Attachments

 

 

Quality Handbook

 

 

Programme Specification Template - Undergraduate

 

SECTION A:CORE INFORMATION

 

  1.  

Name of programme:

Digital and Technology Solutions (Apprenticeship) with Pathways:

Digital and Technology Solutions (Apprenticeship): Software Engineering

Digital and Technology Solutions (Apprenticeship): Data Analytics

Digital and Technology Solutions (Apprenticeship): Cybersecurity

 

  1.  

Award title:

BSc Honours

  1.  

Programme linkage:

 

No

  1.  

Is the programme a top-up only?

 

No

  1.  

Does the programme have a Foundation Year (Level 3) associated with it so that students enter for a four-year programme and progress directly from the Foundation Year to Stage 1 without having to re-apply?

 

No

  1.  

Level of award:

Level 6

  1.  

Awarding Body:

University of Sunderland

  1.  

Department:

Computer Science

  1.  

Programme Studies Board:

Undergraduate Computer Science

  1.  

Programme Leader:

 

TBC

 


  1. How and where can I study the programme?

Tick all boxes that apply

 

At Sunderland:

 

Full-time on campus

X

Part-time on campus

 

As work-based learning full-time

X

As work-based learning part-time

 

As a full-time sandwich course

 

As a part-time sandwich course

 

By distance learning

 

 

At the University of Sunderland London campus: 

 

Full-time on campus

 

Part-time on campus

 

As work-based learning full-time

 

As work-based learning part-time

 

As a full-time sandwich course

 

As a part-time sandwich course

 

By distance learning

 

 

At a partner college:

 

Full-time in the UK 

 

Part-time in the UK

 

Full-time overseas

 

Part-time overseas

 

By distance learning

 

As a full-time sandwich course in the UK

 

As a part-time sandwich course in the UK

 

As a full-time sandwich course overseas

 

As a part-time sandwich course overseas

 

As work-based learning full-time in the UK 

 

As work-based learning part-time overseas

 

Other (please specify)

 

 

Free text below for give further brief details (optional) – e.g. that the partner teaches Stages 1 after which students’ progress to Sunderland. (Maximum 150 words)

 

  1. How long does the programme take?

 

 

Min number of years / months

Max number of years / months

Full-time

3

9

Part-time

 

 

Distance learning

 

 

Work-based learning

3

9

 

For start-dates please see the current edition of the Prospectus or contact the relevant department at the University. For start-dates for programmes delivered in a partner college, please contact the relevant college.

 

SECTION B:FURTHER CORE INFORMATION 

 

Use Outline Programme Proposal Form for ADC for questions 13 to 25

 

  1. Learning and teaching strategy. 

The programme will be delivered as a graduate apprentice model. The participants will be employed by a participating organisation and will attend the programme as part of their apprenticeship. The programme will be delivered to ensure that graduates meet the expectations associated with the National Qualification Framework and the expectations of the Graduate Apprenticeship Standard and will comply with the principles and expectations specified in the University of Sunderland’s Academic Quality Handbook – particularly the sections on work based learning and the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) Code of Practice on Work-Based and Placement Learning. The programme aims to provide a course of study, comprised of appropriate strategies for teaching, learning, assessment and a responsive system of individual support, which will equip its graduate apprentices with the knowledge and abilities specified by Tech Partnership (formerly e-skills UK) in the Apprenticeship Standard Specification document (April 2015) and in conjunction with the Academic Quality Handbook from the University of Sunderland, with particular consideration to the sections on work based learning.. The stated objective of the programme is to develop “confident, competent, and capable Digital and Technology Solutions professionals who are able to operate in a range of related roles”. The learning and teaching strategy on the programme is designed to enable the degree apprentices to develop the skills and knowledge appropriate to their employment and is based upon Tech Partnership’s core set of values and supplemented by the specialisms in Software Engineering and Data Analytics. Work based learning is introduced at stage 1, increases in stage 2 and is the key learning and teaching approach in the final year.

With a faculty mission statement: “To be recognised by our students as providing them with an excellent academic experience, preparing them for employment or starting their own enterprise”, it should be evident that student experience is at the core of our thinking in programme conception, design and pedagogical approach and closely related to the requirements of participating employers. Student experience and the role that is carried out in employment – through work based learning – during the degree apprenticeship also motivates our ideas about delivery. 

In both the curriculum design and the delivery, we have carefully considered the degree apprenticeship market (through speaking with potential employer partners, Tech Partnership, and participants on current apprenticeship programmes) and reflected on, the expectations in the Degree Apprentice Standard documentation and our current teaching experience on our exiting degree programmes. The curriculum for the Degree Apprenticeship has been designed to develop the core skills specified in the Degree Apprenticeship Standard. Student interests, desires and motivations change rapidly and perhaps particularly so in the domain of digital and technology solutions, and so we are constantly engaged in dialogue with them to complement the experiences and views of our teaching staff, the aims of our institutional Learning and Teaching Plan, the professed needs of business and industry, the stipulations of our professional accreditation bodies, and the requirements of the subject benchmark statements, in deciding how to improve our offering.  Our aims are to ensure relevance and balance in the curriculum, its delivery and its assessment; timely and meaningful assessment feedback dialogue – mapped to the specified expectations in the Degree Apprentice Standard document.

In accordance with the University Learning and Teaching Plan and the Degree Apprenticeship expectations we strive to develop independent, active and reflective learners; create learning environments where teaching approaches, learning technologies, and institutional structures and culture foster these learners; and promote learning partnerships in which innovative, supportive and challenging practice, inspires students to approach their degree apprenticeship and developing careers with curiosity, enthusiasm and creativity. In terms of delivery we employ a blended teaching learning approach, which is tied to the work based learning expectations of the Degree Apprenticeship. At stage 1 in particular is closely tied in to pastoral care and PDP. As indicated earlier the amount of work based learning increases throughout each stage but is always supported by pastoral care and work based mentoring.

The programme takes into account the University’s definition of work based learning, namely “learning achieved through engagement with the workplace which is integral to a programme of study and reflected in the learning outcomes of the programme and module(s) as applicable” and seeks to deliver work based learning by

 

  1. Engagement with the workplace’ may be achieved in a range of ways including:
  • requiring the student to draw on his/her experience of their current workplace. In this situation, unlike a placement, the student’s involvement in the workplace is prior to, and not the responsibility of, the University. Programmes drawing on such experience often require students to be in appropriate employment as a condition of entry.

 

  1. Integral to a programme of study’ means that the WBL element must play a meaningful part in the programme design (note – this degree apprentice programme has been designed to facilitate the links between theory and the application).

 

The modes of teaching, learning and assessment articulated for the programme as a whole in the programme specification must include those relevant to WBL.  Strategies for student support, resourcing of the programme, student employability and the alignment of the programme with research and reach-out activities, all of which are described in the programme specification, should also be appropriate to the WBL elements. 

WBL must be integrated into the credit-rated, modular structure of the programme. WBL may make up all the modules in a programme, or some of them, or play a part in a module, but in all cases the module must be given a credit level and volume.  WBL must also be catered for in the university regulations, including provision for referrals, progression requirements and the status of WBL modules in the calculation of the degree classification.  (Note – the detail of these requirements is given in the appropriate module descriptors)

  1. Reflected in the learning outcomes’. It follows from the integration of WBL into the programme that the programme learning outcomes must reflect the WBL nature of the programme.  The way in which this happens will depend upon the proportion of learning which is by WBL and the proportion by more traditional modes. 

 

As with all learning outcomes it is essential that the outcomes are defined at an appropriate HE level and are assessed in ways which test student achievement of them. Learning outcomes may include (the following are examples only and are not mutually exclusive):

  • skills and knowledge related to a particular project;
  • application of theory to practice;
  • general exposure to the workplace to gain understanding of the issues which arise there and to engage with how these are addressed;
  • personal development in the context of on-going work activity.

 

Clearly different assessments are appropriate to these different situations. It is often appropriate to use some form of reflective practice (such as a learning log) within the assessment but this is not a requirement and it is also the case that learning logs and other related approaches (such as portfolio development) are used in contexts other than WBL. Note – the assessment for this programme has been designed to take into account the work based learning environment and focuses heavily on portfolio development and project work).

Note – the above is an extract from the University’s Academic Quality Handbook covering work based learning programmes – bracketed comments with notes are comments on how the programme design has taken into account the expectations of WBL).

We believe the curriculum we have designed provides a balanced and stringent approach to the development of the skills needed for the Degree Apprenticeship model. The programme has 3 broad module types – those developing the core skills in the Tech Partnership model, those developing skills in Software Engineering or Data Analytics and modules that are project based; all the modules have a strong work based learning element and it is expected that a great deal of student learning takes place in the work place. All the modules have appropriate skills development and encourage reflective learning – a key part of the apprenticeship portfolio and PDP.

