Department of Digital

School of Engineering, Digital and Sustainable Construction

Welcome to our Department of Digital

Thank you for taking the time to come and check out what we offer at University College Birmingham, the highest ranking university in the region as voted by students at the 2023 Whatuni Student Choice Awards. Our student support is award-winning too, as is our provision for international students.

If you are looking at joining us to carve out a career in digital, here is a glimpse into our student and staff community - with insight into the placements and enrichment we offer - to see if we are right for you. 

Find out about our Whatuni awards

Kanwal Rauf
Head of the Department of Digital

Welcome from Kanwal Rauf

Demand for tech experts in the UK and globally is growing and our digital courses in everything from computing to cyber security, one of the most in-demand tech roles, are led by specialists in the field. I, myself, have worked in industry and at many UK colleges, so know the importance of hands-on industry experience and the highest quality training to prepare students for employment in the field. 

Our students benefit from a dynamic learning environment where coursework champions the practical application of knowledge and skills, all aligning to the top ten skills currently being demanded by employers and IT firms. And we really do have stand-out facilities, including suites of top-spec computers and a dedicated cyber security lab to develop your advanced knowledge and skills.

With high graduate salaries and plenty of progression routes, there's never been a better time to be starting a career in the digital field. We look forward to welcoming you to our department.

*Kanwal has worked in higher education for over a decade, including as a course lecturer and manager for computing, media and games

Find out more about Kanwal

“If you're anything like me, you'll have always been fascinated by how things work and are built, and if you are joining our university, you really will get the very best, most advanced training, with access to incredible networks and opportunities."

Rosa Wells Executive Dean, School of Engineering, Digital and Sustainable Construction

Edward Bird
Deputy Dean (Engineering, Digital and Sustainable Construction)

Meet Edward Bird

My role across the School of Engineering, Digital and Sustainable Construction is quite broad, with responsibilities for quality, teaching and learning as well as curriculum development and innovation, ensuring that we are at the cutting edge of our subject sectors.

The school is developing rapidly and there has been a huge amount of interest in our courses both at college and university level. We are currently expanding our postgraduate offer to include an MSc in Computer Science and MSc in Engineering Management, both from September 2023.

We have worked closely with the West Midlands Combined Authority, the Institute of Technology and employers to ensure that all of our courses offer excellent opportunities for students to progress into fulfilling careers in STEM or further study.

*Edward has a background in software and web development

Read more about Edward

Our teaching and learning

Whether you want to become an IT expert or cyber security specialist, or work in another digital-focused career, our aim is simple - to turn you into a stand-out professional. We have an award-winning reputation for the highest quality courses and a learning experience that sets us apart from bigger universities.

Our degrees are designed to develop you personally and professionally, with graduate advantage, employability and enrichment sessions threaded throughout the curriculum, sitting alongside really interesting theory modules. Our partnership with the University of Warwick, a top-ranking Russell Group university, also brings extra opportunities including access to guest speakers and additional resources.


Our courses are developed and taught by experienced lecturing staff, meaning they can draw on their industry expertise and years of experience to make scenario-based discussions, debates and concepts come to life, supporting the linking of theory to practice.

You will learn so much from our lecturing teams, who are passionate about their profession and eager to inspire and nurture the next generation of IT professionals.

We also have many invited guest lecturers from industry participate in our courses, sharing their knowledge and experiences to enhance your learning.

Students also have a lot to bring and as a team, we will also learn a lot from you! We encourage you to share your perspectives and viewpoints, especially when reflecting on your own life and placement experiences.


Placements are key to success as employers want you to have real experience. We have excellent links with industy so we can allocate you to a diverse range of placements.

This exposure to different learning environments opens opportunities for you when you qualify. And you will receive real-life training in our IT suites and Cyber Security Lab.


Our support is exceptional, so much so, our students voted to make us the winner of the Student Support award at the Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2022 and we came a close second in 2023.

Throughout your studies, you will not only have a personal tutor, but a link tutor during placements and module leaders to support you through academic modules. And we have a whole range of additional support services available, providing you with as much or as little support as you need to succeed in your degree. Our smaller teaching groups enable all students to grow and flourish, with strong peer support and friendship.  

Our Learning and Teaching Strategy 2021-24 is key to how we approach the educational journey, focusing on three main pillars that set out our commitment to your learning and teaching experience while you are studying with us.

  • Pillar 1 – Provide accessible and inclusive teaching and learning across a wide range of vocationally-led courses
  • Pillar 2 – Develop next generation opportunities and skills through innovative, future-focused curriculum and pedagogy
  • Pillar 3 – Shape local and global sectors, promoting sustainable futures and global citizenship

Read our Learning and Teaching Strategy

IT suites and cyber lab

Our facilities won silver at the 2023 Whatuni Student Choice Awards, so you know you will get to learn in outstanding training environments approved by industry.

Students on our digital courses learn in our top specification computing rooms with course-specific software, while our Cyber Security Lab gives students te chance to learn and participate in cyber-related activities in a controlled environment. Located in Camden House, the computing suites and Cyber Security Lab enable students to experiment and experience a range of scenarios safely using a discrete network.

You will also have access to our Digital Creative Studio featuring industry-standard media equipment.

Find out more

We look forward to seeing you on campus

As you prepare to join us, here's a refresher on some of the essentials:

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