Internet of Things (IoT): Introduction to Understanding and Designing IoT Systems

  • 150 hours
  • 4 days teaching, 3 hour tutorial, (optional) assignment


This four-day course is designed to provide an introduction to the 'internet of things' (IoT) for postgraduate students with some background in electronic engineering (or related subjects).

It aims to give you:

  • a solid grounding in the key technologies involved and how they're integrated to form complete IoT systems
  • an understanding of how the internet of things fits within the wider context of the ICT industry

It's run by UCL's Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering.

Who this course is for

The course is aimed at postgraduate students who already have:

  • a background in electronic engineering or a related subject
  • an understanding of basic networking
  • some software (coding) experience

You don't need any pre-requisite qualifications to take this course, although a basic understanding of engineering mathematics will be beneficial.

Course content

The course has a significant practical content: 50% of the time will be spent on practical lab exercises, involving IoT system design and software development.

It's broadly divided into two parts:

  1. development in the cloud
  2. development at the edge

It's assumed that you'll already have a basic familiarity with coding (in any language).

1. Development in the cloud

This part of the course makes use of the IBM Bluemix cloud data analytics platform and Node-RED visual tool for wiring together hardware devices.

These tools use a graphical user interface and training will be provided.

The underlying programming languages for these tools are JavaScript and HTML (though prior knowledge of these languages is not required).

2. Development at the edge

For this part of the course, familiarity with functional C/C++ programming would be useful since these languages are used to configure the sensors and edge-computing platforms.

An example of a programming environment used for this part is Energia by Texas Instruments.

Structure, certificates and assessment

The course runs over four days, followed by a three-hour tutorial and an optional assessment.

A certificate of attendance will be issued on completion for those who take the module but not the assessment.

If you take and pass the assessment you'll get a certificate stating this, which includes your pass level.

Benefits of UCL's Electronics and Electrical Engineering CPD courses

You can take this course as a standalone (one-off) course/module, or accumulate it towards a Master's degree (up to two standalone modules can be transferred towards the flexible Master's degree).

Benefits to the employee
The programme offers the opportunity for professional people working in the telecommunications industry to develop their career, be able to respond to changes in their environment, and learn while they earn. It's also designed to give you the opportunity of working towards an MSc qualification from an academic institution whose quality is recognised world-wide.

Benefits to employers
Our flexible CPD courses enhance staff motivation and assists in the recruitment and retention of high-quality staff. It enables your company to keep ahead of the competition by tapping into world-leading research, and to profit from UCL’s world class Telecommunications and Business expertise.

Learning outcomes

On completion of this course, you should be able to: 

  • explain the definition and usage of the term 'the internet of things' in different contexts
  • understand where the IoT concept fits within the broader ICT industry and possible future trends
  • understand the various network protocols used in IoT
  • be familiar with the key wireless technologies used in IoT systems, such as WiFi, 6LoWPAN, bluetooth and ZigBee.
  • understand and be able to explain the role of big data, cloud computing and data analytics in a typical IoT system
  • design a simple IoT system made up of sensors, wireless network connection, data analytics and display/actuators, and write the necessary control software
  • build and test a complete working IoT system

Course information last modified: 18 Jun 2018, 16:33