It is expected in the Degree Apprenticeship Standard that the degree apprenticeship will include a synoptic project – a work based project that broadly represents the skills, knowledge and behaviours in the standard. In this programme there will be project modules in the final year, which will combine to for the synoptic project. The project will provide substantive evidence from a business-related project to demonstrate the application of skills and knowledge. The end point assessment integrates the project outcomes and presentation into the overall synoptic project assessment. The projects will take place over a period of around 6 months, in the final year of the programme. The project modules have been designed to assess apprentices in a consistent way, irrespective of their particular workplace and university. Because of the significance of the project the employer and university will work together with the apprentice to agree a project that is achievable within the employer’s business constraints and that meets the requirements of the standard. The projects will be work based learning modules and be conducted as part of the apprentice’s normal work. Employers will make suitable allowance for the project to be undertaken, both in terms of time and resources. However there are some elements such as the writing of the report, particularly in its reflective aspects that may be undertaken outside of normal work.  The workload for the project will be agreed between apprentice, employer and university such that apprentices are not disadvantaged in any way from performing their job and meeting the requirements of the project.

Any issues with confidentiality and/or security will also be addressed between the university, employer and apprentice allowing for projects of business value to be undertaken using real data.

Each project will include a presentation / demonstration / viva. The purpose of this is to review:

  • what the apprentice set out to achieve;
  • what they have actually produced in the project;
  • the standard of their work;
  • how they have approached the work and dealt with any issues arising;
  • clarify any questions the university/employer has from their assessment of the project;
  • explore aspects of the project work, including how it was carried out, in more detail;
  • confirm the demonstration of appropriate interpersonal and behavioural skills.

The presentation will be assessed as part of the overall project assessment. The university will provide guidance on the nature of the presentation and the assessment criteria used. This will ensure that consistent approaches are taken and that all key areas are appropriately explored. The initial and primary focus for the presentation is on the work presented in the project. However, the presentation assessors can explore the apprentice’ broader experience from the workplace, to demonstrate that the skills and knowledge defined in the standard have been met. Whilst there will be input from the work based supervisor / mentor all summative assessment will be undertaken by University of Sunderland academics. 

Research Active Curriculum: Research active staff are involved in the delivery of teaching across the complete range of our programmes. We actively map teaching teams to modules based on the relevance of their current activities and previous experience. The resulting cross-fertilisation of research and teaching means that our modules remain current in a rapidly developing field.  The opportunity to collaborate with participating employers in joint research projects will feed into the Degree Apprenticeship delivery.

  1. Retention strategy

 

Orientation and induction to the concept and philosophy of the graduate apprenticeship programme and work based learning is an integral part of the level 4 module. The way in which participants attend University (block mode) and are supervised at the workplace are designed to encourage and support participants through their programme of study. Participants are employed as apprentices and as part of that employment there is an expectation that they engage with their studies.

 

As well as receiving academic support throughout their studies participants will be allocated a personal tutor (for pastoral and academic support) from the University and will have a work based mentor. Participants are expected to meet regularly with their work based mentor and give regular updates on their progress on the programme of study (weekly). Throughout stage 1, students are in regular contact with their personal tutor through teaching on the fundamentals module, face to face meetings, and regular monitoring of the students’ e-portfolio activity (a key retention initiative). These tutors are excellently placed for advising the student during stage 1.

 

At stage 2 students undertake a work based learning module – CET231 and the module tutor for this module provides additional pastoral support for the students.

 

To support student learning, and to aid retention and progression, the academic programme is punctuated by attendance blocks These serve as useful junctures for engagement with personal tutors and work based mentors to check engagement and progress through face to face meetings and checking of e-portfolio updating. During each of the attendance blocks participants will meet with their personal tutor to discuss progress on the programme, share their PDP and portfolio and discuss any learning or progress issues.

 

As part of our commitment to the principles of the Degree Apprentice programme students are not expected to have prior experience of the subject (although they must meet the employer recruitment expectations and the standard university entrance requirements). Therefore, it is imperative that our students feel supported in their learning, feel comfortable with not grasping difficult concepts first time around and understand they can engage in scaffolded learning supported by peers, tutors, and mentors.

 


 

  1. Any other information

 

All students have individual access to their Programme (and Module) Leaders on a needs basis and formally timetabled in accordance with the university student support/personal tutoring policy.  We also use programme spaces/noticeboards within the VLE, as well as email interaction to provide flexible and efficient communication on day to day issues. Programme teams meet with student representatives each term in Staff Student Consultative Committees (SSCCs) in order to formally record issues around the student experience. In many instances, issues can quickly and easily be resolved in this way. In some cases they need referral to the Boards of Study. In either event, Canvas is used as a mechanism for formally feeding back to the students regarding the resolution or otherwise of the issues raised.

 

SECTION C:TEACHING AND LEARNING

 

  1. What is the programme about?

 

The programme is designed as a degree apprenticeship to meet the “Apprenticeship Standard” devised by the Tech Partnership. There are currently 2 strands of specialism that enables degree apprentices to specialises in Software Engineering or Data Analytics (two of six specialist options identified by the Tech Partnership) and seeks to address the core skills in the following identified areas of: Information Systems; Systems Development; Data; Cybersecurity; Business Organisation; IT Project Management; and Computer and Network Infrastructure, the core technical knowledge identified by Tech Partnership including how businesses operate; value of technology investment; contemporary techniques for design, developing, testing and implementing software; role of data management; common system vulnerabilities; strategic decision making; quality management and team-working and the technology roles in an organisation. In addition, there are a set of core behavioural skills identified in the Apprenticeship Standard document. These are reflected in the programme learning outcomes.

 

The programme includes a set of specialist outcomes (skills and technical knowledge) in the Software Engineering strand incorporating the requirements for the specialism titles of Software Engineer including skills for creating effective and secure software solutions; undertaking analysis of systems; production of high quality software code; perform code reviews; test code; deliver software solutions; software development lifecycle; team-working in software engineering; application of software design approaches; use of a range of software development tools.

 

In the Data Analytics strand degree apprentice students are given the opportunity to use a range of analytical techniques such as data mining, time series forecasting and modelling techniques to identify and predict trends and patterns in data             

 

Typical projects that data analysts would be involved with include projects to analyse, devise and deploy data analytics solutions for a real-world problem domain. For example, applying data analysis techniques and processes and the tools readily available to perform analytics for data-driven decision-making. Degree apprentices on the data analytics strand will develop significant project planning including estimations of both time and cost to proposed solutions, and include technical and commercial aspects of the proposed solution.

 

Typical skills that the degree apprentices will develop on the Data Analytics strand include: identifying a data problem; collecting, cleaning and extracting data; analysing data using a range of standard analytical tools and techniques; visualising data; and the ability to present their findings.

 

In the Cybersecurity strand degree apprentice students are given the opportunity to investigate the principles of cybersecurity and apply these in a work based environment. Students will look at the technical and the behavioural aspects of cybersecurity and will develop policies and procedures as well as solutions that can be applied in the work based settings.

 

Typical projects that cybersecurity degree apprentice students would be involved with include projects to develop cybersecurity solutions for real-world problems. For example, applying cybersecurity principles, protocols and techniques and processes to implement or enhance cybersecurity. Degree apprentices on the cybersecurity strand will develop significant project planning including estimations of both time and cost to proposed cyber solutions, and include technical, commercial aspects, business risk and business continuity aspects of the proposed solution.

 

Typical skills that the degree apprentices will develop on the Cybersecurity strand include: an understanding of the cyber threat environment; an appreciation of the principles, techniques and tools associated with cybersecurity; the ability to apply cybersecurity to software solutions; the technical understanding of cybersecurity functions; and an ability to deploy cybersecurity solutions.

 

 

The structure of the graduate apprenticeship degree programme embraces work-based learning throughout the modules at all levels of the programme and the apprentices will have the opportunity to contextualise their learning to their own working environment through work based activities that are embedded in each of the modules.

 

All the modules will be new to this programme since this is the first time the Faculty has embarked on a graduate apprenticeship programme. (Update the programme has been running since Sept 2015)

 

Level 4 – Core Skills module (for all strands)  (120 credits) providing the foundations in Information Systems; Systems Development; Data; Cybersecurity; Business Organisation; IT Project Management; and Computer and Network Infrastructure and applying these in a work based context. The core skills module will also develop academic skills, reflective skills, and make clear to students with the expectations of studying and working on the graduate apprenticeship and how the different environments for learning and developing map together. Students will begin to develop their work based learning portfolios in this module.

 

Level 5 – Core Skills module (for all strands) (60 credits) providing the opportunity to develop the principles associated with the core skills and build on the learning and application from level 4.

 

Level 5 – Specialism module for Software Engineering strand (40 credits) – Principles of Software Engineering

 

Level 5 Specialism module for Data Analytics strand (40 credits) – Principles of Data Analytics

 

Level 5 Specialism module for Cybersecurity strand (40 credits) – Principles of Cybersecurity CET245

 

Level 5 – Work based Learning module (for all strands) (20 credits) – Digital and Technology Solutions in the Workplace

 

Level 6 – Core Skills module (for all strands) (40 credits) – advanced applications of the core skills identified in levels 4 and 5 with particular reference to application in the work based setting

 

Level 6 – Specialism module for Software Engineering strand (40 credits) – advanced theory and practice of software engineering delivered in the context of work based learning

 

Level 6 – Specialism module for Data Analytics strand (40 credits) – advanced theory and practice of data analytics delivered in the context of work based learning

 

Level 6 – Specialism module for Cybersecurity strand (40 credits) – advanced theory and practice of cybersecurity delivered in the context of work based learning

 

Level 6 – Project module (for all strands) (40 credits) – work based activity addressing an identified need in the business context and applying the core skills and specialist skills for the Software Engineering, Data Analytics or Cybersecurity graduate apprentice.

