Prestigious Scottish Funding Council Awards are available to high calibre applicants for this
programme. The SFC has selected this programme in recognition of the high demand for students with these qualifications.
The awards cover all tuition costs; for further information, please see: funded places.
The Masters in Software Development will give you an intensive grounding in computer programming, professional software development, and related skills. You will apply your knowledge and skills by undertaking a demanding software development project.
- The University of Glasgow’s School of Computing Science is consistently highly ranked achieving 1st in Scotland and 2nd in the UK (Guardian University Guide 2014)
- With a 97% overall student satisfaction in the National Student Survey 2014, the School of Computing Science continues to meet student expectations combining both teaching excellence and a supportive learning environment.
- The School is a member of the Scottish Informatics and Computer Science Alliance: SICSA. This collaboration of Scottish universities aims to develop Scotland's place as a world leader in Informatics and Computer Science research and education.
- You will have opportunities to meet employers who come to make recruitment presentations, and often seek to recruit our graduates during the programme.
- You will benefit from having 24-hour access to a computer laboratory equipped with state-of-the-art hardware and software.
Modes of delivery of the MSc in Software Development include lectures, seminars and tutorials and allow students the opportunity to take part in lab, project and team work.
- Advanced programming
- Algorithms and data structures
- Database theory and applications
- Software engineering
- Software project management
- Systems and networks
- Group project.
Plus one of the following specialist courses:
- Enterprise computing
- Human-centred security.
- Cyber security
- Human computer interaction: design and evaluation
- Internet technology
- Safety critical systems.
Depending on staff availability, the optional courses listed here may change.
If you wish to engage in part-time study, please be aware that dependent upon your optional taught courses, you may still be expected to be on campus on most week days.
- To complete the MSc degree you must undertake a project worth 60 credits. This is a project chosen by you to design, implement, and test a software development system.
- The project will integrate the subject knowledge and generic skills that you will acquire during your Masters.
- We offer a wide range of projects, and each student is normally allocated a different project. We take your preferences into account when we allocate the projects.
- You will also have the opportunity to propose your own project, subject to academic approval.
Here are some typical project titles from recent years:
- Augmented reality iPhone application
- Developing a mobile chess game using Bluetooth
- Drawing editor for digital hardware diagrams
- Economic video game
- Gesture media player
- Mind games: Othello
- System to support real estate valuation
Furthermore for students hoping to continue into research, we have seven major research groups: computer vision and graphics; embedded, networked, and distributed systems; formal analysis, theory, and algorithms; human computer interaction; inference, dynamics, and interaction; information retrieval; software engineering and information security. Most MSc students choose projects offered by these groups, giving them an opportunity to go on to PhD study. You can find details of our research here.
MSc Software Development is accredited by the British Computer Society (BCS).
Our conversion MSc graduates in Information Technology and Software Development are recognised by the British Computer Society (BCS), The Chartered Institute for IT, for the purposes of partially meeting the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered IT Professional (CITP Partial Fulfilment).
- Information Technology (IT) pervades our lives. If you are a graduate and you are equipped with advanced software development skills, you will enjoy a significant advantage in pursuing your career, whatever your previous degree subject.
- Our MSc Software Development programme teaches the knowledge and skills needed to develop substantial software products, including web-based applications and information systems.
- The School of Computing Science has extensive contacts with industrial partners who contribute to several of their taught courses, through active teaching, curriculum development, and panel discussion. Recent contributors include representatives from IBM, J.P. Morgan, Amazon, Adobe and Red Hat.
- Employers are interested in graduates who have a combination of good technical skills and well-developed personal skills, and in this respect graduates of the MSc in Software Development from the University of Glasgow are particularly well placed.
- During the programme students have an opportunity to develop and practice relevant professional and transferrable skills, and to meet and learn from employers about working in the IT industry.
Below are testimonials from some of our recent graduates:
“I graduated last year from the MSc programme in IT having previously done a BSc in Physics & Astronomy at the University of Glasgow. I had previously done small amounts of computer programming and really enjoyed it so I wanted to gain some proper training and qualifications in the subject. This course provided me with all of that and more. The course also covered a wide area of professional skills that I was initially sceptical about, but now as a working graduate I consider to have been an excellent aid to me in my first career. My Masters project was working on a matching algorithm to upgrade a system used by the NHS for allocating graduate doctors to their jobs. As well as being a good experience I'm sure that it aided my employability. I am now working as a graduate Software Engineer with a medium sized international company based just outside of Glasgow. I started there two months after graduating and it has been a tremendous success for me. I don't think this is an opportunity which I would have considered or which would have been available to me had I not studied for my MSc.”
Neil Armstrong, former MSc Information Technology student, University of Glasgow. Neil is currently a Software Engineering in a company within Glasgow.
