Module code: COMM060

Module Overview

Cybersecurity Placement Review is designed to enable students to develop a sharp ability to select, define, research, analyse, develop solutions and draw structure, technically sound and clearly structured conclusions w.r.t. a topic, issue or problem relevant to their programme of study, with the support of their cybersecurity work-experience acquired via a placement in a company.

The module is conceived as a final project, bringing together the learning from the entire programme and a period of work experience. The project has to be carried out in an area relevant to the programme of study, i.e. a student work placement. offering an opportunity to apply it in a relevant organisational context under the supervision of both an academic and a professional supervisor.

At the end of the Cybersecurity Placement Review module, students will have developed advanced professional, research and/or development skills relevant to their programme of study and work experience. They will have demonstrated the ability to seek and apply (with reasonable likelihood of success) for appropriate employment in an area relevant to information security, gained practical work experience in a domain-specific job role, and completed a substantial project linked to the placement organisation and their own academic and professional career

Module provider

Computer Science

Module Leader

BOUREANU Ioana (Computer Sci)

Number of Credits: 60

ECTS Credits: 30

Framework: FHEQ Level 7

JACs code:

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes: The module includes a supervised placement experience and an independent applied/theoretical research/development project that are focuses on two related groups of learning outcomes: professional development and the integration of learning from the programme through applied research/development in the placement organisation. Both learning aspects are supervised by an academic supervisor as well as a professional supervisor in the workplace. Under their guidance, students undertake a research/ development project focused on an issue identified within the placement organisation and relevant to their programme of study as well as their placement work responsibilities.

With the support of both supervisors, students define and investigate a topic/matter/problem to propose evidence -based solutions and recommendations and consider this in the context of the placement organisation. They present the results of their work in a Placement Report and reflect on their professional development in a Professional Development Review document

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework Coursework 30
Project (Group/Individual/Dissertation) Project 70

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate:

• Evidence of advanced subject-specific knowledge in the chosen area of cybersecurity study;

• Evidence of ability to work as an independent, critical and competent cybersecurity professional

• Ability to carry out primary applied research and/or development work

• Ability to report technical findings in writing clearly and effectively;

• Ability to arrive at sound conclusions and recommendations based on original research/development and/or testing;

• Ability to critically reflect on their professional experience and plan their professional development.

Summative assessment for this module consists of:

• 8,000-word Placement Report, including a 1,500-word executive summary;

• A comprehensive Professional Development Portfolio documenting the students personal and professional development and career management skills throughout the duration of the programme.

Formative assessment

Formative assessment includes a 1,000-word placement project proposal and the individual submissions of all the elements of the Professional Development Portfolio.


Feedback will be provided in written and verbal format throughout the duration of the module.

Module aims

  • • To enable students to develop a signification piece of independent reporting work, under the supervision of a member of faculty.
  • • To guide students in applying the knowledge from their InfoSec MSc programme to research and/or development in a specific organisational setting, during an internship
  • • To provide students with experience of conceptualising practical issues occurring in organisations in research/development terms, designing research studies or taking part in significant development work, in ways that generally lead to evidence-based solutions and recommendations that they would be capable to articulate.
  • • To demonstrate an awareness of any ethical dilemmas that arise at the intersection of research, development and other professional practices.
  • • To allow students to specialise and apply their learning in an area that is relevant and of interest to them.
  • • To support students to develop and apply new skills appropriate to the professional setting in which they are working.
  • • To enable students to develop advanced employability skills relevant to appropriate, graduate-level job roles in areas relevant to their programme of study.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Understand and demonstrate appropriate professional work ethics and conduct in a context relevant to the programme of study. PT
002 Developed a practical ability to understand a new organisational culture and structure CP
003 Critically evaluate personal and professional strengths, areas requiring further personal and professional development C
004 Demonstrate a strong ability to plan professional development and PT
005 Understand in depth and provide certain amount of insight into a relevant applied topic of academic and/or strong practical interest in cybersecurity CK
006 Write with clarity and coherence about the research or a development project. CKPT
007 Critically evaluate research or development in the chosen cybersecurity topic. CK
008 Demonstrate critical review of existing literature or technical background relevant to the chosen topic. C

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Overall student workload

Personal Tutorial Hours: 7

Independent Study Hours: 549

Lecture Hours: 22

Seminar Hours: 22

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching methods are mainly facilitated via the placement itself.

The mentoring, coaching and assessment role of both the workplace supervisor and the academic supervisor are focused on ensuring the students achieve the learning outcomes for the module; these relate to (1) personal and professional development, (2) academic development of the student taking the Cybersecurity Placement Review module.

The academic supervisor advises on the research project via regular technical meetings and sessions and aids with critical self-reflection by offering regular mentoring sessions. If students work on placements at remote locations, both forms of support are provided via phone, email or teleconference.

In addition, the module includes taught sessions for the development of research, practical methods and of personal and professional skills. These sessions are scheduled throughout the year and prepare students for the applied research phase during the work placement.

The learning and teach methods include:

• Self-directed learning pertains to engaging with learning materials linked to the topic of study in the report and the topics of the placement, as well as around personal development

• Independent research/development: students learn through applying the knowledge and skills from the programme to their research/development project in an integrative and original manner;

• Immersion in practice: students learn in an hands-on manner by working in their placement organisation.

• Skills workshops: are organised throughout the semester to develop students' professional career and interpersonal skills and their ability to design and conduct an applied research project; some of these will be run online to facilitate with students on longer placements, etc.

• Lectures are mainly designed to develop mainly theoretical insight into research/development methods and technical report writing;

• Seminar group discussions are designed to develop mainly practical insight into topics covered in the lectures;

• Active learning through online study (synchronous and asynchronous)

• Active learning includes engaging in classroom and practical exercises, video and case analyses, and participation in career events and fairs;

• Individual Supervisory Sessions support students in their project work through systematic review of progress, discussion and formative feedback from an academic tutor. These may be run face-to-face or online (synchronously).

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list


Other information


Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2020/1 academic year.