Module details for Graphics Programming with Shaders


This module develops a critical understanding of the computer graphics programmable pipeline and various graphics techniques. Students will develop and evaluate techniques used to manipulate 3D graphics in real-time.


The aim of this module is to provide the student with the knowledge and core techniques necessary for creating real-time 3D graphics applications utilising the programmable pipeline.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this module the student should be able to:

1.  Develop custom shaders.

2.  Design and develop real-time 3D graphics applications, demonstrating use of the programmable pipeline.

3.  Evaluate graphics programming techniques utilised.

Indicative Content

1 Graphics programming

Introduction to the graphics programmable pipeline

2 Shaders

Creation and use of shaders within the context of the programmable pipeline.

3 Vertex Processing

Standard vertex processing along with more advantage processing such as height mapping and algorithmically controlled manipulation.

4 Pixel Processing

Development of post processing techniques, for example blur or depth of field. Includes the use of alternative render targets

5 Lighting and Shadows

A detailed look at processing lighting and shadows with the programmable pipeline.

6 Tessellation

A detailed look at the dedicated pipeline stage for geometry subdivision.

Teaching and Learning Work Loads

Teaching and Learning Method Hours
Lecture 12
Tutorial/Seminar 0
Practical Activity 24
Assessment 80
Independent 84
Total 200

Guidance notes

SCQF Level - The Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework provides an indication of the complexity of award qualifications and associated learning and operates on an ascending numeric scale from Levels 1-12 with SCQF Level 10 equating to a Scottish undergraduate Honours degree.

Credit Value – The total value of SCQF credits for the module. 20 credits are the equivalent of 10 ECTS credits. A full-time student should normally register for 60 SCQF credits per semester.


We make every effort to ensure that the information on our website is accurate but it is possible that some changes may occur prior to the academic year of entry. The modules listed in this catalogue are offered subject to availability during academic year 2021/22 , and may be subject to change for future years.