How to Learn a New Language COMPSCI1020

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Computing Science
  • Credits: 30
  • Level: Level 1 (SCQF level 7)
  • Typically Offered: Runs Throughout Semesters 1 and 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No

Short Description

This course is intended for Graduate Apprenticeship students only.

After this course students will be able to learn new programming languages themselves. It is designed to teach the fundamentals of programming in such a way that students will very easily be able to pick up new languages and be able to use them quickly in their respective workplaces. Glasgow graduates are good at picking up new languages quickly - we want to distil this skill into a single course without teaching specific languages.


Note that the first half of the course will be spent largely on campus, with the second half spent largely in the workplace.

Requirements of Entry


Excluded Courses



Written examination 50%, practical test 10%, class test 5%, written guide to learning a new language 10%, report on workplace practices 25%.

Main Assessment In: March

Course Aims

The aim of this course is to provide students with the skills and knowledge to pick up a new programming language. The students will also be able to develop existing programming skills in order to embed sound programming language fundamentals and techniques for structuring programs appropriately. The course also teaches the basics of writing good clean code that is easy to read and maintain.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate the use of a newly learned programming language to write simple programs

2. Identify common concepts, characteristics and functionality shared by programming languages

3. Understand the differences and similarities between programming language implementations and programming paradigms

4. Recognise the importance of appropriate program design standards and clean coding concepts

5. Apply knowledge of software engineering best practices to write easy-to-read and suitably formed programs

6. Demonstrate the ability to make additions to a large codebase

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.