative merits and abilities in line with the University's Equal Opportunities Policy. Disabled applicants will be treated according to the same procedures as any other applicant with the added involvement of the Disability Office to assess their needs. The programme may require adaptation for students with disabilities (eg hearing impairment, visual impairment, mobility difficulties, dyslexia), particularly the practical laboratory sessions, and we will attempt to accommodate students wherever possible.



To Apply

You can apply for the programme through the University of Southampton's online postgraduate application system. For more background and detailed information, see How to Apply

Related programmes

Career opportunities

Computer Science students from Southampton mainly go on to work in the software industry, often as developers, but also as consultants, project managers, testing and support, or technical specialists.  These roles support a variety of sectors, such as banking and finance, consumer electronics, defence, engineering, entertainment, insurance, power generation, telecommunications, and television.  As well as larger multinationals, many students also go on to work for small to medium enterprises (SMEs), including start-ups.

Visit our careers hub for more information.

Pre-course reading lists