Getting ready to do a degree

Foundation years (not be confused with Foundation Degrees!)

Some universities offer a one-year extension to certain higher education level courses for those who lack the subject specific qualifications normally needed for entry. 

Foundation years (which are sometimes known by other titles such as ‘extension years’ or ‘preliminary years’) prepare students for specific degree courses. As mentioned above, don’t confuse foundation years with Foundation Degrees.

The entry requirements for foundation year programmes vary depending on the course, but they may be suitable for students who, for example: 

  • don’t meet the minimum academic entry requirements for a particular degree course, but have significant life and/or work experience
  • hold arts-based qualifications who wish to transfer into science-based subjects
  • have been out of learning for some time who need to update their subject knowledge

Some foundation year programmes are delivered at local colleges. Contact a college or university or search on the UCAS website to find courses with foundation years. Here are a just a few examples:

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