Course specification and structure
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PMCNCSWE - MSc Computer Networking and Cyber Security with Work Experience

Course Specification


Validation status Validated
Highest award Master of Science Level Masters
Possible interim awards Postgraduate Diploma, Postgraduate Certificate
Total credits for course 200
Awarding institution London Metropolitan University
Teaching institutions London Metropolitan University
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Subject Area Communications Technology and Mathematics
Attendance options
Option Minimum duration Maximum duration
Full-time 18 MONTHS  
Part-time Day 36 MONTHS  
Full-time (January Entry) 24 MONTHS  
Course leader Haralambos Benetatos

About the course and its strategy towards teaching and learning and towards blended learning/e-learning

This unique course prepares graduates for a career in the areas of Computer Networking and Cyber Security, by bringing together opportunities to learn and develop skills and knowledge in the academic environment and the real work environment, through completing a six month work experience programme. The combined development of subject specific and work place related know-how is highly sought by the employers, and this will open up a wide range of career opportunities to the students within the IT industry, and will provide them the necessary competitive advantage. The course may appeal to practising consultants aiming to consolidate their skills and knowledge and achieve formal academic recognition.

The course has been designed to have a well-balanced coverage of Computer Networking and Cyber Security. There are 4 core modules; two in Networking and two in Cyber Security. There are a further 4 optional modules; two of which are related to Networking and two are in Cyber security. Students must select one from each of the options in each semester.

The course is supported by a number of specialised laboratories in general electronics, Microwave and Satellite communications, Advanced Networking and Cyber Security. Students in each of the specialized modules spend a considerable part of the module in these laboratories providing an opportunity to practice what they learn in the formal lecture/seminar session to investigate, design and implement, evaluate and test and document a variety of real-world examples in Networking and Cyber Security. These sessions are performed individually or as part of a group.

In addition, the University was one of the first Cisco Academy in UK. It is equipped with four up-to-date Cisco laboratories supporting CCNA, CCNP, Security and Wireless laboratories.

Tutorial exercises and short phase tests are used to provide candidates with feedback on their progress. Summative assessment of students’ knowledge base and their understanding is incorporated into formal in-course tests/exercises/case studies and a final unseen examination.

Students have access to the innovative Graduate centre to meet and discuss their courses. The campus library has recently undergone a successful refurbishment offering specialised group study areas as well as access to a comprehensive range of textbooks, journals and online learning resources. There are also open areas on the ground floor of the Tower building and the green lounge at Benwell Road offering open study areas. These areas all have access to IT facilities with several terminals at each one.

All students joining the programme will be encouraged to become Student Members of the Institute of Engineering & Technology (the IET). The membership provides students access to one of the largest on-site and on-line library in the world as well as automatic invitation to seminars/conferences in the areas of their course. Students have access to number of professional on-line lectures in specialized areas of Networking and Cyber Security. The membership also enables students to be automatically transferred to the class of Member of the IET, once they are graduated from the course. Being a member of the IET has significant merits both in academia and in the industry. It provides students with the opportunity to become eligible for the Charted Engineering (CEng) Status after a few years of work experience.

Course aims

Main educational aims of the course
1. to provide students with an in-depth understanding and knowledge of the principles of and developments in computer networking and Cyber Security.
2. to integrate and work effectively in a real enterprise environment undertaking business roles and working on specific projects related to design and management of Computer Networking and Cyber Security.
3. to provide students with knowledge of analytical and practical techniques for evaluating, planning, designing and implementing a variety of secured computer networks in different applications.
4. to provide students with an in-depth knowledge and appreciation of the importance and the necessity of network and Cyber Security.
5. to develop the practical and theoretical skills essential for professional secured network designed to adapt to a rapidly changing technology.
6. to enable students to research, design and critically appraise specific systems.
7. to provide an awareness of the newly developing opportunities in computer networking and Cyber Security.
8. to allow students to acquire knowledge appropriate to their interests and career, complimenting and enhancing the knowledge, skills and professional perspectives from their previous education and work related experience.
9. to understand the strategic process for deployment and implementation of Cyber Security within a small to large scale organization.
10. to allow students to acquire knowledge appropriate to their interests and career, complimenting and enhancing the knowledge, skills and professional perspectives from their previous education and work related experience.
11. To understand and critically discuss the professional, legal and ethical, economical and global environmental issues and their impact relevant to computer networking and Cyber Security.
In addition, the work experience element of the course:
a) allows the students to combine academic experience with work experience
b) allows the students to select dissertation topics, which are directly related to their work experience thus making the most of the final project
c) allows the students to increase their carrier prospects
d) extends the relationship between the employers, the teaching staff and the students which in turn provides an invaluable feedback from industry and creates new opportunities for potential collaboration

Course learning outcomes

knowledge and understanding:

