The foundation year is focused on equipping learners with the necessary tools to excel in Higher Education such as critical thinking and digital skills along with boosting confidence and employability.

Throughout the initial year learners will be able to engage with their chosen subject through special sessions and projects. Once the first year has been completed they will then progress onto the rest of the course.

  • 'Offers an alternative pathway to studying for a degree'
  • 'Small class sizes allow you to get to know your tutors and fellow students'
  • 'Bespoke taster sessions enable you to experience what it will be like to study your chosen subject'
  • 'Gives you the skills you need to succeed in university study'

What is a foundation year?

We’ve developed our degrees with Foundation Year to give you an alternative route to studying a degree. Studying a course with a Foundation Year is perfect for you if you don’t have the usual academic qualifications or UCAS points necessary for normal entry onto a degree course. It is not a stand-alone qualification, but is designed to underpin specific degree programmes to which it is directly attached. So, for example, instead of direct entry onto a BA (Hons) English Literature course you’ll study BA (Hons) English Literature with Foundation Year. Once you’ve successfully completed your Foundation Year you’ll progress onto your subject specific modules.

Why should I study a degree with a Foundation Year?

Studying a degree with a Foundation Year gives you a perfect introduction in what it means to be a university student, equipping you with the necessary skills and knowledge for effective undergraduate study. At BGU you’ll benefit from small class sizes, intensive teaching and personalised support which will help you to get the most out of your study. It will provide you with a solid base for future study and allow you to settle into university life.

If you’d like to find out more about studying for a degree with a Foundation Year or would like to discuss your options, our Enquiries Team will be glad to help. Simply call (01522) 583658 or email

What will I study in the Foundation Year of my course?

In this module you will explore and consider what it means to be a successful learner at university. You’ll explore the principles of effective learning and engage with a range of tools and techniques to practice and develop strategies for your own learning. These include for example, understanding your needs as a learner, effective time management and organisational skills.

You will learn about a range of resources and practice locating and using these resources to support effective learning. These resources will include, for example, textbooks, websites, academic journals, and popular press. In addition to these key techniques, the module covers academic conventions including referencing, citation and the risks of plagiarism.

This module will allow you to learn to utilise sources in a considered and critical way. You will begin to engage effectively with literature and other sources in a meaningful manner that promotes deep learning and enables knowledge and understanding of a topic. You will also begin to differentiate qualitative and quantitative data and consider their appropriate interpretation and use.

Critical thinking is an integral part of university study. While studying this module you will define critical thinking, its importance and how it can help you in your learning. A range of critical thinking models will be utilised to demonstrate how this works in action, allowing you to recognise critical thinking and identify barriers and challenges.

The skilled use of digital technologies is an important element in university study and is used to support both the obtaining and demonstration of knowledge. This module will develop your digital capabilities and confidence, encouraging you to develop techniques for the purposeful use of a range of digital tools to support learning. These include specific tools such as the Virtual Learning Enrvironment and appropriate and effective uses of wider applications such as social media, email and the internet.

This module explores, compares and evaluates a range of communication types, giving you opportunities to combine written and spoken communication in a range of contexts and for a range of audiences. From a theoretical, sociological perspective you will explore different communication media and styles of discourse, for example, discussion, debate, enquiry and reporting.

Reflection is a powerful learning tool that enables you to consider your existing knowledge and also to plan for your future learning and professional development. The module content includes the principles of reflective learning and collaborative planning with reference to structured models. As part of this module, you will have an opportunity to attend live delivery of an ongoing degree programme which will provide a taster of discipline-specific undergraduate study.

Academic writing is an essential element of successful university study, so this module explores a range of techniques to help develop your own academic writing style. It will enable you to draw together your learning throughout the Foundation Year and reflect on the feedback you have received. You will structure a clear and effective piece of academic writing on a subject-linked topic in which you will apply standard academic conventions.

What are the entry requirements for courses with a Foundation Year?

Application for courses with a Foundation Year is via UCAS, although there is no formal requirement for UCAS points to access the course (normally GCSE English or equivalent is desirable). As part of your application you will have the opportunity to speak with a member of BGU Admissions staff to resolve any questions or queries you may have.

Different degree subjects may have specific entry requirements to allow you to progress from the Foundation Year. Whilst not a condition of entry onto the Foundation Year, you will need to have met these by the time you complete the first year of this four year course.

The Foundation Year syllabus does not include any specific element of upskilling in English language.

Applications for Recognition of Prior Learning RP(C)L will not be accepted.

Unfortunately, we are unable to accept applications from international students for Foundation year programmes linked to Early Childhood Studies courses.


Studying at BGU is a student-centred experience. Staff and students work together in a friendly and supportive atmosphere as part of an intimate campus community. You will know every member of staff personally and feel confident approaching them for help and advice, and staff members will recognise you, not just by sight, but as an individual with unique talents and interests.

We will be there to support you, personally and academically, from induction to graduation.

Fees & Finance

A lot of student finance information is available from numerous sources, but it is sometimes confusing and contradictory. That’s why at BGU we try to give you all the information and support we can to help to throughout the process. Our Student Advice team are experts in helping you sort out the funding arrangements for your studies, offering a range of services to guide you through all aspects of student finance step by step.

Click here to find information about fees, loans and support which will help to make the whole process a little easier to understand.

Undergraduate course applicants must apply via UCAS using the relevant UCAS code. For 2022 entry, the application fee is £22 for a single choice, or £26.50 for more than one choice. For all applicants, there are full instructions at UCAS to make it as easy as possible for you to fill in your online application, plus help text where appropriate.

What our students say

Health and Social Care student, Foundation Year 2020-21:
'The Foundation Year will give you a general idea of how university works, what the workload is like, how you can fit it around your personal life or work, and what you can manage both mentally, physically, and financially. It gives you the time to get used to just about everything that involves becoming a university student, and gives you an idea of how to use software such as Blackboard, and how to create and write your assignments. And we can't forget about the wonderful orange book that teaches us referencing in APA 7th format! Looking beyond getting to grips with things, it will prepare you to not sweat the small stuff when it comes to your first year and gives you that headstart to higher grades. It's also great to become familiar with tutors, academic support, and friendly faces around campus. Even buying food and parking was a massive worry that I didn't have to carry into my first year. I really found my feet and my confidence, and gained skills in all areas thanks to the Foundation Year. I'm so glad I took the year and I'd suggest it to anyone! Good luck and welcome to your first step at becoming the best student you can be. This will help you achieve!'

Ivan, Theology, Philosophy, and Ethics student, Foundation Year 2021-22
'If I can give any words of advice to future Foundation Year students - it would be to accept all help offered by your tutors. I was not able to make use of all the assistance available to me as I was having to travel far to get to classes and back. Yet, the tutors were always there to listen to my concerns, and offer guidance and support when needed. Do not be afraid to talk to them, as they have encountered all sorts of challenges. If they do not know the answer, they will point you in the right direction to talk to somebody else who can be of assistance to you. I would also encourage you to be actively involved when attending classes. Have a voice. I was by far the oldest student in my class, yet it often surprised me how my younger classmates had a different perspective. Do not be afraid to share your thoughts with others. Do not be afraid to say something wrong. I found that the best lessons were the classes in which most students had a say and shared their thoughts with others. Never think you have failed if you get something wrong. Look at it as an opportunity to get even better. Remember that everyone on campus is there to learn, nobody knows everything and has all the correct answers. Lastly, do not forget to enjoy yourself. You have been offered this marvellous opportunity in life, so grab hold of it and make the most of it.'