SET07106 Module Descriptor

1. Module title: Mathematics for Software Engineering

2. SCQF level: 07 3. SCQF credit value: 20 4. ECTS credit value: 10

5. Module number SET07106

6. Module leader: Dr Uta Priss

7. School: Computing

8. Napier subject area: Software Engineering and Technology SET

9. Prerequisites: None

10. What you will learn and what this module is about

In this module you will be given a basic introduction to mathematics for software engineering. The concepts will be introduced in an applied, programming-oriented manner. This module intends to serve as a foundation for any mathematics skills required by software engineering at higher levels.

11. Description of module content

The module covers basic mathematical concepts, such as basic discrete mathematics, matrices, Boolean and other logics and set theory. The aim is to improve the computational competence of the students (i.e., the ability to implement and evaluate functions for basic visualisation, modelling and processing tasks) as well as introducing the students to "basic mathematical thinking" (i.e., the ability to model problems and their solutions). The emphasis is on a practical, programming-oriented introduction to the materials, demonstrating the usefulness of mathematics as a tool for software engineering. Students will write small programs that explore mathematical concepts using a scripting language. There will also be a brief introduction to Computer Algebra System software (such as Mathematica or one of its open-source alternatives).

12. Learning Outcomes for module

On completion of this module, students will be able to:

13. Indicative References and Reading List

14. Occurrence:

14a. Primary mode of delivery Face-to-face (class contact)
14b. Location of delivery: Scotland

15. WebCT presence

This version of the module requires a WebCT presence that is not shared with any other versions.

16. LTA approach

Learning & teaching methods including their alignment to LOs

Taught using weekly lectures and tutorials. Lectures will present the underpinning concepts and principles (LOs 1 & 3). Tutorials/practicals will present students with a graded range of problems that require the applications of the theoretical knowledge presented in the lectures (LOs 2 & 4). Tutorials constitute the formative assessment because the students receive instant feedback on the exercises. Although the coursework is handed in at the end of the semester, it will consist of several parts, which will be developed over the duration of the semester. The students will receive formative feedback on drafts of parts of the coursework during the semester.

Embedding of employability/ PDP/ scholarship skills

The skills presented in this class build a foundation for higher level materials. It is intended to refer to a few current topic problems (for example the use of prime numbers for encryption), but due to the introductory nature of the module, this might be on the basis of optional further reading materials for interested students.

Assessment (formative and summative)

All learning outcomes will be covered in the coursework, which will include several parts and code demonstrations. The students will receive formative feedback on drafts of parts of the coursework during the semester.

Research/ teaching linkages

All team members undertake some scholarly activity in this area. It is intended to use a conceptual approach to mathematics education in this module which has been a scholarly interest of one of the staff members for years.

Supporting equality and diversity

On line learning materials and resources are available to support inclusiveness and accommodate students from a wide variety of backgrounds. By encouraging supported self-study the module has flexibility that allows students to develop their skills at a pace and time appropriate to their prior experience and individual circumstances.


There should be no special issues with respect to internationalisation because of the abstract and introductory nature of the topic. This module will use a conceptual approach to mathematics education based on contemporary German educational research, which has been shown to be able to reach larger student groups than traditional maths education.

17. Student Activity (NESH)

Mode of activity L&T activity NESH
Face-to-face Lecture 24
Face-to-face Practicals/Labs 24
Independent learning Individual learning activities 156
TOTAL NESH = 200 hours

18. Assessment

Week Type of assessment Weighting LOs covered Length/ volume
12 Practical assessment 100% 1-4 20 hours

19. Trimester(s) of delivery: TR2