Yearbooks

Programme: BSc Computer Science

Code Faculty Department
12134001 Faculty of Engineering, Built Environment and Information Technology Department: Computer Science
Credits Duration NQF level
Minimum duration of study: 3 years Total credits: 442 NQF level:  07

Admission requirements

  • The closing date is an administrative admission guideline for non-selection programmes. Once a non-selection programme is fulland has reached the institutional targets, then that programme will be closed for further admissions, irrespective of the closing date. However, if the institutional targets have not been met by the closing date, then that programme will remain open for admissions until the institutional targets are met.
  • The following persons will be considered for admission: Candidates who are in possession of a certificate that is deemed by the University to be equivalent to the required National Senior Certificate (NSC) with university endorsement; candidates who are graduates from another tertiary institution or have been granted the status of a graduate of such an institution, and candidates who are graduates of another faculty at the University of Pretoria.
  • Life Orientation is excluded when calculating the APS.
  • Grade 11 results are used for the conditional admission of prospective students.
  • A valid qualification with admission to degree studies is required.
  • Minimum subject and achievement requirements, as set out below, are required.
  • All lectures at the University of Pretoria are presented in English only.

Transferring students

Candidates previously registered for the BSc – Extended programme

The Admissions Committee of the faculty considers applications of candidates who were previously registered for the BSc – Extended programme, on grounds of their NSC results as well as academic merit. Such students will only be considered for the four-year programme if they have passed all the prescribed modules and obtained a minimum of 65% in the Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry modules, respectively.

Candidates previously registered at UP or at another university

The faculty’s Admissions Committee considers applications of candidates who have already completed the final NSC examination and/or were previously registered at UP or at another university, on grounds of their NSC results as well as academic merit. Candidates who were dismissed from other faculties or universities will not be considered.

Candidates previously registered at a teacher’s college or university of technology

The faculty’s Admissions Committee considers the application of these candidates on the grounds of their NSC results as well as academic merit.

Qualifications from countries other than South Africa

  • Citizens from countries other than South Africa and South African citizens with foreign qualifications must comply with all the other admission requirements and the prerequisites for subjects/modules.
  • In addition to meeting the admission requirements, it may be expected from candidates to write the TOEFL, IELTS or SAT, if required.
  • Candidates must have completed the National Senior Certificate with admission to degree studies or a certificate of conditional exemption on the basis of a candidate’s foreign qualifications, the so-called “Immigrant” or “Foreign Conditional Exemption”. The only condition for the “Foreign Conditional Exemption” that is accepted is: ‘completion of the degree course’. The exemption certificate is obtainable from Universities South Africa (USAf). Detailed information is available on the website at click here.

University of Pretoria website: click here 

Minimum requirements

Achievement level

English Home Language or English First Additional Language

Mathematics

APS

NSC/IEB

AS Level

NSC/IEB

AS Level

5

C

5

C

 

30

 

* Cambridge A level candidates who obtained at least a D in the required subjects, will be considered for admission.

*  International Baccalaureate (IB) HL candidates who obtained at least a 4 in the required subjects, will be considered for admission.

Additional requirements

Please note that additional admission requirements may result from certain electives.

Candidates who do not comply with these requirements are advised to register for BSc IT, depending on whether they comply with the admission requirements the programme.

Promotion to next study year

General

  1. A student must pass all the modules of the first year of study, before he or she is permitted to register for any module of the third year of study. Module prerequisites remain applicable. Exceptions to this rule will be considered by the relevant head of department and the Dean.
  2. A student must pass all the modules of the second year of study, before he or she is permitted to register for any module of the fourth year of study (in the case of a four-year degree). Module prerequisites remain applicable. Exceptions to this rule will be considered by the relevant head of department and the Dean.
  3. A new first-year student, who has failed in all the prescribed modules of the programme at the end of the first semester, will not be permitted to proceed  to the second semester in the School of Information Technology.
  4. A student who has not passed at least 70% of the credits of the current year of study after the November examinations will not be re-admitted to the School of Information Technology.
  5. Students who fail a module for a second time, forfeit the privilege of registering for any modules of an advanced year of study.
  6. Students whose academic progress is not acceptable can be suspended from further studies.

Procedure: Exclusion from and re-admission to further studies in the School of Information Technology

  1. A student who is excluded from further studies in terms of the stipulations of the abovementioned regulations will be notified in writing by the Dean or admissions committee of the School of Information Technology at the end of the relevant semester.
  2. A student who has been excluded from further studies may apply in writing to the admissions committee of the School of Information Technology on level 6 in the Engineering building I for re-admission.
  3. Written applications for re-admission to the second semester must be submitted at least 7 days before lectures resume for the second semester.
  4. Written applications for re-admission to the new academic year must be submitted before 12 January.
  5. Late applications will be accepted only in exceptional circumstances after approval by the Dean.
  6. Should a student not be re-admitted to further studies by the admissions committee of the School of Information Technology, he/she will be informed in writing.
  7. A student who is not re-admitted by the admissions committee of the School of Information Technology has the right to appeal to the Appeals Committee: Admissions in the Administration building, room 3-13.
  8. Any decision taken by the Appeals Committee: Admissions is final.
  9. Should the student be re-admitted by the Admissions Committee, strict conditions will be set which the student must comply with in order to proceed with his/her studies.
  10. A student, who is repeating his or her year, may be permitted by the Dean, on recommendation of the relevant head(s) of department, to register for modules of the following year of study in addition to the outstanding modules he or she has failed, providing that he or she complies with the prerequisites of these modules and no timetable clashes occur. In no semester may the total credits for which a student registers, exceed the normal number of credits per semester by more than 16 credits, except with special permission from the relevant head of department.

Pass with distinction

A degree (undergraduate) in the School of IT is conferred with distinction on a student who did not repeat any module of his/her final year, obtained a weighted average of at least 75% in all the prescribed modules for the final year, provided that a subminimum of 65% is obtained in each of these modules and provided that the degree is completed in the prescribed minimum period of time. Ad hoc cases will be considered by the Dean, in consultation with the relevant head of department.

Minimum credits: 174

Students wishing to continue with Mathematics or Mathematical Statistics on year level 2 or 3 need to take WTW 114, WTW 124 and WTW 162. Students not wishing to continue with Mathematics or Mathematical Statistics on year level 2 or 3, need to take WTW 152, WTW 134, WTW 146 and WTW 148.

