Quantum Computing

Module aims

In this module you will have the opportunity to:

  • Be introduced to the basic notions of quantum computing with particular emphasis on quantum algorithms
  • Find out more about quantum mechanics from a computer science viewpoint, which includes a repetition of the necessary formalism from linear algebra
  • Be introduced to the notions of Quantum Bits and Quantum Entanglement, which naturally lead to the basic landmark Quantum Algorithms, such as Quantum Search, Quantum Fourier Transform, or Quantum Factoring of Integers
  • Satisfy your academic curiosity and learn about a non-standard topic   

Learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of this module you will be able to:

  • explain key notions of Quantum Computing, including Quantum Bits, Quantum Evolution, Quantum Circuits and Quantum Teleportation
  • critically compare a range of quantum algorithms used to solve common problems
  • contrast the classical paradigm and the quantum paradigm of computation
  • explore the role of quantum computers in providing efficient solutions to problems that are currently computationally intractable

Module syllabus

This module covers the following topics:

  • Introduction to Quantum Mechanics
  • Quantum Bits and Complex Vector Spaces
  • Quantum Evolution and Quantum Gates
  • Quantum Registers
  • Universal Gates
  • No-Cloning Theorem
  • Quantum Entanglement and Teleportation
  • Quantum Algorithms
  • Quantum Search
  • Quantum Fourier Transform
  • Phase Estimation
  • Quantum Counting
  • Order Finding for Periodic Functions
  • Quantum Factoring of Integers
  • Physical Realisation of Quantum Gates
  • Quantum Error Correction   

Teaching methods

The largely mathematical material will be taught through traditional lectures. This will also include modern tools such as Mentimeter and Piazza for further engaging students in order to explore some topics deeper (or provide support). In addition, there will be roughly one hour per week of supervised problem solving, which are designed to reinforce understanding. These problems are not assessed, although specimen solutions will be provided. Past exam paper questions will also be included in the problem sets in order to help prepare you for the exam.

Assessments

There will be two assessed coursework tests designed to reinforce the material covered in the lectures and give hands-on experience of solving problems. These coursework tests together count for 20% of the marks for the module. There will be a final written exam which counts for the remaining 80% of the marks.

There will be detailed feedback on the assessed coursework tests which will include:
a) written feedback on your individual submission
b) class-wide feedback explaining common pitfalls and suggestions for improvement

Reading list

Core Reading

Supplementary Reading

Module leaders

Dr Mario Berta