Cryptography (L.6) (G1032)

15 credits, Level 6

Spring teaching

You will be introduced to various algorithms used for data encryption and security, as well as mathematical techniques that make those algorithms possible. In terms of mathematics, the module borrows some concepts from algebra, such as fields and groups, modular operations on polynomials, and logical operations with Boolean variables.

We will discuss algorithms for symmetric-key and public-key encryption, many of which we use daily whenever we go online or use our mobile devices. For each of them, we will also discuss their advantages, as well as their limitations to develop awareness of the most relevant issues in terms of efficiency and data security.

The module also covers more advanced topics, such as (pseudo)random number generation and elliptic curve cryptography, which includes cryptographic techniques at the forefront of current technology.


100%: Lecture


20%: Coursework (Portfolio, Problem set)
80%: Examination (Unseen examination)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 150 hours of work. This breaks down into about 33 hours of contact time and about 117 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2024/25. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to feedback, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let you know of any material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.


This module is offered on the following courses: