Computer Science MSc

London, Bloomsbury

Become a computer scientist in just one year through this conversion programme that will enhance your career prospects in a growing and innovative field. The Computer Science MSc teaches everything from programming to application engineering, while providing opportunities to create solutions for industrial or research clients. Taught at UCL, world renowned for computer science research, this is an exceptional place to build your foundations as a computer scientist.

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2024/25)
Overseas tuition fees (2024/25)
1 calendar year
Programme starts
September 2024
Applications accepted
Applicants who require a visa: 16 Oct 2023 – 05 Apr 2024

Applications closed

Applicants who do not require a visa: 16 Oct 2023 – 10 May 2024

Applications closed

Entry requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class UK Bachelor's degree (or an international qualification of an equivalent standard in a subject other than computer science or information technology. Evidence should be included within the application to demonstrate suitable mathematical skills (to at least Mathematics A-level standard), and analytical skills. Although, the programme is intended for those who are new to Computer Science, applicants must ensure they have standard computational thinking skills, as programming is a core part of the programme.

The English language level for this programme is: Level 2

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level.

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

Equivalent qualifications

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below. Please note that the equivalency will correspond to the broad UK degree classification stated on this page (e.g. upper second-class). Where a specific overall percentage is required in the UK qualification, the international equivalency will be higher than that stated below. Please contact Graduate Admissions should you require further advice.

About this degree

Computer science pervades almost every sector and industry today. Equipping yourself with the sought-after skills required to be a developer, software engineer, or related role places you in an exceptional position to thrive in the world of computing.

This programme is equally ideal for those who want to complement their existing scientific knowledge with computer science skills, or for those from different disciplines who want to switch career paths to work in this field.

In this programme, you will learn from renowned academics in computer science. The curriculum is based on the latest trends and is constantly updated due to the fast-paced developments in innovation and technology.

You will learn programming, application engineering, computer architecture and algorithmics. You can also choose from optional modules that range from interaction design to machine learning.

You will also undertake a substantial project, either working with a company to help solve a real-world problem, or with a research group at UCL Computer Science if you are interested in further research or academia.

This programme gives you key skills that will enable you to seek a career in a computer science field. Learning in the heart of London in an inclusive environment, you'll be alongside likeminded people from across the world.

Who this course is for

The programme aims to provide steppingstones to pursue a career in the computing or information technology sector or for further doctoral research.

The programme is ideal for you if you have a solid understanding of mathematics and want to blend your existing knowledge with computer science skills. Alternatively, you may want to move from another discipline towards a career in computer science.

The programme is not suitable for Computer Science graduates or equivalent. It is a conversion programme and therefore meant for graduates in non-computer science subjects wishing to develop a background in computer science.

What this course will give you

UCL is ranked 9th globally in the latest QS World University Rankings (2024), giving you an exciting opportunity to study at one of the world’s best universities.   

UCL Computer Science is recognised as a world leader in teaching and research. The department was ranked 1st in England and 2nd in the UK for research power in Computer Science and Informatics in the UK's most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF2021). You will learn from leading experts at the forefront of computer science innovation.

The comprehensive curriculum of this MSc means that you can become career-ready computer scientist within just one year.

The opportunity to work with an industry partner on a real-world project through the Department’s Industry Exchange Network (IXN) provides incredible hands-on experiences, which is particularly beneficial when applying for jobs.

The programme team takes an experimental approach to our subject, enjoying the challenge and opportunity of entrepreneurial partnerships, and placing high value on our extensive range of industrial collaborations.

The foundation of your career

Alumni from this programme have been employed by some of the world's leading IT companies and large private and public organisations, including Accenture, Barclays Capital, Credit Suisse, Twitter, and the NHS. Others have gone on to pursue further study or a career in academia.


The programme is designed to enhance career prospects through the study of fundamental computer science principles to complement your first-degree subject. This will prepare you to assume key interdisciplinary industrial positions and PhD research.

The programme also aims to give you the ability to take an analytical approach to solving problems and resolving issues, and to build positive working relationships. You'll not only learn to be a good team player, but also to manage and delegate to others and take on responsibility.


UCL is proud to support innovation and link our students and research directly to real-world business applications. From internships to solving complex problems with commercial partners, UCL Engineering has a collaborative, innovative spirit at its core.

As a student and later as a graduate, you will have access to a UCL Engineering careers events programme, connecting you with employers and alumni. This programme provides invaluable insight into the reality of different roles, sectors, and current application processes.

Entrepreneurial minds thrive at UCL. For example, UCL’s IDEALondon was the first innovation centre led by a university in London, and incubates companies post-seed to reach technical and business milestones. Our academic and industrial networks provide a safe and supportive environment to grow a company.

Teaching and learning

The programme’s core curriculum is typically delivered through a combination of lectures, tutorials, and lab classes, as well as directed and self-directed learning supported by teaching materials and resources, published through each module’s online virtual learning environment. Each module employs a teaching strategy that aligns with and supports its intended learning outcomes.

