Software Engineering with Digital Technology Partnership (BENG) G606 | Courses | Queen's University Belfast
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BEng | Undergraduate

Software Engineering with Digital Technology Partnership

Entry year
Entry requirements
4 years (Full Time)
UCAS code
Placement Year
  • Overview

    This is a degree apprenticeship. Those applying to the programme will be employed as an apprentice of a
    leading technology employer and will combine traditional university study with work-based learning.

    Without software engineering, you wouldn’t be reading this page. Software innovation has transformed the way we think about, and interact with, technology. In fact, all the forms of communication, interaction and access that we take for granted today are made possible by software in some shape or form. Which is why the demand for software engineers has never been greater.

    From improving the efficiency of the apps we use in order to make them more sustainable, to developing scalable and secure app infrastructure, Software Engineers have skills that drive innovation. In essence, they are problem solvers with the ability to take an existing software system and creatively refine, enhance and transform it into something even better.

    This degree programme is designed to equip you with the analytical, reasoning and practical skills required to design, develop and deploy large software systems. It blends the best knowledge and skills from both Software Engineering and Computer Science. Graduates could find themselves working on a wide variety of projects, from industry disrupting apps to Internet connected devices, lifesaving smart medical implants to consumer space travel.

    Developed through very close partnerships with key employers, the degree apprenticeship is designed to combine the analytical, reasoning and practical skills learnt in a typical university degree with key industry attributes like collaboration, teamwork and workload management which they will need to succeed as professional software engineers. As a degree apprentice, you will be employed as an apprentice at a leading technology company for the duration of your traditional University based study.

    Software Engineering with Digital Technology Partnership Degree highlights

    Industry Links

    • Our computing courses are well established and are closely aligned with the needs of employers. Over the last decade, we have enabled thousands of graduates to succeed as professionals within the technology sector.

      Northern Ireland has an excellent international reputation for the quality and supply of its software engineers. Indeed many companies, both national and international, have opted for Northern Ireland as a base for their computing divisions in recognition of the high quality of graduates produced by the local universities.

      Given this situation, it is not surprising that our graduates have had unparalleled job opportunities over the years, both locally and internationally. Because of the achievements of Queen's graduates already in the software engineering profession, a Software Engineering degree from Queen's is a highly respected qualification.

      Employers, from large multinational firms to small local organisations, actively target our students, recognising that Queen's Software Engineering graduates are equipped with the skills they need. On graduating the majority of graduates take up posts associated with software design and implementation. Opportunities exist in fields as diverse as finance, games, pharmaceuticals, healthcare, research, consumer products, and public services - virtually all areas of business.

      The types of career open to Software Engineering graduates include: Software Developer; Systems Analyst; Web Designer; Games Developer; Programmer; IT Consultant; Project Manager.

    Career Development

    • As a degree apprenticeship this programme provides the opportunity to get ‘hands on’ experience from day one. Students will develop close working relationships with their employer and have the opportunity to assist on and lead projects within their specialism.

    World Class Facilities

    • Our courses are delivered within a recently constructed, start-of-the-art facility that provides access to hundreds of modern computers alongside a diverse and flexible range of individual and group study spaces.

    Student Experience

    • Other than a providing a high-quality education, we also run a wide range of extra-curricular events that expose our students to emerging technologies and provide an opportunity to explore how technology can be used to tackle important problems.
    Rebekah Kane (Computer Science for Levels 1 and 2, however switched to Software Engineering for final year)

    Attraction to QUB
    I went to secondary school in Belfast and we had an open day at QUB in sixth year, which really opened my eyes to how many opportunities are available to you when you study at Queen’s, especially for students like myself who have an interest in studying abroad.
    I was also really impressed with the development plans for the Computer Science Building, which opened at the start of my second year of uni. The resources available within the building are fantastic and events run weekly which allow students to connect with future employers.

    Positive experience during studies
    Personally, my placement year stands out as the most positive experience I have had throughout my degree. I worked with the Renault Formula One Team in Oxfordshire for nine months within their IT department, and it was a fantastic opportunity to network within an industry I would like to work in once I graduate. Through studying at QUB I also had the opportunity to partake in a two month placement in Zhuhai, China, which was an amazing experience and makes me stand out to perspective employers.