Students are required to choose a science elective as part of the BSc Computer Science first year. The choice is dependent on the Grade 12 Physical Science results. A student who achieved a level 5 in Physical Science in Grade 12 may choose between Physics (PHY 114 and PHY 124) and Chemistry (CMY 117 and CMY 127). A level 4 in Physical Science allows the student to choose Biological Science (MLB 111, BOT 161 and MBY 161) and Geology (GLY 155 and GLY 163). A student who does not have Physical Science in Grade 12 has a choice between Physics (PHY 131 and SCI 154) and Geography (ENV 101, GGY 156, GGY 168 and GMC 110).

Students have a choice between Mathematical Statistics (WST 111 and WST 121), Statistics (STK 110 and STK 120) and (STK 110 and STC 122) for the Data Science option to fulfil the statistics requirement for the degree programme.

Fundamental modules

Core modules

  • Module content:

    The focus is on object-oriented (OO) programming. Concepts including inheritance and multiple inheritance, polymorphism, operator overloading, memory management (static and dynamic binding), interfaces, encapsulation, reuse, etc. will be covered in the module. The module teaches sound program design with the emphasis on modular code, leading to well structured, robust and documented programs. A modern OO programming language is used as the vehicle to develop these skills. The module will introduce the student to basic data structures, lists, stacks and queues.

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  • Module content:

    Fundamental concepts of modern operating systems in terms of their structure and the mechanisms they use are studied in this module. After completing this module, students will have gained, as outcomes, knowledge of real time, multimedia and multiple processor systems, as these will be defined and analysed. In addition, students will have gained knowledge on modern design issues of process management, deadlock and concurrency control, memory management, input/output management, file systems and operating system security. In order to experience a hands-on approach to the knowledge students would have gained from studying the abovementioned concepts, students will have produced a number of practical implementations of these concepts using the Windows and Linux operating systems.

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  • Module content:

    This module introduces imperative computer programming, which is a fundamental building block of computer science. The process of constructing a program for solving a given problem, of editing it, compiling (both manually and automatically), running and debugging it, is covered from the beginning. The aim is to master the elements of a programming language and be able to put them together in order to construct programs using types, control structures, arrays, functions and libraries. An introduction to object orientation will be given. After completing this module, the student should understand the fundamental elements of a program, the importance of good program design and user-friendly interfaces. Students should be able to conduct basic program analysis and write complete elementary programs.

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  • Module content:

    This module introduces concepts and terminology related to the computer science discipline. General topics covered include the history of computing, machine level representation of data, Boolean logic and gates, basic computer systems organisation, algorithms and complexity and automata theory. The module also introduces some of the subdisciplines of computer science, such as computer networks, database systems, compilers, information security and intelligent systems. The module also focues on modelling of algorithms.

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  • Module content:

    *This module serves as preparation for students majoring in Mathematics (including all students who intend to enrol for WTW 218 and WTW 220). Students will not be credited for more than one of the following modules for their degree: WTW 114, WTW 158, WTW 134, WTW 165.
    Functions, limits and continuity. Differential calculus of single variable functions, rate of change, graph sketching, applications. The mean value theorem, the rule of L'Hospital. Definite and indefinite integrals, evaluating definite integrals using anti-derivatives, the substitution rule.

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  • Module content:

    Propositional logic: truth tables, logical equivalence, implication, arguments. Mathematical induction and well-ordering principle. Introduction to set theory. Counting techniques: elementary probability, multiplication and addition rules, permutations and combinations, binomial theorem, inclusion-exclusion rule.

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  • Module content:

    *Students will not be credited for more than one of the following modules for their degree:
    WTW 124, WTW 146, WTW 148 and WTW 164. This module serves as preparation for students majoring in Mathematics (including all students who intend to enrol for WTW 218, WTW 211 and WTW 220).

    The vector space Rn, vector algebra with applications to lines and planes, matrix algebra, systems of linear equations, determinants. Complex numbers and factorisation of polynomials. Integration techniques and applications of integration. The formal definition of a limit. The fundamental theorem of Calculus and applications. Vector functions and quadratic curves. 

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  • Module content:

    *Students will not be credited for more than one of the following modules for their degree: WTW 134, WTW 165, WTW 114, WTW 158. WTW 134 does not lead to admission to Mathematics at 200 level and is intended for students who require Mathematics at 100 level only. WTW 134 is offered as WTW 165 in the second semester only to students who have applied in the first semester of the current year for the approximately 65 MBChB, or the 5-6 BChD places becoming available in the second semester and who were therefore enrolled for MGW 112 in the first semester of the current year. 
    Functions, derivatives, interpretation of the derivative, rules of differentiation, applications of differentiation, integration, interpretation of the definite integral, applications of integration. Matrices, solutions of systems of equations. All topics are studied in the context of applications.

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  • Module content:

    *Students will not be credited for more than one of the following modules for their degree:
    WTW 124, WTW 146 and WTW 164. The module WTW 146 is designed for students who require Mathematics at 100 level only and does not lead to admission to Mathematics at 200 level.

    Vector algebra, lines and planes, matrix algebra, solution of systems of equations, determinants. Complex numbers and polynomial equations. All topics are studied in the context of applications.

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  • Module content:

    *Students will not be credited for more than one of the following modules for their degree:
    WTW 124, WTW 148 and WTW 164. The module WTW 148 is designed for students who require Mathematics at 100 level only and does not lead to admission to Mathematics at 200 level.

    Integration techniques. Modelling with differential equations. Functions of several variables, partial derivatives, optimisation. Numerical techniques. All topics are studied in the context of applications.

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  • Module content:

    The module serves as an introduction to computer programming as used in science. Modelling of dynamical processes using difference equations; curve fitting and linear programming are studied. Applications are drawn from real-life situations in, among others, finance, economics and ecology.

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  • Module content:

    *Students will not be credited for more than one of the following modules for their degree: WTW 162 and WTW 264.

    Introduction to the modelling of dynamical processes using elementary differential equations. Solution methods for first order differential equations and analysis of properties of solutions (graphs). Applications to real life situations.

