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Demystifying Computing with Python


  • Credit value: 15 credits at Level 7
  • Convenor: Dr Alessandro Provetti
  • Assessment: data analysis worksheets (20%) and a two-hour examination (80%)

Module description

In this module we cover the fundamental concepts and techniques of programming with Python and how to apply them to perform simple analyses. You will develop the core skills and expertise needed by an information professional, for example using Python to implement programs and to interface with different data sources. You will also develop computational thinking skills as we will introduce basic algorithms such as those needed for searching and sorting data sets.

During the lab sessions, you will work with case studies to realise the potential of Python for data analytics. We will show you how to use Python to solve practical problems based on use cases extracted from real domains.

Indicative syllabus

  • Computational thinking and algorithms
  • Computing with numbers
  • Decision structures and loops
  • Data structures with Python
  • Object-oriented programming
  • Statistics and probabilities with Python
  • Security and general data protection regulations and standards
  • Case studies to introduce data analytics with Python

Learning objectives

By the end of this module, you will be able to:

  • demonstrate satisfactory knowledge of programming with Python
  • understand techniques for Python data structures and algorithms
  • work on case studies to apply data analytics using Python, including the use of application programming interfaces and data repositories
  • understand the programming paradigm of object-oriented programming
  • use Python to apply the techniques learned on the module to real-world problems
  • develop an algorithm to carry out a specified task and to convert this into an executable program
  • debug a program
  • understand new technologies including computing environments for data storage, big data and cloud computing.