You will be assessed through a range of methods across the programme, which will vary depending on any optional or elective module choices. The programme’s core curriculum is typically assessed by methods including coursework, lab work, individual and group projects, class tests, written examinations, oral assessments, and, in all cases, culminating in a final research or industrial project/ dissertation.

Contact time takes various forms, including lectures, seminars, tutorials, project supervisions, demonstrations, practical classes and workshops, visits, placements, office hours (where staff are available for consultation), email, videoconferencing, or other media, and situations where feedback on assessed work is given (one-to-one or group).

Each module has a credit value that indicates the total notional learning hours a learner will spend to achieve its learning outcomes. One credit is typically considered equal to 10 hours of notional learning, which includes all contact time, self-directed study, and assessment.

The contact time for each of your 15 credit taught modules will typically include 22-30 hours of teaching activity over the term of its delivery, with the balance then comprised of self-directed learning and working on your assessments. You will have ongoing contact with teaching staff via each module’s online discussion forum, which is typically used for discussing and clarifying concepts or assessment matters and will have the opportunity to access additional support via regular office hours with module leaders and programme directors.

Your research project/dissertation module is 60 credits and will include regular contact with your project supervisor(s), who will guide and support you throughout your project. You will dedicate most of your time on this module to carrying out research in connection with your project and writing up your final report.


The Computer Science MSc is a one-year programme.

In term 1, you will study topics including programming, computer architecture, operating systems, algorithmics, and databases. These topics set the foundation for the whole degree, preparing you for further topics and for your research project/dissertation.

In term 2, you will study application engineering and choose from a range of optional topics, which may include functional programming, software engineering, entrepreneurship, and machine learning. You will also begin preparation for your final research project/dissertation.

In term 3, you will primarily focus on your final industrial or research project/dissertation, and any examinations that take place in the main examination period.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability are subject to change. Modules that are in use for the current academic year are linked for further information. Where no link is present, further information is not yet available.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded an MSc in Computer Science.


Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support and Wellbeing team.

Online - Open day

Graduate Open Events: Department of Computer Science

Join us for a live online information session to hear from Computer Science staff. We will cover areas such as the general admission process, careers support, and industry links/placements. There will also be an opportunity for you to ask staff and current students any questions you may have. Two sessions will run for this event. These sessions are the same and are repeated to cater to people in different time zones.

Fees and funding

Fees for this course

UK students International students
Fee description Full-time
Tuition fees (2024/25) £19,300
Tuition fees (2024/25) £37,500

The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Where the programme is offered on a flexible/modular basis, fees are charged pro-rata to the appropriate full-time Master's fee taken in an academic session. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website:

Additional costs

All full time students are required to pay a fee deposit of £2,000 for this programme. All part-time students are required to pay a fee deposit of £1,000.

Students will require a modern computer (PC or Mac) with minimum specifications 8GB RAM and 500GB SSD storage. A computer with the stated specifications is estimated to cost £500 or greater.

In addition, students interested in machine learning projects are strongly recommended to have a computer with a machine learning capable GPU e.g., NVIDIA RTX series.

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.

Funding your studies

For more information about funding opportunities for UCL Computer Science taught postgraduate programmes, please see the department's scholarships webpage.

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

UCL East London Scholarship

Deadline: 20 June 2024
Value: Tuition fees plus £15,700 stipend ()
Criteria Based on financial need
Eligibility: UK

UCL Friends & Alumni Association scholarship for Machine Learning

Deadline: 3 June 2024
Value: $20,000 (1 year)
Criteria Based on both academic merit and financial need
Eligibility: EU, Overseas

Next steps

Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at Application fees.

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver. Your application will be judged entirely on the evidence you provide.

Your personal statement should answer the following questions and should not be longer than one A4 size page:

Due to competition for places on this programme, no late applications will be considered. Students with visa requirements or applying for scholarships are advised to apply early.

Applications missing evidence such as (A-level in mathematics or equivalent, etc.) will not be processed unless completed before the closing deadline of applications.

If no A-level in mathematics has been obtained, the applicant’s CV should highlight that the university degree includes modules covering the content of an A-level in mathematics. For content, please refer to this this website.

We aim to give a decision within 6-8 weeks of a complete application being received (submitted, application processing fee paid, all evidence included, and both references returned.)

If you do not receive a response within 8 weeks, this means that your application is on a waiting list. If this is the case, you can either wait for a response to be made or withdraw your application via the online applicant portal.

The department receives an increasing number of excellent applications. Applying does not guarantee a place, as places are limited and the selection competitive.

  • How your academic and professional background meets the demands of this programme
  • What mathematics experience you have, to meet the requirements of the programme
  • What programming experience you have
  • Why are you interested in pursuing this MSc
  • Why you want to study Computer Science at UCL

Please note that you may submit applications for a maximum of two graduate programmes (or one application for the Law LLM) in any application cycle.

Got questions? Get in touch

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