    My placement was with the Renault F1 Team in Enstone, Oxfordshire. I spent nine months there working as an IT analyst, helping users with various tech problems they were experiencing. My placement year was probably the highlight of my time at Queen’s, as it has opened doors for me within an industry that many believe to be out of reach. I was lucky enough to work alongside some of the best minds in the business, as well as the F1 drivers and the media.

    Engaging in extracurricular activities
    I studied French at A-Level but had forgotten much of it by the time I finished my first year of university, so this year I signed up for post-GCSE and A-Level French classes. Through this I have met so many people who have the same interests as me and I feel not only much more confident at the language but also more involved in the wider QUB community.

    One piece of advice for EEECS applicant
    I wasn’t entirely sure whether or not I should study Computer Science at university, but it has opened more doors for me than I could have imagined. If you are the kind of person who is good with numbers and logic but also likes to be creative, then this is the course for you. I didn’t study IT based subjects at GCSE or A-Level – my A-Level subjects were Maths, Chemistry, Biology and French – but by approaching concepts like programming with an open mind and using the support systems within the EEECS community that are available, I am on course to graduate with a 2.1 in a highly desirable degree.

    Going forward
    Once I graduate in June, my plan is to travel for a few months before returning to the world of F1 for the 2021 Season.

    If you had a time machine, and could go back to your first day at Queen’s, what would you do differently? (if anything!)
    The best bit of advice that I can give to freshers is to talk to people at your induction – making friends on the first day is the easiest way to do it as everyone is in the same boat. I didn’t know anyone on my course on that first day, but it’s been four years and I still sit with the same girls I befriended on day one.

    Brexit Advice

    Information on the implications of Brexit for prospective students.

  • Course content

    Course Structure

    Course contentThe degree teaches the fundamental principles of Software Engineering together with the necessary skills, tools and techniques to enable our graduates to succeed as professional software engineers. In the first two years of the programme, apprentices will develop a broad technology foundation that will underpin later learning. During the final two years of the programme, apprentices will flexibly combine specialist university modules with employer-based work experience.

    The programme contains the following themes which may change due to the nature of the IT Industry and keeping up with industrial trends:
    Year 1Apprentices will establish a solid foundation in:
    • Programming
    • Computer Architecture and Networking
    • Databases
    • Software Engineering
    • Rigorous Problem-solving
    Year 2Apprentices will build their foundational knowledge to include more:

    • Software Development Processes and Practices
    • Software Engineering
    • Information Modelling
    • Computer Architectures and Networking
    • Data Structures and Algorithm Analysis
    • Professional Computing Practice

    In addition to establishing a solid foundation in the above area, apprentices will also develop though on-the-job learning with their employer outside of term-time (for example, working with their employer over the summer months).
    Year 3 / 4In Year 3 and Year 4 of the programme, apprentices will study a number of modules that will permit them to develop specialism in key areas of software engineering. Currently this includes the following options:

    • Data Analysis and Visualisation
    • Artificial Intelligence and Advanced Data Analytics
    • Agile and Lean Software Development
    • Machine Learning
    • Advanced Computer Architecture
    • Concurrent Programming
    • Software Design Principles and Patterns
    • Information System Security
    • Secure Software Design
    • Malware Analysis
    • Software Testing
    • High Performance Computing
    • Software Engineering Project

    Apprentices will complete one semester of University study in both Year 3 and Year 4. The remaining time will be devoted to on-the-job learning with their employer.

    People teaching you

    T: +44 ())28 9097 4669 E:

    Contact Teaching Times

    Large Group Teaching9 (hours maximum)
    hours of lectures
    Personal Study24 (hours maximum)
    Small Group Teaching/Personal Tutorial6 (hours maximum)
    hours of practical classes, workshops or tutorials each week

    Learning and Teaching

    The School has a world class reputation for research and provides excellent facilities, including access to major new research centres in Secure Information Technologies, Electronics, Communications and Information Technology and Sonic Arts. A number of modules on the course are closely linked to the research expertise of these centres and evolve and change rapidly to reflect some of the current, emerging and exciting developments in the field.

    At Queen’s, we aim to deliver a high quality learning environment that embeds intellectual curiosity, innovation and best practice in learning, teaching and student support to enable student to achieve their full academic potential.