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Elective modules

  • Module content:

    Botanical principles of structure and function; diversity of plants; introductory plant systematics and evolution; role of plants in agriculture and food security; principles and applications of plant biotechnology; economical and valuable medicinal products derived from plants; basic principles of plant ecology and their application in conservation and biodiversity management.
    This content aligns with the United Nation's Sustainable Debelopment Goals of No Poverty, Good Health and Well-being, Climate Action, Responsible Consumption and Production, and Life on Land.

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  • Module content:

    General introduction to inorganic, analytical and physical chemistry. Atomic structure and periodicity. Molecular structure and chemical bonding using the VSEOR model. Nomenclature of inorganic ions and compounds. Classification of reactions: precipitation, acid-base, redox reactions and gas-forming reactions. Mole concept and stoichiometric calculations concerning chemical formulas and chemical reactions. Principles of reactivity: energy and chemical reactions. Physical behaviour gases, liquids, solids and solutions and the role of intermolecular forces. Rate of reactions: Introduction to chemical kinetics.

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  • Module content:

    Theory: General physical-analytical chemistry: Chemical equilibrium, acids and bases, buffers, solubility equilibrium, entropy and free energy, electrochemistry. Organic chemistry: Structure (bonding), nomenclature, isomerism, introductory stereochemistry, introduction to chemical reactions and chemical properties of organic compounds and biological compounds, i.e. carbohydrates and aminoacids. Practical: Molecular structure (model building), synthesis and properties of simple organic compounds.

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  • Module content:

    Introducing the basic concepts and interrelationships required to understand the complexity of natural environmental problems, covering an introduction to environmental science and biogeography; including a first introduction to SDGs and Aichi targets.

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  • Module content:

    This module begins by fostering an understanding of human geography. Then follows with the political ordering of space; cultural diversity as well as ethnic geography globally and locally; population geography of the world and South Africa: and four economic levels of development. The purpose is to place South Africa in a world setting and to understand the future of the country.

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  • Module content:

    Note: Students cannot register for both GGY 168 and GGY 166.
    This module serves as an introduction to the field of physical geography and geomorphology. Initially, a theoretical overview of a variety of geomorphic realms will be studied. Students will be taught about the key processes that are present in each realm and how those processes work together in order to produce specific landforms. In addition, students will receive training in several fundamental analytical techniques, including cartographic skills, aerial photographs and introductory GIS.

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  • Module content:

    Solar system; structure of solid matter; minerals and rocks; introduction to symmetry and crystallography; important minerals and solid solutions; rock cycle; classification of rocks. External geological processes (gravity, water, wind, sea, ice) and their products (including geomorphology). Internal structure of the earth. The dynamic earth – volcanism, earthquakes, mountain building – the theory of plate tectonics. Geological processes (magmatism, metamorphism, sedimentology, structural geology) in a plate tectonic context. Geological maps and mineral and rock specimens. Interaction between man and the environment, and nature of anthropogenic climate change.

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  • Module content:

    This module will give an overview of earth history, from the Archaean to the present. Important concepts such as the principles of stratigraphy and stratigraphic nomenclature, geological dating and international and South African time scales will be introduced. A brief introduction to the principles of palaeontology will be given, along with short descriptions of major fossil groups, fossil forms, ecology and geological meaning. In the South African context, the major stratigraphic units, intrusions and tectonic/metamorphic events will be detailed, along with related rock types, fossil contents, genesis and economic commodities. Anthropogenic effects on the environment and their mitigation. Practical work will focus on the interpretation of geological maps and profiles.

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  • Module content:

    History, present and future of cartography. Introductory geodesy: shape of the earth, graticule and grids, datum definition, elementary map projection theory, spherical calculations. Representation of geographical data on maps: Cartographic design, cartographic abstraction, levels of measurement and visual variables. Semiotics for cartography: signs, sign systems, map semantics and syntactics, explicit and implicit meaning of maps (map pragmatics). Critique maps of indicators to measure United Nations Sustainable Development Goals in South Africa.

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  • Module content:

    The module will introduce the student to the field of Microbiology. Basic Microbiological aspects that will be covered include introduction into the diversity of the microbial world (bacteria, archaea, eukaryotic microorganisms and viruses), basic principles of cell structure and function, microbial nutrition and microbial growth and growth control. Applications in Microbiology will be illustrated by specific examples i.e. bioremediation, animal-microbial symbiosis, plant-microbial symbiosis and the use of microorganisms in industrial microbiology. Wastewater treatment, microbial diseases and food will be introduced using specific examples.

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  • Module content:

     Introduction to the molecular structure and function of the cell. Basic chemistry of the cell. Structure and composition of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. Ultrastructure and function of cellular organelles, membranes and the cytoskeleton. General principles of energy, enzymes and cell metabolism. Selected processes, e.g. glycolysis, respiration and/or photosynthesis. Introduction to molecular genetics: DNA structure and replication, transcription, translation. Cell growth and cell division.

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  • Module content:

    SI-units. Significant figures. Waves: intensity, superposition, interference, standing waves, resonance, beats, Doppler. Geometrical optics: Reflection, refraction, mirrors, thin lenses, instruments. Physical optics: Young-interference, coherence, diffraction, polarisation. Hydrostatics and dynamics: density, pressure, Archimedes’ principle, continuity, Bernoulli. Heat: temperature, specific heat, expansion, heat transfer. Vectors. Kinematics of a point: Relative, projectile, and circular motion. Dynamics: Newton’s laws, friction. Work: point masses, gasses (ideal gas law), gravitation, spring, power. Kinetic energy: Conservative forces, gravitation, spring. Conservation of energy. Conservation of momentum. Impulse and collisions. System of particles: Centre of mass, Newton’s laws. Rotation: torque, conservation of angular momentum, equilibrium, centre of gravity.

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  • Module content:

    Simple harmonic motion and pendulums. Coulomb’s law. Electric field: dipoles, Gauss’ law.Electric potential. Capacitance. Electric currents: resistance, resistivity, Ohm’s law, energy, power, emf, RC-circuits. Magnetic Field: Hall-effect, Bio-Savart. Faraday’s and Lenz’s laws. Oscillations: LR-circuits. Alternating current: RLC-circuits, power, transformers. Introductory concepts to modern physics. Nuclear physics: Radioactivity.