 

The programmes aim to provide courses of study, comprised of appropriate strategies for teaching, learning, assessment and a responsive system of individual support, which will equip its graduate apprentices with the knowledge and abilities to progress in their chosen careers. The programmes aim to allow those with the appropriate interest, motivation and potential to successfully pursue their personal aspirations and in doing so contribute to fulfilling the social and economic requirement for a professional workforce within the fields of Software Engineering or Data Analytics or Cybersecurity and in the shaping their future development.

 

More specifically this programmes aim to ensure the following:

 

  • To produce highly motivated, technically competent individuals who have the awareness, understanding and the necessary flexibility to effectively utilise and continually re-develop their own knowledge and skills of technologies and tools used within the area of digital and technology solutions specialising in software engineering or data analytics or cybersecurity.
  • To produce degree apprenticeship graduates who are technically competent software and information systems developers or data analysts with experience of up-to-date methodologies, thereby opening up a wide range of career development opportunities.
  • To produce degree apprenticeship graduates with a suitable grounding in the theoretical foundations of software engineering or data analysis such that they can create, test and implement software or data solutions or security solutions and to solve complex problems in the specialist domains.
  • To increase the apprentice’s practical and theoretical knowledge and focus on current research in the more scientific aspects of digital and technology solutions.
  • To produce graduates with a high level of transferable skills in order that they are ready for a number of career paths and are highly employable and attractive to local, regional and national companies.


 

  1. What will I know or be able to do at each Stage of the programme? These should be brief bullet points for each sub-heading.  

 

Learning Outcomes Software Engineering Stage 1 – Skills  

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

S1

Manage and schedule small projects within both time and resourcing constraints

COG-6

PRA-3

 

 

S2

Make use of software engineering techniques  to design, develop and test a range of digital and technology solutions

PRA-1, PRA-2,

PRA-4, PRA-5

 

S3

Locate and utilise information from a range of sources including books, journals and online articles.

PRA-6

 

S4

Make appropriate use of IT to prepare presentations, compile reports and analyse numerical data.

PRA-5

 

 

 

 

Learning Outcomes Software Engineering Stage 1 – Knowledge

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

K1

Understanding of the  theoretical underpinnings of computing and software engineering in the context of digital and technology solutions

 

COG-1, COG-2

K2

Appraisal  of the fundamental operation of Information Systems; Systems Development; Data; Cybersecurity; Business Organisation; IT Project Management; and Computer and Network Infrastructure

COG-1, COG-2

COG-3, COG-4

K3

Knowledge of the  standards,  tools and techniques used in the production of digital and technology solutions

COG-1, COG-2

 

 

K4

Recognition of the need for adaptable formal approaches to problem solving in the development of digital and technology solutions in the work place

COG-6, COG-7

 

K5

Knowledge of the expectations of the key cybersecurity properties of confidentiality, integrity and availability

COG-2

 

Learning Outcomes Software Engineering Stage 2 – Skills

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

S5

Employ a range of specialist techniques in order to undertake the design and development of digital and technology solutions.

 

PRA-1,

PRA-2,

PRA-5

S6

Employ conceptual tools across all aspects of the systems lifecycle, including: requirements analysis, specification, design, security design, testing, documentation, implementation and maintenance.

PRA-1,

PRA-5

 

 

S7

Perform quantitative and qualitative analysis in order to evaluate solutions to technical, business and theoretical problems

 

PRA-2

PRA-4,

 

S8

Manage and reflect on own learning in order to achieve effective work practices both as an individual and as a member of a team

 

COG-7

 

 

Learning Outcomes Software Engineering Stage 2 – Knowledge

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

K6

Understanding of the industrial, security, professional, legal and ethical issues associated with computer-based systems in a work based environment

COG-1, COG-7

 

K7

Knowledge of all aspects of the systems lifecycle, including: requirements analysis, specification, design, security design, testing, documentation, implementation and maintenance.

 

COG-4,

COG-5, COG-6

 

K8

Knowledge of a range of specialist software engineering techniques and how they may subsequently be applied to solve digital and technology problems within an application domain in a secure and trustworthy environment.

 

COG-1, COG-2

COG-5

 

K9

Recognition of the need to evaluate digital and technology solutions using an appropriate methodology

 

COG-6

 

 

Learning Outcomes Software Engineering Stage 3 – Skills

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

S9

Undertake independent research in order to  identify appropriate methods, tools, and techniques to address complex problems

 

PRA-1, PRA-2

PRA-3, PRA-4,

PRA-5

S10

Design, build and evaluate complex software artefacts using a wide range of development methods, languages and platforms

 

PRA-1, PRA-4,

PRA-5

S11

Learn, critically appraise and evaluate both new concepts in technology and own skills development in preparation for the life-long challenge of working in a continually changing environment.

 

PRA-2

 

Learning Outcomes Software Stage 3 – Knowledge

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

K10

Understanding of research methods in the context of synthesising and interpreting knowledge in data analytics for digital and technology solutions

COG-1, COG-2

COG-5, COG-7

K11

In-depth knowledge of the theory, principles and practices underpinning the design, development, evaluation and documentation of data analysis solutions.

 

COG-1, COG-2, COG-6

K12

An in-depth understanding of the state of the art in selected specialist area(s) of data analysis as applied to digital and technology solutions in the workplace

 

COG-7

 

Learning Outcomes Data Analytics Stage 1 – Skills  

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

S1

Manage and schedule small projects within both time and resourcing constraints

COG-6

PRA-3

 

 

S2

Make use of data analytics techniques  to design, develop, visualise and test a range of digital and technology solutions

PRA-1, PRA-2,

PRA-4, PRA-5

 

S3

Locate and utilise information from a range of sources including books, journals and online articles.

PRA-6

 

S4

Make appropriate use of IT to prepare presentations, compile reports and analyse numerical data.

PRA-5

 

 

 

Learning Outcomes Data Analytics Stage 1 – Knowledge

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

K1

Understanding of the theoretical underpinnings of computing and data analysis in the context of digital and technology solutions

 

COG-1, COG-2

K2

Appraisal  of the fundamental operation of Information Systems; Systems Development; Data; Cybersecurity; Business Organisation; IT Project Management; and Computer and Network Infrastructure

COG-1, COG-2

COG-3, COG-4

K3

Knowledge of the  standards, tools and techniques used in the production of digital and technology solutions

COG-1, COG-2

 

 

K4

Recognition of the need for adaptable formal approaches to problem solving in the development of digital and technology solutions in the work place

COG-6, COG-7

 

K5

Knowledge of the expectations of the key cybersecurity properties of confidentiality, integrity and availability

COG-2

 

Learning Outcomes Data Analytics Stage 2 – Skills

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

S5

Employ a range of specialist techniques in order to undertake the design and development of digital and technology solutions.

 

PRA-1,

PRA-2,

PRA-5

S6

Employ conceptual data analytics tools across all aspects of the systems lifecycle, including: requirements analysis, specification, design, security design, testing, documentation, implementation and maintenance.

PRA-1,

PRA-5

 

 

S7

Perform quantitative and qualitative analysis in order to evaluate solutions to technical, business and theoretical problems

 

PRA-2

PRA-4,

 

S8

Manage and reflect on own learning in order to achieve effective work practices both as an individual and as a member of a team

 

COG-7

 

 

Learning Outcomes Data Analytics Stage 2 – Knowledge

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

K6

Understanding of the industrial, security, professional, legal and ethical issues associated with data analysis in a work based environment

COG-1, COG-7

 

K7

Knowledge of all aspects of the systems lifecycle – with particular reference to data and data analytics

COG-4,

COG-5, COG-6

 

K8

Knowledge of a range of specialist data analysis tools and techniques and how they may subsequently be applied to solve digital and technology problems within an application domain in a secure and trustworthy environment.

 

COG-1, COG-2

COG-5

 

K9

Recognition of the need to evaluate digital and technology solutions using an appropriate methodology

 

COG-6

 

 

Learning Outcomes Data Analytics Stage 3 – Skills

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

S9

Undertake independent research in order to identify appropriate methods, tools, and techniques to address complex problems

 

PRA-1, PRA-2

PRA-3, PRA-4,

PRA-5

S10

Design, build and evaluate complex software artefacts using a wide range of development methods, languages and platforms

 

PRA-1, PRA-4,

PRA-5

S11

Learn, critically appraise and evaluate both new concepts in technology and own skills development in preparation for the life-long challenge of working in a continually changing environment.

