For the context, I'm in the final year of my MEng degree in Computer Science, and I have a choice to resit a course, which I failed, to stay on the accredited route, or I can choose not to resit and graduate without BCS accreditation. The main problem with resitting is that I will only be able to graduate and receive my degree certificate in winter, meaning that I might not be able to find a job in the next 4+ months. In addition, if I don't resit, the title of my degree will change to Computer Systems Engineering. Does anyone know if accreditation and degree title actually matter in the UK (or EU)? Is it worth not being able to graduate anytime soon?

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    It may matter for professional accreditation purposes. For example, to become a Professional Engineer (PE) in the US requires a 4-year engineering degree from an accredited engineering program.
    – Jon Custer
    Commented Jul 9 at 12:57
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    I am not UK, but it depends on your life situation. Over the long-term, IMHO you are better off getting the accreditation, but if you have a short-term need for pay you may wish to skip it. If you are "on the fence" (which by asking question you appear to be) I'd go for the accreditation. Commented Jul 9 at 15:03
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    More on topic, it seems like your actual question should be: does degree title matter, as you state in the body of your question that not taking the resit will also result in the (more crucial) title change. The degree title essentially signals what your degree is to an employer, so it's about whether you want a job that is more engineering or more computer science. I would personally resit, especially if the only con is that you may go 4 months without work. You can always do some freelance work or find a temporary job to get by for 4 months, but you can't change your degree title later. Commented Jul 9 at 18:44
  • Out of interest, as someone personally considering studying CompSci in the next 2 or so years, can I ask what the course you need to resit is? I'm interested to know what's so important that it changes your entire degree title and prevents you from getting accreditation. Commented Jul 9 at 18:45
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    @HashimAziz , I need to resit Computer Graphics, but it actually doesn't matter which one you fail. It could be any other course, I would still need to resit to preserve my accreditation. At least, that's how it is at my university.
    – leaf34
    Commented Jul 9 at 19:03

4 Answers 4


You may wish to take a look at the BCS website to learn more about the accreditation process and what it is intended to signify.

There seem to be two benefits to studying an accredited degree. The first is that it provides some benchmark of course quality: if you choose an accredited degree, you can have some confidence that the course will cover the core skills and knowledge that are needed for a career in IT. However, it is those skills and knowledge that are valuable, not the accreditation itself. In your circumstances, the important question is "will resitting the course give me a better understanding of a topic that will help my career?". Doing it to get an accredited degree may not be worthwhile, but doing it to demonstrate competence in the material may be.

The second benefit of an accredited degree is that it gives you a more straightforward route to Chartered IT Professional/Chartered Engineer status. Whether this is valuable likely depends on your intended career path (looking at LinkedIn profiles for people in your target industry may provide insight into this). Even with a non-accredited degree, you can achieve chartered status; you would just need to provide additional evidence of your competencies and skills.


My undergraduate degree was a BCS accredited BEng in Software Engineering, and when I was applying for graduate programming jobs nobody was interested in the accreditation - they were interested in whether I could write code. It depends on what you're planning to do after you graduate. If you're interested in a specific field, you can check some job listings to see if accreditation is important. I think for the vast majority of programming jobs, it won't matter at all. I wouldn't delay graduation for BCS accreditation unless you know you're going into a field where it really matters.


It may matter in the future, in ways that no-one can predict depending on what you may or may not decide to do in future (e.g. a further degree in a decade).

Will any job you can get in the mean time care? Probably not, employers offering entry level programming positions are most likely be interested in the practical skills not the academic qualification so if you can demonstrate you can code (e.g. from projects you can show) then you're probably fine.

TL;DR the risk/reward of regretting not resitting is higher than the risk/reward of working four months without either.


If you're not committed to a future in academia, it will be your early years of work experience that will influence where you head later. Eg: into "managerial" roles after a few years, or opening a flower shop, instead. Some find their goals in life change once the rubber hits the road.

The fields are changing so rapidly, yesterday's "state of the art" is today's "legacy burden".
You won't know if you can row until you actually put your oar in the water.
You may find you don't really like rowing, and prefer coxing instead.

Suggest asking on the SE "workplace" community, hoping some HR or recruiter-type can give you their advice for the UK requirements, and what you can expect (with your achievements so far) in the coming years.

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