    On the Software Engineering with Digital Technology Partnership degree we do this by providing a range of learning experiences which enable our students to engage with subject experts, develop attributes and perspectives that will equip them for life and work in a global society and make use of innovative technologies and a world class library that enhances their development as independent, lifelong learners. Examples of the opportunities provided for learning on this course are:

    • -
      Additional Information

      Students have access to a wide range of computers (laboratories are equipped with several hundred PCs) and specialised software packages. Networks link the School and University computers to powerful machines in Great Britain.

      The course emphasises the professional and practical application of software engineering. As such, students are encouraged to build strong links with local software engineering companies through employer involvement within projects, lectures and other forms of teaching contact.

      E-Learning technologies

      Information associated with lectures and assignments is often communicated via a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) called Queen’s Online. A range of e-learning experiences are also embedded in the degree through, for example: interactive group workshops in a flexible learning space; IT and statistics modules; podcasts and interactive web-based learning activities; opportunities to use IT programmes associated with design in practicals and project- based work etc.


      Introduce basic information about new topics as a starting point for further self-directed private study/reading. Lectures also provide opportunities to ask questions, gain some feedback and advice on assessments (normally delivered in large groups to all year group peers).

      Peer Mentoring

      Queen’s runs a peer mentoring scheme for Computing students – a group of students from all year groups (except first year) are trained to provide support for the 1st year students, in terms of offering advice and guidance, organising social events etc. The School also has a Computing Society (QCS – Queen’s Computing Society) who organise a range of activities, including social events and more formal activities such as industry lectures, for all Computing students. A games club also meets once a week and this is open to all computing students in the School (not just those studying for the games degree).

      Personal Tutor

      Undergraduates are allocated a Personal Tutor who meets with them on several occasions during the year to support their academic development.


      Where you will have significant opportunities to develop technical skills and apply theoretical principles to real-life or practical contexts. Comprehensive demonstrator support is provided – typically one demonstrator per 8-10 students.

      Projects and teamwork

      A number of modules throughout the degree will use supervised projects as a means of enabling you to put your technical understanding into practice. The extensive use of team based projects from first year will provide you with the opportunity to develop skills widely used by employers. In final year, you will be expected to carry out a significant piece of research on a topic or practical methodology. You will receive support from a supervisor who will guide you in terms of how to carry out your research and will provide feedback to you.

      Self-directed study

      This is an important part of life as a Queen’s student when important private reading, engagement with e-learning resources, reflection on feedback to date and assignment research and preparation work is carried out.


      A number of modules will make use of seminars/tutorials (typically 10-20 students). These provide an opportunity for students to engage with academic staff who have specialist knowledge of the topic, to ask questions of them and to assess their own progress and understanding with the support of peers. You should also expect to make presentations and other contributions to these groups.

      Work placements

      A student taking this programme can spend a year gaining professional experience in industry in a paid full-time post. Students are helped to obtain suitable places and the School has excellent links with over 500 local, national and international employers such as Microsoft, Liberty IT, Kainos, IBM,Deloitte, BT, Citi Group, SAP and Dell. It is expected that students will gain a Licentiateship of the City and Guilds from this period of work experience.


    Details of assessments associated with this courses are outlined below:

    • The way in which you are assessed will vary according to the Learning objectives of each module. Some modules are assessed solely through project work or written assignments. Others are assessed through a combination of coursework and end of semester examinations. Details of how each module is assessed are shown in the Student Handbook which is provided to all students during their first year induction


    As students progress through their course at Queen’s they will receive general and specific feedback about their work from a variety of sources including lecturers, module co-ordinators, placement supervisors, personal tutors, advisers of study and peers. University students are expected to engage with reflective practice and to use this approach to improve the quality of their work. Feedback may be provided in a variety of forms including:

    • Feedback provided via formal written comments and marks relating to work that you, as an individual or as part of a group, have submitted.

      Face to face comment. This may include occasions when you make use of the lecturers’ advertised “office hours” to help you to address a specific query.

      Placement employer comments or references

      Online or emailed comment

      General comments or question and answer opportunities at the end of a lecture, seminar or tutorial.

      Pre-submission advice regarding the standards you should aim for and common pitfalls to avoid. In some instances, this may be provided in the form of model answers or exemplars which you can review in your own time

      Feedback and outcomes from practical classes.

      Comment and guidance provided by staff from specialist support services such as, Careers, Employability and Skills or the Learning Development Service.