  1. Comprehensive knowledge of selecting the most appropriate devices to provide industry standard solutions to practical networking and security issues.
  2. Critically evaluate the performance of a current Networking and Security systems and design high performance secure networks with consideration to the future needs of business.
  3. Apply advanced tools and techniques that may be used when developing and managing computer networks and Cyber Security systems, and apply these in real world situations.
  4. Critical awareness of current issues in networking technology and new and future developments.
  5. Discuss the professional, legal and ethical, economical and global environmental issues through the development of Networks, Security and their impact.
  6. Undertake a six months agreed work experience programme within the IT industry, avail the opportunity to forge links with employers and colleagues within the sector, and enhance both personal and professional development.

cognitive intellectual skills:

  1. Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of current and future techniques/technology used to increase the capabilities of computer networks.
  2. Select appropriate analysis and design procedures to solve problems in creative and innovative manner and apply those solutions in a real world situations.
  3. Deal with Cyber Security issues both systematically and creatively.
  4. Analyse, specify, design, implement and evaluate the performance behaviour of various computer network scenarios and apply these in real world situations.
  5. Assess critically published academic papers and produce original work of a standard and in a form suitable for publication.

transferable skills including those of employability and professional practice:

  1. Critically and systematically apply knowledge and skills to real applications in the workplace thereby enhancing employability and career prospects.
  2. Use initiative and take responsibility to plan, organise and implement a programme of work.
  3. Communicate effectively orally and in writing to specialists and non-specialist audiences.
  4. Think critically in respect of their own and others’ work.
  5. Demonstrate operational effectiveness, both as an independent learner and as a team member, in a supervised work environment, through completion of tasks to clients’ requirements and timelines.

subject-specific practical skills:

  1. Select and use appropriate computer based tools for analysis and synthesis.
  2. Select, configure and use appropriate test equipment.
  3. Locate and retrieve appropriate information from electronic sources.
  4. Apply both the theoretical and practical knowledge gained in the work experience programme, solely or as a part of a team.

Principle QAA benchmark statements

Course design is informed by the

QAA: Benchmark Statement for Engineering
http://www.qaa.ac.uk/en/Publications/Documents/SBS-consultation-engineering.pdf

“Subject Benchmark Statement Master’s Degrees in Computing” 2011.
http://www.qaa.ac.uk/en/Publications/Documents/SBS-Masters-degree-computing.pdf

Assessment strategy

A range of assessment methods is employed throughout the course. The method of assessment for each module is clearly described in the individual ‘Module Guide’ which is made available to the students at the start of the semester. Every module has dedicated Web site providing students with comprehensive learning/teaching material including Workshops exercises. Module leaders use this site regularly to communicate with their students including providing general feedback, guidelines on how to write technical report/ effective presentations and keeping logbooks. Modules employ a combination of the following forms of assessments:

  • Case study reports and presentations
  • Laboratory workbooks/logbooks
  • Unseen examinations
  • Part seen examinations
  • Individual viva

External speakers from relevant industries/professional Institutes (such as IET) are invited when possible to deliver lectures. The Communications Technology is a member of University Academy of a number of companies (such as Xilinx, ARM, Texas Instruments, Digilent and Cisco) and therefore the workshops and hands-on elements of the modules apply some of the most up to date technologies to enhance the relevant topics covered during the lecture/seminar sessions.
The details of the workshops and the way each module is assessed are described in the individual module specification.

The student report on work experience will enable students to reflect on the knowledge and skills gained in the course in preparation for the MSc Project which is a significant artefact (requirement and detailed specification).

Organised work experience, work based learning, sandwich year or year abroad

The course provides students with an opportunity to undertake work experience in the Computer Networking and Cyber Security at postgraduate level. The work experience spans over two semesters and is underpinned by the taught element of the course in order to further enhance students’ skills relevant to their world of work and their career aspirations.

This Work Experience may take one or a combination of the following:

  • Students will be encouraged to find their own work placements in the public and private sector in the first instance.
  • Students may be placed in suitable employment at the university and will be required to apply for work experience at the university.
  • Students may be placed in suitable employment in the voluntary sector
  • The World of Work (WoW) Agency in the School of Computing may find suitable projects for the students.
  • Students may undertake a WoWbiz project which would typically entail an individual student or a team of students working on a real project which has been specified by a business

Students will be prepared for work experience over a 6 week period. The actual work experience will cover a period of 6 months followed by an appraisal, critical reflection and review period of 2 weeks

The work experience forms an integral part of the degree and will be assessed formally by the academic supervisor. It is an important part of the student's education that they spend an appropriate time in work with a view to establishing good professional practice that will enrich their learning and prepare them for the world of work.

Students will have the work experience approved, before they take up the opportunity. It is essential that students are made aware that both the work experience and the relevant “health and safety checklist” where applicable need to be approved before starting.
Support and advice will be given to students by their academic supervisor. The academic supervisor will be able to identify appropriate forms of work experience, consult a local employers’ database for prospective work experience and direct students to the careers team at Student Services for further help and advice in seeking employment.

