Module Details

The information contained in this module specification was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change, either during the session because of unforeseen circumstances, or following review of the module at the end of the session. Queries about the module should be directed to the member of staff with responsibility for the module.
Title MSc Placement Experience
Code COMP598
Coordinator Professor I Potapov
Computer Science
Year CATS Level Semester CATS Value
Session 2023-24 Level 7 FHEQ Whole Session 60


The aim of the module is to provide students with experience of an industrial environment and to assess operational aspects of the placement provider, its products, working practices and management structure.  Students are expected to work as normal employees of the placement provider and develop a range of skills and knowledge in the context of their placement.  The specific aims of the module are: 1) To have an appreciation of: The management and organisational structure of the company. Principal roles of company personnel. Strategic plans (as published). Processes for ordering goods and/or services. Processes for processing orders and/or services. Financial controls that are in place to ensure that costs are controlled. The company's accounts. Decision making processes within the company. Process function in the company to ensure delivery of quality in services and/or products. Any related ethical policies. Sustainability of product lines or services. 2) To de velop a range of practical skills related to commercial environments.  Students should gain, where appropriate, hands-on experience of: The process for producing products and/or services. Organising of documentation and/or work flows. Setting of realistic deadlines with the expectation of on-time delivery. 3)  To develop general transferable skills with respect to: Effective communication (written, audio and visual). Ability to work within a team, towards achieving a common target. Leadership and managerial skills. Time and resource management. Enhanced ability for self-learning.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) Experience of working practices in the context a commercial organisation.

(LO2) A critical understanding of the nature of the managerial structure of commercial organisations.

(LO3) A comprehensive understanding of the working practices of commercial organisations.

(LO4) A comprehensive appreciation and understanding of documentation (paper trail) related to employment and relevant employment legislation.

(S1) The necessary positive attitude and self-confidence for success in the modern day work place, together with: (i) readiness to take part and contribute to activities, (ii) openness to new ideas and (iii) drive to make "things happen".

(S2) The self-management skills required to: (i) accept positions of responsibility (i.e. leadership), (ii) demonstrate flexibility, resilience, self-starting, initiative and integrity in the workplace, (iii) display appropriate assertiveness, (iv) conduct effective time management and (v) improve one's own performance based on feedback and/or reflective learning.

(S3) Business and customer awareness and a basic understanding of the key drivers for business success, including the importance of: (i) innovation, (ii) the need to provide customer satisfaction and (iii) the need to build customer loyalty.



This module contains the generic work experience elements of the second year placement for the 2 year Computer Science MSc degree programmes. The students on placement will learn about the general organisational structure of the placement provider, how it reports financial data, how it manages people and performance, and how it complies with legal requirements such as risk assessment and ethical approval.  Placement students will work as normal employees of the placement provider, maintaining a good record for both attendance and the completion of tasks assigned by their line manager, for a minimum period of 26 weeks.

Teaching and Learning Strategies

Teaching Method 1 - Work Placement
Description: The module will be one element of an industrial placement and it will be situated at the premises of the placement provider.
Attendance Recorded: Yes
Notes: The attendance record of the student should be deemed satisfactory by the placement provider.

Teaching Method 2 - Portfolio
Description: A dossier of information required for assessment should be collated.
Attendance Recorded: Yes
Notes: Submission of a single portfolio (may be electronic submission) containing the following (personal and/or confidential information may be redacted from the submission):

1. Contract of employment
2. Evidence of at least 26 weeks placement with the placement provider (e.g. timesheets, payslips / letter from line manager).
3. Copy of the company's policy on risk assessment for Health and Safety regulations.
4. Evidence that the student understands the placement provider's risk a ssessment policy (e.g. letter from line manager).
5. Copy of the company's policy on ethical approval (or similar).
6. Either evidence that student has followed ethical approval policy or letter from line manager to the effect that no ethical approval was required.
7. Copy of the company policy on performance management and/or performance appraisal.
8. Either evidence that the student has followed performance appraisal procedures or letter from line manager to the effect that no appraisal was required.
9. Organisational chart of the company, i.e. who reports to whom.
10. Recent publicly available financial results of the company.
11. Weekly log book initialled by the line manager.

Unscheduled Directed Student Hours (time spent away from the timetabled sessions but directed by the teaching staff): 10

Teaching Schedule

  Lectures Seminars Tutorials Lab Practicals Fieldwork Placement Other TOTAL
Study Hours             0
Timetable (if known)              
Private Study 600


EXAM Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
CONTINUOUS Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
(598) Portfolio Standard UoL penalty applies for late submission. This is not an anonymous assessment. Assessment Schedule (When) :At the last month of the placement period    100       

Recommended Texts

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