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COMP32412 The Internet of Things: Architectures and Applications syllabus 2018-2019

COMP32412 The Internet of Things: Architectures and Applications

Level 3
Credits: 10
Enrolled students: 78

Course leader: Vasilis Pavlidis

Additional staff: view all staff


  • Pre-Requisite (Compulsory): COMP28112
  • Pre-Requisite (Compulsory): COMP28411

Additional requirements

  • Students who are not from the School of Computer Science must have permission from both Computer Science and their home School to enrol.

Assessment methods

  • 70% Written exam
  • 30% Practical skills assessment
Sem 2 Lecture 1.4 Fri 14:00 - 15:00 -
Sem 2 Lecture 1.5 Thu 15:00 - 16:00 -
Themes to which this unit belongs
  • Web and Distributed Systems


Augmenting objects, otherwise designed to perform a specific task, with the ability to connect to the Internet has led to a new technological paradigm called the Internet of Things (IoT). This course will introduce the students to this concept where high level tasks such as data analytics and fundamental hardware components, such as sensors and actuators are integrated to produce complex systems aimed at improving quality of life and benefit society. Considering the upcoming IoT revolution, this course unit offers a timely opportunity to familiarise yourself with the fundamental principles and primary issues that define the IoT. We put emphasis on the versatility of components that can be integrated into such systems, as well as the diversity of data types produced by the IoT edge-nodes. Successful development of IoT applications also requires communication between different levels (layers) of IoT architectures with the associated security and privacy issues.


Demystify the IoT concept. Offer insight into the IoT components and explain the different principles and the several aspects of designing the IoT architectures. The course will be focused towards the edge of the IoT that is the “Things” (i.e., the edge devices). Several IoT areas of application will be analysed, such as smart grids, home automation, and industrial IoT to demonstrate the different requirements and constraints in designing practical IoT architectures for these segments. Furthermore, the course will analyse the importance of the security, trust, and privacy issues for IoT and present techniques that address these. The course will also demonstrate the interplay and the role of diverse engineering and computer science fields that compose the IoT ecosystem.


·         Introduction and evolution of IoT (1)

·         Organisation and primary components of IoT systems (4)

o   Structure of IoT systems

o   IoT backend modules

o   IoT gateways

o   The IoT edge

·         A reference IoT architecture (3)

o   Design principles and design requirements for the reference architecture

o   Real-world constraints

·         Design issues for the IoT edge (4)

o   Sensors and actuators for IoT systems

o   Interoperability and reliability issues

o   Communication protocols and protocol stacks for the edge devices

o   Hardware security for edge devices

·         Security, trust, and privacy issues in IoT (2)

o   Identity management of IoT edge devices

·        IoT case studies (6)

o   Smart grid (2)

o   Home automation (2)

o   Industrial IoT (2)

Teaching methods

Up to 20 lectures (2 hrs per week)

6 lab sessions per term combining/alternating pen & paper questions with laboratory hands on tasks.

Feedback methods

Via questions and answers and weekly office hours

Study hours

  • Lectures (20 hours)
  • Practical classes & workshops (6 hours)

Employability skills

  • Analytical skills
  • Innovation/creativity
  • Project management
  • Problem solving
  • Research
  • Written communication

Learning outcomes

Programme outcomeUnit learning outcomesAssessment
A3Gain fundamental knowledge on the structure and components that underpin the IoT systems
  • Examination
A2Understand the IoT architectures and related design principles and requirements
  • Examination
  • Individual coursework
A1 A3Familiarize the student with the applications, and communication protocols for the devices of the Edge
  • Examination
B3Assimilating the information from multiple sources and create a novel design under multiple constraints
  • Individual coursework
  • Examination
A5 A7Appreciate the different IoT segments, such as smart home and industrial IoT
  • Examination
B1 B3Derive a simple IoT architecture based on the related principles and provided constraints
  • Individual coursework
B3 B5 C1 C9Develop the capability to design an IoT system for a specific application based on a holistic view
  • Examination
  • Individual coursework

Reading list

Building Internet of Things with the ArduinoDoukas, Charalampos9781470023430CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform2012
From Machine-to-Machine to the Internet of Things: introduction to a new age of intelligenceHoller, Jan et al9780124076846Academic Press2014
Internet of Things: principles and paradigmsBuyya, Rajkumar and Amir Vahid Dasterdji (eds.)9780128053959Morgan Kaufmann2016