 

PRA-2

 

Learning Outcomes Data Analytics 3 – Knowledge

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

K10

Understanding of research methods in the context of synthesising and interpreting knowledge in data analysis for digital and technology solutions

COG-1, COG-2

COG-5, COG-7

K11

In-depth knowledge of the theory, principles and practices underpinning the design, development, evaluation and documentation of complex data analytics artefacts.

 

COG-1, COG-2, COG-6

K12

An in-depth understanding of the state of the art in selected specialist area(s) of data analysis as applied to digital and technology solutions in the workplace

 

COG-7

 

 

Learning Outcomes Cybersecurity Stage 1 – Skills  

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

S1

Manage and schedule small projects within both time and resourcing constraints

COG-6

PRA-3

 

 

S2

Make use of software engineering techniques to design, develop and test a range of digital and technology solutions

PRA-1, PRA-2,

PRA-4, PRA-5

 

S3

Locate and utilise information from a range of sources including books, journals and online articles.

PRA-6

 

S4

Make appropriate use of IT to prepare presentations, compile reports and analyse numerical data.

PRA-5

 

 

 

Learning Outcomes Cybersecurity Stage 1 – Knowledge

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

K1

Understanding of the theoretical underpinnings of computing and software engineering in the context of digital and technology solutions

 

COG-1, COG-2

K2

Appraisal of the fundamental operation of Information Systems; Systems Development; Data; Cybersecurity; Business Organisation; IT Project Management; and Computer and Network Infrastructure

COG-1, COG-2

COG-3, COG-4

K3

Knowledge of the standards, tools and techniques used in the production of digital and technology solutions

COG-1, COG-2

 

 

K4

Recognition of the need for adaptable formal approaches to problem solving in the development of digital and technology solutions in the work place

COG-6, COG-7

 

K5

Knowledge of the expectations of the key cybersecurity properties of confidentiality, integrity and availability

COG-2

 

Learning Outcomes Cybersecurity Stage 2 – Skills

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

S5

Employ a range of specialist techniques in order to undertake the design and development of cybersecurity solutions.

 

PRA-1,

PRA-2,

PRA-5

S6

Employ conceptual tools across all aspects of the systems lifecycle, including: requirements analysis, specification, design, security design, testing, documentation, implementation and maintenance.

PRA-1,

PRA-5

 

 

S7

Perform quantitative and qualitative analysis in order to evaluate solutions to technical, business and theoretical problems in the domain of cybersecurity

 

PRA-2

PRA-4,

 

S8

Manage and reflect on own learning in order to achieve effective work practices both as an individual and as a member of a team

 

COG-7

 

 

Learning Outcomes Cybersecurity Stage 2 – Knowledge

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

K6

Understanding of the industrial, professional, legal and ethical issues associated with cybersecurity in a work based environment

COG-1, COG-7

 

K7

Knowledge of aspects of the systems lifecycle relating to cybersecurity, including: requirements analysis, specification, design, security design, programming, testing, documentation, implementation and maintenance.

 

COG-4,

COG-5, COG-6

 

K8

Knowledge of a range of specialist cybersecurity techniques and standards how they may subsequently be applied to solve cybersecurity problems within a secure and trustworthy environment.

 

COG-1, COG-2

COG-5

 

K9

Recognition of the need to evaluate cybersecurity solutions using an appropriate methodology

 

COG-6

 

 

Learning Outcomes Cybersecurity Stage 3 – Skills

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

S9

Undertake independent research in order to identify appropriate methods, tools, and techniques to address complex cybersecurity problems

 

PRA-1, PRA-2

PRA-3, PRA-4,

PRA-5

S10

Design, build and evaluate cybersecurity artefacts using a wide range of development methods, languages and platforms

 

PRA-1, PRA-4,

PRA-5

S11

Learn, critically appraise and evaluate both new concepts in technology and own skills development in preparation for the life-long challenge of working in a continually changing environment.

 

PRA-2

 

Learning Outcomes Cybersecurity Stage 3 – Knowledge

 

By the end of this Stage of the programme successful students should know, understand or be able to do the following:

 

 

 

QAA Benchmark

K10

Understanding of research methods in the context of synthesising and interpreting knowledge in cybersecurity

COG-1, COG-2

COG-5, COG-7

K11

In-depth knowledge of the theory, principles and practices underpinning the design, development, evaluation and documentation of cybersecurity artefacts.

 

COG-1, COG-2, COG-6

K12

An in-depth understanding of the state of the art in selected specialist area of cybersecurity in the workplace

 

COG-7

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Core Behavioural Skills Software Engineering, Data Analytics and Cybersecurity

 

In addition to the specified programme learning outcomes participants will have the opportunity to develop a range of core behavioural skills that have been identified by the Tech Partnership. These core skills are embedded in the teaching and learning across all the levels of the programme and complement the skills and knowledge outcomes identified above.

 

 

Professional, interpersonal  and business skills

Attributes and behaviours

  • Fluent in written communications and able to articulate complex issues.
  • Makes concise, engaging and well-structured verbal presentations, arguments and explanations.
  • Able to deal with different, competing interests within and outside the organisation with excellent negotiation skills.
  • Is able to identify the preferences, motivations, strengths and limitations of other people and apply these insights to work more effectively with and to motivate others.
  • Competent in active listening and in leading, influencing and persuading others.
  • Able to give and receive feedback constructively and incorporate it into his/her own development and life-long learning.
  • Applies analytical and critical thinking skills to Technology Solutions development and to systematically analyse and apply structured problem solving techniques to complex systems and situations.
  • Able to put forward, demonstrate value and gain commitment to a moderately complex technology-oriented solution, demonstrating understanding of business need, using open questions and summarising skills and basic negotiating skills.
  • Able to conduct effective research, using literature and other media, into IT and business related topics.
  • Have demonstrated that they have mastered basic business disciplines, ethics and courtesies, demonstrating timeliness and focus when faced with distractions and the ability to complete tasks to a deadline with high quality.
  • Flexible attitude.
  • Ability to perform under pressure.
  • A thorough approach to work.
  • Logical thinking and creative approach to problem solving.

 

The following table indicates which modules the core behavioural skills are covered and assessed.

 

 

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Fluent in written communications and able to articulate complex issues.

CET119

CET229

CET231

CET330

CET332

Makes concise, engaging and well-structured verbal presentations, arguments and explanations.

CET119

CET229

 

CET330

Able to deal with different, competing interests within and outside the organisation with excellent negotiation skills.

 

CET229

CET231

CET330

CET332

Is able to identify the preferences, motivations, strengths and limitations of other people and apply these insights to work more effectively with and to motivate others.

 

 

CET331(o)

or

CET352(o)

or

CET348(o)

 

Competent in active listening and in leading, influencing and persuading others.

 

CET229

CET332

Able to give and receive feedback constructively and incorporate it into his/her own development and life-long learning.

 

CET231

CET332

Applies analytical and critical thinking skills to Digital and Technology Solutions development and to systematically analyse and apply structured problem solving techniques to complex systems and situations.

 

CET229

CET230(o)

or

CET245(o)

or

CET246(o)

CET330

CET331(o)

or

CET352(o)

or

CET348(o)

CET332

Able to put forward, demonstrate value and gain commitment to a moderately complex technology-oriented solution, demonstrating understanding of business need, using open questions and summarising skills and basic negotiating skills.

 

CET229

CET330

CET331(o)

or

CET352(o)

or

CET348(o)

CET332

Able to conduct effective research, using literature and other media, into IT and business related topics.

 

 

CET330

CET332

Have demonstrated that they have mastered basic business disciplines, ethics and courtesies, demonstrating timeliness and focus when faced with distractions and the ability to complete tasks to a deadline with high quality.

CET119

CET229

CET231

CET331

Flexible attitude.

 

CET231

CET332

Ability to perform under pressure.

 

CET231

CET330

CET332

A thorough approach to work.

 

CET230(o)

or

CET245(o)

or

CET246(o

CET330

CET331(o)

or

CET352(o)

or

CET348(o)

CET332

Logical thinking and creative approach to problem solving.

CET119

CET229

CET230(o)

or

CET245(o)

or

CET246(o

CET330

CET331(o)

or

CET352(o)

or

CET348(o)

CET332

 

 

 

 

Learning Outcomes – Ordinary degree

 

If you are awarded an Ordinary degree you will have achieved the majority of the learning outcomes for the programme studied. However you will have gained fewer credits at Stage 3 than students awarded an Honours degree, your knowledge will typically be less broad and you will typically be less proficient in higher-level skills such as independent learning. For this programme an ordinary degree will be award for participants who complete 80 credits at level 6, as well as the full diet of modules at levels 4 and 5.

 

  1. What will the programme consist of?

 

Each undergraduate programme consists of a number of Stages from a minimum of 1 to a maximum of 4, each of which is equivalent to a year’s full-time study. The summary below describes briefly what is contained in each Stage. Most programmes have a mixture of core (i.e. compulsory) modules and optional ones, often with increasing choice as you move through the programme and gain in experience. In some programmes the choice of optional modules gives you particular ‘routes’ through the programme. The programme structure including a detailed list of modules can be found in the programme regulations.

