To help you make the transition to university, we've put together some resources which we hope you will find useful.
We have links to free courses, tips on brushing up your skills, recommended reading, and useful information if you're looking to purchase a new computer for your studies.
Questions? Contact us! Email us and we'll be happy to help.
To support your transition to higher education, the University of York has created two online short courses exclusively for offer holders which will help you prepare to become part of our academic learning community.
Both courses are completely free of charge and use the FutureLearn platform. You can participate from anywhere in the world - all you need is an internet connection and a web browser. Register for our free online courses
If you're looking to brush up on your maths and programming skills over the summer, then this is the place to start!
We're often asked by new students whether there is any preparatory reading that can be done before joining us here at York. We've put together a reading list for you to explore: we don't expect you to have read all these titles by the start of the autumn term, but we hope you find them interesting.
A good all-round introductory text to the study of Computer Science is that by Brookshear (2). If you would like something more advanced (and fun), then take a look at Harel and Feldman’s text (9). For a thought provoking discussion of the consequences of the creation of superintelligent machines, the text by Bostrom (1) is excellent. Dewdney (6) makes good background reading, and single subject students who would like to prepare for the hardware modules may find Clements (4) useful. Downey (7) provides an introduction to programming in Python for beginners. To explore Human-Computer Interaction, the texts by Christian (3), Fry (8) and Krug (10) are good starting points. Cottrell’s book (5) is a useful guide to study skills at university, and prepares you for what to expect before, during and after your studies.
When you arrive, recommended reading will also be indicated for each module that you will be studying. You should be able to borrow these books from the University Library.
Want to keep really busy over the summer? It is by no means essential to complete the indicative reading before you start but, if you wish, you can take a look at the recommended reading for two of our first year modules: Theory 1 and Software 1.
The Department has three dedicated software labs which are available to our students 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our lab PCs are set up with all the software needed for teaching and assessments, and are upgraded on a regular basis by our specialist in-Department team.
Many students have their own PCs or laptops and we know students may prefer to use their own machines. Some find laptops more practical; others prefer to have a desk-top PC - the choice is yours.
To support your studies in the Department of Computer Science, a laptop or PC with at least 500GB hard disk is ideal, as it enables you to dual boot Windows and Linux if you wish. 8GB RAM is a minimum and i3 is the minimum processor to go for. We recommend an SSD as the performance will be much better.
While we don’t teach anything that has Mac-specific software, you can buy a Mac laptop if you prefer. All our teaching is in Linux and Windows, so most applications will either have a Mac version or will compile in macOS. You can dual boot Windows and macOS using Boot Camp and we can provide some software in Windows if you need it.