“My first degree was a MA in English Literature and Philosophy also from the University of Glasgow. I enjoyed my time at the university so I decided to continue my studies here and do the MSc in Information Technology. I studied computing within the humanities during my English degree and decided to further my knowledge in IT. I liked the intensive work pace of the course which was challenging but also very rewarding. I particularly enjoyed, however, the independent project where I designed a new input technique for a mobile device using the camera to detect light levels and movement. The camera was used to detect a series of gestures which controlled a music player. This was something which had not really been explored before. The MSc IT degree is a valuable qualification and soon after graduation I secured full time employment as a graduate software developer. For anyone thinking about developing their career in computing, I highly recommend this course without any reservation.”
Shaun Gourlay, former MSc Information Technology student, University of Glasgow. Shaun is currently a Software Developer.
“After graduating from Glasgow University with a degree in English Language, I stayed in Glasgow and worked for a few years in the public sector. At work, I gradually became more involved in their technical activities: querying databases, testing software as a user, specifying requirements for a new micro-site. It became obvious that I was interested in IT, so I decided to take the MSc in IT to develop that interest. Glasgow's computing department had an excellent reputation, so it seemed the ideal place to go.
It turned out to be the best career decision I've ever made. The course was hard work but immensely rewarding, and my previous interest quickly turned into a passion as I learned about everything from programming to database design, and much more besides. The breadth of subjects covered was impressive – something which some interviewers commented on when I was job hunting. The masters project offered the opportunity both to develop a deeper understanding of a particular area, and to put some of what I had learned into practice. I implemented a data visualisation system for manipulating large volumes of data from voting records of MPs at Westminster. I have now just started working for Toshiba Medical Visualization Systems as a software engineer. So far, there have been a lot of new things for me to learn, but thanks to the solid grounding that the MSc gave me, I am well prepared and learning quickly. Looking back, I can hardly believe how far I've come in a little over a year!”
Clare Sheehy Hutton, former MSc Information Technology student, University of Glasgow. Clare is currently a Software Engineer for Toshiba Medical Visualization Systems.
for entry in 2016
A minimum of a 2.1 Honours degree or equivalent (eg GPA 3.0 or equivalent) in a subject other than computing science.
For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.
International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)
- overall score 6.5
- no sub-test less than 6.0
- or equivalent scores in another recognised qualification (see below)
Common equivalent English language qualifications
All stated English tests are acceptable for admission for both home/EU and international students for this programme:
- ibTOEFL: 92; no sub-test less than 20
- CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
- CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
- PTE Academic (Person Test of English, Academic test): 60; no sub-test less than 59
- Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English: ISEII at Distinction with Distinction in all sub-tests
For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use these tests to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level programmes. The University is also able to accept an IELTS test (Academic module) from any of the 1000 IELTS test centres from around the world and we do not require a specific UKVI IELTS test for degree level programmes. We therefore still accept any of the English tests listed for admission to this programme.
The University of Glasgow accepts evidence of the required language level from the English for Academic Study Unit Pre-sessional courses. We also consider other BALEAP accredited pre-sessional courses:
What do I do if...
my language qualifications are below the requirements?
The University's English for Academic Study Unit offers a range of Pre-Sessional Courses to bring you up to entry level. The course is accredited by BALEAP, the UK professional association for academic English teaching; see Links.
my language qualifications are not listed here?
Please contact the Recruitment and International Office: email@example.com
For further information about English language requirements, please contact the Recruitment and International Office: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuition fees for 2016-17
|Home and EU|
|Full time fee||£6950|
|Part time 20 credits||£772|
|Full time fee||£18900|
|Home and EU|
|Full time fee||£4633|
|Full time fee||£12600|
|Home and EU|
|Full time fee||£2317|
|Full time fee||£6300|
Fees are subject to change and for guidance only
A 10% discount is available to University of Glasgow alumni applying to the
MSc. This includes graduates and those who have
completed a Junior Year Abroad, Exchange programme or International Summer School at
the University of Glasgow. The discount is applied at registration for students who
are not in receipt of another discount or scholarship funded by the University. No
additional application is required.
The University requires a deposit of £1000 to be paid by International (beyond the EU) applicants in receipt of an offer to this programme.
Former students are now employed in the chemical, electronics, travel, food, and oil industries, in banking and insurance, in software houses, in retailing, in education, in the health service, in management consultancy, in civil engineering, and in other sectors. Some graduates apply their newly-acquired software development skills within their existing careers, or move into research or teaching.
Graduates of this programme have gone on to positions such as:
Junior Java Developer at Sky
Software Engineer at Kotikan
Graduate Developer at BiP Solutions
self-employed Junior Database Programmer
Software Engineer at Morgan Stanley
Graduate Developer at BiP Solutions
Web Developer at FibroTest
Software Developer at Seemis.
