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UWS Web & Digital Media Team Working | University of the West of Scotland

Course Overview

The UWS Graduate Apprenticeship BSc (Hons) IT: Software Development is a British Computer Society accredited degree which is mostly delivered through work-based learning. Typically, you will spend one day every 1-2 weeks at UWS. While the work and learning you do in your workplace counts towards more than three quarters of your degree, you will also be a student at the new UWS Lanarkshire campus. All Graduate Apprenticeship (GA) degrees require that applicants are employed in a relevant role in Scotland, and they have the right to live and work in Scotland.

The course uses modern blended learning, industry-led projects, and minimal exam based assessments. It focuses on cultivating professional development skills in project management, enquiry based research, and problem based learning. During your time in UWS you will be supported by a dedicated team of lecturers, you will be assigned a dedicated personal tutor, work mentor, and link tutor who meet regularly with you on campus and in your workplace.


Work-based Learning

As an apprentice on the BSc (Hons) IT: Software Development you will be in relevant employment therefore the GA will build on your existing employability skills.

Graduate Apprentices are productive members of their companies from an early stage. Your learning will be integrated with your workplace activities and your learning and skills are applied in a professional environment right from day one; your learning will be applied to your workplace environment. As a Graduate Apprentice you will be uniquely placed to integrate your academic skills, knowledge and practices with workplace practices.

The GA provides a thorough grounding in the principles of programming and associated software engineering approaches, and develops the lifelong learning skills that apprentices will need to stay abreast of the rapidly evolving technologies in software development.

Nicole Strain, one of our Graduate Apprentices on the BSc IT: Software Development, is employed as a Data Analyst with Mail Marketing Scotland Limited:

I would highly recommend anyone who has the opportunity to undertake a GA at UWS to grab it with both hands!



Company-based degree

work-based learning


British Computer Society

Entry Requirements

What qualifications do you need?

To apply for a GA you must be resident in Scotland before you start. The premises you work in must also be located in Scotland. As part of your application, you will have to show that you have the right to live and work in Scotland.

GAs are open to existing employees and new recruits.

All applicants are considered on an individual basis.

Don’t worry if your qualifications are not listed here, we take a range of factors into account when assessing your application and are happy to consider other alternative combinations of qualifications and experience. Experienced applicants can apply for admission based on Accreditation of Prior Learning / Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning in accordance with the University’s RPL guidelines - contact us for more information.


Year 1

  • Scottish Highers: BBBC, plus Maths and English at least at National 5 (102 UCAS points)
  • A levels: CCD, plus Maths and English at least at GCSE (88 UCAS Points)
  • Irish Leaving Certificate: H3H3H3H4 plus Maths and English
  • SQA HNC-D / BTEC Level 4-5 HNC-D / Others: SQA National Qualifications/Edexcel Foundation - an appropriate Foundation Apprenticeship, Modern Apprenticeship or HNC/D award with the level of entry and/or credit awarded being subject to the content of the programme

Advanced entry

SQA HNC / BTEC Level 4 HNC / SQA HND / BTEC Level 5 HND / Others: an appropriate Foundation Apprenticeship, Modern Apprenticeship or HNC/D award with the level of entry and/or credit awarded being subject to the content of the programme

Course Details

This GA in IT: Software Development is a Work-based Learning course which has been developed in partnership with Industry, the education sector and Skills Development Scotland (SDS). This ensures that graduate learning is aligned to Industry needs.

This course fully embraces the principles of Work-Based Learning. It is delivered over four years and you will undertake 120 credits per year (three trimesters per year). Work-based learning and work-based assessment will form the backbone of the course.

Year 1

Core modules:
Work-Based Learning 1 (40 Credits)
Introduction to Software Development (40 Credits)
Mathematics for Computing (10 Credits)

Optional Modules:
Introduction to Web Development (20 Credits)
Computing Systems (10 Credits)
Negotiated Learning 1 (10 Credits)
Negotiated Learning 1 (20 Credits)

Year 2

Core Modules:
Work-Based Learning 2 - Group Project (40 Credits)
Software Engineering (40 Credits)
Database Development (20 Credits)

Optional Modules:
Programming for Mobile Devices (20 Credits)
Negotiated Learning 2 (20 Credits)

Year 3

Core Modules:
Work-Based Learning 3 (40 Credits)
Software Engineering Practice (40 Credits)
Information Security Management (10 Credits)
Research Methods in Computing (10 Credits)

Optional Modules:
Project Management for IT (20 Credits)
Database Applications (20 Credits)
Advanced Programming for Mobile Devices (20 Credits)
Negotiated Learning 3 (20 Credits)

Year 4

Core modules:
Computing Honours Project (40 Credits)
Work-Based Learning 4 - Industrial Project (40 Credits)

Optional Modules:
Data Warehouse Environment (20 Credits)
HCI & User Experience Design (UXD) (20 Credits)
Secure Programming (20 Credits)

Teaching & Assessment

The programme is delivered through blended learning with the majority of the learning delivered through Work-based Learning. Students are expected to be on campus for a day every 1-2 weeks for facilitated workshops and practical sessions to reinforce their online e-learning and workplace experiential learning.

Assessment is through a number of methods including:
Case Studies
Field reports
Individual research
Laboratory write-ups
Multiple choice exams
Online discussion boards
Oral presentations
Practical assessments (e.g. radio broadcast, video clip, web page, app, animation, song, portfolio, etc.)
Written examinations

Course Structure

Find out more about the structure, learning outcomes, compulsory and optional modules in this course.

BSc (Hons) IT: Software Development Course Structure

Find out more

For individuals and businesses who wish to find out more about the BSc (Hons) IT: Software Development Graduate Apprenticeship, please contact our team at

Fiona Kennedy
Graduate Apprenticeship Project Manager

Dr. James Riordan
Graduate Apprenticeship Course Leader - BSc (Hons) IT: Software Development
School of Engineering & Computing


We will always try to make sure that we publish accurate course information but we do not accept responsibility for any mistakes or omissions. We will also try to make sure that we deliver our courses in line with our published information. However, we may not always be able to do so and you can find further information about this in our enrolment terms and conditions.