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MEng (Hons) Computer Science with Cyber Security (with a year in industry)

Become a warrior in the fight to ensure people and systems are kept safe online and extend your skills with a year in industry

Year of entry: 2020

UCAS code


Institution code



5 years full-time

Typical offer

AAA (full entry requirements)

Start date

September 2020 (term dates)

UK/EU fees

£9,250 per year (2020/21)

International fees

£22,080 per year (2020/21)

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Cyber security covers concepts, policies, guidelines, tools and technologies used to protect the cyber environment, organisational assets and users.

Our integrated Masters helps you develop as a multi-skilled, highly competent practitioner. The course provides a solid foundation in computer science and cyber security, including coding, mathematics and basic engineering.

You will then undertake advanced training, informed by our world-class research, in topics such as secure systems, cryptography and forensic analysis, gaining a solid theoretical foundation to take full advantage of emerging new technologies.

You'll spend a year in industry, furthering your knowledge, networking and getting real-life experience.

On graduation, you’ll be prepared for a career in cyber security or related fields across industry and government.


We are currently seeking accreditation for this course from GCHQ. This application will be submitted once our first cohort of students has graduated (in 2022).

Research excellence

Our research ranked 7th overall in the UK and 5th for impact [Times Higher Education ranking of the 2014 Research Excellence Framework]

Quality teaching

Our staff are at the cutting edge of their fields and we maintain strong links with industry

Course content

All students will study our core topics in computer science, which we have designed to be consistent with the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) curriculum guidelines. These core topics provide the fundamental knowledge that all computer science graduates should possess, and the foundation to study more flexibly in the third and fourth years. The core topics are structured into eight streams:

  • Theory
  • Software
  • Systems and Devices
  • Data
  • Human-Computer Interaction (HCI)
  • Intelligent Systems
  • Engineering
  • Cyber security

Study abroad

There are opportunities for you to spend time abroad during your course:

Year 1

You will focus on establishing a solid foundation regardless of your previous experience of programming and computing.

Core modules

Academic integrity module

In addition to the above you will also need to complete our online Academic Integrity module.

Year 2

Year Two of the course will build upon the solid foundations you will have laid down in Year One. You’ll take modules from streams 1 to 5 to deepen your learning and start on two further streams studying intelligent systems and undertake a group engineering project. You should develop your interests which you will then begin to focus on in Year Three.

Core modules

  • Theory 3: Computational Complexity (10 credits)
  • Software 2: Functional Programming with Applications (10 credits)
  • Systems and Devices 2: System Software and Security (10 credits)
  • Systems and Devices 3: Advanced Computing Systems (20 credits)
  • Data 2: Data Analysis and Management (10 credits)
  • Human Computer Interaction 2: Interaction Design (10 credits)
  • Intelligent Systems 1: Search and Representation (10 credits)
  • Intelligent Systems 2: Machine Learning and Optimisation (20 credits)
  • Engineering 1: Introduction to Software and Systems Engineering (20 credits)

Year 3

You will spend this year out in industry if you successfully obtain a placement. You will be supported in achieving this by our dedicated Industrial Placement Coordinator, who is there to help you with your CV, give you interview tips, arrange interviews on campus, and visit you on placement to ensure everything is going well. We have excellent relationships with a strong portfolio of companies from large multinationals such as IBM and Airbus UK, to smaller companies such as YorkTest and Informed Solutions. 

Your year in industry gives you a chance to use what you have learned during your degree. As well as being paid a good salary, students who take a year in industry generally achieve better grades, develop a broader range of skills and are more attractive to future employers. Some students even find a job with their placement company before they graduate.

Find out more about a year in industry.

Year 4

When you return for Year Four, you will really get under the skin of the specialist areas which interest you.