      Once you have reviewed your feedback, you will be encouraged to identify and implement further improvements to the quality of your work.
  • Entry Requirements

    Entrance requirements

    BBB including Computing, Mathematics or Software Systems Development + GCSE Mathematics grade C
    ABB including Chemistry, Digital Technology, GCE A-level ICT (not Single Award Applied ICT), Physics, Technology and Design or Double Award Applied ICT + GCSE Mathematics grade C.
    Irish Leaving Certificate
    H3H3H3H3H4H4/H3H3H3H3H3 including Higher Level grade H3 in Mathematics
    H3H3H3H3H3H3/H2H3H3H3H3 including Higher Level grade H3 in Chemistry or Physics + Ordinary Level grade O4 in Mathematics.
    BTEC Level 3 Extended/National Extended Diploma
    A relevant QCF Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma (180 credits), with 100 credits at Distinction grade and 80 credits at Merit grade + GCSE Mathematics grade C/4.

    A relevant RQF Level 3 BTEC National Extended Diploma (1080 Guided Learning Hours (GLH)), with at least 540 GLH at Distinction grade (minimum 240 GLH to be externally assessed) and 540 GLH at Merit grade + GCSE Mathematics grade C/4.
    Access/Foundation Course
    Successful completion of Access Course with an average of 65-70%. Must be relevant Access Course (eg: Mathematics and Computing). GCSE Mathematics grade C or equivalent in Access Course.
    Please note that the course is open only to applicants who are Northern Ireland, Great Britain or European Union for tuition fees purposes.

    Applications will be academically assessed by the Admissions and Access Service. Academically eligible applicants will be asked to complete a supplementary form agreeing to share information with the employer. Applicants will then be invited to take part in the employer selection process from which the final successful candidates will be chosen.

    Applicants who are not shortlisted for an offer to this course will automatically be considered for entry to the BEng Software Engineering degree.

    Selection Criteria

    In addition, to the entrance requirements above, it is essential that you read our guidance below on 'How we choose our students' prior to submitting your UCAS application.

    Applications are dealt with centrally by the Admissions and Access Service rather than by the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. Once your application has been processed by UCAS and forwarded to Queen's, an acknowledgement is normally sent within two weeks of its receipt at the University.

    Selection is on the basis of the information provided on your UCAS form, which is considered by a member of administrative staff from the Admissions and Access Service and, if appropriate, the Selector from the School. Decisions are made on an ongoing basis and will be notified to you via UCAS. However, offers will not be processed until after completion of all assessment centres.

    For entry last year, applicants must have had, or been able to achieve, a minimum of five GCSE passes at grade C or better (to include English Language and Mathematics), though this profile may change from year to year depending on the demand for places. The Selector also checks that any specific entry requirements in terms of GCSE and/or A-level subjects can be fulfilled.

    Offers are normally made on the basis of three A-levels. Two subjects at A-level plus two at AS would also be considered. The offer for repeat candidates is normally the same as the offer for first time applicants. Grades may be held from the previous year.

    Applicants offering other qualifications, such as Edexcel National, the International Baccalaureate, Irish Leaving Certificate or an Access course, will also be considered. The same GCSE profile is usually expected of those candidates offering other qualifications.

    For applicants offering a relevant HNC, the current requirements are successful completion of the HNC with two Distinctions and remainder Merits.

    Applicants offering relevant Foundation Degrees and Higher National Diplomas will be considered on an individual basis for entry to Stage 1. Please note that advanced entry to this course is not possible.

    The information provided in the personal statement section and the academic reference together with predicted grades are noted but these are not the final deciding factors in whether or not a conditional offer can be made. However, they may be reconsidered in a tie break situation in August.

    A-level General Studies and A-level Critical Thinking are not normally be considered as part of a three A-level offer and, although they may be excluded where an applicant is taking four A-level subjects, the grade achieved could be taken into account if necessary in August/September.

    If you cannot find the information you need here, please contact the University Admissions and Access Service (, giving full details of your qualifications and educational background.

    International Students

    For information on international qualification equivalents, please check the specific information for your country.

    English Language Requirements

    An IELTS score of 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each test component or an equivalent acceptable qualification, details of which are available at:

    If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this degree programme, INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for admission to this degree.

    As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, we will be offering Academic English and Pre-sessional courses online only from June to September 2020.

    • Academic English: an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level
    • Pre-sessional English: a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English.

