Higher Diploma in Science in Computing (Blockchain) 1 Year Online (September 2020)

National College of Ireland (HDBC_SEPOL)
Key Programme Details
Award

Higher Diploma in Science in Computing

NFQ Level

Level 8 About NFQ

Delivery Method

Online

Mode

Full Time

ECTS Credits

60

Department

School of Computing

General Information
Contact

The Springboard Team

Email

springboard@ncirl.ie

Phone

1850 221 721 (Option 4)

Address

Springboard Office,
National College of Ireland,
Mayor Street,
IFSC,
Dublin 1

Role

Springboard Co-ordinator

Important Dates
Application Deadline

04/08/2020

Start Date

28/09/2020

End Date

31/08/2021

About this Course

Fees: A student contribution fee of €540 is applicable if you are in employment. No fees are applicable if you are unemployed and in receipt of an eligible DEASP payment. This amount must be paid in full no later than Friday 20th November 2020. If a student withdraws before the commencement of the course the full amount that they have paid is refundable. No refund will be processed once the student commences the course the week beginning 28th of September 2020. Please see https://www.ncirl.ie/NewStudents for more details. Please note that this scheme does not cover any allowance for books and materials


Course Overview:

Higher Diploma in Science in Computing (Blockchain) is taught entirely online therefore learners can study in a comfortable environment from anywhere in Ireland and people in more rural areas can upskill, retrain or simply look for career advancement. The course is delivered through the Adobe Connect platform. Lectures are delivered synchronously with learners being able to interact with the teaching staff live. Access to various resources and recording of the lectures is also provided. All aspects of the course are delivered online from lectures, labs, presentations, in-semester assessments, and final examinations.

This course will appeal to professionals or graduates with a level 8 degree from different background who would like to upgrade and learn new skills in the field of Blockchain, as well as to technical and non-technical professionals who would like to upgrade their skills in the computing domain, helping them to progress faster in their employment. The course teaches students the computing fundamentals, complemented with detailed knowledge, problem-solving and specialised technical skills required for analysing, designing and developing technical software solutions. The second semester consists of a focused set of modules specific to the Blockchain specialisation that explores the development of blockchain applications and their implications in other fields by providing a practical understanding of blockchain foundations, blockchain application development, and distributed ledger systems. The learners will study computing-related topics such as software development, software engineering, design and implementation of databases, computer architecture, networks and operating systems, blockchain foundations, blockchain application development, and distributed systems.

The students will apply the acquired knowledge and skills to the development and documentation of a medium scale software capstone project. Learners will consolidate their knowledge and skills by carrying out a three-month work placement. Career Bridge module will help the students to enhance their employability skills and improve their overall career prospects

Objectives

This course will typically appeal to graduates with a level 8 degree from different backgrounds who would wish to change their non-ICT qualification into the computer science field through a level 8 award in computing. Nonetheless, it is noted that the course is technical in nature and will entail a significant amount of independent study. Given the content and the timescale you will need to have a strong commitment to the course and a willingness to fully engage with the technical content.

The Blockchain specialisation explores the development of blockchain applications and their implications in other fields by providing a practical understanding of blockchain foundations, blockchain application development, and distributed ledger systems. The learners will study computing-related topics that include software development, best practices in software engineering, the design and implementation of databases, computer architecture, networks and operating systems, blockchain foundations, blockchain application development, and distributed systems.

Entry Requirements

Applicants holding an honours degree (level 8) in any discipline will be considered for the course. The college operates a Recognition of Prior Experiential Learning (RPEL) scheme meaning applicants who do not meet the normal academic requirements may be considered based on relevant work and other experience. This may be assessed using a portfolio of learning, demonstration of work produced and interview.

Technical Requirements:
Besides having a very strong WIFI connection, students of online courses at the National College of Ireland are required to have the following equipment in order to effectively participate in an online classroom:

• Laptop/Desktop
Specifically, students are expected to successfully participate in lectures, laboratories and projects using a portable computer (laptop/notebook) with a substantial hardware configuration. Its minimal suitable configuration is 8GB of RAM (16GB are recommended); a modern 64-bit x86 multi-core processor (Intel i5 or superior); 250+ GB of available space in hard disk; WiFi card; and a recent version of Ubuntu, macOS, or Windows.

• Microphone
Any microphone is acceptable, provided the audio is clear. Most laptops have an inbuilt microphone which is perfectly acceptable, however occasionally an external mic is necessary.
You may test your microphone’s compatibility with your browser here: https://www.onlinemictest.com/

• Headphones
Headphones are strongly recommended to avoid echo while using the microphone.

• External Webcam
External Webcams (USB cable) are required in order to authenticate yourself for examination purposes. Onboard webcams, ie webcams built into the laptop are not appropriate for examination authentication. Webcams are not required for day to day classes.

Long Description

Modules on this course:

Semester 1
• Software Development
• Object Oriented Software Engineering
• Introduction to Databases
• Web Design and Client Side Scripting

Semester 2
• Computer Architecture Operating Systems and Networks
• Blockchain Foundations
• Distributed Systems
• Career Bridge

Year 1 Semester 3 (10 hours over 10 weeks)
• Blockchain Application
• Development - Block delivery
Project - Block delivery

Relevant Employment / Placement can be undertaken within the course timeline, or commenced within 3 months of course completion.

Note: The prospective students are required to specify the specialisation they would like to follow when they apply for a place within the Higher Diploma in Science in Computing programme.

