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Databases and Web-based Systems


School - School of Computing, Science & Engineering

Subject area - Computer Science

Start Dates(s): September; January


September start:
MSc by project - one year full-time or three years part-time
PgDip - one year full-time or two years part-time

January start:
MSc by project – 16 months full-time or three years part-time


Part-time - £1,230 per 30 credit module

UK - £7,380

International - £13,500, part-time £6,750

In Brief:

  • MSc by project accredited by the British Computer Society
  • Gain hands-on experience of the design and implementation of databases and web applications
  • Learn data-mining techniques using popular tools in different application domains
  • Part-time study option
  • International students can apply

Course Summary

This course is your opportunity to specialise in the development of web-based software systems that use databases. During your time with us, you will gain a critical awareness of the methodologies, tools and techniques used for the development of web-based computer systems and an advanced understanding of the techniques used for the development, evaluation and testing of databases.

The course also develops an awareness of the latest developments in the field of advanced databases, data mining and data warehousing. You will also gain substantial knowledge and skills in the deployment of SAS business intelligence software leading towards SAS data miner accreditation, and learn what the Semantic Web and Linked Data are, together with what these technologies enable.

Awards and Accreditation

Course Details

This course covers a very comprehensive range of topics split in to four large modules worth 30 credits each plus the MSc Project. External speakers from blue-chip and local companies will give seminars to complement your learning, that will be real-world case studies related to the subjects you are studying in your modules. These are designed to improve the breadth of your learning and often lead to ideas that you can develop for your MSc Project.

The module aims to provide a broad overview of the general field of 'database systems' and to develop specialised knowledge in areas that demonstrate the interaction and synergy between ongoing research and practical deployment of this field of study.
This module aims to build on previous knowledge of software development to provide a systematic understanding of up-to-date issues, techniques and technologies for developing robust, usable and scalable web-accessible data-driven applications that conform to interoperable standards. Both the hardware and software aspects of network-based service delivery on an enterprise scale will be covered.
This module aims to equip students with a specialist understanding of the Semantic Web and the data languages commonly used for content development and the associated tools and techniques that can be used for automated extraction, representation and indexing of information in unstructured multimedia data sources such as text, audio/music and image/video data.
This module aims to introduce you to the tools and techniques to build decision making systems for business organisations; from gathering large sets of data and information, to the production of outputs and reports that will allow organisations to make strategic decisions to improve their businesses and predict future  trends.
The project module aims to provide you with an opportunity to integrate learning from the course modules, working under the direction of an academic supervisor to carry out high-level coordinated academic and practical work on researching a suitable problem and developing, evaluating and critically assessing a robust, scalable and usable solution.

Entry Requirements

  • The minimum requirement is a second class division 2 Honours degree or equivalent in a computing discipline, including recent programming experience
  • Other subjects with a high technical content will be considered individually.

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

We welcome applications from students who may not have formal/traditional entry criteria but who have relevant experience or the ability to pursue the course successfully.

The Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) process could help you to make your work and life experience count. The APL process can be used for entry onto courses or to give you exemptions from parts of your course.

Two forms of APL may be used for entry: the Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) or the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

English Language Requirements

International students must provide evidence of proficiency in English- IELTS 6.0 band score (with no element below 5.5) or above are proof of this.

Suitable For

Students who want to become trained professionals:

  • In designing and implementing database systems in Oracle/MySQL DBMS, and those who want to work towards DBA certification
  • In designing and implementing web applications using ASP.NET, Microsoft SQL Server and PHP with My SQLIn data and text mining using SAS Enterprise Miner.
  • In Semantic Web languages and tools including SPARQ, RDF and OWL.

Fees 2017-18

Type of StudyFee
Part-time£1,230 per 30 credit module
Full-time International£13,500, part-time £6,750

Additional costs

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

Scholarships and Bursaries

For more information please see our funding section


Teaching on this course takes the form of lectures, individual and group class work, topical class discussions and critical case study evaluation.

You will gain hands-on lab experience of using and setting up databases and web-based systems. What’s more, tutorials will give you practice in solving the theoretical and design problems associated with these systems.


  • Coursework 60%
  • Examinations 40%

Postgraduate Staff Profile

Dr Mohamad (Mo) Saraee
Senior Lecturer in Data Mining & Bioinformatics
Module leader for Business Intelligence and Advanced Databases. Further details...

Dr N. Murray
Programme leader: MSc/PgDip Database and Web-based Systems
Lecturer in the School of Computing, Science & Engineering. Further details...


With this qualification, you’ll be equipped as web/database designer and programmer, data analytics and miner among other roles. Your experience will be in high demand across all industrial and commercial sectors.

Previous students have gone on to work with companies including British Airways, Google, Hewlett-Packard, Oracle and other IT firms.

Links with Industry

Our links with industry include large companies (BT, Oracle, Microsoft) and local companies.

These companies engage with the University by giving guest seminars and often our students will work with them on their MSc Project.

Further Study

Many of our graduates will go on to further study in our Computer Networks and Telecommunications Research Centre (CNTR)

The CNTR undertakes both pure and applied research in the general field of telecommunications and computer networking including computer networking technologies, wireless systems, networked multimedia applications, quality of service, mobile networking, intelligent buildings, context driven information systems and communication protocols. Much of this work is funded through research grants and supported by industry. In addition, members of the group are actively involved in a range of public engagement courses which aim to raise the awareness of these subjects for the general public and in schools.

Research themes in this Centre include:

  • Wireless technologies and sensor networks
  • Context and location based information systems
  • Intelligent buildings and energy monitoring
  • Communication protocols, traffic routing and quality of service
  • Network planning, traffic modelling and optimisation
  • Ubiquitous and ambient technology
  • Information security and computer forensics
  • Public Awareness

94% of our postgraduates go on to employment and/or further study within six months of graduating.DLHE 2009 and 2010

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