BSc (Hons) Software Engineering

Are you fascinated by the creativity of technology and software? Our software engineering course gives you the skills and practical experience to jump-start your career.

Software Engineering

Key facts

  • Award BSc (Hons)
  • Start date September 2024, January 2025
  • Duration 36 months or 48 months
  • Mode of study full time, part time
  • Delivery on campus
  • UCAS Code G600
  • Study abroad opportunities


BCS (Chartered Institute for IT)

British Computer Society logo


Are you fascinated by the creative possibilities of technology and software? Do you love solving complex problems as part of a team? If yes, software engineering could be the career for you. You’ll be in high demand for developing the systems that are the foundation and glue of our modern world, and that transform our experiences in communications, business, entertainment, gaming and healthcare.

Our degree will teach you creativity, logical analysis, problem-solving and how teamwork builds complex systems. You’ll study practice and techniques for real-world software design and associated programming technologies, gaining practical experience in software development.

Our graduates are highly sought-after. To help you build strong links with industry, we offer three-month summer placements and one-year placements with local SMEs and large corporates. Students also have the opportunity to engage with an international teaching environment through our exchange programmes.

Top reasons to study with us

Professional accreditation

BCS (Chartered Institute for IT)

Prizes or awards

Each year we offer the following prizes:

  • Outstanding performance in 1st year Computing Science modules
  • Outstanding performance in 2nd year Computing Science modules
  • Outstanding performance in 3rd year Computing Science modules
  • Outstanding performance in 4th year Computing Science modules
  • Faculty research prize for an outstanding research project
  • BCS Glasgow prize: Best honours project

Entry requirements

Year 1 entry – Four-year honours

SQA Highers
ABBB - by the end of S5
AABB - by the end of S6

GCE A-levels

IB Diploma
30 points

BTEC (Level 3)

Widening access students
Widening access students may be eligible for an adjusted offer of entry. To find out if this applies to you go to our widening access pages.

Care-experienced applicants will be guaranteed an offer of a place if they meet the minimum entry requirements.

For year 1 entry, there are no course specific requirements for this programme although some experience of computer programming is beneficial.

Year 2 entry – Three-year honours

SQA Advanced Highers

GCE A-levels

IB Diploma
35 points

Essential subjects
Subjects to include Computing and relevant experience of Java or other programming languages.

Other Scottish qualifications

Scottish HNC/HND
Year one minimum entry - Bs in graded units.

Access courses
University of Stirling access course - for mature students only. You must pass the course with 50% or above.

SWAP access course - for mature students only.

Email our Admissions Team for advice about other access courses.

Foundation Apprenticeships
Considered to be equivalent to 1 Higher at Grade B

Other qualifications

English, Welsh and Northern Irish HNC/HND
Merits and Distinctions

English, Welsh and Northern Irish access courses
Access to Higher Education - 60 credits, minimum 45 at QCF Level 3, pass at 60% or above.

International entry requirements

Advanced entry

Year 2 and Year 3 entry
Entry into Year 2 or Year 3 may be possible depending on your HNC/HND course. To find out more go to our articulation pages.

Other qualifications
Advanced entry may be possible depending on your qualifications. For more information, contact our Admissions Team at

Other routes of entry

If you don't currently meet our academic requirements, INTO University of Stirling offers a variety of preparation programmes that can earn you the qualifications and skills you need to progress onto some of our courses. Explore INTO University of Stirling to see the Foundation and International Year 2 routes available.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:

  • IELTS Academic or UKVI 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each sub-skill.
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic) 56 overall with a minimum of 51 in each sub-skill.
  • IBT TOEFL 78 overall with a minimum of 17 in listening, 18 in reading, 20 in speaking and 17 in writing.

See our information on English language requirements for more details on the language tests we accept and options to waive these requirements.

Pre-sessional English language courses

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this course, our partner INTO University of Stirling offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for entry to this degree.

Find out more about our pre-sessional English language courses

Course details

During Semesters 1-3, students from all three of our computing-related degrees (Computing Science, Software Engineering and Business Computing) take the same core modules in Computing Science, plus two other subjects. Core topics include: Computational Thinking; Programming Using Java; Social and Professional Issues; Database Principles and Application; Data Structures, Objects and Algorithms. In Semester 1, Software Engineering students must also take a Mathematics module that is specifically designed to help with their understanding of networks, logic and algorithms.

Semesters 4-8 cover compulsory modules - including Programming Language Principles, Software Engineering, Computer Security and Networks - plus optional modules, including: Artificial Intelligence; Web Services; Mobile App Development. The combination of compulsory and optional modules give you the opportunity to explore your particular interests while providing a solid foundation of core computing concepts.

You’ll undertake an independent project in your final year, which involves the design and development of a major piece of software from initial requirements to final delivery.

Our students also enjoy access to an active Computer Club that organises a number of activities and projects for those interested in Computing Science and Software Engineering.


The module information below provides an example of the types of course module you may study. The details listed are for the academic year that starts in September 2024. Modules and start dates are regularly reviewed and may be subject to change in future years.

Course details


Computing Science at Stirling has been ranked 7th in the UK in the 2022 Guardian University Guide. Furthermore, the University of Stirling have been awarded five-star excellence for teaching by the QS Stars University Ratings 2024.

Our teaching makes use of both our campus-based teaching facilities and online learning environment. You’ll learn about Software Engineering through lectures, small tutorial groups and practical labs, where concepts taught in lectures are implemented and tested. You’ll complete a number of modules that will involve team-based software design, development and testing.

Computing Science at Stirling is part of the Scottish Informatics and Computer Science Alliance (SICSA) Scotland-wide pooling initiative in research and knowledge exchange, as well as The DataLab, Scotland's Innovation Centre for data and AI.

