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CSC2034 : Introducing Contemporary Topics in Computing (Inactive)

  • Inactive for Year: 2019/20
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Jennifer Warrender
  • Lecturer: Dr Ahmed Kharrufa, Dr Jaume Bacardit, Mr Richard Gordon Davison, Dr Paolo Missier
  • Owning School: Computing
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 30
ECTS Credits: 15.0


The module provides students with an introductory understanding of a range of advanced areas in computing, including BioComputing, Data Science, Computer Game Engineering and Human Computer Interaction. These are the research areas which the school of computing at Newcastle is renowned for (and not covered in other stage 2 modules). The module acts as introduction to these contemporary topics, and gives students insight into optional modules and project choices in preparation for stage 3, while building on skills learned in stages 1 and 2, accruing experience of how they are applied into more advanced areas of computing.

Outline Of Syllabus

•       Bio Computing. Introduction to cellular and molecular biology, the computational needs of modern biological data analysis, biological concepts and the development of novel computational approaches and the principles of how computational systems can be used to engineer biological systems.
•       Data Science: Predictive modelling, similarity, visualization, ethical challenges, and examples of how data science is used to solve problems in a range of domains.
•       Computer Game Engineering: Introduce students to each step of the programming tool-chain pipeline used in the video game industry by utilising an industry standard games engine to develop a video game. Focus on the programming and visual interfaces to game construction, allowing provided game assets to be utilised in the production of a video game.
•       Human Computer Interaction. Key concepts and issues in HCI, theories and history of HCI, understanding users (human factors, requirements engineering), HCI Design (Principles, standards and guidelines, input and output technologies, and designing interactions), prototyping, evaluation techniques for usability and specific application areas.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion401:0040:00Lecture follow-up
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture401:0040:00Traditional lectures
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical402:0080:00Computer classroom
Guided Independent StudyProject work251:0025:00Coursework 2
Guided Independent StudyProject work251:0025:00Coursework 1
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study901:0090:00Background reading
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The module combines lectures and practical sessions providing students with a learning framework across the range of specific computing topics that the school is renowned for. Students experience lectures from leading researchers in each field. Coursework gives students a chance to explore a contemporary topic in computing through background research and analysis, and implementation of a specific application in a related field.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Practical/lab report2M50Written report on selected area (3000 words)
Practical/lab report2M50Practical implementation (equivalent of 3000 words)
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The written examination demonstrates that students understand the underlying theory and standard methods, and
can apply them. The coursework ensures the students understand and can engineer solutions based on the learned material. A further Synoptic assessment allows students to combine the topics in computing in a practical context, contributing to their portfolio of work.

NB. This module has both “Exam assessment” and “Other assessment” (e.g. coursework). If the total mark for either falls below 35%, the maximum mark returned for the module will normally be 35%

Reading Lists