 

Stage 1

 

During your first year, students study the 120 credit module CET119 ‘Fundamentals of Digital and Technology Solutions’. The purpose of this module is to expose students to the complete range of theoretical concepts that underpin the computing, software engineering, data analytics and cybersecurity expectations of the digital and technology solutions degree apprenticeship.  The module presents the fundaments of digital and technology solutions as specified in the Tech Partnership Apprenticeship Standard. Students will develop skills and understanding in the range of core topics: Information Systems; Systems Development; Data; Cybersecurity; Business Organisation; IT Project Management; and Computer and Network Infrastructure. Students have the opportunity to apply these in a work-based context.

 

This module is a core skills module for the degree apprenticeship and as such will develop academic skills, reflective skills, and make clear to students the expectations of studying and working on the graduate apprenticeship programme, the concept of work based learning and how the different environments for learning and developing map together. Students will begin to develop their work based learning portfolios in this module.

 

Throughout the module students will be able to develop their core skills, core technical knowledge and core behavioural skills as specified in the Tech Partnership Apprenticeship Standard.

 

Stage 2

 

At stage 2 all students studying on the degree apprenticeship programme will increase the proportion of their time through work based learning. All of the modules on this stage have a significant amount of learning in the workplace and CET231 is a complete work based learning module.

 

CET229 ‘Principles of Digital and Technology Solutions’ builds on the material covered in year 1 of the programme and further develops the principles of digital and technology solutions as specified in the Tech Partnership Apprenticeship Standard. Students develop further their skills and understanding of the principles (and apply these principles) in the range of core topics: Information Systems; Systems Development; Data; Cybersecurity; Business Organisation; IT Project Management; and Computer and Network Infrastructure. Students have the opportunity to apply these in a work based context. The module will also develop academic skills, reflective skills, and make clear to students the expectations of studying and working on the graduate apprenticeship programme, the concept of work based learning and how the different environments for learning and developing map together. Students will begin to develop their work based learning portfolios in this module.

 

Throughout the module students will be able to further develop their core skills, core technical knowledge and core behavioural skills as specified in the Tech Partnership Apprenticeship Standard.

 

For Software Engineering Strand

 

CET230 ‘Principles of Software Engineering’ – at stage 2 students build on their knowledge and understanding of digital and technology solutions by beginning to specialise in software engineering (one of the 6 Tech Partnership specialisms). This module provides students with the opportunity to develop knowledge and skills in the fundamentals of software engineering in order to design, build and test high-quality software solutions in a work based environment. The module will provide students with the knowledge and skills to professionally, systematically and impartially operate at all stages of the software development lifecycle  taking into account the challenges of design and covering a range of topics ranging from an initial choice of a high-level architecture through the choices of test and evaluation strategies. Students will learn that software engineering is more than just programming; and includes attention to details such as quality, time management, economic goals and risk factors.

 

For Data Analytics Strand

 

CET246 Principles of Data Analytics (40 credits new)

 

In this module students will be have the opportunity to analyse data and understand the processes and procedures used to manipulate data, to enable business to utilize the data collected, to focus on specific areas to KPI’s. The module will cover a range of statistical software used, data storage and programming languages which will empower students to make decisions about which solutions would be best used in the context of the problems faced. Students will gain an understanding of the relevant tools and techniques used within data analytics and how to identify emerging technologies.

 

For Cybersecurity Strand

 

CET245 Principles of Cybersecurity (40 credits new) – in this module students will have the opportunity to explore the fundamental principles and applications of cybersecurity in order to facilitate secure systems design. Students will learn to analyse the range of trade-offs in balancing the security principles of confidentiality, integrity and availability (CIA). Students will be able to explain, apply and evaluate the concepts of trust and trustworthiness in a cybersecurity context and explain and apply the issues associated with authentication, authorization and access control.

 

Students will be encouraged to critically discuss the concepts of risk, threats, vulnerabilities and attack vectors in systems security, information security and operational security. Students will have the opportunity to evaluate the technical, legal and business issues involved in developing and implementing cybersecurity solutions.

 

Students will be introduced to information assessment methodologies such as ISO27001/2 and information risk management frameworks and standards, such as CHECK and (ISC)2. The module will provide students with the opportunity to consider the testing of security (systems and software testing) and to measure the effectiveness of security implementations using appropriate metrics.

 

The module will bring together the spectrum of tools and techniques which can be used to manage the operation of cybersecurity in a range of domains including internet security, network security, systems security and application security. In addition students will be introduced to the physical security needs and the threats that can become apparent from breaches in physical security.

 

For all strands

 

CET231 ‘Digital and Technology Solutions in the Workplace’ allows students the opportunity to engage in work based learning and as such builds on the material covered in CET119 and CET229 and gives students the opportunity to participate in a work based learning project utilising the principles of software engineering, data analytics and systems development to produce a digital and technology solution to a set of user / client requirements.

 

Throughout this module students will be able to practice and develop their core skills, core technical knowledge and core behavioural skills as specified in the Tech Partnership Apprenticeship Standard.

 

Stage 3

 

At stage 3 you will consolidate your learning from stages 1 and 2, develop the specialist skills and knowledge to a higher level and apply your learning in work based environments. You will reflect on the work based projects you have been involved in and critically analyse and evaluate the success of those projects using software engineering metrics and measures that have been agreed with clients. You will undertake significant projects allowing you to develop research skills and techniques as well as problem solving, time management and communication skills in a work based environment.

 

For all strands

 

CET330 ‘Degree Apprenticeship Project’ – this module constitutes a significant part of the synoptic project for the degree apprenticeship. Students must undertake advanced study in order to define, research and develop to completion a substantial piece of individual work that demonstrates the range of skills acquired on their degree apprenticeship programme. Normally the project will be a work based project and related to digital and technology solutions. The students are required to write an initial proposal document outlining the problem domain and the software engineering or data analytics principles that will be applied in providing a digital and technology solution. Following consultation with relevant tutors and work based supervisors, they will submit a definitive brief of the project to an approval panel comprising key staff from the programme team (incorporating a learning contract, and an agreed set of final outcomes). This is assessed, and where change is required feedback will be given to students in order to meet the learning outcomes. The students’ work will be monitored by regular supervision sessions which will also incorporate an assessed project review in which the research paper must be submitted. There will also be a series of workshops and presentations on study skills for project students.

 

For Software Engineering Strand

 

CET331 ‘Software Engineering Applications’ – this module follows on from CET230 and provides further opportunity for work based learning in the specialist topic area allowing students to apply software engineering tools and techniques in the production of digital and technology solutions in a work based environment. The module provides students with the knowledge and skills to professionally, systematically and impartially develop software solutions. Students will learn that software engineering is more than just programming; and includes attention to details such as quality, time management, economic goals and risk factors.

 

For Data Analytics Strand

 

CET348 Data Analytics Applications (40 credits new)

 

In this module students will examine the technical skills and knowledge for data analysis practitioners and develops the technical and behavioral competencies required in the data analytics specialism for Digital and Technology Solutions. The module covers a range of technical and theoretical aspects surrounding data analytics including policies and procedures, management of data, evaluating data quality, interoperability, and sources, technical guidance and support, enhancing practices by implementing new technologies and techniques, with consideration how to address risk, policies, legislation and organisational standards.

 

The module will bring together the spectrum of tools and techniques which can be used to manage the storage and retrieval of data with the aim to enhance finance and business operations.

 

For Cybersecurity Strand

 

CET352 Technical Cybersecurity (40 credits new)

 

This module examines the technical skills and knowledge for cybersecurity practitioners and develops the technical and behavioural competencies required in the cybersecurity specialism for Digital and Technology Solutions. The module covers a range of technical aspects of cybersecurity including systems and applications security, network and internet security, incident response and recovery and information risk management with consideration how to address risk, threats and attacks.

 

The module will bring together the spectrum of tools and techniques which can be used to manage the operation of cybersecurity in a range of domains including internet security, network security, systems security and application security. In addition students will be introduced to the physical security needs and the threats that can become apparent from breaches in physical security.

 

Students will be encouraged to critically discuss the concepts of risk, threats, vulnerabilities and attack vectors in systems security, information security and operational security. Students will have the opportunity to evaluate the technical, legal and business issues involved in developing cybersecurity solutions.

 

 

For all strands – contextualised work based learning project

 

CET332 ‘Advanced Skills and Techniques in Digital and Technology Solutions’ – this module builds on the material covered in CET119, CET229 and CET231 and gives students the opportunity to participate in a significant work based learning project in the context of their specialised strand. The work in this module will contribute to the synoptic assessment in the degree apprenticeship programme and provides a more practical and applied work based project when compared to CET330 which although work based has a greater research slant. The two modules complement each other and together form the synoptic assessment for the degree apprenticeship.  

Placement/Work Based Learning

The programme has been designed as a work based learning programme to meet the requirements of the degree apprenticeship programme. Work based learning takes place in all levels of the programme and increases in proportion and complexity as the students progress between levels. WBL is introduced in first year as students develop their portfolio mapping against the core disciplines of the degree apprenticeship standard.

WBL is included in all modules in year 2 and the ‘Digital Technology Solutions in the Workplace’ module is a “pure” WBL module with all learning taking place in the workplace for this module.

