Module Provider: School of Mathematical, Physical and Computational Sciences
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn term module
Pre-requisites: SE1PR11 Programming or SE2BP11 Business Programming or CS2BP16 Business Programming
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2017/8

Module Convenor: Dr James Anderson

Email: j.anderson@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:

This module extends students’ prior learning in the fundamentals of computer science by introducing transcomputation as exception-free computing. Elementary mathematics and physics are presented, along with their application in computer programming. Coursework is assessed by students building up a personal portfolio of evidence to demonstrate understanding of transcomputation.


To teach exception-free programming and both its theoretical and practical underpinnings.

Assessable learning outcomes:

Evaluation of trans-Boolean formulas; the role of class theory and solution of elementary membership problems; the role of transarithmetics and the solution of elementary transreal equations; trans-two’s-complement and trans-floating point formats and operations on them; the role of transphysics and the solution of elementary problems at singularities; ability to critique dataflow, von Neumann and other computer architectures.

Additional outcomes:

Solution of transcomplex equations; knowledge of areas of mathematics, computer science and scholarship extended by transmathematics; ability to critique disruptive technologies.

Outline content:

Trans-Boolean and other paraconsistent logics – dealing with dialaethaic and gap values that cause exceptions in Boolean logic and systems built on it. Class theory – dealing with partial set operations and the antinomies of set theory that cause exceptions in set theory and systems built on it. Transreal arithmetic – dealing with the exceptions of real arithmetic, floating-point arithmetic, two’s complement arithmetic and systems built on them. Transphysics – dealing with the exceptions to Newton’s Laws of Motion at singularities. Dataflow machines – dealing with the exceptions of the von Neumann architecture.

Global context:

Transcomputation is highly desirable because it provides for computer programs that have no logical exceptions. This means that if a program compiles then it will not crash for a logical reason, though it may crash because of a hardware fault. Such behaviour would support safety-critical and high reliability systems.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

Lectures supported by practical classes/seminars.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20
Seminars 1
Practicals classes and workshops 10
Guided independent study 69
Total hours by term 100.00
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 70
Portfolio 30

Other information on summative assessment:

Formative assessment methods:

Problem solving classes.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:

    Two hours.

    Requirements for a pass:

    A mark of 40% overall.

    Reassessment arrangements:

    One examination paper of 2 hours duration in August/September - the resit module mark will be the higher of the exam mark (100% exam) and the exam mark plus previous coursework marks (70% exam, 30% coursework).

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

    Last updated: 31 March 2017

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