We ask that you apply online for a postgraduate taught degree. Our system allows you to fill out the standard application form online and submit this to the University within 42 days of starting your application.
You need to read the guide to applying online before starting your application. It will ensure you are ready to proceed, as well as answer many common questions about the process.
Do I have to apply online for a postgraduate taught degree?
Yes. To apply for a postgraduate taught degree you must apply online. We are unable to accept your application by any other means than online.
Do I need to complete and submit the application in a single session?
No. You have 42 days to submit your application once you begin the process. You may save and return to your application as many times as you wish to update information, complete sections or upload additional documents such as your final transcript or your language test.
What documents do I need to provide to make an application?
As well as completing your online application fully, it is essential that you submit the following documents:
- A copy (or copies) of your official degree certificate(s) (if you have already completed your degree)
- A copy (or copies) of your official academic transcript(s), showing full details of subjects studied and grades/marks obtained
- Official English translations of the certificate(s) and transcript(s)
- Two supporting reference letters on headed paper
- Evidence of your English Language ability (if your first language is not English)
- Any additional documents required for this programme (see Entry requirements for this programme)
- A copy of the photo page of your passport (Non-EU students only)
- A two-page personal statement highlighting:
- How your academic career to-date makes this programme a suitable next step
- Why you want to study this programme
- How you think this programme will help you in your future career development
If you do not have all of these documents at the time of submitting your application then it is still possible to make an application and provide any further documents at a later date, as long as you include a full current transcript (and an English translation if required) with your application. See the ‘Your References, Transcripts and English Qualification’ sections of our Frequently Asked Questions for more information.
Do my supporting documents need to be submitted online?
Yes, where possible, please upload the supporting documents with your application.
How do I provide my references?
You must either upload the required references to your online application or ask your referees to send the references to the University as we do not contact referees directly. There is two main ways that you can provide references: you can either upload references on headed paper when you are making an application using the Online Application (or through Applicant Self-Service after you have submitted your application) or you can ask your referee to email the reference directly to email@example.com. See the 'Your References, Transcripts and English Qualifications' section of the Frequently Asked Questions for more information.
What if I am unable to submit all of my supporting documents online?
If you cannot upload an electronic copy of a document and need to send it in by post, please attach a cover sheet to it that includes your name, the programme you are applying for, and your application reference number.
You may send them to:
Recruitment & International Office
71 Southpark Avenue
Fax: +44 141 330 4045
Can I email my supporting documents?
No. We cannot accept email submissions of your supporting documents.
What entry requirements should I have met before applying? Where can I find them?
You should check that you have met (or are likely to have met prior to the start of the programme) the individual entry requirements for the degree programme you are applying for. This information can be found on the ‘entry requirements’ tab on each individual programme page, such as the one you are viewing now.
What English Language requirements should I have met before applying? Where can I find them?
If you are an international student, you should also check that you have met the English Language requirements specific to the programme you are applying for. These can also be found on the ‘entry requirements’ tab for each specific programme.
Please see the Frequently Asked Questions for more information on applying to a postgraduate taught programme.
Guidance notes for using the online application
These notes are intended to help you complete the online application form accurately, they are also available within the help section of the online application form. If you experience any difficulties accessing the online application then you should visit the Application Troubleshooting/FAQs page.
- Name and Date of birth: must appear exactly as they do on your passport. Please take time to check the spelling and lay-out.
- Contact Details: Correspondence address. All contact relevant to your application will be sent to this address including the offer letter(s). If your address changes, please contact us as soon as possible.
- Choice of course: Please select carefully the course you want to study. As your application will be sent to the admissions committee for each course you select it is important to consider at this stage why you are interested in the course and that it is reflected in your application.
- Proposed date of entry: Please state your preferred start date including the month and the year. Taught masters degrees tend to begin in September. Research degrees may start in any month.
- Education and Qualifications: Please complete this section as fully as possible indicating any relevant Higher Education qualifications starting with the most recent. Complete the name of the Institution (s) as it appears on the degree certificate or transcript.
- English Language Proficiency: Please state the date of any English language test taken (or to be taken) and the award date (or expected award date if known).
- Employment and Experience: Please complete this section as fully as possible with all employments relevant to your course. Additional details may be attached in your personal statement/proposal where appropriate.
- References: Please provide the names and contact details of two academic references. Where applicable one of these references may be from your current employer. References should be completed on letter headed paper and uploaded on to your application.
Standard application deadlines
- International applications (non-EU): 22 July 2016
- UK and EU applications: 26 August 2016
Classes start September 2016 and you may be expected to attend induction sessions the week before.
Please note: applications for SFC funded places are open for entry in September 2016.