At level 6, the final year there are 2 project style modules – both of which are work based and the specialist Software Engineering, Data Analytics or Cybersecurity modules are also delivered in the context of the work place.

Since participants on the degree apprenticeship are employees of the participating organisations there are no additional placements.

There is an expectation that the apprentices on the degree apprentice programme will be in employment before starting on the programme. In order for an employer to become a partner with the programme they will require approval. Approval will be formalised via the processes and procedures outlined in the University of Sunderland Academic Quality Handbook. In particular employers will be required to complete AQH-M1-3-1 “Employer Link Approval Form”, QQH-M1-3.2 “Employer Collaboration Form” and have this approved by the University – and where appropriate there will be in place learning contracts AQH-M1-7and memoranda or collaboration AQH-M1-8. All employers will be expected to comply with the principles specified by the University in the AQH-M1-5 Employer Handbook and AQH-M1-6 Student Handbook.

 

  1. How will I be taught? Modes of teaching and learning aligned with Unistats– choose one or more

Scheduled teaching activities

x

Independent study

x

Placement

x

 

As subject areas, computing, software engineering, data analytics and digital technologies are very hands-on and practical yet they also require the facility for developing mastery of theoretical and technical principles as well as generic and transferable skills and problem solving skills. This is particularly the case with the degree apprenticeship programme where the practical and work based aspects of the programme combine with the theoretical underpinnings and fundamentals to create the ability in degree apprentice graduates to produce high quality software systems. Thus our physical (University and work place) and virtual learning environments must offer a range of diverse learning opportunities. At the University the core of our teaching and learning space is formed of several computer ‘cells’ or labs used for hands-on tutorials and project work, surrounded by traditional large lecture theatres. Within this physical environment we teach through lectures, tutorials, interactive lectorials, lab-based practicals, classroom based seminars and group problem solving sessions, case studies, guest expert lectures, one-to-one and group supervisions. In the work place environment students will have the opportunity to develop their learning by engaging with real projects and applying their skills and knowledge to develop digital and technology solutions.

Our graduate apprentices use PCs, Macs, commercial games consoles, and mobile devices, including their own phones (which we have seen enhances understanding of different platforms and increases motivation, as well as provides portability of their work to show family members, friends and potential employers during interview) as well as appropriate technologies in the workplace.  Lectorial rooms are smaller than lecture theatres and allow interactive teaching while students work at PCs under the lecturer’s direction. Practical sessions for networking, telecommunications and cybersecurity take place in specialised labs. We have a dedicated Learning Lab for interactive group work scenarios. In addition, our students use ‘break out’ areas with comfortable seating and refreshment areas where they can chat and engage in group work which is a significant part of their stage 1 and 2 learning.

 

At stage 1 students study a 120 credit module providing a holistic grounding in the fundamentals required to solve digital and technology problems in second and third years of study. The teaching and learning in first year includes large group teaching in large lecture theatres plus smaller tutor-group based activities both at University and in the work environment. In stage 2 participants make use of the Learning Lab and are encouraged to develop their “core behavioural skills” including team work for developing skills in analysis, scheduling, managing, and communicating problem solutions. Students are introduced to work based projects and tackle a small project addressing a real world problem and are required to demonstrate their solution. In stage 3 learning and teaching is more individually focused and the work based elements increase in scale with project work receiving individual supervision, and the software engineering or data analytics module seeking to develop skills in planning, design and development and the ability to evaluate the self and the published work of others. Increasingly as participants progress through their studies they are exposed to approaches that seek to promote work based learning, student-centred, and enquiry-based learning for fostering creativity, critical enquiry and independent thinking, in line with our Research Active Curriculum commitment. Our faculty Learning and Teaching Principal Lecturers are currently working on a learning spaces project examining physical environment (including work based environments) as a factor in the approaches we may take to learning and teaching.

 

Outside of the university buildings, our partnerships with key technology providers like Microsoft and CISCO allow us to offer free software downloads for student home-study. We operate a Global Desktop System that allows students to remotely access the same software environments we have installed in our teaching areas. We also use the VLE to provide directed reading and development tasks, group online discussions, wikis etc. Students can access staff, module descriptors, handbooks, MyModuleResources, taught materials, and online submission through the VLE.

 

A list of the modules in each Stage of the programme can be found in the Programme Regulations.

 

A summary of the types of teaching, learning and assessment in each module of the programme can be found in the Matrix of Modes of Teaching.

 

  1. How will I be assessed and given feedback? 

Written examinations

 

Coursework

x

Practical assessments

x

 

A summary of the types of teaching, learning and assessment in each module of the programme can be found in the Matrix of Modes of Teaching.

 

The generic assessment criteria which we use can be found here. Some programmes use subject-specific assessment criteria which are based on the generic ones.

 

This programme uses the Generic University Assessment Criteria

YES

 

This programme uses the Subject Specific Assessment Criteria

 

NO

 

The University regulations can be found here.

 

Each September the Faculty staff engages in assessment scheduling to determine when assessments will take place for each module and ensure that every programme, and hence every student, has an assessment load that is fairly balanced across the year – this will be applied to the degree apprenticeship model. Throughout their apprenticeship degree, students are encouraged to use the e-portfolio to collect, reflect upon and showcase their assessed work-pieces, which is useful both in PDP and in applications for placements and graduate employment.

 

At stage 1 for the 120 credit module the students will build their portfolio with examples of work across the main themes / core technologies of the Digital and Technology Solutions programme, namely – Information Systems; Systems Development; Data; Cybersecurity; Business Organisation; IT Project Management; and Computer and Network Infrastructure. The assessment briefs for the core technologies are on the fundamentals module are ‘cross-topic’, underlining the relevance of all the topics we teach and giving consideration to the work based environment. Stage 1 is assessed using coursework which can be practical development work, written reports, presentations, and demonstrations. Our feedback approach in all three stages is underpinned by our experience of the ESWAF project (Engaging Students with Assessment Feedback) in which the university was a cascade partner and this Faculty a contributor. Our feedback models include the use of peer review, CRAFTing and generic feedback which allow partial submissions that are commented on with the opportunity to further improve, and the use of exemplars to help students understand what is expected of them.

 

The University part of the delivery at stage 1 is based around eight teaching blocks, each of three days. These are supplemented by work based activities and regular work based mentoring sessions. At stage 2 this shifts to 6 blocks of 3 days with an increase in work based learning. At stage 3 the majority of learning takes place in the work place undertaking applied projects and is supplemented by 3 teaching blocks.

 

Alongside the academic and work based problem solving parts of the degree apprenticeship students identify the skills they need to develop and the practical means to achieve these. The portfolio provides the evidence and level of achievement of these skills. The culmination of the degree apprenticeship programme is the major independent piece of research and development encapsulated in the Degree Apprentice Project.

 

The University aims to return marked assessments and feedback within 4 working weeks of the assignment submission date after internal moderation processes have been completed. If this is not possible, students will be notified by the Module Leaders when the feedback is available and how it can be obtained.

 

The Academic Misconduct Regulations and associated guidance can be found here. It is the responsibility of students to ensure they are familiar with their responsibilities in regards to assessments and the implications of an allegation of academic misconduct.

 

Students should refer to the University Regulations for information on degree classifications and compensation between modules.

 

 

 

 


  1. Teaching, learning and assessment matrix

 

Stage 1

Code

Title

Core /

Option

Modes of T&L

Modes of Assessment

Learning Outcomes

K1

K2

K3

K4

K5

S1

S2

S3

S4

CET119

Fundamentals of Digital and Technology Solutions

Core

Lectures, Seminars, Practicals, Work based learning,  Directed Study, Canvas instruction & support, Self Study

CW – Portfolio 

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

 

Stage 2

Code

Title

Status

Modes of T&L

Modes of Assessment

Learning Outcomes

K6

K7

K8

K9

S5

S6

S7

S8

CET229

Principles of Digital and Technology Solutions

Core

Lectures, Seminars, Practicals, Work based learning,  Directed Study, Canvas instruction & support, Self Study

CW - Portfolio

T D A

T D A

 

T D A

T D

A

 

T D

T D

CET230

Principles of Software Engineering

 

 

Core for SE

Lectures, Seminars, Practicals, Work based learning,  Directed Study, Canvas instruction & support, Self Study

CW – technical report

CW – testing plan and strategy

CW – software and demonstration

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

 

T D A

T D A

T D A 

CET246

Principles of Data Analysis

Core for DA

Lectures, Seminars, Practicals, Work based learning,  Directed Study, Canvas instruction & support, Self Study

CW – technical report

CW – analysis and presentation

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

 

T D A

T D A

T D A 

CET245

Principles of Cybersecurity

Core for Cyber

Lectures, Seminars, Practicals, Work based learning,  Directed Study, Canvas instruction & support, Self Study

CW – work based audit design and action plan

CW – Technical report

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

 

T D A

T D A

T D A 

CET231

Digital and Technology Solutions in the Workplace

Core

Lectures, Tutorials,

Work based learning

 

CW – work based project brief

CW – Work based learning log

CW – Report and demonstration

 

