Software Engineering

Gain Chartered IT Professional status

Star Course Overview

Why take this course?

Software engineering is at the foundations of the majority of today’s modern businesses.

On this course you will acquire knowledge and skills in the key areas of existing and emerging software techniques. It will ensure that you develop a holistic view to software development, so that you are able to understand that success comes from integrating several software technologies against a business's defined system need.

What will I experience?

On this course you can:

  • Apply your skills to real-life practical problems as part of the department’s partnership scheme with local and global organisations
  • Use our fully equipped multi-platform suites and computer labs to enhance your learning experience
  • Design and develop your own piece of software, hardware, or network system as part of your final project

What opportunities might it lead to?

The effective use of software engineering is increasingly seen as vital to industry and commerce. You will be fully equipped to find employment as a professional software engineer within information systems environments.

Accredited by BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT for the purposes of fully meeting the further learning academic requirement for registration as a Chartered IT Professional (CITP). This course also partially meets Engineering Council's academic requirement for registration as a Chartered Engineer (CEng).

Dean Chimezie, MSc Software Engineering student 2013

I like the practical and hands-on approach to all the units.

Dean Chimezie, MSc Software Engineering student 2013

Key Facts

1 year full time, 3 years part time
A second-class honours degree or equivalent, which includes some element of Software Development/Software Engineering. English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5

UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students
2016/17 entry: full time: £5,200, part time: £1,730 p/a*
2017/18 entry: full time: £5,200, part time: £1,730 p/a*

Full-time course is eligible for Government Postgraduate Loan
Part-time course is not eligible for Government Postgraduate Loan

International students
2016/17 entry: full time: £13,700, part time: £4,570 p/a*
2017/18 entry: full time: £14,400, part time: £4,800 p/a*

*Tuition fee is subject to annual increase.

View tuition fee terms and conditions
View additional course costs

+44 (0)23 9284 5566
School of Computing
Programme specification
Accreditations & Endorsements

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Light bulb Structure & Teaching

During the course you will study topics oriented toward working with modern software technologies within realistic development environments. The main subject areas covered are advanced programming, web and mobile application development, requirements engineering and project management. You’ll also undertake a substantial project.

Here are the units you will study:

  • Advanced Programming Skills for the Web: You will learn a number of advanced system development skills, focusing on how they can be applied to the development of web applications.
  • Software Project Management: This unit covers the process and managerial issues of producing complex software.
  • Formal Approaches to Software Development: Rigorous approaches to requirements engineering, system specification and system development will be explored and applied in this unit.
  • Mobile Application Design and Development: This unit aims to give you the knowledge and skills required to design, implement and evaluate applications for mobile computing devices.
  • Master’s Project: You will also undertake a substantial project where you will apply the skills and knowledge from the taught part of the course to a practical software engineering problem, often supplied by local businesses or other external clients.

Teaching and Assessment

You will be taught using a combination of formal lectures, tutorials and lab sessions. You’ll also be required to spend a significant amount of time in private study, which may involve additional software development or research as appropriate to the topic you are currently studying.

How are you assessed?

You will encounter a range of assessment styles depending on the content and nature of the unit topic. This can include written assignments and presentations as well as group and individual lab-based assessments. However, the most significant assessment element is the final dissertation, which reports and reflects on your final project.

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Monitor Facilities & Features

Specialist Software and Equipment

A full range of industry software will be available for you to use in the computer labs, supported by multi-platform network suites offering a variety of operating systems. You’ll have a range of excellent resources at your fingertips, including:

  • mobile computing lab to develop Android and iOS apps
  • pervasive computing lab for high performance computing
  • usability lab including state of the art eye tracking equipment
  • Linux and Windows systems
  • forensics lab with industry standard forensic tools

Tutor Centre

A one-stop academic help and support resource for all School of Computing students. Need help understanding your assessments? Want to talk to someone about your project or about a programming problem? This is the place to go.

Maths Café

Drop in any time and get one-to-one help with that tricky maths or stats problem. With handouts on key topics to take away and computer-aided learning packages, we can get the problem solved and help you improve your numeracy skills.