    International Students - Foundation and International Year One Programmes

    INTO Queen's offers a range of academic and English language programmes to help prepare international students for undergraduate study at Queen's University. You will learn from experienced teachers in a dedicated international study centre on campus, and will have full access to the University's world-class facilities.

    These programmes are designed for international students who do not meet the required academic and English language requirements for direct entry.

    INTO - English Language Course(QSIS ELEMENT IS EMPTY)

  • Careers

    Career Prospects

    Employment Links
    As this is a degree apprenticeship, by applying for this course you will also be applying for a job with a leading technology employer. If you are accepted onto the course, as an apprentice, you will receive a salary to cover your university study and the on-the-job learning. In addition to this, you will not have to pay any student fees.

    At the end of the degree apprenticeship you can look forward to receiving a highly regarded software engineering degree from Queen’s University alongside career progression opportunities with your employer.

    Additional Awards Gained(QSIS ELEMENT IS EMPTY)

    Prizes and Awards(QSIS ELEMENT IS EMPTY)

    Degree plus award for extra-curricular skills

    In addition to your degree programme, at Queen's you can have the opportunity to gain wider life, academic and employability skills. For example, placements, voluntary work, clubs, societies, sports and lots more. So not only do you graduate with a degree recognised from a world leading university, you'll have practical national and international experience plus a wider exposure to life overall. We call this Degree Plus. It's what makes studying at Queen's University Belfast special.

  • Fees and Funding

    Tuition Fees

    Northern Ireland (NI) £0
    England, Scotland or Wales (GB) £0
    Other (non-UK) EU * £0
    International N/A

    No tuition fees are payable by students for the degree apprenticeship as it is funded by the Department for the Economy’s Higher Level Apprenticeship programme. Please refer to for further information.

    The undergraduate fees for 2021 entry are set out above.

    * The tuition fees that EU students starting courses at UK universities following the agreed transition period are required to pay will depend on what is agreed as part of the UK's exit negotiations. Please refer to It is however expected that there will be a specific arrangements put in place for RoI nationals living in the UK and Ireland and those with pre-settled and settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme.

    Tuition fee rates are calculated based on a student’s tuition fee status and generally increase annually by inflation. How tuition fees are determined is set out in the Student Finance Framework.

    Additional course costs

    All Students

    Depending on the programme of study, there may be extra costs which are not covered by tuition fees, which students will need to consider when planning their studies.

    Students can borrow books and access online learning resources from any Queen's library.

    If students wish to purchase recommended texts, rather than borrow them from the University Library, prices per text can range from £30 to £100. A programme may have up to 6 modules per year, each with a recommended text.  

    Students should also budget between £30 to £75 per year for photocopying, memory sticks and printing charges.  

    Students undertaking a period of work placement or study abroad, as either a compulsory or optional part of their programme, should be aware that they will have to fund additional travel and living costs.

    If a final year includes a major project or dissertation, there may be costs associated with transport, accommodation and/or materials. The amount will depend on the project chosen. There may also be additional costs for printing and binding.

    Students may wish to consider purchasing an electronic device; costs will vary depending on the specification of the model chosen.

    There are also additional charges for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.

    Software Engineering with Digital Technology Partnership costs

    Students may wish to become a student member of BCS - The Chartered Institute for IT - at an annual cost of £20, or £30 for four years (subject to change).

    How do I fund my study?

    There are different tuition fee and student financial support arrangements for students from Northern Ireland, those from England, Scotland and Wales (Great Britain), and those from the rest of the European Union.

    Information on funding options and financial assistance for undergraduate students is available at


    Each year, we offer a range of scholarships and prizes for new students. Information on scholarships available.

    International Scholarships

    Information on scholarships for international students, is available at



  • Apply

    How and when to Apply

    A. How to Apply
    Application for admission to full-time undergraduate and sandwich courses at the University should normally be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). Full information can be obtained from the UCAS website at:

    B. When to Apply
    UCAS will start processing applications for entry in autumn 2021 from 1 September 2020.

    Advisory closing: 15 January 2021 (18:00).

    Applications received after this date will not be considered.

    Applicants are encouraged to apply as early as is consistent with having made a careful and considered choice of institutions and courses.

    The Institution code for Queen's is QBELF and the institution code is Q75.

    Further information on applying to study at Queen's is available at:

    Download a prospectus


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