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  • Module content:

    Units, vectors, one dimensional kinematics, dynamics, work, equilibrium, sound, liquids, heat, thermodynamic processes, electric potential and capacitance, direct current and alternating current, optics, modern physics, radio activity.

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  • Module content:

    Students from all faculties are welcome to join us in our exploration of the universe from an earth-bound perspective. We reflect on the whole universe from the sub microscopic to the vast macroscopic and mankind’s modest position therein. To what degree is our happiness determined by stars? Echoes from ancient firmaments - the astronomy of old civilisations. The universe is born with a bang. Stars, milky ways and planets are formed. Life is breathed into the landscape on earth, but is there life elsewhere? The architecture of the universe – distance measurements, structure of our solar system and systems of stars. How does it look like on neighbouring planets? Comets and meteorites. Life cycles of stars. Spectacular exploding stars! Exotica like pulsars and black holes.

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  • Module content:

    Inferential concepts. Experimental and observational data. Measures of association, uncertainty and goodness of fit. Sampling error and accuracy of estimation. Introduction to linear regression, reduction of variation due to regression. Conditional distributions of residuals.  Simulation based inference: conditional means and prediction intervals. Bivariate data visualisation. Supporting mathematical concepts. Statistical concepts are demonstrated and interpreted through practical coding and simulation within a data science framework.
    This module is also presented as a summer school for students who initially elected and passed STK 120 with a final mark of at least 60% and then decides to further their studies in statistics as well as for students who achieved a final mark of between 40% - 49% in STC 122 during semester 2.

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  • Module content:

    Descriptive statistics:
    Sampling and the collection of data; frequency distributions and graphical representations. Descriptive measures of location and dispersion.
    Probability and inference:
    Introductory probability theory and theoretical distributions. Sampling distributions. Estimation theory and hypothesis testing of sampling averages and proportions (one and two-sample cases). Supporting mathematical concepts. Statistical concepts are demonstrated and interpreted through practical coding and simulation within a data science framework.

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  • Module content:

    Students can only get credit for one of the following two modules: STK 120 or STK 121.
    Analysis of variance, categorical data analysis, distribution-free methods, curve fitting, regression and correlation, the analysis of time series and indices. Statistical and economic applications of quantitative techniques: Systems of linear equations: solving and application. Optimisation, linear functions, non-linear functions. Marginal and total functions. Stochastic and deterministic variables in statistical and economic context: producers' and consumers' surplus. Supporting mathematical concepts. Statistical concepts are illustrated using simulation within a data science framework.
    This module is also presented as STK 121, an anti-semester module. This is a terminating module. 

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  • Module content:

    Characterisation of a set of measurements: Graphical and numerical methods. Random sampling. Probability theory. Discrete and continuous random variables. Probability distributions. Generating functions and moments.

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  • Module content:

    Sampling distributions and the central limit theorem. Statistical inference: Point and interval estimation. Hypothesis testing with applications in one and two-sample cases. Introductory methods for: Linear regression and correlation, analysis of variance, categorical data analysis and non-parametric statistics.  Identification, use, evaluation and interpretation of statistical computer packages and statistical techniques.

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Minimum credits: 124

Students have a choice of electives (45 credits) from Computer Science (COS 314, COS 344 and COS 326); Information Science (IMY 310 and IMY 320); Data Science ((STK 210, STK 220 and WST 212) or (WST 211, WST 221 and WST 212) at year-level 2 depending on year level 1 Statistics choice) and (STK 353 and COS 314 at year level 3), Mathematics; Mathematical Statistics or Statistics; Physics and Chemistry. The module choices for Mathematics, Mathematical Statistics or Statistics, Physics and Chemistry must be done in consultation with the programme organiser and may require second year elective modules to be included in the degree programme.

Fundamental modules

  • Module content:

    This module is integrated into all undergraduate academic programmes offered by the Faculty. Main objectives: execution of a community project aimed at achieving a beneficial impact on a section of a socio-economically underprivileged community located in socio-economically deprived areas our society; awareness of personal, social and cultural values and an understanding of social issues; and development of life skills.

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Core modules

  • Module content:

    This module introduces students to a framework for investigating both computability and complexity of problems. Topics include, but are not limited to: finite-state machines, regular expressions and their application in a language such as awk, the Halting problem, context-free grammars, P vs NP problem, NP-complete class, reduction techniques, regular languages, DFAs and NFAs, Lattices, Church-Turing thesis.

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  • Module content:

    Data abstraction is a fundamental concept in the design and implementation of correct and efficient software. In prior modules, students are introduced to the basic data structures of lists, stacks and queues. This module continues with advanced data structures such as trees, hash tables, heaps and graphs, and goes into depth with the algorithms needed to manipulate them efficiently. Classical algorithms for sorting, searching, traversing, packing and game playing are included, with an emphasis on comparative implementations and efficiency. At the end of this module, students will be able to identify and recognise all the classical data structures; implement them in different ways; know how to measure the efficiency of implementations and algorithms; and have further developed their programming skills, especially with recursion and polymorphism.

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  • Module content:

    The module will introduce the concepts of model-driven analysis and design as a mechanism to develop and evaluate complex software systems. Systems will be decomposed into known entities, such as design patterns, classes, relationships, execution loops and process flow, in order to model the semantic aspects of the system in terms of structure and behaviour. An appropriate tool will be used to support the software modelling. The role of the software model in the enterprise will be highlighted. Students who successfully complete this module will be able to concep-tualise and analyse problems and abstract a solution.

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  • Module content:

    This module will introduce the student to netcentric systems by focusing on the development of systems for the web, mobile devices and the cloud.  To lay the foundation on which the rest of the module can follow, traditional web-based programming languages such as HTML5, JavaScript, CSS and Python will be covered differentiating between client-side and server-side computation.  Persistence of web-based data will be included for both client and server-based computation.  These technologies will be extended and applied to mobile platforms where the availability of a connection, location-services and mobile device limitations play a role.  For cloud platforms, aspects relating to task partitioning, security, virtualisation, cloud storage and access to the shared data stores, data synchronisation, partitioning and replication are considered. In order to practically demonstrate that a student has reached these outcomes, students will be required to use, integrate and maintain the necessary software and hardware by completing a number of smaller practical assignments where after integrating all these technologies into a comprehensive and practical programming project is required.

