Taught course

Computer Communication Networks

Brunel University, London · Electronic and Computer Engineering

Entry requirements

Entry Criteria 2016/7 A UK first or second class Honours degree or equivalent internationally recognised qualification usually in Electrical or Electronic Engineering; Computer Science; Information Systems; Mathematics or Physics. Other qualifications and relevant experience will be assessed on an individual basis.

Months of entry


Course content

About the course

This course provides exposure to the wide variety of technical, managerial and organisational issues essential to effective commercial deployment of data communication systems.

You will develop practical skills through the workshop module, both to reinforce the theory presented in lectures and to gain hands-on experience. In addition to in-depth technical knowledge, the data communications industry also considers project management, team working and presentation skills to be key attributes, which are all developed on the course.


Data communications is a rapidly expanding sector with exciting career prospects. In this fast moving environment postgraduate qualifications provide a competitive edge in career progression.

This course is aimed at widening and deepening the experience of academically capable graduates and practising engineers, specifically:

  • Recent graduates in electrical or electronic engineering, computer science, physics and mathematics who wish to deepen their knowledge of the technological, commercial and managerial issues associated with data communication systems
  • Practicing engineers who wish to update their knowledge.
  • European and other overseas engineers who wish to broaden their education in the UK.

Course Content

Compulsory Modules

Advanced Digital Communications
The aim of this module is to introduce students to more advanced topics in digital communication systems and to provide students with up-to-date knowledge of the techniques used in digital communication systems including more advanced topics in digital wireless communication systems. This module covers channel modelling, coding, digital transmission through wireless channels, advanced error control techniques, spread spectrum, multi-carrier digital transmission (OFDM and MIMO), and their applications in wireless and cellular mobile communication systems.

Computer Networks
Introduces the terminology and concepts of system networks, using the OSI network model as the reference framework. Aims to produce an understanding of network structures and techniques, covering layered network architectures, protocols, process interconnection, system network modelling, routing and software implementation at various network layers. The reference framework is compared with common networks such as TCP/IP, IPX and NETBIOS and the technologies for bearer transmission services and related issues, including ISDN, SDH, ATM, frame relay, email, X400 and X500 are considered.

Communication Networks Security
This module introduces the fundamental theory that enables what is achievable through the use of security engineering and presents the practical techniques and algorithms that are currently important for the efficient and secure use of distributed/Grid computing systems. Topics include Introduction to Security Engineering, Classical Cryptography (Monoalphabetic and Polyalphabetic Ciphers, Transposition, Substitution, Linear Transformation), Computational Fundamentals of Cryptosystems (Computational Complexity and Intractability, Modular Arithmetic and Elementary Number Theory), Modern Symmetric Key Cryptography (Feistel Ciphers, DES, Triple-DES and AES), Public Key Cryptography (The Diffie-Hellman Key Exchange Algorithm, Public Key Infrastructures, X.509 Certificates, PK Systems such as RSA and Elliptic Curves), Multilevel Security (the Bell-LaPadula Security Policy Model, the Biba Model, the NRL Pump), Multilateral Security (Compartmentation and the Lattice Model, the Chinese Wall, the BMA Model), Protecting eCommerce Systems.

Network Design and Management
Introduces different network design methodologies and principles. Covers the needs to identify and resolve design issues with regards to networks and protocols. Provides network strategies and regulation policies. Considers how to design and manage networks of different types with respect to performance and requirements.

Network Computing
Introduces the use of Java object-oriented programming language for distributing peer to peer program design. Includes the use of databases (JDBC, SQL, XML/XQL), client/server systems, servlets and RMI.

Radio and Optical Communication Systems
Covers modern data transmission technologies starting from the component level and building up to complete system design, operation and management. Considers current and planned optical, satellite and mobile networks and services, as well as their integration into global systems.

Project Management
Introduces a range of formal methods and skills necessary to equip the student to function effectively at the higher levels of project management. Covers the need for the development of project management skills in achieving practical business objectives.

Research Methods

The aim of this module is to instil principles of good research practice and enable students to acquire skills to conduct scientifically-robust research with due consideration of engineering quality issues and environmental and health and safety risks:

  • To develop understanding of how research and development drives innovation in a business context and the mechanisms to protect intellectual property.
  • To develop student’s ability to plan their own research and learning activities, including for a piece of advanced research (the dissertation

Project and Dissertation


The course is accredited by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET). This will provide a route to Chartered Engineer status in the UK, if you have a qualifying first degree.

Information for international students

English Language Requirements •IELTS: 6 (min 5.5 in all areas) •Pearson: 51 (51 in all subscores) •BrunELT: 60% (min 55% in all areas)

Fees and funding

UK students
International students

Read about funding opportunities available to postgraduate students

Qualification and course duration


full time
12 months

Course contact details

Marketing and Recruitment Office
+44 (0)1895 265370