Introduction to Programming in Python

The details
Computer Science and Electronic Engineering (School of)
Colchester Campus
Postgraduate: Level 7
Thursday 03 October 2019
Saturday 14 December 2019
08 May 2019


Requisites for this module



Key module for

MSC N30312 Computational Finance,
MSC H60112 Computer Networks and Security,
MSC H61012 Electronic Engineering

Module description

This module provides an introduction to computer programming exemplified by the Python programming language used in the Linux environment. Emphasis will be on developing practical skills via worked examples.

Module aims

The aim of this module is to provide an introduction to computer programming for students with little or no previous experience. The Python language will be used in the Linux environment, and students will be given a comprehensive introduction to these during the module. The emphasis is on developing the practical skills necessary to write effective programs, with worked examples taken principally from the realm of data processing and analysis.

Module learning outcomes

After completing this module, students will be expected to be able to:

1. Demonstrate an understanding of the principles and main concepts of programming in Python.
2. Explain Python programming constructs including control structures, lists, numerical arrays, input/output, exceptions, subprograms and modules.
3. Write and analyse programs that use the features listed above.

Module information

Outline Syllabus:

* Introduction to programming
* Program development and execution under Linux
* Computation in Python
* Input and output
* Developing subroutines and modules
* Numerical and scientific modules
* Exceptions
* Graphical output
* Programming in the large

No programming knowledge will be assumed. A familiarity with Microsoft Windows will be expected.

Learning and teaching methods

Lectures and practical exercises will take place in interactive sessions in software laboratories. Each session will incorporate short presentations and practical exercises, with ample opportunity for discussing difficulties and receiving formative feedback.


  • Downey, Allen. (2015) Think Python: How to Think Like a Computer Scientist: Green Tea Press.

The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course. The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students. Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Coursework   Progress Test - Week 8    50% 
Coursework   Assignment Programming in Python  14/01/2020  50% 

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Renato Amorim, email: r.amorim@essex.ac.uk.
Dr Renato Amorim
School Office, e-mail csee-schooloffice (non-Essex users should add @essex.ac.uk to create full e-mail address), Telephone 01206 872770.



External examiner

Dr Robert Mark Stevenson
University of Sheffield
Senior Lecturer
Available via Moodle
Of 28 hours, 0 (0%) hours available to students:
28 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information

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