Course specific regulations

Students must undertake core and optional modules (as outlined in the course structure, Sec 27) to the value of 200 credits to receive the award ‘MSc Computer Networking and Cyber Security with Work Experience’.

Modules required for interim awards

All core modules, two of the optional modules plus the Work Experience and MSc project must be completed and passed for the award of the MSc.

“PG Diploma Computer Networking and Cyber Security with Work Experience” is awarded following the successful completion of any combination of modules to the value of 120 points which must include FC7W06 Work Experience.

“PG Diploma Computer Networking and Cyber Security” is awarded following the successful completion of any combination of modules to the value of 120 points which do not include FC7W06 Work Experience.

“PG Certificate Computer Networking and Cyber Security with Work Experience” is awarded following the successful completion of any combination of modules to the value of 60 points which must include FC7W06 Work Experience.

“PG Certificate Computer Networking and Cyber Security” is awarded following the successful completion of any combination of modules to the value of 60 points which do not include FC7W06 Work Experience

Arrangements for promoting reflective learning and personal development

Research and Development Skills will be embedded in all core modules. It is during these core modules that students are expected to select their project. Students are also assigned to their project supervisor(s) and together with the MSc project module leader, students undergo a process of evaluating their knowledge, managing, leading, evaluating, reasoning, and reflecting upon their learning, and ethically undertaking their project work. Candidates will be required to develop a personal development portfolio.

Arrangements on the course for careers education, information and guidance

The resources of the Careers Service are available to all Students, who, as Postgraduates, may already be pursuing defined career goals. Students are also made aware of the advantages of IET membership (special membership seminars are organized by IET early at the start of the semester), its careers information and the employment opportunities advertised in its publications.
The Faculty ’s World of Work (WOW) Agency offers opportunities to enhance employability skills, gain real experience and 'earn while you learn' through placements into real client-driven projects - working with business and industry.

Other external links providing expertise and experience

The followings external links provide experience and support:

  • Cisco Academy: A number of modules in the course are linked to the Cisco CCNA certification as shown in the course structure. Students follow the same curriculum and final examinations offered by Cisco. The specific learning outcome of the course/modules are also covered and assessed by in-house practical work shop examinations and forms part of the assessment for each of the modules.
  • ILG (Industrial Liaison Group) and the Communications Technology Research Group: Changes and modification to the course is also discussed with the relevant members in ILG and the research group to ensure the appropriateness of the course contents.

Professional Statutory and Regulatory Body (PSRB) accreditations & exemptions

Successfully pass this course and you will receive Cisco accreditation.

Career opportunities

You could enjoy a career as a network engineer, network manager, network security and cyber security consultant, crime and computer forensic or network security professional.

Entry requirements

You will be required to have:

  • a 2:2 UK degree (or equivalent) in electronics and communications, computer science, computing or a closely related discipline (applicants with relevant professional experience will also be considered)

All applicants must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. Applicants who require a Tier 4 student visa may need to provide a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.

Official use and codes

Approved to run from 2015/16 Specification version 1 Specification status Validated
Original validation date 11 Jan 2016 Last validation date 13 Jan 2016  
Sources of funding HE FUNDING COUNCIL FOR ENGLAND
JACS codes I120 (Networks and Communications): 100%
Route code CNCSWE

Course Structure

Stage 1 Level 07 September start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
CC7177 Cybercrime and Cyber Security Core 20 NORTH AUT TUE AM
CC7178 Cyber Security Management Core 20 NORTH SPR TUE AM
CT7154 Network Routing Protocols Core 20 NORTH AUT    
CT7155 Switched Networks Core 20 NORTH SPR FRI AM
FC7P01 MSc Project Core 60 NORTH SPR WED PM
          NORTH AUT WED PM
FC7W06 Work Experience Core 20 NORTH SPR+SUM    
          NORTH AUT    
CC7179 Digital Forensics Option 20 NORTH AUT TUE PM
CC7180 Security Auditing and Penetration Testing Option 20 NORTH SPR TUE PM
CT7156 Network Troubleshooting Option 20 NORTH AUT    
CT7157 Hardening Network Infrastructure Option 20 NORTH SPR FRI PM

Stage 1 Level 07 January start Offered

Code Module title Info Type Credits Location Period Day Time
CC7177 Cybercrime and Cyber Security Core 20        
CC7178 Cyber Security Management Core 20 NORTH SPR TUE AM
CT7154 Network Routing Protocols Core 20        
CT7155 Switched Networks Core 20 NORTH SPR FRI AM
FC7P01 MSc Project Core 60 NORTH SPR WED PM
FC7W06 Work Experience Core 20 NORTH SPR+SUM    
CC7179 Digital Forensics Option 20        
CC7180 Security Auditing and Penetration Testing Option 20 NORTH SPR TUE PM
CT7156 Network Troubleshooting Option 20        
CT7157 Hardening Network Infrastructure Option 20 NORTH SPR FRI PM