BSc Computer Graphics, Vision and Games (inc Integrated Industrial and Professional Training)

The information on this page relates to September 2016 entry. For 2017 information, including grade requirements, please check our prospectus.

BSc Computer Graphics, vision and Games students at a show and tell event

Computer vision, image processing, graphics, games and visualisation have become significant areas within computer science. Technical developments in academia and industry and availability of data capture devices are helping to generate a strong demand for specialist computer science graduates in these areas. Specific applications include games development, movie special effects, image understanding, geometry processing, computer aided design, additive manufacturing, phenotyping of crops, digital preservation of historical relics, automatic driving, and industrial quality control. Researchers from Aberystwyth have been active in all these areas. The degree scheme in Computer Vision, Graphics, and Games offers a sound grounding in the underlying technologies as well as vocational skills that include programming, operating systems, software design, information search and query, data analysis and classification.

Overview

The terms ‘Computer Graphics, Vision and Games’ cover a wide range of topics within the computing industry and the modern world. While computer games are the most well-known aspect of this area, what many people do not know is the underlying complexity of a relatively simple application. This course focuses on the programming aspects of various techniques and also on how visual data can be obtained, processed, interpreted, visualised and applied. You will gain a firm foundation in computing skills such as programming, software design, data storage, analysis and classification. You will also learn specialised skills in the areas of vision and graphics, and interact with related areas of study such as intelligent agents and mobile computing.

Why study Computer Graphics, Vision and Games with a year in industry at Aberystwyth?

The Computer Graphics, Vision and Games degree allows you to study all the general Computer Science core modules, while also focusing specifically on vision, graphics and how games are developed and programmed. You will be required to take three modules in your second year and another three in your third year that relate specifically to vision, graphics or games, in addition to necessary supporting programming modules. This may be supplemented with modules in robotics and artificial intelligence. In addition, your final year project, on which you spend a third of your time, will be in the area of Computer Graphics, Vision or Games and will be supervised by a member of staff whose research is in this area.

A year-long paid industrial placement (with substantially reduced fees simply to cover supervision and marking) is an incredible boost to your CV. You will come back for your final year clearer about your goals and with an improved set of skills and some money in your pocket. The department helps you to obtain a placement in several ways: in the first year you work on producing a professional quality CV that can be further tuned by the careers service, one of our administrators contacts employers to organise advertisements and interview opportunities, and a second year weekend away gives you the opportunity to practice interview with real employers. Many students find that their industrial year employer offers them a position after graduation.

Since your degree will cover the main areas of Computer Science, you will be eligible for general jobs in industry, government bodies, charity, universities or research institutes, as well as those specifically targeted at vision, graphics and games.

Computer Science at Aberystwyth

Our computer science degrees are accredited by the British Computer Society (BCS) on behalf of the Engineering Council, which means that they meet industry standards and requirements, giving you a head start when you enter the competitive jobs market.

The Department is also designated a Centre of Excellence by the Welsh Assembly Government’s Department of Enterprise, Innovation and Networks and in the most recent Research Excellence Framework comparison (REF2014) the Department produced more world-leading (4*) and internationally excellent (3*) research than any other university in Wales. REF 2014 also assessed the impact of research on society, industry and government policy and the Department delivered 100% of its research impact at the top 3* and 4* level, demonstrating that our research makes a real difference in the world outside academia.

We are particularly proud that Times Higher Education (THE) ranked the Aberystwyth Computer Science department as 11th in the UK and 1st in Wales based on an analysis that takes into account both the research quality profile and the proportion of staff submitted. This is a good indicator of the research activity in a department irrespective of its size, and, with 99% of eligible staff submitted, indicates that you will be taught by staff who are working at the frontiers of their disciplines. Many staff also and have significant experience in industry, often working in co-operation with major international companies, so you can be confident that you will be learning the very latest concepts and working with cutting-edge technologies.