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  • Module content:

    This module will expose students to the evolution of databases systems. They will be able to model data conceptually, in terms of models such as conceptual, relational, object oriented, graph-based and network and the mapping between models, in particular between the conceptual and relational model. Foundational concepts relating to the relational model will be considered, such as: entity and referential integrity, relational algebra and calculus, functional dependency, normals forms, Indexing of database systems and transaction processing will also form an integral part of the curriculum. The physical data representation of the databases system both in memory and within the file system of the operating system will be considered.

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  • Module content:

    Computer science courses mostly deal with sequential programs. This module looks at the fundamentals of concurrency; what it means, how it can be exploited, and what facilities are available to determine program correctness. Concurrent systems are designed, analysed and implemented.

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  • Module content:

    This module provides the foundations on which other modules build by enabling a deeper understanding of how software interacts with hardware. It will teach the design and operation of modern digital computers by studying each of the components that make up a digital computer and the interaction between these components. Specific areas of interest, but not limited to, are: representation of data on the machine-level; organisation of the machine on the assembly level; the architecture and organisation of memory; inter- and intra-component interfacing and communication; data paths and control; and parallelism. Topic-level detail and learning outcomes for each of these areas are given by the first 6 units of ‘Architecture and Organisation’ knowledge area as specified by the ACM/IEEE Computer Science Curriculum 2013.
    The concepts presented in the theory lectures will be reinforced during the practical sessions by requiring design and implementation of the concepts in simulators and assembly language using an open source operating system.

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  • Module content:

    Setting up and solving recurrence relations. Equivalence and partial order relations. Graphs: paths, cycles, trees, isomorphism. Graph algorithms: Kruskal, Prim, Fleury. Finite state automata.

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Elective modules

  • Module content:

    Theory: Classical chemical thermodynamics, gases, first and second law and applications, physical changes of pure materials and simple compounds. Phase rule: Chemical reactions, chemical kinetics, rates of reactions.

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  • Module content:

    Statistical evaluation of data in line with ethical practice, gravimetric analysis, aqueous solution chemistry, chemical equilibrium, precipitation-, neutralisation- and complex formation titrations, redox titrations, potentiometric methods, introduction to electrochemistry. Examples throughout the course demonstrate the relevance of the theory to meeting the sustainable development goals of clean water and clean, affordable energy. 

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  • Module content:

    Resonance, conjugation and aromaticity. Acidity and basicity. Introduction to 13C NMR spectroscopy. Electrophilic addition: alkenes. Nucleophilic substitution, elimination, addition: alkyl halides, alcohols, ethers, epoxides, carbonyl compounds: ketones, aldehydes, carboxylic acids and their derivatives Training in an ethical approach to safety that protects self, others and the environment is integral to the practical component of the course.

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  • Module content:

    Atomic structure, structure of solids (ionic model). Coordination chemistry of transition metals: Oxidation states of transition metals, ligands, stereochemistry, crystal field theory, consequences of d-orbital splitting, chemistry of the main group elements, electrochemical properties of transition metals in aqueous solution, industrial applications of transition metals. Fundamentals of spectroscopy and introduction to IR spectroscopy. During practical training students learn to acquire and report data ethically. Practical training also deals with the misuse of chemicals and appropriate waste disposal to protect the environment and meet the UN sustainable development goals.

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  • Module content:

    Information seeking and retrieval. This module explores the theory and practice of effective information seeking and retrieval. It builds on supporting research paradigms such as the systems, user-centred, cognitive and socio-cognitive paradigms. The focus is on the complexities of effective information seeking and retrieval within the context of information behaviour on a personal level, as well as in the context of professional, academic or everyday information needs.

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  • Module content:

    Representation and organisation. Information needs to be represented and organised in a system for it to be effectively retrievable. This module deals with the representation and organisation of information on the level of individual entities (e.g. indexing), from the perspective of the users (user profiling), as well as within a document collection (taxonomies and ontologies).

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  • Module content:

    Economics and politics of information. This module examines the economics and politics of information, with a special emphasis on South Africa's information sector. It aims to promote an understanding of the market and non-market qualities of information, and their consequences for the production, distribution and marketing of information goods and services. The ways in which information access and expression are regulated and the use of ICTs in crime and corruption is also addressed.

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  • Module content:

    Indigenous knowledge and communication. This module focuses on the role and function of Indigenous Knowledge (IK) in the information and knowledge society. Various categories and contexts of IK are explored within international and local perspectives.
    Issues pertaining to access and communication of IK, inter alia through Information and Communication Technology (ICT), are addressed in order to ensure sustainable development.

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  • Module content:

    Vibrating systems and waves (14 lectures)
    Simple harmonic motion (SHM). Superposition (different frequencies, equal frequencies). Perpendicular vibrations (Lissajous figures). Damped SHM. Forced oscillations. Resonance. Q-value. Transverse wave motion. Plane wave solution using method of separation of variables. Reflection and transmission at a boundary. Normal and eigenmodes. Wave packets. Group velocity.
    Modern physics (30 lectures)
    Special relativity: Galilean and Lorentz transformations. Postulates. Momentum and energy. 4 vectors and tensors. General relativity. Quantum physics. Failure of classical physics. Bohr model. Particle-wave duality. Schrödinger equation. Piece-wise constant potentials. Tunneling. X-rays. Laser. Nuclear physics: Fission. Fusion. Radioactivity.
    Heat and thermodynamics (12 lectures)
    Heat. First Law. Kinetic theory of gases. Mean free path. Ideal, Clausius, Van der Waals and virial gases. Entropy. Second Law. Engines and refrigerators. Third Law. Thermodynamic potentials: Enthalpy Helmholtz and Gibbs free energies, Chemical potential. Legendre transformations (Maxwell relations). Phase equilibrium. Gibbs phase rule.
    Modelling and simulation (7 practical sessions)
    Introduction to programming in a high level system: Concept of an algorithm and the basic logic of a computer programme. Symbolic manipulations, graphics, numerical computations. Applications: Selected illustrative examples.
    Error Analysis (7 practical sessions)
    Experimental uncertainties. Propagation of uncertainties. Statistical analysis of random uncertainties. Normal distribution. Rejection of data. Least-squares fitting. Covariance and correlation.

