First Year Computing: What Should I Expect?

With September rapidly approaching, summer quickly heating up and time flying by, you’ll be starting university before you even know it. Welcome Sunday will be a blur of moving in, meeting new people, making friends and most likely getting drunk throughout Fresher’s week. But once all of the partying has settled down and your lectures start, what should you expect and be expected to do in Computing?

When you start, you’ll be given a set programme for the first year where everyone studies the same modules before you all split off into pathways and module choices in second and third year. The modules that you’ll do will include learning programming, web, foundations of computer science and digital world which covers topics like operating systems and networking.

In programming, you’ll start off using the Alice drag-and-drop software (which is free to download so you can practice over summer before starting!) before moving on to using Java hand-coding to make some software and then using Lego robots to program for different challenges.

For the web module, you’ll learn HTML code, Javascript and some other basics that will help you be able to build a website. Over the course of the year, it will build up and by the end you’ll be able to make some pretty impressive stuff!

Foundations of Computer Science is a new module which covers more of the decision making and maths involved with Computing.

Finally, digital world covers a wide range of computing including databases, networking, operating systems and physical components like taking the PC to pieces and understanding the components.

If you’d like more information, everything is listed on the website here and you can find out some of the things you’ll be involved in with your modules next September.

In terms of what you are expected to do, you should be attending all of your sessions to get the most out of the experience and to meet your friends who can also help, but also undertake some outside study. You should be aiming to spend roughly the same amount of time outside of lessons as you are in lessons, for example if you have 4hours contact time a week with tutors, you should aim to do 4hours outside of class as well.

Good luck with your first year!

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