As you would expect from a major research department, you have access to excellent facilities. In addition to Windows PCs across campus for everyone, students in our department have access to dedicated Linux and Mac OS X laboratories and central servers. The Department has a range of equipment and simulation environments used primarily for research, which are available to final year students who choose projects in these areas. These include mobile and aerial robots, vision and motion tracking systems, micro-controller systems and laser scanners.

The department also prides itself on the employability of our graduates. Students may take a year in industry as part of their course. All students participate in a fun-packed activity weekend away from Aberystwyth in the first year which helps to develop important team-building and team-working skills. This will not only make you more attractive to employers, but will also pave the way for working on group projects later in your course.

Our Staff

Almost all of the Department of Computer Science Lecturers and Teaching Fellows are qualified to PhD level, and those who are not have considerable research or industrial experience. All new Lecturers and Teaching Fellows are required to obtain the PGCTHE, and hence are Senior Fellows or Fellows of the Higher Education Academy. The department also employs a number of part time demonstrators and tutors and some student demonstrators, who are selected from our undergraduate and postgraduate students. Research fellows and research assistants (mostly PhD qualified) may also be involved in delivering occasional teaching when it is appropriate.

Course Content

Welsh medium modules available

Please note: The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery during the next academic year and may be subject to change. They are included here to give an indication of how the course is structured.

Year 1 Core (60 Credits) The following modules are core

Semester 1

Introduction To Computer Infrastructure CS10220

Semester 2

Problems And Solutions CS10720

Web Development Tools CS15020

Year 1 Options You MUST take one of the following modules

Semester 1

Datblygiad Proffesiynol A Phersonol CC18010

Professional And Personal Development CS18010

Year 1 Options You MUST take one of the following modules

Semester 2

Rhaglennu Gan Ddefnyddio Iaith Gwrthrych-gyfeiriadol CC12320

Programming Using An Object-oriented Language CS12320

Year 1 Options You MUST take one of the following modules

Semester 1

Cyflwyniad I Raglennu CC12020

Introduction To Programming CS12020

Year 1 Electives Up to 10 credits as advised by the Department.

Semester 1

The Mathematics Driving License For Computer Science CS10410

Functional Programming CS12510

Computational Thinking CS12910

Chaos, Communications And Consciousness PH19510

Year 2 Core (60 Credits) You must take the following modules:

Semester 1

Modelling Persistent Data CS27020

Semester 2

Applied Graphics CS24320

Artificial Intelligence CS26520

Year 2 Options You MUST take ONE of the following modules

Semester 1

Dylunio Rhaglen, Strwythurau Data A Algorithmau CC21120

Program Design, Data Structures And Algorithms CS21120

Year 2 Options You MUST take ONE of the following modules

Semester 2

Cylch Bywyd Datblygiad Meddalwedd CC22120

Software Engineering CS22120

Year 2 Options 20 credits as advised by the Computer Science Department.

Year 3 Core (120 Credits) On your compulsory Sandwich year your registration will be as follows

Semester 1

Sandwich Year CSS0000

Sandwich Year CSS0100

Semester 2

Sandwich Year CSS0060

Sandwich Year CSS0160

Final Year Core (50 Credits) You must take the following modules:

Semester 1

Advanced Computer Graphics CS32310

Computer Vision CS34110

Machine Learning CS36110

Semester 2

Professional Issues In The Computing Industry CS38220

Final Year Options You MUST take ONE of the following projects:

Semester 2

Prosiect Hir CC39440

Major Project CS39440

Final Year Options You must take a further 30 credits from Computer Science

Employability

Career prospects 

A degree in Computer Graphics, Vision and Games will prepare you for a variety of careers in software design, games development, communications and networking, computer applications, web development, IT consultancy and management, systems analysis and development, computer sales and marketing. Following further study, you could also consider teaching or research. 