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  • Module content:

    Classical mechanics (28 lectures)
    Fundamental concepts, energy and angular momentum, calculus of variations and Lagrangian mechanics, conservative central forces and two body problems, scattering, mechanics in rotating reference frames, many body systems.
    Physical Optics (14 lectures)
    Maxwell’s equations, wave equation and plane wave solution, coherence, interference,
    diffraction, polarisation.
    Physics of Materials (14 lectures)
    Classification of materials. Atomic bonding. Crystallography. Defects. Material strength.
    Phase diagram's, Ceramics. Polymers. Composites. Fracture. Electrical and
    magnetic properties. Semiconductors. Smart materials Nanotechnology.
    Experiments (14 sessions)

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  • Module content:

    Statistical problem solving. Causality, experimental and observational data. Probability theory. Multivariate random variables. Discrete and continuous probability distributions. Stochastic representations. Measures of association. Expected values and conditional expectation. Simulation techniques. Supporting mathematical concepts. Statistical concepts are demonstrated and interpreted through practical coding and simulation within a data science framework.

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  • Module content:

    Multivariate probability distributions. Sampling distributions and the central limit theorem. Frequentist and Bayesian inference. Statistical learning and decision theory. Simulation techniques enhancing statistical thinking. Supervised learning:  linear regression, estimation and inference. Non-parametric modelling. Supporting mathematical concepts. Statistical algorithms. Statistical concepts are demonstrated and interpreted through practical coding and simulation within a data science framework.

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  • Module content:

    Set theory. Probability measure functions. Random variables. Distribution functions. Probability mass functions. Density functions. Expected values. Moments. Moment generating functions. Special probability distributions: Bernoulli, binomial, hypergeometric, geometric, negative binomial, Poisson, Poisson process, discrete uniform, uniform, gamma,exponential, Weibull, Pareto, normal. Joint distributions: Multinomial, extended hypergeometric, joint continuous distributions. Marginal distributions. Independent random variables. Conditional distributions. Covariance, correlation. Conditional expected values. Transformation of random variables: Convolution formula. Order statistics. Stochastic convergence: Convergence in distribution. Central limit theorem. Practical applications. Practical statistical modelling and analysis using statistical computer packages and the interpretation of the output.

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  • Module content:

    Introductory machine learning concepts. Data base design and use. Data preparation and extraction. Statistical modelling using data base structures. Statistical concepts are demonstrated and interpreted through practical coding and simulation within a data science framework.

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  • Module content:

    Stochastic convergence: Asymptotic normal distributions, convergence in probability. Statistics and sampling distributions: Chi-squared distribution. Distribution of the sample mean and sample variance for random samples from a normal population. T-distribution. F-distribution. Beta distribution. Point estimation: Method of moments. Maximum likelihood estimation. Unbiased estimators. Uniform minimum variance unbiased estimators. Cramer-Rao inequality. Efficiency. Consistency. Asymptotic relative efficiency.
    Bayes estimators. Sufficient statistics. Completeness. The exponential class. Confidence intervals. Test of statistical hypotheses. Reliability and survival distributions. Practical applications. Practical statistical modelling and analysis using statistical computer packages and the interpretation of the output.

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  • Module content:

    This is an introduction to linear algebra on Rn. Matrices and linear equations, linear combinations and spans, linear independence, subspaces, basis and dimension, eigenvalues, eigenvectors, similarity and diagonalisation of matrices, linear transformations.

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  • Module content:

    Calculus of multivariable functions, directional derivatives. Extrema and Lagrange multipliers. Multiple integrals, polar, cylindrical and spherical coordinates.

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  • Module content:

    Abstract vector spaces, change of basis, matrix representation of linear transformations, orthogonality, diagonalisability of symmetric matrices, some applications.

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  • Module content:

    *This module does not lead to admission to WTW 310 or WTW 320. Students will not be credited for more than one of the following modules for their degree: WTW 220 and WTW 224.
    Sequences of real numbers: convergence and monotone sequences. Series of real numbers: convergence, integral test, comparison tests, alternating series, absolute convergence, ratio and root tests. Power series: representation of functions as power series, Taylor and Maclaurin series. Application to series solutions of differential equations. 

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  • Module content:

    Vectors and geometry. Calculus of vector functions with applications to differential geometry, kinematics and dynamics. Vector analysis, including vector fields, line integrals of scalar and vector fields, conservative vector fields, surfaces and surface integrals, the Theorems of Green, Gauss and Stokes with applications.

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  • Module content:

    *Students will not be credited for more than one of the modules for their degree: WTW 264, WTW 286
    Theory and solution methods for ordinary differential equations and initial value problems: separable and linear first-order equations, linear equations of higher order, systems of linear equations. Application to mathematical models.  Numerical methods applied to nonlinear systems.Qualitative analysis of linear systems.

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Minimum credits: 144

Students have a choice of electives (45 credits) from Computer Science (COS 314, COS 344 and COS 326); Information Science (IMY 310 and IMY 320); Data Science ((STK 210, STK 220 and WST 212) or (WST 211, ST 221 and WST 212) at year-level 2 depending on year level 1 Statistics choice) and (STK 353 and COS 314 at year level 3), Mathematics; Mathematical Statistics or Statistics; Physics and Chemistry. The module choices for Mathematics, Mathematical Statistics or Statistics, Physics and Chemistry must be done in consultation with the programme organiser and may require second year elective modules to be included in the degree programme.

Core modules

  • Module content:

    The module exposes students to problems associated with software development on an industrial scale. Overall goals of the module are: to become familiar with the latest trends in software engineering; to understand the software engineering process and to appreciate its complexity; to be exposed to a variety of methodologies for tackling different stages of the software lifecycle; to understand and apply the concepts of systems administration and maintenance; to complete the development of a fairly large object orientation-based software product. The focus of the module is on a project that lasts the whole year. The project is completed in groups of approximately four (4) students and teaches students to take responsibility for a variety of roles within a group, and to understand the different requirements for these; to experience the advantages and problems of working in a group; professionalism with regards to particularly colleagues and clients.
    After the successful completion of this module, the student will be able to: understand the psychology of a client; work in groups; and have an appreciation for planning, designing, implementing and maintaining large projects. These qualities should place the students in a position in which they are able to handle software development in the corporate environment.

