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Foundation Year Study

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What is a foundation year?

A foundation year is an extra year of study at the start of a university course. It is a great way to build your skills, knowledge and confidence to prepare you for a degree course. On successful completion of a foundation year, you can progress to a wide range of our undergraduate courses.

There are many reasons a student may not be ready to embark on a full undergraduate degree right away, a foundation year gives students the time and support to develop and prepare before entering the full degree path of their choice. 

Why study a foundation year?

  • You might have studied A-levels that don’t match your chosen degree path, if you want to study Film and TV production but didn’t study Media, or if you want to study engineering but didn’t study maths, a foundation year will allow you to develop missing skills and progress onto a degree.
  • If you haven’t met the entry requirements to your chosen degree, a foundation year will allow you to develop your academic skills and gain a place on the course.
  • During your foundation year, you will gain and develop skills that will prepare you for your first year, making the transition to University study easier.
  • If you are an international student they can help you meet the UK qualification levels required to enrol on your desired degree path.
  • A foundation year will give you a year of varied insight into the subject field you are interested in. Allowing you to get first-hand experiences in different areas helping you make the best choice in an undergraduate degree.
  • By completing a foundation year, you will earn a guaranteed place on your degree course of choice at Northumbria.
    (Some courses may require certain grades to be reached or require an interview or audition to progress)

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Student Profiles / Foundation Year

Hear what it is really like to study on a foundation year from our current students.

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Benefits of a foundation year

An article by Rob, a previous foundation student

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2025 ENTRY

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My foundation year not only gave me access to a better degree, but really helped me prepare for it.

University / What Northumbria can offer you

19 courses found

Design Foundation Year

Undergraduate | Newcastle | 1 year Full Time followed by a further 3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

2025 entry. Develop your skills across the various areas of design and study a broad range of design elements with this foundation…

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Law Foundation Year

Undergraduate | Newcastle | Foundation year followed by a further 3 or 4 years full-time study

Interested in a career in law? The foundation year is designed to provide a strong grounding in both subject knowledge and skills.

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Design Foundation Year

Undergraduate | Newcastle | 1 year Full Time followed by a further 3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

2024 entry. Develop your skills across the various areas of design and study a broad range of design elements with this foundation…

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Music Foundation Year

Undergraduate | Newcastle | 1 year Full Time followed by a further 3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Interested in a career in the music industry? Gain the skills and knowledge you’ll need to take the next step with this course.

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Social Science Foundation Year

Undergraduate | Newcastle | 1 year Full Time followed by a further 3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Prepare for degree level study in a social science subject with this course that covers areas of sociology, politics, and criminology.

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Psychology Foundation Year

Undergraduate | Newcastle | 1 year Full Time followed by a further 3 year or 4 years full-time study

Interested in the workings of the human mind? Gain a developed understanding and knowledge of the fundamental principles of Psychology.

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Humanities Foundation Year

Undergraduate | Newcastle | 1 year Full Time followed by a further 3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

This foundation year will prepare you for degree level study by exploring a range of topics from across the humanities subject areas.

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Applied Sciences Foundation Year

Undergraduate | Newcastle | 1 year Full Time followed by a further 3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Passionate about science? This course will give you wider scientific knowledge to help you decide your ideal degree destination.

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Sport Foundation Year

Undergraduate | Newcastle | 1 year Full Time followed by a further 3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

The Sport Foundation Year will provide you with all the skills and knowledge you’ll need to take the next step into a Sport degree.

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