University Library

Modern, comfortable and a great learning environment, our library offers a wealth of information including 400,000 books, DVDs, maps and thousands of online ejournals and newspapers. Many electronic resources are available anywhere, 24/7 and our friendly staff are always on hand to help.

We subscribe to the Association of Computer Machinery (ACM) Digital Library, which will give you access to full text articles from leading computing and computer science journals.

Nkem Nzemeke, MSc Software Engineering student 2013

The mobile laboratory is one of the best I've seen. The practicals are based on real-life scenarios which are great and we also benefit from speakers from top mobile companies.

Nkem Nzemeke, MSc Software Engineering student 2013

Budgeting for your studies

There may be extra costs arising from your studies which you will need to consider when planning your expenditure.

Some are common costs to all courses of study. These may include the cost of study texts, reference books, photocopying and computer supplies. Others relate to specific courses and may include field trips, materials and specialist equipment.

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Mortarboard Careers & Opportunities

Career prospects

On completing this course, you can expect to find employment in software development, either at the systems or application levels, where high-level professional skills are a prime requirement. You may find work as software professionals in corporate settings on modern computer and network installations, or alternatively, there are many opportunities to work in specialist software houses working in the rapidly growing area of mobile or hand-held devices.

You can also use the course as a route to an academic career by undertaking research study leading to a PhD, with the aim of eventually becoming a university lecturer or researcher.

Career planning

One of the benefits of studying at Portsmouth is the support that we provide to our Master's and Research Degree students in career planning. Our careers and recruitment service can assist you in career research and finding employment opportunities. Help is also available if you wish to find a part-time job while studying your degree.

We offer our postgraduate students and alumni one-to-one appointments with a careers adviser, or an online service for those not able to travel back to the University. Our alumni can call on our career services for five years after graduation.

In addition, regular employability events offer you the chance to meet employers, find out about different career sectors and improve your applications or CV. The Graduate Summer Programme provides a range of guidance and employability seminars and workshops.

Benefits of Postgraduate Study

Regardless of whether you are seeking to build on your studies, further your career or pursue a career change, a postgraduate qualification adds to your achievement record.

  • Postgraduate study may greatly improve your chances of getting that first break.
  • Many graduate employers prefer the higher intellectual rigour displayed in postgraduate students.
  • Recruiters for roles requiring specialist knowledge or research particularly target those with higher level qualifications.
  • Postgraduate study shows you can take the challenge of in-depth study; acquiring transferable skills in team working and problem solving techniques.
  • If you have a passion for a particular subject, postgraduate study can also be something undertaken as part of your own development at an appropriate time in your life.
Bola Adeyeye, MSc Software Engineering student 2013

I would like to be a solution provider, delivering tactical support and effective solutions in achieving various IT objectives as benefited from my year in industry.

Bola Adeyeye, MSc Software Engineering student 2013

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Apply now

Online application form

Apply direct using our online form

Your application will be received by the University Admissions Centre for consideration.

Postgraduate Information Days

Our Postgraduate Information Days give you the opportunity to visit the University and meet with course leaders. You can also go to a range of academic and support-based talks to get the information you need to consider when studying at postgraduate level with us.

Our Postgraduate Information Days for 2017 entry are:

  • Wednesday 1 March 2017, 1pm - 5pm
  • Wednesday 26 April 2017, 1pm - 5pm
Book now

Other opportunities to visit

Download our free walking tour PDF for a self-guided tour of the University. You can visit Monday to Friday between 8.30am and 4pm.

We have an open-door policy so you will be able to take a look in our buildings, speak to some of our support services and get a feel for the campus.

Find out more about our self-guided walking tours

If you are unable to visit us, contact the admissions team – see the 'Key Facts' section above for contact details.

Further information

If you have any further enquiries about postgraduate study at Portsmouth, including advice on the Postgraduate Loan entry, plus scholarships and bursaries available, visit our postgraduate pages.

International Students

Staff from our international Office regularly attend overseas exhibitions. To find out more about these and our visits to your region see our International Office exhibitions page.

Fees and Funding

Find out more about fees and funding available to you at Portsmouth.