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  • Module content:

    This module develops an appreciation of the fundamentals and design principles for information assurance and security. Students will develop a clear understanding of the basic information security services and mechanisms, enabling them to design and evaluate the integration of solutions into the user application environment. Emphasis will be placed on services such as authorisation and confidentiality. Students will  acquire knowledge and skills of Security Models such as the Bell-LaPadula, Harrison-Ruzzo Ullman and Chinese Wall Model. Students will develop a detailed understanding of the confidentiality service by focusing on cryptology and the practical implementation thereof. The student will be introduced to professional and philosophical ethics. At the end of the module students will be able to engage in a debate regarding the impact (local and global) of computers on individuals, organisations and society. The professionalism of IT staff will be discussed against national and international codes of practices such as those of the CSSA, ACM and IEEE.

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  • Module content:

    The objective of this module is to acquaint the student with the terminology of communication systems and to establish a thorough understanding of exactly how data is transferred in such communication networks, as well as applications that can be found in such environments. The study material includes: concepts and terminology, the hierarchy of protocols according to the OSI and TCP/IP models, protocols on the data level, physical level and network level as well as higher level protocols. The practical component of the module involves programming TCP/IP sockets using a high level language. The emphasis throughout is on the technical aspects underlying the operation of networks, rather than the application of networks.

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  • Module content:

    Programming languages are the backbone for software development. Each language has its own different syntax and semantics, but there are many common concepts that can be studied and then illustrated through the languages. The module concentrates on issues of object orientation, including delegation, iteration and polymorphism. It surveys how languages provide the basic building blocks for data and control, as well as exception handling and concurrency. At the end of the module, students will be able to appreciate the rich history behind programming languages, leading to independent principles that evolve over time. They will be skilled at using a variety of programming languages, including new paradigms such as functional, logical and scripting, and will know how to learn a new language with ease. From this experience, they will be able to apply evaluation criteria for choosing an appropriate programming language in a given scenario.

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  • Module content:

    This module will introduce the student to the fundamentals of compiler construction. These include: the structural difference between a high-level and a von-Neumann language, the meaning of syntax and semantics and what semantics-preserving correctness means; the concepts of regular expressions, finite automata, context-free grammars in the context of programming languages; the need to construct parse-trees for given programmes; the application of data structures and algorithms for the purpose of code-analysis, code-optimisation and register-allocation; and the limits of code-analysis in terms of undecideability and the halting problem.
    After successful completion of the module, the student will have an understanding of the importance of compilers and will understand how to implement a compiler, in terms of its components, the scanner, parser, type checker and code-generator for a given grammar.

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Elective modules

  • Module content:

    Theory: Molecular quantum mechanics. Introduction: Shortcomings of classical physics, dynamics of microscopic systems, quantum mechanical principles, translational, vibrational and rotational movement. Atomic structure and spectra: Atomic hydrogen, multiple electron systems, spectra of complex atoms, molecular structure, the hydrogen molecule ion, diatomic and polyatomic molecules, structure and properties of molecules. Molecules in motion: Viscosity, diffusion, mobility. Surface chemistry: Physisorption and chemisorption, adsorption isotherms, surface tension, heterogeneous catalytic rate reactions, capillarity.

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  • Module content:

    Separation methods: Extraction, multiple extraction, chromatographic systems. Spectroscopy: Construction of instruments, atomic absorption and atomic emission spectrometry, surface analysis techniques. Mass spectrometry. These techniques are discussed in terms of their use in environmental analysis and the value they contribute to meeting the UN sustainable development goals (#3,6 & 11). Instrumental electrochemistry. The relevance of electrochemistry to providing affordable and clean energy (UN SDG#7) is addressed.

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  • Module content:

    Theory: NMR spectroscopy: applications. Aromatic chemistry, Synthetic methodology in organic chemistry. Carbon-carbon bond formation: alkylation at nucleophilic carbon sites, aldol and related condensations, Wittig and related reactions, acylation of carbanions (Claisen condensation). Practical: Laboratory sessions are designed to develop the rational thinking behind the design of organic chemistry experiments. An industrial project specifically prepares students for work in SA industry context and honours projects. As part of this practical programme the UN sustainable development goals must be considered in evaluating the best industrial process.

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  • Module content:

    The main objective of this module is to introduce a selection of topics from artificial intelligence (AI), and to provide the student with the background to implement AI techniques for solving complex problems.
    This module will cover topics from classical AI, as well as more recent AI paradigms. These topics include: search methods, game playing, knowledge representation and reasoning, machine learning, neural networks, genetic algorithms, artificial life, planning methods, and intelligent agents. In the practical part of this module, students will get experience in implementing
    (1) game trees and evolving game-playing agents;
    (2) a neural network and applying it to solve a real-world problem; and
    (3) a genetic algorithm and applying it to solve a real-world problem.

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  • Module content:

    This module builds on a prior introductory module on database technology and provides more advanced theoretical and practical study material for managing large volumes of data, for example, noSQL database systems and MapReduce. The module will consider file system models, for example Hadoop, relevant for big data storage, manipulation at scale, mining and visualisation.  Basic knowledge of parallel decomposition concepts will be included.

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  • Module content:

    The aim of this module is to acquire a sound knowledge of the basic theory of interactive computer graphics and basic computer graphics programming techniques. The theory will cover graphics systems and models, graphics programming, input and interaction, geometric objects and transformations, viewing in 3D, shading, rendering techniques, and introduce advanced concepts, such as object-oriented computer graphics and discrete techniques. The module includes a practical component that enables students to apply and test their knowledge in computer graphics. The OpenGL graphics library and the C programming language will be used for this purpose.

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  • Module content:

    Information Organisation. The module is concerned with the organisation of information in the digital environment focusing on the structure and use of document management and workflow systems, as well as distribution channels and virtual environments. The characteristics and application of the internet, intranets, as well as portals and applications use, are considered.

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  • Module content:

    Information and Knowledge Management. This module focuses on information and knowledge management at an operational level and introduces information and knowledge management at a corporate strategic level. It deals with the management of information and knowledge, which enables the organisation to be competitive. In this module the focus is on four aspects, namely: the 21st century organisation, the external and internal stakeholders that have an interest in information products, as well as the infrastructure that should be in place in organisations to manage information products. The module concludes with a few topics relating to information management at a corporate strategic level.

