MSci Computer Science and Mathematics

Duration4 Years
Typical offerA*AA-ABB; IB: 38-32
DisciplineComputer Science and IT
LocationTaught in Exeter Streatham (Exeter)


This programme is designed for students with an interest in both mathematics and computer science. It is taught by both mathematicians and computer scientists, with an equal split of modules between the two disciplines, covering the core elements of both subjects at the degree level.

Mathematics has long influenced the development of computer science, and the rapid growth of computing power has led to the development of techniques and algorithms which have in turn influenced the mathematics community, making this joint degree a natural combination. In addition graduates from the programme are well prepared for careers requiring either or both of the disciplines.

Programme structure

The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.

Year 1

The first year of this programme aims to give you a firm foundation in analytical methods and in the fundamentals of programming and computer systems.

Year 2

From your second year onwards, you’ll have a choice of optional modules which allows you to tailor your degree towards your preferences in Mathematics and/or Computer Science.

Year 3

In the third year, students on the Computer Science and Mathematics programme carry out an extensive computing research project, whilst those studying Mathematics and Computer Science will take at least 50 per cent of their final year credits in Mathematics.

Compulsory modules

Year 4

The 4-year MSci Computer Science and Mathematics programme provides the opportunity to study more advanced material and obtain a higher level qualification. The final year includes a substantial project involving elements of both Computer Science and Mathematics, as well as a range of advanced optional modules in the two subjects. Graduates of these programmes are able to tackle a wide range of problems, making them highly employable.

Entry requirements 2017

Typical offer

A*AA-ABB; IB: 38-32

Required subjects

GCE AL Maths grade B; IB Maths HL5
Candidates may offer GCE AL Maths, Pure Maths or Further Maths.

International students

International students should check details of our English language requirements and may be interested in our Foundation programmes.

Further information

Please read the important information about our Typical offer.

For full and up-to-date information on applying to Exeter and entry requirements, including requirements for other types of qualification, please see the Applying section.

Learning and teaching

We believe every student benefits from being taught by experts active in research and practice. You will discuss the very latest ideas, research discoveries and new technologies in seminars and in the field and you will become actively involved in a research project yourself. All our academic staff are active in internationally-recognised scientific research across a wide range of topics. You will also be taught by leading industry practitioners.

All our degrees involve a combination of teaching methods, including lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials. Most modules in mathematics involve three one-hour lectures per week, so you would typically have 12 lectures per week. In the first year there are tutorial classes for each module every week and example classes every fortnight, except for modules involving computing or project work. Thus in the first year you would typically have around 16 contact hours per week.

In addition to this, you are expected to spend about 20 hours per week in private study. The tutorials and exercise classes enable you to discuss the lecture material and coursework problems. Further support is available at lunchtime mathematics surgeries run by postgraduate students.  You are encouraged to discuss any mathematical problems or questions that may arise with the lecturer. All lecturers have advertised office hours when they are available to provide help. Working through examples and solving problems is a vital part of learning mathematics so coursework is set in each module.


Assessment for all degrees is through a combination of examinations and coursework. Examinations are the more important part of the process, but the assessed coursework will help you to work steadily throughout your degree. This is particularly important in Mathematics where the subject matter develops logically from fairly simple beginnings. Written examinations for mathematics modules are held in January and May/June of the first and second years and in May/June of each subsequent year. Most modules also have either a mid-term test or coursework contributing to the assessment.

Coursework typically contributes 20% to the assessment of all modules except in the final year of the MSci programme. In the third and fourth years several modules allow you to undertake further coursework to contribute to your overall degree classification.

You must pass your first year assessment in order to progress to the second year, but the results do not count towards your final degree classification.


Exeter has an excellent reputation with graduate recruiters and a strong employment record. Our graduates excel in specialist computer science fields and across a broad range of other sectors, as shown on our Graduate destinations web page.

We offer a very wide range of opportunities for you to develop the skills employers are looking for, including industrial placements and study abroad. Visit our Careers and employability webpages to find out more.

Mathematics has long influenced the development of computer science, and the rapid growth of computing power has led to the development of techniques and algorithms which have in turn influenced the mathematics community, making this joint degree a natural combination. In addition graduates from the programme are well prepared for careers requiring either or both of the disciplines.

There has never been a greater need for experts in computing. From the complex IT systems used in modern businesses to sophisticated online gaming experiences, computers are a familiar characteristic of the modern world. This makes for a fascinating range of careers that require the technical expertise of a computer scientist (someone who understands the science behind computer technology).

As an Exeter Computing graduate you may find yourself working with business IT systems, the web, mobile communications or games technology, or in the management and development of the safety-critical systems that control aeroplanes, trains and nuclear power stations.

During your time with us you’ll develop your problem-solving skills, your technical competence and your ability to analyse and reflect on issues relating to computer technology. These are essential skills whether you wish to work for a leading computing company developing new technologies, enter the world of business and finance, or if you would like to use your degree in a different role where you can use your abilities to analyse and solve problems.

Undergraduate students on the four-year MSci Computer Science and Mathematics can choose to take an optional Commercial and Industrial Experience module during the vacation before the third year. This module provides paid work experience in a commercial setting while earning credits towards your degree programme.

Contact us

Streatham Campus, Exeter

Phone: +44 (0)1392 724061

Website: Visit the Computer Science website