Communications Networks and Software MSc
Why choose this course
As society evolves, and technology alongside it, we are placing greater demands on the internet. Both traditional and up-and-coming telecommunications infrastructures continue to migrate to the internet in various forward-thinking ways. There is a growing demand for skilled graduates who can develop and support mobile networks and future internet services. You could become one of these graduates by studying this course.
On our MSc in Communications, Networks and Software course, you will benefit from the experts in our 5G Innovation Centre, who are spearheading change in the exciting race to the next generation of communications networks.
What you will study
On our MSc in Communications Networks and Software course, you will learn the core aspects of mobile networks and the changing internet environment. In particular, you will gain an insight into the advances in next generation 5G mobile and wireless communications, the supporting software solutions and much more.
Your MSc project can encompass experiments based on our pioneering testing facilities, including our mobile network testing infrastructure installed on campus as part of our 5G Innovation Centre which is expected to develop into the world’s first 5G network test site.
There is also scope to explore a wide variety of other topics such as future internet technologies, 5G mobile networking, network ‘service’ management and control, as well as emerging network services such as broadband applications and ‘internet of things’ applications.
MSc - Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET).
Accredited by the Institution of Engineering and Technology on behalf of the Engineering Council as meeting the requirements for Further Learning for registration as a Chartered Engineer. Candidates must hold a CEng accredited BEng/BSc (Hons) undergraduate first degree to comply with full CEng registration requirements.
Study and work abroad
There may be opportunities to acquire valuable European experience by working or conducting research abroad during your degree or shortly afterwards. It is possible to do this in the summer period with an Erasmus+ grant working on your dissertation or as a recent graduate. In order to qualify your Erasmus+ traineeship must be a minimum of two months.
Through your project, you will have the unique opportunity to participate in the research and innovation activities carried out in the Institute for Communication Systems, home of the 5G Innovation Centre. Innovative work can lead to research contributions, patents or publications. Core material is taught by staff engaged in hands-on research including mobile networking, ‘internet of things’ and web services.
As a graduate of this course, you will find there will be a wealth of opportunities available to you in the communications sector. Industrial companies such as Huawei and CGI have recruited, and continue to seek, skilled graduates from Surrey to support mobile networks and future internet services.
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Terms and conditions
When you accept an offer of a place at the University of Surrey, you are agreeing to comply with our policies and regulations, and our terms and conditions. These terms and conditions are provided in two stages: first when we make an offer and second when students who have accepted their offers register to study at the University. View our offer terms and conditions and our generic registration terms and conditions (PDF) as a guide as to what to expect.
Please note: our offer terms and conditions will be available in the September of the calendar year prior to the year in which you begin your studies. Our registration terms and conditions will vary to take into account specifics of your course.
This online prospectus has been prepared and published in advance of the academic year to which it applies. The University of Surrey has used its reasonable efforts to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content or additional costs) may occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for a course with us. Read more.
Academic year structure
If you wish to study our full-time course, you’ll do a total of eight modules with four modules studied across each of the semesters. During the two semesters, you will also apply for and agree a project with an academic supervisor. You’ll then begin work on the project before working on it full time after the end of Semester 2.
After this point, you have around two and a half months to complete the work and write your dissertation. If you study part time, you’ll cover our course within two to five years. The length depends on how many modules you study each year. You can expect to study between two and six modules per year. We recommend you do your project in the final year of your studies.
Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability, student demand and/or class size caps.
The University operates a credit framework for all taught programmes based on a 15-credit tariff. Modules can be either 15, 30, 45 or 60 credits, and additionally for some masters dissertations, 90 credits.
The structure of our programmes follows clear educational aims that are tailored to each programme. These are all outlined in the programme specifications which include further details such as the learning outcomes:
Year 1 (full-time)
Optional modules for Year 1 (full-time) - FHEQ Levels 6 and 7
A full-time student must choose:
THREE in Semester 1
TWO in Semester 2
Unstructured (3-5 years)
Course timetables are normally available one month before the start of the semester. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week (Monday–Friday). Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities. Part-time classes are normally scheduled on one or two days per week, details of which can be obtained from the course administrators. View our Timetabling Policy (PDF).
Learning and disability
We have two services, Academic Skills and Development and the Disability and Neurodiversity Service which can help develop your learning.
Academic Skills and Development
Academic Skills and Development is a learning space in the Library where our learning development team is based. It comprises dedicated Student Learning Advisers and Information Skills Librarians who can help you develop your academic and research skills, including writing, presenting, revision and critical thinking.
Find out more about the study support available.
Disability and Neurodiversity Service
The University’s Disability and Neurodiversity Service supports students with disabilities, long-term health conditions, specific learning differences (such as dyslexia and dyspraxia) and other neurodiverse conditions (including autism spectrum and attention deficit disorder).
If you tell us about any conditions and register with us, we can give you appropriate support during your studies.
We can arrange exam and learning support adjustments, give advice on applications for the Disabled Students' Allowance, and test you for dyslexia and dyspraxia. We can also offer regular study skills and mentoring support.
English language support
Our English Language Support Programme (ELSP) provides tailored English language support during your studies. It is particularly valuable to students who speak English as a second or additional language, but native speakers are also welcome.
A minimum of a 2:2 UK honours degree in either Communication Engineering, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information and Communication Technologies, Physics or Telecommunication Engineering, or a recognised equivalent international qualification. We'll also consider relevant work experience if you don’t meet these requirements.
View entry requirements by country
English language requirements
IELTS Academic: 6.5 overall with 6.0 in Writing and 5.5 in each other element.
View the other English language qualifications that we accept.
If you do not currently meet the level required for your programme, we offer intensive pre-sessional English language courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here.
The University of Surrey recognises that many students enter their higher education course with valuable knowledge and skills developed through a range of professional, vocational and community contexts. If this applies to you, a process called recognition of prior learning (RPL) may allow you to enter your course at a point appropriate to your previous learning and experience, or to join the start of a course without the formal entry requirements. This means that you may be exempt from certain elements of study in the course for which you have applied and be awarded credit based on your previous qualifications/experience. There are restrictions on RPL for some courses and fees may be payable for certain claims.
Please see the code of practice for recognition of prior learning and prior credit: taught programmes (PDF) for further information. Please email Admissions with any queries.
- These fees apply to students commencing study in the academic year 2019-20 only. Fees for new starters are reviewed annually.
- If you are on an unstructured self-paced part-time course, the fee shown is per 15 credits for the 2019-20 academic year. The fee payable in subsequent years will be reviewed annually.
Scholarships and bursaries
We're committed to making sure that we offer support for students who might need it.