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  • Module content:

    This module deals with the construction and management of digital repositories. It also addresses the characteristics of the digital repository in a rapidly changing technological world and a challenging information society. Core aspects include: system design, relationships to hybrid libraries, digital collections and rights management, standards, virtual referencing and the development and evaluation of digital repositories.

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  • Module content:

    This module examines aspects of the information and knowledge society within local, regional and international contexts. A special focus of the module is the interaction and exchange of data, information and knowledge from communities' local knowledge system with data, information and knowledge from the global knowledge system. The module discusses the growth and role of information and communication technologies (ICTs), and their implications for development.

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  • Module content:

    Experiential learning project. This module takes the form of a project and experiential training in co-operation with industry.

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  • Module content:

    This module provides an overview of Competitive Intelligence (CI) and focuses on the needs for CI in organisations. The ways in which organisations compete and the benefits that CI can bring to these organisations will also be covered. The growing need for CI among South African organisations will also be examined. Practical examples and case studies will be used to highlight the value of CI in organisations.

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  • Module content:

    Electronics (14 lectures)
    Thévenin and Norton equivalent circuits, superposition principle, RC, LC and LRC circuits. Semiconductor diode. Bipolar transistor. Operational amplifiers. Computer controlled instrumentation.
    Electromagnetism (21 lectures)
    Electrostatics: Coulomb’s law, divergence and curl of E, Gauss’ law, Laplace’s equation, image charge problems, multipole expansion.
    Magnetostatics: Lorenz force, Biot-Savart law, divergence and curl of magnetic field strength, Ampère’s law, magnetic vector potential, multipole expansion, boundary conditions.
    Electrodynamics: Electromotive force, electromagnetic induction, Maxwell’s equations, wave equation.
    Electric and magnetic fields in matter: Polarisation, electric displacement and Gauss’s law in dielectrics, linear dielectrics. Magnetisation (diamagnets, paramagnets, ferromagnets), auxiliary field H and Ampère’s law in magnetised materials, linear and nonlinear media.
    Quantum mechanics (28 lectures)
    The Schrödinger equation, the statistical interpretation of the wave function, momentum, the uncertainty principle, the time-independent Schrödinger equation, stationary states, the infinite square well potential, the harmonic oscillator, the free particle, the Delta-Function potential, the finite square well potential, Hilbert spaces, observables, eigen functions of a Hermitian operator, Dirac notation, the Schrödinger equation in spherical coordinates, the hydrogen atom, angular momentum spin.

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  • Module content:

    Statistical mechanics (28 lectures)
    Isolated systems in thermodynamical equilibrium. Systems in equilibrium with a heat bath: the canonical ensemble, Gibbs' entropic formula, classical statistical mechanics, energy equipartition theorem, thermodynamic potentials, paramagnetism.
    The classical limit of perfect gases: non-distinguishable character of quantum particles, the equation of state of the classical ideal gas. Quantum perfect gases: Black body radiation, the grand canonical ensemble, Fermi-Dirac distribution, the free electron gas in metals, the Bose-Einstein distribution, Bose-Einstein condensation.
    Solid state physics (28 lectures)
    Crystal structures, the reciprocal lattice, x-ray diffraction, lattice vibration, the Debye model, characteristics of solids, the free electron model, Pauli paramagnetism, electronic heat capacity, the relaxation time, electrical conduction, the classical Hall effect, thermal conduction in metals, failures of the free electron model, the independent electron model, band theory of solids.
    Computational Physics and modelling. Assessment will be done through a portfolio of project reports. The topics for the projects will be selected from various sub-disciplines of Physics.

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  • Module content:

    Data exploration. Data wrangling. Statistical coding. Algorithmic thinking.  Sampling: basic techniques in probability, non-probability, and resampling methods. Text mining and analytics. Machine learning: classification and clustering. Statistical concepts are demonstrated and interpreted through practical coding and simulation within a data science framework.

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  • Module content:

    Definition of a stochastic process. Stationarity. Covariance stationary. Markov property. Random walk. Brownian motion. Markov chains. Chapman-Kolmogorov equations. Recurrent and transient states. First passage time. Occupation times. Markov jump processes. Poisson process. Birth and death processes. Structures of processes. Structure of the time-homogeneous Markov jump process. Applications in insurance. Practical statistical modelling, analysis and simulation using statistical computer packages and the interpretation of the output.

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  • Module content:

    Note: Only one of the modules WST 321 or STK 320 may be included in any study programme. 

    Stationary and non-stationary univariate time-series. Properties of autoregressive moving average (ARMA) and autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA) processes. Identification, estimation and diagnostic testing of a time-series model. Forecasting. Multivariate time-series. Practical statistical modelling and analysis using statistical computer packages, including that of social responsibility phenomena.

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  • Module content:

    Bayes estimation. Loss distributions. Reinsurance. Risk models. Ruin theory. Credibility theory. Extreme value theory. Copulas. Practical statistical modelling and analysis using statistical computer packages.

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  • Module content:

    Mean variance portfolio theory. Market equilibrium models such as the capital asset pricing model. Factor models and arbitrage pricing theory. Measures of investment risk. Efficient market hypothesis. Stochastic models of security prices

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  • Module content:

    Group theory: Definition, examples, elementary properties, subgroups, permutation groups, isomorphism, order, cyclic groups, homomorphisms, factor groups. Ring theory: Definition, examples, elementary properties, ideals, homomorphisms, factor rings, polynomial rings, factorisation of polynomials. Field extensions, applications to straight-edge and compass constructions.

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  • Module content:

    Direct methods for the numerical solution of systems of linear equations, pivoting strategies. Iterative methods for solving systems of linear equations and eigenvalue problems. Iterative methods for solving systems of nonlinear equations. Introduction to optimization. Algorithms for the considered numerical methods are derived and implemented in computer programmes. Complexity of computation is investigated. Error estimates and convergence results are proved.

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  • Module content:

    Axiomatic development of neutral, Euclidean and hyperbolic geometry. Using models of geometries to show that the parallel postulate is independent of the other postulates of Euclid.

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The information published here is subject to change and may be amended after the publication of this information. The General Regulations (G Regulations) apply to all faculties of the University of Pretoria. It is expected of each student to familiarise himself or herself well with these regulations as well as with the information contained in the General Rules section. Ignorance concerning these regulations and rules will not be accepted as an excuse for any transgression.

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