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

T D A

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stage 3

 

Code

Title

Status

Modes of T&L

Modes of Assessment

Learning Outcomes

K10

K11

K12

S9

S10

S11

CET330

Computing Project

Core

Lectures

Tutorials

Workshops

Individual Supervision

Self Study

 

CW – Definitive Brief

CW – Project Reviews

CW – Report

CW – Software Artefact

CW – Presentation and VIVA

T D A

T D A

 

T D A

D A

T D A

CET331

Software Engineering Applications

Core for SE

Lectures, Seminars, Practicals, Work based learning,  Directed Study, Canvas instruction & support, Self Study

 

CW – Technical Report

CW – Design Implementation

CW – Software Implementation

 

T D A

T D A

 

T D A

T D A

CET348

Data Analysis Applications

Core for DA

Lectures, Seminars, Practicals, Work based learning,  Directed Study, Canvas instruction & support, Self Study

 

CW – Technical Report

CW – Design Implementation

CW – Software Implementation

 

T D A

T D A

 

T D A

T D A

CET352

Technical Cybersecurity

Core for Cyber

Lectures, Seminars, Practicals, Work based learning,  Directed Study, Canvas instruction & support, Self Study

 

CW – breach response and action plan

CW – technical report

 

T D A

T D A

 

T D A

T D A

CET332

Advanced Skills and Techniques in Digital and Technology Solutions

Core

Lectures

Tutorials

Workshops

Individual Supervision

Self Study

 

CW – Work based brief

CW – Reflective Log

CW – Report

CW - Demo

T D A

D A

D A

D A

D A

D A

 

 

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  1. How does research influence the programme? 

 

Research within the School of Computer Science sits across four strands, each of these drawing from a number of areas both within and beyond the school. This allows us to clearly identify the ways in which clusters of researchers bring their different subject expertise together to tackle a range of interesting research problems in the digital economy. Moreover, it is also a risk mitigation strategy since it enables subject specific expertise to develop while still leaving robust strands of research.

 

The strands are: Big Data which is concerned with novel techniques for managing and discovering knowledge in enormous data sets; HCI/UXD which focuses on effectively incorporating technology into all aspects of everyday-life and evaluating the impact of digital technologies at a personal level; and Cybersecurity which focuses on developing processes and procedures to enhance cybersecurity, use of digital forensics and ways in which to address cybercrime.

 

Big Data is predominantly focused on research within in the computing domain, while Technology-Enhanced Living and Informatics for Business and Manufacturing are multi-disciplinary.

 

Big data research has impact wherever analysis of large-scale complex data is useful. For instance it enables businesses and policy makers to determine trends; it can be used in disease prevention; preventing terrorist attacks; cybersecurity; combatting crime and in the discovery of new scientific knowledge. Interesting areas of current work include algorithmic analyses that prevent terrorist attacks; intelligent intrusion detection; and digital forensics work. These feed into the degree apprenticeship programme in modules CET119, CET229, CET230, CET246, CET348 and CET331. 

 

HIC/UXD has impact wherever digital technologies are used at a personal level. For instance in education, learning, domestic activity, exercise, promoting secure on-line behaviours in users. Significant work in this strand has focused on improving Usability Evaluation Methods by empirically testing the contribution of usability methods (e.g. Think-aloud testing) to usability problem discovery and analysis.  Our research also focuses on studying those factors that influence behaviour with technology, for example, those aspects of design that are related to credibility and trust, that promote behaviour change in the context of healthy living, or safer internet transactions. The usability evaluation research feeds directly into the usability strands that go through each year of the undergraduate degrees and can be seen in the project modules CET330 and CET332, CET231 work based learning, and CET119 and CET229.

 

Cybersecurity – the Cybersecurity research strand in the school operates within the context of the ever growing computing use and ever growing threat from misuse and potential cyber-attack. The members of the group bring a variety of different and complementary specialisms in cybersecurity, digital forensics, analysis of cybercrime, policing, computer ethics and computer law. The research strand goes beyond the school and embraces the interdisciplinary research opportunities afforded through collaborating with colleagues in all other Faculties across the university – with particular subject links to colleagues in health, engineering, psychology, sociology and law. The group is enhanced by colleagues from outside the university through visiting professors and strong links with local and national industry. Much of the work in this area is carried out as applied research/ knowledge transfer activity in collaboration with companies, and staff involved in these activities have used case studies in their teaching e.g. in CET230 and CET331. The Cybersecurity research strand is reflected in the research specialism modules, CET245 and CET352

 

Given the applied nature of our research Industrial Engagement is key to our activities. Our engagement industrial partners has led directly to the production of teaching materials and case studies. Our collaborative research involves over 150 industrial collaborators and informs the design and development of our curriculum.

 

Outside of the practical subject-based research and outreach that impacts on our curriculum, we operate to the institution’s Research Active Curriculum commitment. In our assessment planning week each September we discuss and record where each module may map onto the Healey (2005) model of research active curriculum, so we have a mix of research based (students undertake enquiry based learning activities), research orientated (we teach the students ‘how to research’), research led (our subject-based research is disseminated in the curriculum), and research tutored (students actively participate in research activities) student learning situations.

 

SECTION D:EMPLOYABILITY

 

  1. How will the programme prepare me for employment?

 

The programme gives you the opportunity to develop skills which you can use in the future. Some skills are more specific than others to the subject area, or to a particular type of activity, but all skills can be applied in a range of employment situations, sometimes in quite unexpected ways. The skills which this programme is designed to develop are listed below.

 

The degree apprenticeship programme gives you the opportunity to develop technical and behavioural skills which you can use in the future. Some skills are more specific than others to the subject area, or to a particular type of work based activity, but all skills can be applied in a range of employment situations, sometimes in quite unexpected ways. We aim to ensure the degree apprenticeship enables participants on the programme to enhance their current work based roles but also to prepare students for employment opportunities. This is done through the work based learning approach of the programme and utilising our close ties with business and industry as well through the curricula and the manner in which we facilitate our students’ learning.

 

For every approval/re-approval, we include employers in the development process and consult industrial, PSRB, sector skills (Tech Partnership for the degree apprenticeship) and academic staff at appropriate junctures.  In the development of this programme we have worked closely with employers to ensure that the programme meets their requirements and facilitates work based opportunities for learning. 

 

We have an active Industrial Advisory Board comprising colleagues from international, national and local business including IBM, SAGE, BA, Leighton Group, Accenture, HP, Tombola, Sunderland City Council, Sapphire, Northumbria Police, and CISCO. This provides a forum for discussion that in turn informs the Faculty’s syllabi and curricula, thereby enhancing the student experience. The IAB obtains input on employer needs and expectations of graduate and placement student skills and abilities; shares developments in CET to obtain industrial viewpoints; discusses opportunities for industrial input to the delivery of the curricula through guest lectures, projects, case studies, assessment briefs, prizes and engagement with Sunderland Futures; and discusses opportunities for collaboration in research, reach out and employability matters. 

 

We are represented on local employer groupings including DYNAMO, Digital Leaders North East, the North East Fraud forum as well as the relevant PSRBs. The work undertaken with these groups has developed strong relationships increasing employer input e.g. SAGE and Accenture have worked closely with us in addressing the curriculum and employability skills needs. Colleagues in the Faculty have been part of national working groups on cybersecurity in the CS curriculum and the output from these working groups has been included in the curriculum in CET119, CET230 and CET331.

 

In terms of student skills development, we ensure a wide range of learning activities so that students are adequately prepared to work individually and in teams, on analytical problem solving, and in practical scenarios of designing/building/testing/evaluating. Digital and Technology Solutions as a programme focuses on problem solving and students do this from day one. We integrate colleagues from Careers and Employability into our module delivery, and clear links are made to the activities of Sunderland Futures. Practitioners from business and industry provide research seminars, presentations, demonstrations and master classes to illustrate the opportunities in employment and to inspire students. In the degree apprenticeship programme work based colleagues take on an additional mentoring role to facilitate work based learning. Students maintain an e-portfolio of their skills development and keep learning logs to enhance reflective practice.

 

For information about other opportunities available to our students who study on campus, click here.

 

Additional opportunities to develop your experiences more widely will vary if you study at one of our partner colleges. For information about the extra-curricular activities available in any of our colleges please contact the college direct. 

 

  1. Particular features of the qualification

 

The programme will operate under programme specific regulations

 

  1. Professional statutory or regulatory body (PSRB) accreditation. 

 

PSRB accreditation is not relevant to this programme 

 

PSRB accreditation is currently being sought for this programme

 

This programme currently has PSRB accreditation

 

Please see PSRB Renewal Process for information on the renewal process.

The relevant PSRB(s) is/are: BCS The Chartered Institute for IT

 

The terms of the accreditation are as follows:

 

Initial accreditation was granted on 17th May 2017

 

The programme will be recognised as: CITP

 

Accreditation gives graduates (status / exemption): CITP

 

This depends upon successful completion of the programme.

