M.Sc. Digital Systems Engineering

University of Portsmouth | Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Digital systems engineering is the core technology that underpins modern-day living. You will gain a sound theoretical and practical knowledge of digital devices, tools, data networks and operating systems. Also learn to apply new technologies in order to participate in the design and development of the next generation of digital communication systems.

Description of Digital Systems Engineering


On this course you can:

  • Focus on the practical application and design aspects of digital systems rather than intensive analytical detail
  • Analyse high-frequency signals or measure antennas in our anechoic chamber
  • Access a wide range of powerful and modern multimedia computational facilities, with the latest industry software installed

What opportunities might it lead to?

This course puts you in an excellent position to start a career as a professional engineer in the telecommunications, electronics, automotive, control and aerospace industries. You could find jobs in areas as diverse as consumer and professional electronics, robotics, defence, broadcasting and telecommunications.
Here are some routes our graduates have pursued:

  • professional electronics
  • design
  • research and development
  • product manufacture
  • project management

Detailed Course Facts

Tuition fee

Fee information can be found at www.port.ac.uk/tuitionfees

Not specified
Start date September  2015
Duration full-time 12 months
  • English
Take an IELTS test
Delivery mode On Campus
Educational variant Full-time
Intensity Flexible

Course Content

You will study several key topics and complete a four-month individual project in which you apply your knowledge to a significant, in-depth piece of analysis or design. Projects are tailored to your individual interests and may take place in our own laboratories or, by agreement, in industry.
Here are the units you will study:

  • VHDL and Digital Systems Design: This unit covers the use of a hardware description language (VHDL) to capture and model the design requirement - whilst programmable logic devices enable an implementation to be explored and tested prior to moving into manufacture. The learning will have a practical bias such that experience as well as theory is gained in completing this unit.
  • Advanced DSP Techniques: This unit aims to introduce you to the fundamentals of statistical signal processing, with particular emphasis upon classical and modern estimation theory, parametric and nonparametric modelling, time series analysis, least squares methods, and basics of adaptive signal processing.
  • Mixed Signal Processors: This unit focuses on both control and signal processing hardware, how it works, how to interface to it, and software - how to design it and debug it.
  • Real-Time Embedded Systems: This is a practical study of underlying principles and current practice of embedded and real-time systems design and development enhances significantly career opportunities.
  • GPU Architecture and Programming: This unit focuses on the architecture and programming model of modern CUDA GPUs and provides you with hands-on experience to achieve high performance general purpose computations on them.
  • Communication Systems Analysis: This unit focuses on basic principles in the analysis and design of modern communication systems, the workhorses behind the information age. It puts emphasis on the treatment of analogue communications as the necessary background for understanding digital communications.

Teaching and Assessment

You will be taught through a mixture of lectures, seminars, tutorials (personal and academic), laboratory sessions and project work. The course has a strong practical emphasis and you will spend a significant amount of time in our electronic, communications and computer laboratories.

How are you assessed?

A range of assessment methods encourages a deeper understanding of engineering and allows you to develop your skills. Here’s how we assess your work:

  • written examinations
  • coursework
  • laboratory-based project work
  • a major individual project/dissertation

English Language Requirements

IELTS take IELTS test
CAE score
193(Grade B)

IMPORTANT NOTE: Per 6 April 2015 only the English language tests from IELTS and Trinity College London are accepted for Tier 4 Visa applications to the United Kingdom. Other tests (including TOEFL, TOEIC, Pearson, City & Guilds) are no longer accepted for Tier 4 visa applications to the United Kingdom. The university might still accept these tests to admit you to the university, but if you require a Tier 4 visa to enter the UK and begin your degree programme, these tests will not be sufficient to obtain your Visa. Since the Trinity College London language tests must be taken in one of their exam centres in the UK, IELTS is now the only language test accepted for Tier 4 visas to the UK that can be taken worldwide.

The IELTS test is most widely accepted by universities and is also accepted for Tier 4 visas to the UK- learn more.

Requirements for Digital Systems Engineering

A second-class honours degree, or equivalent, in relevant subject. Applicants who do not meet the minimum entry requirements but have extensive relative work experience may also be considered.

English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component less than 5.5

Work Experience for Digital Systems Engineering

No work experience is required.

More Information

The Global Study Awards: get funded with up to £10,000 to study abroad

Together with the ISIC Association and British Council IELTS we offer you the chance to receive up to £10,000 to expand your horizon and study abroad. We want to ultimately encourage you to study abroad in order to experience and explore new countries, cultures and languages.