Our research-led teaching is at the core of your learning as our staff conduct world-leading research. Our staff are engaged with funded research from the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), as well as funding from other UK Research Councils and funding agencies.


We teach Software Engineering as a very practical subject, and almost all modules include practical assignments. Typically, these count for 50 percent of the assessment grade per module, with the remainder given to the exam. For an Honours degree, the grades for all advanced modules taken in Semesters 5-8 are combined to give your final degree classification.

Work placement opportunities

We help our students to build strong links with industry through three-month summer placements and one-year placements. Both of these are offered to third year students. Placement opportunities are available with local SMEs as well as large corporate companies. Year 3 contains a professional development course, which is designed to equip you with the necessary skills to secure a placement and, ultimately, job.

Our Careers Service is ranked 1st in Scotland and Top 5 in the UK (UK International Student Barometer (ISB) Benchmark and Global ISB Benchmark 2018). They will not only help you to secure placements but also offer all the support and advice you need to plan your career, develop your employability or think about further study.

Study abroad

You can study abroad through our well-established connections with North American, Australian and European universities.

Fees and funding

Fees and costs

Academic year: 2023/24 2024/25
Scottish students £1,820 £1,820
Students from England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland £9,250 £9,250
International students (including EU) £20,300 £21,300

Scottish students

This fee is set by the Scottish Government and is subject to change.

Although you’re liable for annual tuition fees, if you are domiciled in Scotland you can apply to the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS) to have your tuition fees paid by the Scottish Government on your behalf.

You will be charged the annual tuition fee each year when you enrol.

If you need to take additional modules or resit modules, you will be liable for an additional fee.

For more information on courses invoiced on an annual fee basis, please read our tuition fee policy.

Students from England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland

This tuition fee may be subject to change depending on guidance provided by the UK Government.

You can apply for financial assistance, including a loan to cover the full cost of your tuition fees, from your relevant funding body. Students from the Republic of Ireland are eligible for a tuition fee loan of up to £9,250 from the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS).

We also offer additional funding – such as our Honours Year Scholarship – for students from England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland. See our funding opportunities section below for more information.

You will be charged the annual fee each year when you enrol. Your fees will be held at the same level throughout your course.

If you need to take additional modules or resit modules, you will be liable for an additional fee.

For more information on courses invoiced on an annual fee basis, please read our tuition fee policy.

International students (including EU)

Eligible students will automatically receive a scholarship worth between £8,000-£30,000 over the duration of your course. See our range of generous scholarships for international undergraduate students.

You will be charged the annual fee each year when you enrol. Your fees will be held at the same level throughout your course.

If you need to take additional modules or resit modules, you will be liable for an additional fee.

For more information on courses invoiced on an annual fee basis, please read our tuition fee policy.

Additional costs

There are some instances where additional fees may apply. Depending on your chosen course, you may need to pay additional costs, for example for field trips. Learn more about additional fees.


See what funding opportunities and loans are available to help you with tuition and living costs.

Students from Scotland

Find funding opportunities for Scottish students.

Students from England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland

Eligible students will automatically receive our Undergraduate Welcome Scholarship, Undergraduate Merit Scholarship, and our Honours Year Scholarship, which are worth between £1,000 and £9,250.

International students

Eligible international students will automatically receive a scholarship worth between £8,000-£30,000 over the duration of your course. Find funding opportunities for international students.

Cost of living

If you’re domiciled in the UK, you can typically apply to your relevant funding body for help with living costs. This usually takes the form of student loans, grants or bursaries, and the amount awarded depends upon your personal circumstances and household income.

International (including EU) students won’t normally be able to claim living support through SAAS or other UK public funding bodies. You should contact the relevant authority in your country to find out if you’re eligible to receive support.

Find out about the cost of living for students at Stirling.

Payment options

We aim to be as flexible as possible, and offer a wide range of payment methods - including the option to pay fees by instalments. Learn more about how to pay.

After you graduate

What jobs can you do with a Software Engineering degree?

From software development to data analysis, our computer science graduates have a range of opportunities open to them. According to the 2020 ScotlandIS Scottish Technology Industry survey, about 100,000 people are working in digital technologies professions. This is a growth of 9% since 2016. The growth has been strongest in web design and development, IT business analysts, architects and systems designers, programmers and software development professionals.

Jobs directly related to your degree include:

  • software engineering
  • specialist IT
  • financial services
  • gaming
  • communications
  • business
  • public services
  • analyst programming
  • IT consultancy
  • applications development
  • web development
  • systems development

Software Engineering graduates are in high-demand for both the software industry and one of the many fields in which computer systems are extensively used and developed. Our graduates emerge from our course with a wide range of IT skills and our industry placements will ease your transition into the job market.

Recent destinations for our graduates include Verint, JP Morgan, Accenture, Logica, Microsoft, Google, HSBC, Capgemini, Natural Power and Adobe Systems Inc.

This course provides a perfect foundation for progressing to our postgraduate qualifications.

Companies we work with

We have connections with the following organisation via placements, internships and industrial liaison:

  • Accenture
  • ARM
  • Calnex Solutions
  • Diagio
  • GE Digital
  • Honeywell
  • JP Morgan
  • Mage Control Systems
  • Modus Scotland
  • Morgan Stanley
  • Natural Power
  • NHS
  • Royal Bank of Scotland
  • Sainsbury's Bank
  • Scottish Enterprise
  • Scottish Fire and Rescue Service
  • Scottish Government
  • Scottish Water
  • Sports Scotland
  • Verint
  • Wood MacKenzie

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What our students said

Craig Docherty
Craig Docherty
BSc (Hons) Software Engineering
Overall my time at Stirling has helped me develop a broad range of skills and explore interests that will have a positive impact on my future career.
Read Craig's story

Flexible study

This course is not available as a combined degree.