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Full-time postgrad computer science conversion course

  • 16-02-2012 1:00pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 28 cortezfloyd


    Hi,
    I’m looking for a suitable full-time postgraduate computer science conversion course. I have a 2.1 bachelor of business studies honours degree and I’m a fully qualified ACA chartered accountant. I’ve found that I've no interest in accounting so I’m looking for a change. I’ve always liked maths and computers so I think computing might be for me.
    I'm interested in the 15 month conversion course in UCD (http://www.csi.ucd.ie/content/msc-computer-science-conversion), and having read about it on the UCD website and boards, I think it looks a good fit. I’m going to apply for this course so I could begin this September.
    Can anyone suggest any other computer courses I should be applying for? I might not get this one, or there might be a more suitable course out there so I’d like to keep my options open.
    Thanks
    Cortezfloyd


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 28 cortezfloyd


    Any help would be much appreciated!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 39 humpysomething


    Hi Cortezfloyd,

    As far as I know, NUI Galway offer a 2 year masters in Software Design & Development which is open to people from a non computing background. If you only do the first year, you get a HDip. I think NUI Maynooth have a 1 year HDip in IT also.


  • Registered Users Posts: 28 cortezfloyd


    Hey that's great humpysomething, thanks, I'll look them up


  • Registered Users Posts: 75 ✭✭ rbag


    I think Griffith college have conversion courses


  • Registered Users Posts: 28 cortezfloyd


    Thanks rbag!


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 14 GCDLaw


    Hi Cortezfloyd. Griffith College do offer a conversion course in IT currently which is beginning march 5th. It is a govt. (fully) funded higher diploma in ICT skills with an internship in place once it is completed(sep. 2012).

    The requirements are a level 8 bachelor degree or a level 7 qualification with experience. It is a full time day time course and applicants who are in receipt of social welfare(for at least 3 months before joining the course) may keep these. More info. on course and how to apply are available at www.bluebrick.ie or email [email protected] for more infomration.


  • Registered Users Posts: 28 cortezfloyd


    Thanks GCDLaw, that looks interesting alright but it's not an option as I need to work for the next few months


  • Registered Users Posts: 28 cortezfloyd


    Hi, I've looked at the post grad courses in NUIG:

    http://www.nuigalway.ie/courses/taught-postgraduate-courses/software-design-development.html

    This one year Hdip in software development appears to be geared toward a second year masters research project, as it includes a research module. I doubt I'd be interested in doing a years research on a specific topic after only 2 semesters of learning the basics....Has anyone done this course and how have they found it?



    http://www.nuigalway.ie/courses/taught-postgraduate-courses/softwaredesignanddevelopmenthdipappsc-industrystream/

    This is a software design and development conversion course for students from cognate backgrounds such as Physics, Maths, Engineering and Science, so it doesn't apply to me.


  • Registered Users Posts: 23,213 ✭✭✭✭ Tom Dunne


    I used to lecture on this one in IT Blanchardstown: http://www.itb.ie/StudyatITB/bn509.html

    It's a good course, with great facilities and great staff. I'm not at all biased.


  • Registered Users Posts: 28 cortezfloyd


    Thanks Tom, that looks interesting alright even if it's designed to "prepare students for further postgraduate and higher degree studies". I'll apply there as well.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2 BagsyBags


    @cortezfloyd - I did this course over the 2 years and would highly recommend it for a number of reasons.
    First the downside:
    Like most college courses they are a little behind the times i.e. the higher level programming languages they teach are not exactly industry standard at the moment (VB6) but in all fairness the industry is changing almost annually. You will get a decent knowledge of algorithms and learn to program in C++. That's a decent (and quite difficult) language to learn in but its definitely worth it to drill the basics into you.

    On the plus side, if you are doing this purely to get a job then go for it.
    Whenever you come out of any college course you're pretty useless to an employer (imho). You learn on the job. You're not going to become an expert in 1 or two years so realistically it boils down to making your CV look good. NUIG is a well recognised college and its good to have on a CV - also this particular course has received decent reviews. 90% of the learning is done in the first year -the only reason to do the 2nd year is to get that all important MSc after your name - and again if you're in this to get a job that really helps - really! Not sure if the grant still applies to MSc courses? that could hurt a bit as I think its about 5 or 6k per year.

    I got a job after the first year and did the 2nd year by night (needed the money!). It was hell for the 2nd year but well doable...

    Either way, IT and Software Development in particular is flying so get in sooner rather than later i reckon... As a ballpark - if you're a decent programmer (and have a bit of previous experience in the workplace) you could expect to be earning > 50k in 18 to 24 months...

    Hope this helps...


  • Registered Users Posts: 28 cortezfloyd


    Thanks for your advice BagsyBags, very helpful! Fair play for working and doing the masters at the same time. By the way, had you much prior computers/programming experience before you did this course? Also, I assume the masters involved creating software and documenting the process; was it difficult to choose/do a project after 1 year in the course?

    Would you know of any website/software which could be a good learning tool for C++ as well as I have zero programming experience?

    Someone advised me to look up online computer science college notes to get an idea of what's involved, so that's on my to do list as well. If someone would let me know about a good college site, I'd appreciate it, thanks


  • Registered Users Posts: 2 BagsyBags


    No worries cortezfloyd....

    In answer to your questions I had very little programming experience but I was comfortable with computers. I had a degree in engineering and I think we did about 2 months of C++ in 3rd year. May as well have started from scratch though. In this course you will be fine because 99% of the people are in the same boat. You're definitely right to be looking at getting a head start now though. Its a very intense 1st year.

    I would advise a brief overview of general programming algorithms like 'for loops' and 'switch statements'. These are general programming concepts that pop up in pretty much every language (see python, c, c++, c#) and there's endless examples on the web. However, ill go one better and send you the actual C++ lecture notes if you want to PM me.