Core modules

  • Project preparation
  • Individual project

You will also take modules covering the following stream:

  • Systems and Devices

Option modules

You’ll select options from topics related to Cyber Security, such as:

  • Privacy
  • Security
  • Attacks
  • Ethical use of data project

Additional options from a range of topics, such as:

  • Real-time systems
  • Embedded systems
  • Neural networks
  • Game AI
  • Machine learning
  • Probabilistic graphical models
  • Computer Vision
  • Specification, analysis and verification of systems
  • Computing by graph transformation

Year 5

In your final year, you will work on a team engineering project which will be designed in collaboration with industry partners and take modules which access departmental research at an advanced level.

Core module

  • Team engineering project

Option modules

You’ll select options from topics related to Cyber Security, such as:

  • Privacy
  • Security
  • Attacks
  • Ethical use of data project

Additional options from a range of topics, such as:

  • Intelligent agents
  • Evolutionary computing
  • Constraint programming
  • Critical systems
  • Model-driven engineering
  • Privacy and security
  • Quantum computing
  • Software testing

Please note, modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.

Learning by design

Every course at York has been designed to provide clear and ambitious learning outcomes. These learning outcomes give you an understanding of what you will be able to do at the end of the course. We develop each course by designing modules that grow your abilities towards the learning outcomes and help you to explain what you can offer to employers. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

  • Apply computational thinking to problems they encounter, using skills in problem analysis, representation and abstraction, and in algorithm selection, at different scales in complex situations, drawing on the foundations of computer science but with an awareness of current research issues and areas of commercial development.
  • Adapt to new technologies, languages, paradigms, terminologies and models as they become available, being confident to use cutting-edge techniques and tools in their practice, informed by self-directed study of current research and scholarship, and by awareness of open-source systems and tools.
  • Design and build computer-based systems to serve the needs of users and the commercial imperatives of an employer, with the most appropriate combination of software and hardware, by applying the theory and practice of programming and software engineering, while making effective use of the variety of physical implementations on which that software may be running.
  • Engineer secure systems that operate independently or in conjunction with other software systems by rigorous understanding of the problem domain by using skills from the whole breadth of Computer Science across all parts of the development lifecycle, with deeper skills in security.
  • Make immediate and effective contributions as part of multidisciplinary teams in industry, consultancy or education, by organising themselves to manage workloads, optimise resources and meet deadlines, using experiences from team projects.
  • Communicate and negotiate with technical and non-technical stakeholders about complex computational problems and their solutions in a clear and organised manner, with compelling and convincing arguments.
  • Operate as responsible Computer Science professionals, by maintaining awareness of key legal and ethical issues, appreciating how computers and technology can impact on society and the importance of risk management, and by continuing to expand and deepen their knowledge through critical engagement with the discipline.
  • Apply theoretical and practical knowledge of chosen areas of cutting-edge cyber security and available commercial technology to new or unfamiliar problems they encounter in employment or further study, and to communicate the results in a significant technical report or other appropriate medium.
  • Adapt to new technologies, languages, paradigms, terminologies and models as they become available, being confident to use cutting-edge techniques and tools in their practice, informed by self-directed study of current research and scholarship, by commercial awareness and by awareness of open-source systems and tools.
  • Make immediate and effective contributions as part of multidisciplinary teams in industry, consultancy or education, by organising themselves to manage workloads, optimise resources and meet deadlines, using experiences from team projects and appreciating how their own role relates to others and to the business of an employer or client.
  • Consider relevant legislation and procedures as they plan, perform and monitor their own work, while working to required commercial standards. 

Fees and funding

Annual tuition fees

UK/EU International
£9,250 £22,080

Additional costs

There are unlikely to be any mandatory additional costs associated with the course, although you may want to set aside £200 for optional photocopying and personal stationery over the duration of the course.

UK/EU or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK, EU or international student.

Fees for subsequent years

  • UK/EU: further increases within the government fee cap will apply in subsequent academic years. We will notify you of any increase as soon as we can.
  • International: fees for international students are subject to annual increases. Increases are currently capped at 2% per annum.

More information

For more information about tuition fees, any reduced fees for study abroad and work placement years, scholarships, tuition fee loans, maintenance loans and living costs see undergraduate fees and funding.


We'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2020/21 throughout the year.

