This module is offered in 2022-23.

Please note that CS3102 is normally a firm pre-requisite for this module. For students who have not studied as an undergraduate at St Andrews (e.g. MSc students, or year abroad students), information of pre-requisite knowledge can be found here.


The aims of this module are:

  • To expose students to additional depth in computer communication systems and networks topics that may have been covered at undergraduate level.
  • To introduce students to some of the latest systems and technologies, and how they are used today.
  • To discuss some of the key emerging systems and technologies, including research issues and challenges, and their impact on current and future systems.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module, the student should:

  • Have gained knowledge in both depth and breadth of core topics in computer communication systems topics, both in terms of theory and practice.
  • Have an understanding of the key issues and challenges in the use of technology, including scale, performance (and measurement), and security / privacy.
  • Be able to critically analyse the function, properties, and application of current and emerging communication systems and technologies.
  • Based on the function and properties of current and emerging systems and technologies, demonstrate application and synthesis of such to new situations and domains.


The study and analysis of a number of state-of-the-art developments and emerging challenges in computer communication networks and systems. At least one from each of the following themes will be covered, with possible examples listed (the exact topic will vary year on year):

  • System architectures, e.g. software-defined networking, information-centric networking, Internet of Things (IoT), sensor networks, the web- based systems & applications;
  • Communications protocols, e.g. identifier-locator protocols, data-centre networking, multimedia systems, protocol development such as TCP enhancements, QUIC;
  • Applications, e.g. online social networks, participatory sensing, smart cities, cyber-physical systems, blockchain;
  • Mobile and wireless networks, e.g. 5G systems, ubiquitous computing, vehicular networks, disruption- and delay-tolerant networks, mobile ad hoc networking, immersive environments;
  • Security and privacy engineering: designing, implementing and testing security and privacy into modern architectures, protocols, applications, and systems, e.g. protocol enhancements; architectural considerations; quantum Internet.

Compulsory Elements

This module has no compulsory elements beyond those common to all modules (mark of 4 in each assessment component).

Module Delivery

Back to top

Last Published: 08 Aug 2022.