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About the course

Would you like to improve your English language and academic skills before progressing onto a full undergraduate degree programme? This course aims to fully prepare those who speak English as a second language for full-time study on one of Southampton Solent University’s specialist degree programmes.

Part of a range of extended degree programmes for students whose first language is not English, this foundation year helps learners to reach a standard broadly equivalent to IELTS 6.0 overall (with a minimum of IELTS 5.5 in each language skill component) before starting undergraduate studies.

Using our multimedia facilities and language centre, students will have the chance to tailor their English language studies to suit the subject they will later study at degree level.

Solent University is proud to offer students a supportive learning environment. Face to face academic support is complemented by 24/7 access to our virtual learning environment. Students also benefit from access to our dedicated language centre, which offers a range of interactive resources designed to aid second language study.

Thinking of studying for a degree here in the UK? This foundation year will help you transition into academic life as smoothly as possible, improving your language, research and communication skills as you begin to learn about your chosen subject area.

Further studies

Students will improve their English language skills under the guidance of expert language tutors.

What does this course lead to?

The general and specialised language skills you develop during your course, along with valuable academic skills, will improve your employment prospects in the English-speaking world and ensure you can make the most of your undergraduate studies. On completing the International Foundation Certificate, you’ll be able to move on to a range of undergraduate degrees at Solent or other institutions.

Who is this course for?

Our international foundation year is the perfect way to improve English language and academic skills ahead of a full undergraduate degree. Suitable candidates should be at a minimum of IELTS 4.5 before beginning the course.

Students should choose between the international foundation year (for those wishing to progress here at Solent) and the international foundation certificate (a standalone qualification).

Facts and figures

Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The tuition fees for the 2017/2018 academic year are:
UK and EU full-time fees: £7,800
International full-time fees: £10,000 

Bursaries and scholarships

Southampton Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our bursaries and scholarships pages to find out more.

Graduation costs

Graduation is the ceremony to celebrate the achievements of your studies. For graduates in 2017, there is no charge to attend graduation, but you will be required to pay for the rental of your academic gown (approximately £42 per graduate, depending on your award). You may also wish to purchase official photography packages, which range in price from £15 to £200+. Graduation is not compulsory, so if you prefer to have your award sent to you, there is no cost.
Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

    48 UCAS points or equivalent 
    • For this course you will have successfully completed your high school diploma or equivalent outside the UK
    • You must also have a minimum level of English of IELTS 4.5 overall, with 4.5 in each language skill component or equivalent.
    • In addition, where courses require specific subject expertise (for example, mathematics for engineering courses), you must demonstrate this prior to entry onto the International Foundation Year.

    We welcome applicants from a diverse range of backgrounds. Applicants who are not in possession of the minimum entry requirements but are able to demonstrate aptitude, enthusiasm and motivation will be considered on an individual basis and may be admitted subject to satisfactory interview and/or portfolio. Please contact us for further details.

    Note to all international students requiring a visa:

    All international applicants need to be aware that the English language requirements to attend Southampton Solent University, and the English language requirements to obtain a visa from the Home Office, may be different. This means that if you meet the Southampton Solent University language requirement to gain a place on the course, you may still have to meet additional requirements to be granted with a visa by the Home Office.

    We strongly advise all applicants to visit the Home Office website which outlines all the requirements for a successful visa application and to take a look at this PDF document which outlines both Solent University and Home Office requirements for a number of language tests.  

    Non-standard entry

    If you do not have these qualifications or are unsure of your eligibility please contact the University using the contact details found at the top of this page.

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Ask Solent team: +44 23 8031 9129

How to apply

Any student applying for the first year of a full-time/sandwich undergraduate course must apply through UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service). This includes mature, overseas and EU students.

Nearly all schools and colleges offer their students the facility of applying electronically through the UCAS website using 'Apply'; it may also be used by those applying independently in the UK and overseas. This facility and all course information can be found on the UCAS website:

Your application should reach UCAS by January if you hope to enter a course the following autumn. Early application is advised for the most popular subject areas. Late applications may be made until June. The UCAS Code for the University is S30, code name SOLNT.

How to apply

What you'll study

Students study a total of 120 CATS points (equivalent to 60 ECTS) through four core units, one pathway unit and one option unit, which is related to your chosen degree course.

All pathways

  • Business English Lower Intermediate
  • Academic Skills for Undergraduate Study 1
  • Business English Upper Intermediate
  • Academic Skills for Undergraduate Study 2

Business, sport and enterprise pathways

  • The UK Economy and Institutions
  • One option, from:
    • Business Issues in the Contemporary World
    • Principles of Finance
    • Sport, Health and Fitness
    • Law and Society
    • Tourism and Events in the Contemporary World
    • Work and the Media in the UK

Creative industries pathway

  • Background to the UK Economy
  • Degree-related Project

Maritime and technology pathway

  • Background to the UK Economy
  • Degree-related Project


Web-based learning

Solent's virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

The Student Hub

The Student Hub is a central space where you can access all of the information and support you need during your time at University.

Professional and experienced staff can help resolve any query, and if they cannot answer the question themselves they will find the person who can.

Career support


We provide a stimulating learning environment and access to state-of-the-art resources to help you make the most of your time with us. Flexible spaces, wifi facilities and learning zones all contribute to our lively and contemporary study environment at Solent.

Students will develop the key academic skills required for study at degree level.

Your future

The International Foundation Year will prepare you for your chosen study on one of the following courses:

Business, sport and enterprise pathway

BA (Hons) Accountancy and Finance
BA (Hons) Adventure and Outdoor Management
BSc (Hons) Business Economics
BA (Hons) Business Management
BA (Hons) Events Management
BA (Hons) Festival and Event Management
BA (Hons) Fitness Management and Personal Training
BA (Hons) Football Studies
BA (Hons) Football Studies and Business
BA (Hons) International Air Travel and Tourism Management
BA (Hons) International Business Management
BA (Hons) International Tourism Management
BSc (Hons) Maritime Business
BA (Hons) Marketing
BA (Hons) Marketing with Advertising Management
BSc (Hons) Shipping and Port Management
BA (Hons) Sport Studies
BA (Hons) Sports Studies and Business

Creative industries pathway

BA (Hons) Advertising
BA (Hons) Media Culture and Production
BA (Hons) Popular Music Production
BA (Hons) Public Relations and Communication
BA (Hons) Sport Journalism

Maritime and technology pathway

MEng (Hons) Audio and Acoustic Engineering
BA (Hons)Architectural Design and Technology
BSc (Hons) Broadcast Systems Engineering
BSc (Hons) Business Information Technology
BSc (Hons) Computing
BSc (Hons) Computer Networks and Web Design
BSc (Hons) Construction Management
BEng (Hons) Electronic Engineering
BSc (Hons) Engineering Design and Manufacture
Bsc (Hons) Maritime Transport and International Logistics
BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering
BSc (Hons) Software Engineering
BEng (Hons) Yacht and Powercraft Design
BEng (Hons) Yacht Design and Production

Further study

Enhance your career prospects by continuing your study at Solent.

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