    Doing the MSc after 1 year is a bit much I have to admit, cause you don't really have a massive amount of knowledge. I personally liked that though. I found the 1st year gave me a basic grounding and in the second year I focused in on some main technologies such as SQL server and C# (two industry standard technologies). I learned more in the 2nd year personally but it probably helped that i was working in a software company so i was learning on the job and then applying it to my MSc by night. I also made sure that my MSc project had some relevance to the company I was working with so they would give me a bit of help ;) Otherwise, there wont be any shortage of ideas to do your MSc on. If you don't have any of your own ideas the college provide a huge list for you to choose from.

    No matter what course you do all I can recommend is that programming has a really steep learning curve. You will get lost at times but just stick with it. Keep the head down and things will start falling into place... eventually!


  • Registered Users Posts: 28 cortezfloyd


    Thanks BagsyBags! I’ve PM’d you there, those notes will come in very handy, I'll get started right away!


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,523 ✭✭✭ TJJP


    Have a look here too: www.hea.ie/ictskills or on www.bluebrick.ie


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 5 manunited99


    Hi,

    I'm thinking of applying for the H.Dip in Software Development in UL, starting this September. Its covered under this ICT Skills initiative so the fees are waived. I am currently working in the UK but would give up my job and move home if I got accepted into the course.

    My question is as follows. Would I be eligible to apply for Jobseekers Allowance while completing this course? I know that those people already claiming JSA are entitled to keep this allowance.

    Any advice/help greatly appreciated!


  • Registered Users Posts: 23 Willard


    you would have to be on the Live Register here for at least 3 months in the 6 months prior to the commencement of the programme to 'retain' your payment. Income Supports You cannot just sign on upon starting the course. so you would have to move back & sign on three months prior to starting. I'm currently doing the same course in tallaght, trying to squeeze a degree into a year = pressure. hope this helps.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4 SlowTrain


    Hi cortezfloyd

    I'm just curious to know if you did start that software development course in NUIG in September. I am thinking of applying for it and like you I would like to get a head start for next September. I do not have an IT background, I have a BA in History and Geography and a teaching qualification which is of little use in Ireland at the moment, so I'll need all the help I can get. My main reason for doing a course like this one is to get a job. I would appreciate any advice you may have.

    Thanks in advance.


    HI BagsyBags

    I was wondering if you could send on those C++ lecture notes to me, I would really really appreciate it if you could, they would give me the head start that I badly need. From reading your posts I reckon I will be able to manage the course.

    Kind Regards

    SlowTrain


  • Registered Users Posts: 28 cortezfloyd


    Hi SlowTrain, I did the 15 month conversion course in UCD in the end, I'll be finished in December. Any questions about that, let me know.

    I would say, to get a head start, the newboston website is very good for video tutorials. Their videos for android development are fairly decent anyway. We started with c, then c++, then php (very similar to c++), and are now on ruby, java and android (based on java). Maybe have a look at c and c++ to get a feel for programming anyway.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 9,770 ✭✭✭ danthefan


    Hi SlowTrain, I did the 15 month conversion course in UCD in the end, I'll be finished in December. Any questions about that, let me know.

    I would say, to get a head start, the newboston website is very good for video tutorials. Their videos for android development are fairly decent anyway. We started with c, then c++, then php (very similar to c++), and are now on ruby, java and android (based on java). Maybe have a look at c and c++ to get a feel for programming anyway.

    If you're brand new to programming and trying to teach yourself I'd suggest Java before C/C++. Imo it's a lot more forgiving.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 4 SlowTrain


    Thanks for that cortezfloyd

    Well done on doing the course. How did you find the change over to learning programming, did you find it daunting or was it easier or harder than you thought it would, broad questions I know but I will have a look at C and C++ and see how I get on, fingers crossed.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4 SlowTrain


    Thanks danthefan

    I guess I should really be taking baby steps with all this. It is all new to me. I have a few months before I apply so I'll try and get a head start in the meantime and if I am accepted then I have until next September to improve my knowledge of it, or should I say gain knowledge of it before I improve it :) There is a postgraduate open day in NUIG next Tuesday so I'll have a wee chat with some of the folks there.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 9,770 ✭✭✭ danthefan


    SlowTrain wrote: »
    Thanks danthefan

    I guess I should really be taking baby steps with all this. It is all new to me. I have a few months before I apply so I'll try and get a head start in the meantime and if I am accepted then I have until next September to improve my knowledge of it, or should I say gain knowledge of it before I improve it :) There is a postgraduate open day in NUIG next Tuesday so I'll have a wee chat with some of the folks there.

    http://see.stanford.edu/see/courseinfo.aspx?coll=824a47e1-135f-4508-a5aa-866adcae1111

    This is a great place to start for Java. It's an undergrad course run in Stanford but there's a full set of video lectures and all the resources required to do the assignments and the likes. Starts from the very start.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4 SlowTrain


    danthefan you are the man, thanks a million for that, the baby steps i need


  • Registered Users Posts: 53 ✭✭ harryohh


    Hi SlowTrain, I did the 15 month conversion course in UCD in the end, I'll be finished in December. Any questions about that, let me know.

    I would say, to get a head start, the newboston website is very good for video tutorials. Their videos for android development are fairly decent anyway. We started with c, then c++, then php (very similar to c++), and are now on ruby, java and android (based on java). Maybe have a look at c and c++ to get a feel for programming anyway.

    I'm looking at doing this next September. I did Engineering for my undergrad which included some VB & some C# so I have some programming knowledge.
    How have you found it?
    Also what are the job prospects like? Do you know how last years graduates got on when it came to getting jobs?

    Thanks


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