Taught course

Advanced Computing

Birkbeck, University of London · Computer Science and Information Systems

Entry requirements

A second-class honours degree (2:2) or above or MSc in computer science, with the syllabus containing a substantial amount of programming, preferably in an object-oriented language. Joint honours computing graduates may also be eligible, provided they have covered a substantial amount of programming, or have equivalent professional experience in the IT industry.

MRes: You should also have completed introductory and advanced courses in computer science, especially in the area of research that you are interested in.

On your application form, please list all your relevant qualifications and experience, including those you expect to achieve.

Together with your application documents you should provide a letter of 500-600 words with details of:

  • the direction of research you are interested in, which should be an area offered by our department
  • your choice of two potential supervisors from our academic staff
  • why you believe you can do research in this area with your chosen supervisors.

Applications are reviewed on their individual merits and your professional qualifications and/or relevant work experience will be taken into consideration positively. We actively support and encourage applications from mature learners.

If your application meets the above requirements and a potential supervisor is found for you, then you will be invited to an online or in-person interview.

Months of entry


Course content

MSc Advanced Computing: If you already work in the IT sector, or you intend to pursue a career in IT or a research degree, our MSc is designed to advance your knowledge of advanced computing technologies.

This Master's degree in computing has significant coverage of emerging technologies and research developments and focuses on areas of expertise and research specialisation within the Department of Computer Science and Information Systems.

In addition to eight taught modules, there is a substantial practical project. As an alternative to the award of MSc Advanced Computing, you may choose modules and a project with a particular specialisation leading to the award of MSc Data Analytics.

Once you successfully complete this MSc you will have obtained knowledge and understanding of technologies of growing importance in the IT industry and their relationship to current and emerging IT industry practice.

MRes Advanced Computing: The MRes has been designed to meet the needs of both students wishing to advance their knowledge of computing or information systems before embarking on a research and development career in IT or on an MPhil/PhD degree, and students already working in the IT sector.

This MRes builds on your advanced understanding of computing and information systems. It offers you a supervised research project in one of the following areas of advanced study:

  • algorithms, verification and software
  • experimental data science
  • knowledge representation and data management
  • machine learning
  • large-scale resource management.

As these areas correspond to particular expertise within our department, you will also have the opportunity to undertake your research within our own ongoing research projects if you wish. As well as following three taught modules in the above areas, you will also take a Research Methods module.

MSc and MRes: On successful completion of the MSc or MRes Advanced Computing you will have gained in-depth theoretical and practical knowledge which you will be able to use in:

  • analysis of problems
  • evaluation of technology options
  • deployment of appropriate solutions
  • research into, and development of, new technologies.
  • Significant coverage of emerging technologies and research developments in areas of growing importance in the IT industry.
  • You will have 24-hour access to several laboratories of networked PCs with a range of language compilers, database and other application software. We are connected, via the SuperJANET network, to the computers of other academic institutions in London, elsewhere in the UK and abroad.
  • The Birkbeck Knowledge Lab draws on multi- and interdisciplinary perspectives and methodologies from across the sciences, social sciences and the arts, to investigate how digital technologies and digital information are transforming our culture and how we learn and work.
  • Birkbeck was ranked in the top 25 universities in the UK for its Computer Science and Informatics research in the 2021 Research Excellence Framework.

Information for international students

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, the requirement for this programme is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses and foundation programmes to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • MRes
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Student Advice Service
+44 (0)20 3907 0700