Do you have the ability to join the front line in defending computer networks from cyber attacks? Or are you interested in ethical hacking to probe the digital defences of major corporations?
On this BSc (Hons) Cyber Security and Forensic Computing degree course, you’ll turn your tech talent into a professional qualification, armed with a toolkit of knowledge and skills to tackle the toughest digital security challenges.
This degree could lead to a career in law enforcement or British Intelligence. You’ll be qualified to take on roles in cyber security, cryptography and forensic investigation.
What you'll experience:
- Build sought-after technical and investigative skills to break down security systems, and expose gaps in security when they occur
- Learn to identify cyber intruders, recommend security fixes, and stop hackers in their tracks
- Understand how to investigate cybercrime for the Police and the steps needed to take a case through to court
- Spend plenty of time in our high-powered computer labs, getting to grips with the latest tools and techniques
- Be taught by staff with years of experience and expertise in computer security, with teaching informed by up-to-date research into the latest advancements in forensic computing
- Apply your skills to practical problems as part of the department’s partnership with charities, local and global organisations
- Take advantage of opportunities to put your skills to work through our close relationship with the Hampshire Police High Tech Crime Unit
- Design and develop software, hardware and networks, in fields such as digital forensics and artificial intelligence
- Pick the brains of visiting speakers, who are experts in the forensic and cyber security field
Software and equipment you can use includes:
- a mobile computing lab to develop Android and iOS apps
- a pervasive computing lab for high-performance computing
- a usability lab including state-of-the-art eye tracking equipment
- Linux and Windows systems
- a forensics lab with professional-standard forensic tools
Work experience and career planning
On this course you'll have the oppurtunity to do an internship with Hampshire Police's High-tech crime unit on our campus.
Our Careers and Employability service can help you find relevant work experience during your course. We can help you identify placements, internships and voluntary oppurtunities that will complement your studies, build your CV and put your skills to the test.
What you'll study:
Each module on this course is worth a certain number of credits.
In each year, you need to study modules worth a total of 120 credits. For example, 4 modules worth 20 credits and 1 module worth 40 credits.
Architecture and Operating Systems – 20 credits- This module gives you an introduction to the underlying logical structure of computer systems and emphasises the logical and theoretical concepts that computing systems are physically constructed upon.
Core Computing Concepts – 20 credits- This module covers 4 foundational topics central to understanding computing science and developing computer systems.
Cyber Security and Forensic Computing – 20 credits- In this module you'll get an in-depth look at the way that cyber security and digital forensics intertwine.
Networks – 20 credits- In this module, you'll study the protocols used to develop and manage computer networks and data communications.
Programming – 40 credits- On this module, you'll study the theory and practice of computer programs, looking at algorithm development and object-oriented programming.
Ethical Hacking – 20 credits- In this module you'll identify vulnerabilities in a system and develop your own operating system build.
Forensic Fundamentals – 20 credits- In this module, you’ll develop your critical knowledge of the field of security and forensics and your analytical and problem solving skills through a combination of simulated and real-world scenarios.
Forensic Investigations – 20 credits- In this module, you’ll examine practical aspects of conducting forensic investigations by covering different general forensic tools, methodologies, common good practices and by stressing the importance of the professional presentation of the results.
Operating Systems And Internetworking – 20 credits- In this module, you'll study computer systems and internetworking (connecting various types of networks to create one large network) and consider how they support digital technologies.
Virtualisation and Cloud Computing - 20 credits- In this module, you’ll examine the concepts of virtualisation and cloud computing with a specific focus on the OpenNebula based solutions.
Cyber Law Governance and Human Rights – 20 credits- This module builds on the knowledge you gained on cybercrime in your first year and explores the law governing the different types of cybercrime, focusing on the UK with reference to international and EU legislative initiatives that impact on the UK.
Data Structures And Algorithms – 20 credits- In this module, you'll study and apply fundamental data structures such as lists, trees and graphs.
Industrial Placement – School of Computing – 20 credits- In this module, you’ll gain industrial and commercial experience during the placement year of a degree taken in sandwich mode, or while undertaking self-employment or starting up a business.
Learning from Experience – 20 credits- On this module you can gain credits from paid or unpaid work, volunteering, research placements, internships and other work-related learning including self-employment.
Learning from Experience Teaching Placement – 20 credits- On this module, you'll learn about general pedagogy as well as subject-specific methods and techniques for teaching modern foreign languages (MFL).
Network Servers and Services – 20 credits- This module introduces you to the core concepts essential for the management and administration of network servers and services in both Linux and Windows environments. You’ll develop the knowledge and practical abilities relevant to advanced networking in the information and communications technology (ICT) industry. Practical classes will equip you with important career skills such as critical analysis and team work.
Malware Forensics – 20 credits- In this module, you’ll examine the practical and theoretical aspects of conducting forensic malware investigations and reverse engineering of software.
Security And Cryptography – 20 credits- In this module, you'll study cryptography and the techniques of creating and breaking high security systems.
Vulnerability, Discovery and Exploitation- In this module, you’ll explore the tools and techniques that can be used to identify vulnerabilities in computing systems.
Advanced Networks – 20 credits- In this module, you'll study new theories and technologies in communication networks.
Final Year Study Project – 40 credits- In this module, you’ll produce a substantial individual piece of work using the skills and techniques appropriate to pathway, acquired throughout your degree.
Individual Project (Engineering) – 40 credits- In this module, you'll identify an engineering problem and produce an in-depth investigation into your chosen issue.
Practical Data Analytics And Mining – 20 credits- In this module, you'll learn how to design a data warehouse and analyse its contents using data mining techniques.
Security Management – 20 credits- In this module, you’ll develop your understanding of the value of corporate resources (such as data) and why it's at risk.
How you're assessed
You’ll be assessed through:
- critical evaluation essays
- written exams
- research projects
- mini projects
You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.
You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.
The way you’re assessed may depend on the modules you select. As a guide, students on this course last year were typically assessed as follows:
- Year 1 students: 27% by written exams and 73% by coursework
- Year 2 students: 52% by written exams, 3% by practical exams and 45% by coursework
- Year 3 students: 30% by written exams and 70% by coursework
Careers and opportunities
Police investigations and civil disputes increasingly involve investigations of computer systems, mobile phones or other information devices. So there's lots of demand for professionals in the field.
When you complete the course, you could work in private and public companies in areas such as law enforcement, cyber security and computer forensics. You'll also be able to register as a Chartered IT Professional (CITP).
What jobs can you do with a Cyber Security and Forensic Computing degree?
Roles our graduates have taken on include:
- security architect
- penetration tester
- cyber security analyst
- forensic investigator
- eDiscovery examiner
- software developer
You'll get advice and support from our Careers and Employability service throughout your studies, and for 5 years after you graduate.