We have a number scholarship opportunities available for students in 2018/19, including three IBM scholarships.

Living costs

You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.

Careers and skills

The move towards a digital economy creates demand for computer scientists and software engineers across a broad section of employers, so the skills you develop here will make you attractive to many organisations. Most of our graduates go into the field of IT/Computing, followed by Financial Services, some undertake further study (eg PhD) and others go straight into industry (for example working for IBM, BAE Systems etc).

Many of our graduates are employed by software and electronics industries, but the continuing expansion of the use of computers in commercial and financial operations means that you will be able to find employment in other industries - and here your sharpened numeracy and analytical skills will have prepared you well.

Read some profiles of our past students and find out how their degree from York helps them to do jobs in organisations as diverse as Mars Inc and Cancer Research UK. Other companies that York graduates have gone on to work for include BAE Systems, Morgan Stanley, G Research, Thales, the Civil Service, M&G Investments, Ubisoft, Rapita Systems, Sky, BT, Raspberry Pi, IBM, JP Morgan, Hut Group and Automaton Games.

Computer Science graduates can expect to earn nearly £40,000 after five years in employment (Longitudinal Education Outcomes Dataset).

Career opportunities

  • Computer Programmer
  • Software Engineer
  • Software Developer
  • Business Analyst
  • Research Scientist
  • Network Manager
  • IT Systems Manager

Transferable skills

At York, you will gain a broad understanding of all of the essential scientific principles, engineering techniques and practices in Computer Science. This allows you to be flexible and adapt quickly in any field that you wish to go into. More specifically, we can identify four main skill areas as follows:

  • Analytical skills. The ability to approach problems analytically, and to design structured solutions. Laboratory modules will help you to develop skills of data analysis, design and implementation. You will also be introduced to a wide range of modern software development tools and techniques.
  • Research skills. Throughout the course you will be given opportunities to learn research skills. These culminate in a major final year project where you will research a problem, identify the key issues, produce a critical assessment of the relevant literature, and generate a new solution.
  • Management skills. You will have the opportunity to learn about the techniques, concepts and theories used in project management, and gain experience of putting them into effect.
  • Communication skills. Communication skills are invaluable. You will have the opportunity to develop these skills through, for example, oral and written presentations, in both formal and informal settings. At the end of the course, you will be confident and competent in communicating your knowledge and skills to a wide range of audiences.

Entry requirements

Qualification Typical offer
A levels

AAA including Mathematics

Access to Higher Education Diploma We accept the Access to Higher Education Diploma. The syllabus must contain a significant portion of Mathematics that is considered equivalent to A level standard. Applications will be considered on an individual basis - please contact the Department before you apply.
BTEC National Extended Diploma DDD and grade A in A level Mathematics (or equivalent qualification). We consider applicants with a combination of other BTEC Level 3 qualifications, and this must include grade A in A level Mathematics (or equivalent qualification). Please contact us to discuss your combination of qualifications.
Cambridge Pre-U D3/D3/D3 including Mathematics
European Baccalaureate 85% overall, including at least 80% in Mathematics
International Baccalaureate 36 points overall, including grade 6 in Higher Level Mathematics
Other qualifications We welcome applications offering a mix of OU, A level and other appropriate qualifications. Applications will be considered on an individual basis: please contact the Department before you apply.

We require a qualification in a physical science; for example, a GCSE at grade 4 (C) or above in Physics or Double Science, or Science and Additional Science.

English language

If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:

Qualification Minimum requirement
IELTS 6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in each component
PTE Academic 61, with a minimum of 55 in each component
GCSE/IGCSE/O level English Language (as a first or second language) Grade C
C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency 176, with a minimum of 169 each component
TOEFL 87 overall, with a minimum of 21 in Listening, 21 in Reading, 21 in Speaking, 21 in Writing
Trinity ISE III Merit in all components

For more information see our undergraduate English language requirements.

If you've not met our English language requirements

You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.

The length of course you need to take depends on your current IELTS scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.

After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.


To apply to York, you will need to complete an online application via UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service).

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