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About us

team workThe Department is one of the UK's leading centres for research into Computer Science. In the most recent Research Excellent Framework (REF 2014), we rank 11th in the UK for the quality of our research output, with a third of our publications recognised as world leading, and a further half internationally excellent (87% in total).

We are an elite department with world leading researchers in algorithms and complexity, bioinformatics, distributed and global computing, machine learning, software language engineering and type theory.  The theories we develop lead to the design and building of novel practical computing systems, and their application in the real world. This is an essential element in validating our theories. It also generates opportunities for collaboration with industry and other institutions.

In the past ten years, the Department has received more than £4 million in research funding, from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, the European Union, the Department of Trade and Industry, the Royal Society, the British Council, the Nuffield Foundation, and from our broad network of industrial and government collaborators.  All this creates a vibrant research environment in which research students can learn and develop their own research profile under our guidance and supervision.  

Our research also informs our teaching: we offer three Masters programmes in 'Big Data', which build on our expertise in Machine Learning – the science of systems that can learn from data; and we offer our undergraduate students a wide range of options that reflect the research expertise of our staff.  

We also offer our first and second year undergraduate students a 'hands-on' approach to learning: we teach programming with an emphasis on practical lab work, including digital music production, robot and games programming, and we use scrum-based agile programming to teach software engineering.  Our students learn computer science by making things work (and they have loads of fun while doing so). 

A number of awards bear witness to the excellence of our teaching and of our research.  In 2013, Dave Cohen (in the picture above) was awarded a Teaching Excellence Prize and shortlisted for the Times Higher ‘Most Innovative Teacher of the Year’ 2013 Award; Matthew Hague holds a five-year EPSRC Fellowship (2013-2018); and Gregory Gutin holds a Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award (2014-2019).



"The time I have spent studying Computer Science at Royal Holloway has truly been one of the most enlightening and inspiring periods of my life to date. It is not often that one is given the opportunity to spend three years being taught what is probably the most defining and astonishing subject of the modern world, by people who are at the same time pushing the different fields further ahead.

What's more, whilst this is all going on you only have to turn your head and look out the window to see one of the most beautiful university campuses in England."

- Andrew Walker, BSc Computer Science


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