Elective streams/specialisations will run subject to student numbers.

Why Choose This Course

The Career Bridge module is worked into each of the programme schedules. Assisting students develop and achieve their career goals is a core mission within the NCI Career Development & Employability Office (CDEO) who have won the AHECS “Excellence in Employability Award” for 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2018. These were awarded for the work undertaken with students completing skills conversion programmes. The Career Bridge module involves producing a career action plan and develops in students the ability to self-manage their careers, identify and apply for career opportunities, develop an online brand, network effectively and promote themselves at interview.

Career Opportunities

This course was designed to meet the needs of the IT sector and secure future employment for graduates.

Timetable Info

1 Year, 3 semesters. September to December 2020, January to May 2021 and late May to August 2021

Indicative Schedule: Monday, Wednesday and Friday 18.00 - 22.00 and a number of Saturdays 09:00 - 16:00
Career Bridge online classes will be delivered one day per week 17.00 start time - day to be confirmed.

While every effort is made to schedule exams for students in the evenings or Saturdays this is not always possible and all students, Part-time and Full-time, are expected to sit end of semester examinations during the day and evening Monday to Saturday.

Delivery Location

E-learning

Delivery Notes

E-learning

Admissions Contact Details
Contact Person

The Springboard Team

Address

Springboard Office,
National College of Ireland,
Mayor Street,
IFSC,
Dublin 1

Phone

1850 221 721 (Option 4)

Email

springboard@ncirl.ie

RPL Information

The college operates a Recognition of Prior Experiential Learning (RPEL) scheme - meaning applicants who do not meet the normal academic entry requirements may be considered based on extensive relevant work and other experience. This may be assessed through an interview and assessment

Application Procedures

ACTION ITEM: Throughout the application process please continue to check your Spam and Junk folders in your email account as emails from springboard@ncirl.ie can at times default to these folders instead. In addition, please ensure that you have only one email address registered with Springboard. The email address that you login to your Springboard account with must match the email address on your Springboard application form. If the email address on the application form is different, you will need to update it. Failure to do so will only cause confusion and as a result you may end up missing vital emails from the Springboard team in regards to your application. We also ask you to review the postal address that you have included on your application form and ensure that is up to date.

NEXT STEPS:
This supporting documentation must be uploaded to www.springboardcourses.ie along with your application or within a few days of having submitted your application to ensure that your application can be assessed for a September start.

1. Your current curriculum vitae:
Please provide an up to date CV. The Employer Name and Location needs be outlined for every job. If you were unemployed or travelling for a period of time this too needs to be included on your CV including the dates and location(s) of where you resided during that time. Any unexplained gaps will result in a delay in the processing of your Springboard+ application

2. Career Statement:
Please include a 300 word career statement detailing what has motivated you to undertake the programme and how the programme fits in with your career objectives. This statement is compulsory and must be course specific. It should clearly demonstrate that you have researched the course and have a broad understanding of the course you are applying for. Unless it refers explicitly to the course you are applying for it will not be accepted. Please also ensure that you have included your full name and the exact course title on the career statement.

3. Educational Transcripts for any relevant qualifications listed in your application form and the final certificates for any qualifications listed in your application form. Alternatively a Diploma Supplement will suffice if it contains a breakdown of all subjects taken for the duration of the course.

4. Candidates whose qualifications are in foreign languages - please ensure all documentation is provided in its original language. You must also have these documents officially translated into English by a professional, registered translation company. Translations done by you, the applicant, are not acceptable. There are a number of such companies here in Dublin 1 who will do this for you.

5. A copy of your current passport

6. Non-EU applicants will need to provide a copy of their GNIB card showing a Stamp 4 or Stamp 4 EU FAM . You will need to upload evidence of your first Stamp 4 Visa and your current Stamp 4.

7. Verification of Status Required:
Employed - please provide a recently dated letter from your current employer on headed paper, signed and dated.
Returner - Please provide a letter/statement signed by the Commissioner for Oaths confirming your current status. A form to complete the process is available here: https://springboardcourses.ie/pdfs/Declaration%20for%20Returners%20(2019).pdf
Department of Social Protection - Please provide a recently dated letter confirming that you are on the live register detailing which payment you are in receipt of (alternatively your most recent post office receipt will suffice) or a letter confirming that you are signing for social insurance contribution credits.
Previously Self Employed - A letter from your accountant or revenue confirming that your business is no longer trading.

This supporting documentation must be uploaded to www.springboardcourses.ie along with your application or within a few days of having submitted your application to ensure that your application can be assessed for a September start.

Further Documentation/Interview Requirements
Depending on your background you may be required to submit additional documentation and/or participate in an interview or logic test. The Course Director may also request to meet you in person for an informal interview to assess your suitability for the course. We will advise you in due course if any of the above applies to you.

English Language Requirements
Candidates whose first language is not English may also be required to sit the free NCI Academic Competency Test. Regardless of how long you have lived or worked in Ireland if you have not already successfully completed an academic course through English lasting at least one year and if you cannot provide a suitable IELTS or TOEFL test result you may need to do the NCI Academic Competency Test. We will advise you if this applies to you.

Please note that once courses are at capacity they may close without warning.

Media
Open Evenings

Come to our next open evening online in NCI

https://www.ncirl.ie/Events/ArtMID/6569/ArticleID/452/Online-Open-Evening