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Software and Electronic
  Systems Engineering

Software and Electronic Systems Engineering

Degrees and
The Subject
Careers and
Further Study


Software and Electronic Systems Engineering (4-yr sandwich)  (UCAS Code: GH67)
Software and Electronic Systems Engineering  (UCAS Code: GH6P)

Software and Electronic Systems Engineering (5-yr sandwich)  (UCAS Code: GH68)
Software and Electronic Systems Engineering  (UCAS Code: GH6Q)


For entrance requirements
T: +44 (0)28 9097 3838

For course information

Dr Karen Rafferty
School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
T: +44 (0)28 9097 4280


  • A-level
    BBB including Mathematics and either a Science subject (Biology, Chemistry, Computing, Design/Technology, Electronics, Geography, ICT or Physics) or Double Award Applied Science.

  • BTEC National Diploma
    A relevant BTEC National Diploma with 10 Distinctions and 8 Merits. Distinctions will be required in stipulated relevant units.

  • Higher National Diploma
    Those with good grades in a relevant Higher National Diploma will be considered on their individual merits for entry to Stage 2.

  • Irish Leaving Certificate
    B2B2B2B2CC/B2B2B2B2B2 including Higher Level grade B2 in Mathematics and a Science subject (see list under A-level requirements).

  • A-level
    AAB including Mathematics and at least one from Biology, Chemistry, Computing, Design/Technology, Electronics, Geography, ICT or Physics.

  • Irish Leaving Certificate
    AB2B2B2B2B2 including Higher Level grade A and B2 in any order in Mathematics and a Science subject (see list under A-level requirements).

Option to Transfer
Transfers between BEng and MEng may be possible at the end of Stage 2. 

For students whose first language is not English
An IELTS score of 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each test component or an equivalent acceptable to the University. For further information on other acceptable qualifications click here

The School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science is one of the few research-led university departments in the UK that can offer a truly integrated degree at the fast-moving interface between Software and Electronics disciplines. Here we have an excellent reputation, with Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Queen’s ranking seventh in the UK in the Guardian University Guide 2010.

Almost all of modern life is based on devices, systems and communications that are built on the interaction between software and electronics. It is the combination of these two topics that has fuelled advances in both the everyday, such as games consoles and smartphones, and the specialist, such as tagging and surveillance systems, smart vehicles and life-saving medical implants. The impact on our society, security, and safety and well-being will continue to grow dramatically.

This new and innovative course is designed to address the need for entrepreneurs, inventors, leaders and technologists that will create, discover, engineer and exploit the next generation of products and systems for our rapidly changing world. This is reflected in the course structure with design projects at all stages and a special emphasis on experiential learning and discovery. It also allows graduates to focus on one or more of three themes, depending on their chosen options. These are electronic security, connected health and pervasive systems. The latter theme is concerned with interconnected embedded microprocessor systems and sensors that will help build the future ‘internet of things’.

This is an enhanced engineering Honours course and, for suitably qualified students, normally takes three years of full-time study. It consists of the fundamentals of software, electronics, communications, programming and processors. Special emphasis is placed on individual and team design projects and the latest developments in systems and technology.

The BEng course is also offered incorporating a sandwich year in industry. This professional experience year is usually taken after Stage 2 and students may gain a Licentiateship of the City & Guilds from this period of work. Transfer from the BEng course to the MEng course is possible at the end of Stage 2 or Stage 3, subject to satisfactory performance.

Stage 1
Circuits and Communications
Design Projects
Electronic Circuits and Devices
Embedded Systems

Stage 2
Advanced C++
Data Structures and Algorithms
Design Projects
Digital Systems
Signals, Systems and Sensors

The two remaining modules are chosen according to students’ interests and aspirations (refer to programme specification).

Stage 3

In Stage 3 all students are required to complete an Individual Project module and to take a module in Professional Studies. The other four modules are chosen from a wide range of options covering the full spectrum of topics in electronics and software. Specialist modules are available in the three thematic areas of Connected Health, Computer Vision and Pervasive Systems.


This four-year extended degree course is designed to provide a supply of uniquely well-qualified graduates who will become future industry and business leaders. It is structured to ensure that graduates will have an appropriate blend of knowledge and skills in Electronics and Software with business practice and management. The first three years are common with the BEng course. The MEng is also offered incorporating a sandwich year in industry as per the BEng programme.

Stage 4

A key focus of Stage 4 is the compulsory Industrial Project and Design Projects modules. The remaining three modules are selected from a wide range of research-based modules available within the School from Wireless Sensor Networks to Rigorous Software Design and Media Security.

The School has a world-class reputation for research and, as a result, has attracted funding to provide excellent facilities for use by our undergraduate students. Major new research centres have been established in Secure Information Technologies, Electronics, Communications and Information Technology and Sonic Arts close links to the research expertise of these centres.

Highly-skilled graduates with experience of both software and electronics are extremely sought-after locally, nationally and internationally. There are excellent well-paid career prospects across a wide spectrum: design, research, development, production, marketing and sales in areas such as avionics and space, telecommunications and broadcasting, connected health and medical electronics, consumer electronics and gaming, computing and software, embedded systems and electronic security.

Graduates from these courses will be well equipped to undertake research or further study in a wide range of Electronic Engineering or Computer Science fields, including the School’s new Masters in Computer and Electronic Security and Advanced Wireless Communications.


Staff Testimonials

"Software and Electronic Systems Engineering is an exciting new course that will meet the demands of the emerging global internetworked digital economy. No longer will students need to decide between studying computer science or electronic engineering. This unique course will produce a new breed of highly-skilled and highly sought after entrepreneurs and innovators who will be the architects of our electronic future."

- William Scanlon, Professor of Wireless Communications