Transferable Skills

Studying for a degree in Computer Graphics, Vision and Games will equip you with a range of transferable skills which are highly valued by employers. These include: 

• research and data analysis skills

 • effective problem-solving and creative thinking skills

 • the facility to deal with abstract concepts

 • a thorough grounding in information technology skills

 • the ability to cope with rapid technological changes

 • numeracy 

• the ability to work independently 

• time-management and organisational skills, including the ability to meet deadlines 

• the ability to express ideas and communicate information in a clear and structured manner, in both written and oral form 

• self-motivation and self-reliance 

• team-working, with the ability to discuss concepts in groups, accommodating different ideas and reaching agreement 

Industrial Year and Year in Employment Scheme (YES)

Some of our degree schemes include an Industrial Year (IY), which offers you a fantastic opportunity to take a year out between your second and third year to work in an organisation in the UK or overseas. For the schemes that do not include an assessed industrial year, the University operates an optional Year in Employment Scheme (YES). The IY and YES provide a very rewarding and worthwhile experience, both personally and professionally, and can help you to stand out from the crowd in a very competitive job market.

Help is available from the department and the University's Careers Service to find suitable placements and to develop your interview skills and CV. Our students are in demand with employers such as IBM, HP, Gloversure and Plymouth Marine Laboratories. Industrial year employers are diverse and worldwide, including CERN, Walt Disney and GCHQ.

By the end of your second year you already have enough knowledge and understanding to make a substantial contribution at work. Most students find they return from their industrial year with much improved skills, more motivated to learn, and having a better idea of what areas of computing interest them.

GO Wales 

GO Wales is administered by the University’s Career Service, working with local businesses to create paid work placements of a few weeks’ duration for students. It gives you the opportunity to gain valuable work experience which will enhance your CV and make you more attractive to potential employers.

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

What will you learn?

This course is a four-year full-time course which includes integrated industrial and professional training in the third year.
In the first year, you will be introduced to operating systems, programming, software development, and web development technologies, and no prior knowledge is necessary.
In the second year you will study core modules such as data structures and algorithms, various programming languages, database design, image processing, and user interfaces. All students participate in the Software Development Lifecycle module which includes a group project where, taking one of the roles which exist in industry, such as project manager, designer, or quality assurance manager, you will produce a working software product, following best current industrial practice at every stage.
Your third year will be spent in employment in industry. The Department and the University's Careers Service will provide assistance to help you find a suitable placement and to develop your interview skills and CV. By the end of your second year you will already have enough knowledge and understanding to make a substantial contribution in the workplace, and we find that our students return from their industrial year with improved skills and a greater sense of motivation.
In your final year, you will study machine learning, computer vision and advanced computer graphics. You will also complete a major individual project developing a piece of software in an area of particular interest to you. For many students this is the highlight of the entire course.

How will you be taught?

You will be taught by enthusiastic staff through a complementary set of teaching and learning methods and approaches, ranging from formal lectures, seminars and tutorials to practicals and individual and group-based project work.
You will be assessed through a combination of coursework, practicals, projects, workshops and examinations.

Your personal tutor

You will be assigned a personal tutor throughout your degree course, who will help you with any problems or queries, whether these are academic-related or personal issues. You should feel free to contact them at any time for help and advice.

Student Views

I find the course really interesting. The content is relevant and I've found the abilities I've gained have made finding a suitable industrial year placement a lot easier. I feel that I'm learning skills useful and applicable to my future in the industry! Gideon Jones

The industrial year gave me experience which I would have otherwise not been able to acquire. Having studied in a foreign language school, I came with no programming experience at all. In the past 4 years, I can safely say that I have not just become a programmer, but also a software engineer. The facilities provided by the university offer an excellent opportunity to practise the material taught in the lectures. Georgi Tanev Atanasov

Key Information Set

Key Facts

UCAS Code: G451

Tariff Required: 280

Entry Requirements: GCSE: Grade C in English or Welsh. Grade C in Mathematics.

Course Length: 4 Years

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