Visiting Professor returns to Oxford Brookes to teach postgraduate software engineering
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Visiting Professor returns to Oxford Brookes to teach postgraduate software engineering

Professor Hanspeter Mössenböck visits the Department of Computing and Communication Technologies to teach students compiler construction.

Professor Mössenböck’s visit is the result of a long-standing Erasmus co-operation between Oxford Brookes University and Johannes Kepler University in Linz, Austria. The relationship between the two universities started in 2001 and consists of mutual visits of students and lecturers between the two institutions. The main benefit of the exchange is to provide an opportunity to share expertise and teaching contents which each of the institutes offer. In exchange for Prof Mössenböck’s teaching the Compiler Construction module one of the department’s lecturers Mr David Lightfoot teaches a module about Formal Specification in Linz every year.

This is now Prof Mössenböck’s 14th year of teaching the Compiler Construction module at Oxford Brookes University to postgraduate students in software engineering. Whilst the technology in the area has advanced the goal of the module has remained the same: to provide students with hands-on knowledge of the architecture and the internals of compilers and to make the knowledge they gain transferable to other areas of software engineering. The module blends theory and practice, allowing students to create their own compiler by the end of the semester.

Prof Mössenböck began his career working under Professor Niklaus Wirth who is one of the world’s most renowned programming language designers and compiler architects. At Johannes Kepler University in Linz Prof Mössenböck works on compiler research and his institute has worked with Oracle on Java compilers and the Java virtual machine. Some of the research by Prof Mössenböck’s team is being used in a Java product which is used by millions of people worldwide. When asked what this yearly visit means for him Prof Mössenböck commented that ‘My visit to Brookes is one of the highlights of my year. It is a challenge to teach students compilers in a single week but it is also very rewarding to see their enthusiasm and their satisfaction by the end of the week.The colleagues at Brookes have become good friends of mine and I look forward to seeing them every year.’

For more information on the Erasmus connection with Johannes Kepler University contact David Lightfoot (

Find out more about postgraduate programmes in Software Engineering at Oxford Brookes