July 18, 2019

What is a Foundation Year in the UK?

Woman talking, student at GSM London

Many students will move directly from A Levels or equivalent qualifications into a full-time degree but there will be some students who, for whatever reason, don’t meet the requirements to begin degree-level study.

This could be because you left school early and either never studied for the right qualifications or didn’t get the required grades. It could be because you are travelling from abroad to study in the UK and your existing qualifications are not suitable for degree level study here. Foundation Years are also ideal for those who have little or no higher education experience.

A Foundation Year is in essence an extra year before university which lets you study for the qualifications you need and gets you ready for your chosen degree.

What are the benefits of a Foundation Year? 

There are lots of reasons why a university foundation programme could be the right choice for you:

  • Foundation courses are intensive but they equip students with all the necessary tools for degree-level study.
  • It builds confidence, helps students to believe in their abilities as a student and creates a degree study mind set.
  • Foundation courses fill out any gaps in education and build upon existing subject knowledge.
  • They develop core skills in English, maths, computing and effectiveness in the business world. For international students a Foundation Year can help build upon existing English language skills.
  • They can help students discover their natural strengths and weaknesses and the most effective ways for them to study.
  • Students can try their hand at more than one subject so they can be sure it is the subject they want to study at degree level.
  • Once you have undertaken a Foundation Year with GSM London you’ll automatically be registered on your chosen degree course.
  • They teach students to study independently.
  • They integrate students fully into educational life and the wider student community from the start.

Foundation Year courses 

GSM London offers a number of bachelor degrees with an integrated Foundation Year, which act as a springboard to your chosen career. These are not access courses but give you direct entry onto a degree course.

All the courses cover English, numeracy, computer skills and effectiveness in the business world before allowing you to pick specific topics such as management, marketing and events and law as you progress. Being allowed to pick the subjects that interest you gives you an insight into what studying them at degree level will be like and allows you to decide whether it is for you.

Once you have successfully completed your Foundation Year you can move onto the full three-year bachelor’s degree and expand your knowledge on your chosen subject.

There are plenty of different subjects to choose from – law, accounting and finance, business management, business management with e-commerce, economics, enterprise and small business development, oil and gas management, law and marketing to name just a few. See the full list of degrees we offer here.

All the courses have a strong focus on equipping you, not only with specific subject knowledge, but with many usable business and leadership skills. Good communication, commercial awareness, an understanding of how the wider economy works, the ability to analyse and solve problems etc. are all skills that are highly sought after by graduate employers.

What entry requirements do I need?

Applicants will need at least five GCSEs at grades A* to C or equivalent qualifications. For students where English isn’t your first language you’ll have to prove you’re fluent in English and have an IELTS score of 6.0 or above, or equivalent qualifications.

Don’t worry if you don’t meet any of the above criteria – it’s still possible to apply for non-standard entry and your application will be judged on its individual merits. If you decide to apply via this route you’ll need an up-to-date CV, at least one year of full-time work experience and a signed and stamped reference. You may also need to undertake an academic interview or write an essay.

We would like to hear from you if you have any questions about what our Foundation Year courses. You can call us on 020 3797 4687 or click here to apply.

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