 

There are programme-specific regulations relating to the following. Details are given in the programme regulations:

 

The modules to be studied

 

Pass-marks for some or all modules and/or parts

(elements) of modules 

 

Requirements for progression between one Stage and another

 

Placement requirements

 

Attendance requirements

 

Professional practice requirements

 

Degree classification  

 

Other 

 

 

Interim or exit awards are not accredited. 

 

 

 

SECTION E:PROGRAMME STRUCTURE AND REGULATIONS

 

Complete and insert Part B of the Programme Regulations Form, for question 39

 

SECTION F:ADMISSIONS, LEARNING ENVIRONMENT AND SUPPORT

 

  1. What are the admissions requirements?

 

The University’s standard admissions requirements can be found in the university regulations. Programme-specific requirements which are in addition to those regulations are given below. 

 

The nature of the degree apprenticeship admissions is different to standard university programme admissions. Admissions will not be through the UCAS process. Degree apprenticeship participants will be employed by an apprenticeship partner, and as such APL cannot be applied to the admissions to the programme. Negotiation between the apprenticeship partner employer and the Faculty will determine whether the degree apprenticeship is the most appropriate programme of study.

 

Whilst there are no admissions restrictions on this programme, it is expected that students will have the equivalent of GCSE Mathematics and English and will be able to demonstrate the potential to complete a degree, for example with UCAS equivalent of 260 points or relevant work experiences.

 

Can students enter with advanced standing?

 

No

 

 

  1. What kind of support and help will there be?
    1. in the department (and workplace)

 

Pastoral Care is taken seriously by the Faculty and by work based partners on the degree apprenticeship. At stage 1 there are key staff who teach on the fundamentals module who undertake pastoral care. Throughout the first year participants will be supported by academic tutors and work based mentors. There will be a series (2 per term with academic tutors and weekly with work based mentors) of targeted sessions which seek to engender programme-specific professional practice and allow for targeted apprentice career sessions but also as checkpoints in student engagement and progression through both face to face discussions and checking of engagement in the construction of the eportfolio. In addition, at stage 1 the programme leader oversees the support of the students. At stages 2 and 3, as with stage 1, the programme leaders are closely involved in the teaching of the students, making for effective monitoring of progress and engagement. 

 

There is a strong taught element of ‘context’ running through the programmes which helps ensure participants are appropriately orientated to their degree apprenticeship. All participants have access to their work based supervisor and have individual access to their Programme Leaders on a needs basis and formally timetabled in accordance with the university student support/personal tutoring policy. 

 

At stage 2 the Work Based Learning Module Leader plays a role in readying students for their work based learning module by means of targeted activities during the ‘Context’ teaching sessions in CET231.  Participants continue to be supported by work based mentors.

 

At Stage 3 the same personal tutoring process is in place as in earlier years and in addition there are project supervisors and work based mentors to guide participants on the project module CET330 and the work based project module CET332.

 

We also use programme spaces/noticeboards within the VLE, as well as email interaction to provide flexible and efficient communication on day to day issues. Programme teams meet with student representatives each term in Staff Student Consultative Committees (SSCCs) to formally record issues around the student experience. In many instances, issues can quickly and easily be resolved in this way. In some cases they need referral to the Boards of Study. In either event, Canvas is used as a mechanism for formally feeding back to the students regarding the resolution or otherwise of the issues raised.

 

  1. in the university as a whole:

 

The University provides a range of professional support services including wellbeing, counselling, disability support, and a Chaplaincy. Click on the links for further information.

 

 

  1. What resources will I have access to?

 

On campus

In a partner college

 

By distance learning

 

 

On campus

General Teaching and Learning Space

IT

Library

VLE

Laboratory

Studio

 

Performance space

 

Other specialist

Technical resources 

 

Text for details listed above:

 

Technical learning resources for the Faculty are supported by technicians. The technicians are managed by the Faculty computing manager who works very closely with the academic staff to ensure the appropriateness of resources.

There is a range of learning resources available to students in computing and engineering subjects. Normal access to resources during term time is Mon-Fri 8am-9pm hours, although some specialist facilities have restricted access with academic staff and technical staff managing access to normally locked resources.  If specialist labs are free they can be accessed via a signing in procedure available from the IT Helpdesk in DGIC. Available hardware includes the Computing suite in the David Goldman Informatics Centre which is organised into a set of 7 cells each of 25 machines for teaching and an open access suite of 67 units comprises of PCs and MACs. There are a total of 242 workstations (217 PCs and 25 Macs) on the terraces. The specification of these machines are PCs vast majority Intel i3 ranging to intel i7’s. In addition there are specialised CISCO and Forensic facilities in 6 laboratories. These contain 125 PCs with Cisco networking kit, PICO cell and virtualisation setups.

These labs cater for Networking, Telecommunications, Forensics and Ethical Hacking courses. The total number of available seats is thus 375. Cells are available to all students within the University if not timetabled.  In DGIC there is a Learning Lab which comprises of 7 Smart boards with connecting laptops which is capable of linking all smart boards from one input.

A rolling replacement programme for computing equipment is operated with local and central funding available for hardware and software upgrades each year. This rolling replacement programme is continuing and we have a 5 year plan in place.

Information about the University’s facilities can be found here.

 

Please see the relevant college prospectus or website for details of college learning resources if you are planning to study in one of our partner colleges.

 

  1. Are there any additional costs on top of the fees?

 

No, but all students buy some study materials such as books and provide their own basic study materials.

 

Yes (optional) All students buy some study materials such as books and provide their own basic study materials. In addition there are some are additional costs for optional activities associated with the programme (see below)

 

Yes (essential) All students buy some study materials such as books and provide their own basic study materials. In addition there are some are essential additional costs associated with the programme (see below)

 

 

 

 

 

  1. How are student views represented?

 

All taught programmes in the University have student representatives for each Stage (year-group) of each programme, and in FCS these students meet us in a Staff Student Consultative Committee (SSCC) where they can raise students’ views and concerns. The Students’ Union and the faculties together provide training for student representatives. SSCCs and focus groups are also used to obtain student feedback on plans for developing existing programmes and designing new ones. Feedback on your programme is obtained every year through module questionnaires and informs the annual review of your programme. Student representatives are also invited to attend Programme and Module Studies Boards which manage the delivery and development of programmes and modules.  Various Faculty committees, particularly Faculty Academic Experience Committee, Academic Development Committee and Quality Management Sub-Committee also have student representation. This allows students to be involved in higher-level plans for teaching and learning. There is a parallel structure at university level on which students are represented by sabbatical officers who are the elected leaders of the Students’ Union.

 

The University’s student representation and feedback policy can be found here.

 

Final-year students are also invited to complete a National Student Survey (NSS) which asks a standard set of questions across the whole country. The results of this are discussed at Programme Studies Boards and at Faculty Academic Committee to identify good practice which can be shared and problems which need to be addressed. We rely heavily on student input to interpret the results of the NSS and ensure that we make the most appropriate changes.

 

If you are studying in one of our partner colleges the college will have its own mechanisms for obtaining student feedback. Some of these may be the same as those on-campus at the University but others may be different. You should ask your college for further information.

 

If you are studying by distance learning you will have slightly different arrangements from those used on campus. In particular, you are likely to have virtual rather than physical meetings and discussions. However, these arrangements should provide comparable opportunities for you to give feedback. Details are given below.

 

SECTION G:QUALITY MANAGEMENT 

 

  1. National subject benchmarks

 

The Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) for Higher Education publishes benchmark statements which give guidance as to the skills and knowledge which graduates in various subjects and in certain types of degree are expected to have. These can be found here.

 

Are there any benchmark statements for this programme?

YES

 

 

The subject benchmark(s) for this programme is/are:

 

  • Computing (2016)
  • Degree Apprenticeship Standard (2015)

 

The QAA also publishes a Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ) which defines the generic skills and abilities expected of students who have achieved awards at a given level and with which our programmes align. The FHEQ can be found here.

 

  1. How are the quality and standards of the programme assured?

 

The programme is managed and quality assured through the University’s standard processes. Programmes are overseen by Module and Programme Studies Boards which include student representatives. Each year each module leader provides a brief report on the delivery of the module, identifying strengths and areas for development, and the programme team reviews the programme as a whole.  The purpose of this is to ensure that the programme is coherent and up-to-date, with suitable progression from one Stage to another, and a good fit (alignment) between what is taught and how students learn and are assessed - the learning outcomes, content and types of teaching, learning and assessment. Student achievement, including progress between Stages of the programme and degree classification, is kept under review. The programme review report is sent to the Programme Studies Board and the Faculty in turn reports issues to the University’s Quality Management Sub-Committee (QMSC).

 

External examiners are appointed to oversee and advise on the assessment of the programme. They ensure that the standards of the programme are comparable with those of similar programmes elsewhere in the UK and are also involved in the assessment process to make sure that it is fair. They are invited to comment on proposed developments to the programme. Their reports are sent to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) as well as to the Faculty so that issues of concern can be addressed.

 

All programmes are reviewed by the University on a six-yearly cycle to identify good practice and areas for enhancement. Programmes are revalidated through this review process. These reviews include at least one academic specialist in the subject area concerned from another UK university. Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) review reports for Sunderland can be found here.

 

Further information about our quality processes can be found here.