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Mathematics for Computer Science: Essential Skills

Strengthen key maths skills needed in computer science, including Venn diagrams, algebra techniques and set theory notation.

2,917 enrolled on this course

mathematical formulae on a computer screen

Mathematics for Computer Science: Essential Skills

2,917 enrolled on this course

  • 3 weeks

  • 3 hours per week

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Intermediate level

Find out more about how to join this course

Gain confidence in mathematics to kickstart your career in computer science

If you are approaching or considering degree-level study in computer science, you may wish to strengthen your understanding of key mathematical techniques.

This course from the University of Hull is designed to refresh or equip you with knowledge of the foundational concepts of mathematics for computer science

It assumes no prior mathematical knowledge, so provides a gentle introduction to potentially daunting mathematical skills. Irrespective of academic background or prior attainment, this mathematics bridging course can help you realise your ambition of studying computer science.

Gain confidence in foundational mathematics for computer science

This course will cover some of the key mathematical concepts needed for computer science.

Topics covered include drawing and interpreting Venn diagrams of set relations and operations, algebra techniques, using set theory notation to find subsets and complements, and more.

Equipped with these skills, you’ll be capable of approaching your degree or equivalent study in computer science with assurance.


  • Week 1

    Week 1 Venn Diagrams & Set Theory

    • Introduction to the course

      An overview of what we'll be looking at in this course.

    • Introduction to Venn Diagrams & Set Theory

      John Venn was a mathematician born in Hull. He is famous for inventing the Venn diagram, used in set theory, probability, logic and computer science. Here at the University of Hull we have the Venn building named in his honour.

    • Set theory and Venn diagrams

      Set theory is a useful tool for formalising and reasoning about computation and the objects of computation. Set Theory is indivisible from Logic where Computer Science has its roots.

    • Summary

      A review of the week

  • Week 2

    Week 2 Algebra Techniques

    • Introduction to the week

      An introduction to the week, introducing the core concepts of algebra.

    • Introduction to algebra

      Algebra is used in computer science in the development of algorithms and software for working with mathematical objects. It is used to design formulas that are used in numerical programs and for complete scientific computations.

    • Simultaneous linear equations

      Simultaneous linear equations

    • Quadratic equations

      Quadratic equations

  • Week 3

    Week 3 Vectors & Matrices

    • Introduction

      This week we'll be looking at vectors and matrices.

    • Working with vectors

      Vectors are essential in graphics programming. They can also be used as a data structure to store values or as functions to map one value to another.

    • Matrices

      Matrices are used in Computer Science for 3-D computer graphics, transforming points so you know where to place them on a screen. They can also be used to provide quick approximations of complex calculations.

    • Inverting matrices

      Inverting matrices

    • Quiz

      A quick quiz to test your understanding of the last 3 weeks

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Produce and interpret Venn diagrams of set relations and operations, using them to solve problems. Also use set theory notation and be able to find subsets and complements, define elements and find results of intersections or unions.
  • Solve linear, quadratic and simultaneous equations and inequalities using a variety of algebra techniques.
  • Explore addition and subtraction of vectors, multiplication by a scalar and find the magnitude and direction of a vector. Perform the matrix operations of addition, multiplication and transposition and find the inverse of a given matrix if it exists.

Who is the course for?

This course is aimed at learners starting or considering studying computer science at degree level, who want to build confidence in key mathematical concepts.

It assumes no prior mathematical knowledge, so is suitable for learners of all backgrounds and previous educational attainment.

Who will you learn with?

I joined the University of Hull in 2015 as a foundation maths teaching fellow. It is a career aim of mine to widen participation by helping students using the Foundation Year pathway to succeed.

Who developed the course?

University of Hull

The University of Hull has been changing the way people think for more than 90 years. As England’s 14th-oldest university, they have a proud heritage of academic excellence, life-changing research and excellent teaching. Their vision is to shape a fairer, brighter and carbon neutral future for all. As the Official University Partner of Team GB they believe extraordinary is in everyone, and together with Team GB, they’re going to help you find it.

  • Established

  • World ranking

    Top 60Source: Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2021

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Ways to learn

Choose the best way to learn for you!

Subscribe & save

$349.99 for one year

Automatically renews

Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Buy this course

$109/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Limited access


Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 7 Jul 2024

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

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