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Headstart Course

The dates for next year's Headstart course are: Tuesday 9 July - Friday 12 July 2019

About 'Headstart'

'Headstart' is a well-established education programme designed by Headstart EDT, part of The Engineering Development Trust, for students interested in mathematics or science and considering a technology-based career. It provides an opportunity for those in Year 12 to spend up to a week at university prior to making their UCAS application.

The Headstart Focus course on Computer Science at the University of York aims to communicate some of the theoretical ideas in this subject area as well as practical techniques for the creation of computer software and hardware.

The course is intended to give the students a flavour of life in York and particularly living on the University campus. First hand experience and advice will be offered by the student helpers. All daytime activities are organised by the Department of Computer Science and all the social activities in the evenings, including accommodation, are looked after by the University's Student Recruitment Team.

The course introduces some of the following topics:

  • Quantum Computing
  • Programming Languages and Systems
  • Computation and its Limits
  • Robots
  • Computer Vision
  • Human Computer Interaction
  • Safety Critical Systems
  • Artificial Intelligence and Games

Students will work in teams on a hands-on project offering them the opportunity to engage with the logical thinking and problem solving skills that are key for computer scientists.

Students will experience lectures on aspects of Computer Science and software engineering tools. They will also have the opportunity to meet a recent Computer Science graduate and hear how their experiences at the University of York have supported them in their career.

Departmental staff are available to offer advice on degree courses, university application procedures and career opportunities. The course also includes tours of the university campus and facilities. Student helpers are on hand to assist with project work.

For more information and for booking on one of the Headstart courses, visit the Headstart website.

Example Programme

Day 1
Arrival: Introduction and Welcome
Course Project Introduction
Computer Science Department and Campus Tour
Continued Project Work

Grapevine: Computer Science at University and Beyond

 Student Union Night


Day 2
Big Numbers and Quantum Computing
Turing's Legacy: The Limits of Computation
Designing your own Language
Robots are Fun
Continued Project Work
Ten Pin Bowling


Day 3
Computer Vision
Agent-based modelling
Careers in Computer Science
Continued Project Work
Meal out at a restaurant in York's historic city centre
Ghost Walk


Day 4
Human Computer Interaction
Software Engineering for Safety-Critical Applications
Finalise Project & Presentations
Farewell: Headstart Certificates & Project Prizes