Information Systems BSc

  • UCAS code G560
  • Duration Up to 4 years
  • Delivery type Full Time
  • Study location Edinburgh


The Course

Our BSc Information Systems Honours degree focuses on making sure that computer systems really are useable. There is a strong focus here on system design and evaluation techniques, especially for interactive systems, complemented by the management skills needed to plan and organise the large scale information resources that drive modern organisations.

Career Prospects

Prospects in industry, commerce and the public sector are excellent. The growth in network services on computers in the office and home, and on mobile handheld devices, has increased the demand for experts who can design, implement and manage systems combining rich computational, communication and multimedia facilities for non-specialist users.

Programme content

Level 1

Level 1 combines databases, an introduction to computer systems, programming, investigations of emerging technology and technology in society, and management.

Level 2

You will cover topics in understanding of organisations, socio-technical systems, databases and human factors.

Level 3

You will cover courses such as interaction design, information systems methodologies and management of organisations, which lead to a group project.

Level 4

You will take advanced topics as well as a major individual project in level 4.

Your career

Steven Shiells

  • Degree MEng Software Engineering with Distinction
  • Present Job Scott Logic

Ever since I wrote my first “Hello World” program at school I knew I wanted to pursue a career in software development and ever since I stepped foot on campus there was only ever going to be one place that I was going to study.

The lecturers are passionate about what they teach.  The enthusiasm they show whilst giving lectures makes it very easy to ask questions in class and also to approach them outside of the lecture for more in-depth discussions.

A great aspect of the programme is that although you get experience in using a number of different programming languages, the core skill set that is taught can be applied to any programming language and you leave the university with all the essential skills needed to make it in industry.

As an MEng student, I undertook a placement, which was brilliant, not only did I put the skills I’d picked up over the previous 4 years into practice, I also got great experience  for my CV and best of all - I got paid! It’s also a good opportunity to get to know people within the industry and start to build up a network of contacts which is helpful for seeking employment after graduation. 

The five years of hard work definitely paid off, not just for me but all the students on the programme because we all secured employment within the industry.

Tessa Berg

  • School Forth Valley College
  • Degree BSc (Hons) Information Systems with First Class Honours
  • Present Job PhD Student at Heriot-Watt University

I studied for an Information System HND at Forth Valley College in Falkirk, Scotland, using a good final mark to springboard me into the 3rd year Information Systems programme at Heriot-Watt. I completed my undergraduate degree with a 1st class honours along with a bunch of prizes and awards.

Why did you choose Heriot-Watt University?
I chose Heriot-Watt was for a number of reasons. Firstly, the campus is stunning and offers great facilities such as shops, sports, accommodation, free parking and stunning grounds to name but a few. Secondly, as I am a Mum of three kids, the university needed to be within easy reach. It takes me only 20 minutes by car to get in each day. Finally, it has to be all about the learning opportunities. The information system programme was offering the degree that I wanted, i.e., a good blend of computer science, management and socio-technical systems design.

Who would you recommend this programme to?
I would recommend this programme to all those who just love computers but do not necessarily want to spend hours programming them. Subjects I enjoyed on this programme were database design and SQL manipulation, information system methodologies, web design, interactive design and socio-technical systems. The Info Systems programme is quite unique as it has been created by directly responding to industry and their current working needs. There is a real niche in the market right now for graduates who have good interpersonal, technical and management skills. Even in this current economic climate, I would suggest the opportunities for Information system graduate employment is excellent.

What I am doing now?
Although being offered a variety of different graduate positions I decided to stay within academia. My undergraduate dissertation in 4th year was so compelling that it required considerably more research and I just couldn't leave it alone and go off into industry. Deciding to study for another 3 year

Entry requirements

The University offers as its normal entry routes:

  • entry at Level 1, mainly for students with Scottish Highers (or similar)
  • entry at Level 2, mainly for students with A-levels (or similar).

There is nevertheless considerable flexibility, depending on the level of qualifications, for entrants with A-levels to opt to enter at Level 1 and for Scottish students to enter at Level 2. Direct entry into Level 3 is also possible for students who already have certain HE qualifications.

Level 1 entry

  • Highers BBBBC
  • A-Levels BBB
  • Int. Baccalaureate 28 points

Level 2 entry

  • A-Levels ABB including Computing
  • Advanced Highers BBB including Computing or Scottish Baccalaureate
  • HNC in a relevant subject area with A in graded unit
  • Int. Baccalaureate 30 points including Computing at Higher Level 6

Level 3 entry

  • HND in a relevant subject area with A in group award graded units will be considered
  • Additional information We welcome applicants without a formal qualification in computing. Some prior experience in the subject is useful. We recommend Scottish Higher / A-Level Computing or equivalent, for level 1 entry.
  • Additional information To find out about the difference between the 3 and 4 year honours programmes, please read our leaflet to help you decide which route is best for your qualifications and experience so far.
  • Additional information Those entering at Level 2 are expected to be proficient in a high level programming language, Java is our preference

Tuition fees

Tuition fees for 2015 entry (by residency status)
Status*Scotland / EU**England / Northern Ireland / WalesInternational
FeePaid by SAAS£9,000£16,420

* Your residency 'status' is usually defined as the country where you have been ordinarily resident for the 3 years before the start of your programme. Find out more about tuition fees.

** European Union countries, not including England, Northern Ireland or Wales.

Scholarships & bursaries