Foundation Year

Information for Prospective Students



What is a Foundation Year?


A Foundation Year is an additional year at UEA, providing opportunities to develop your academic skills and knowledge before joining your undergraduate degree course. It is designed for students who wish to embark on a degree course at UEA, but may not currently meet the entry requirements for study and would therefore benefit from having extra time to prepare themselves for their chosen course. This extra time to prepare enables our students to develop academically within a supportive and encouraging environment – which then leads them onto a strong platform to progress into their chosen area of study. 

Once they pass their course, Foundation Year students are automatically enrolled on one of our BA or BSc courses, meaning that you can move from Foundation Year study to your chosen undergraduate pathway without the need to reapply. Many of our pathways also offer the ability to study other courses within their respective Faculties, meaning you will have a range of choices available to you once you enrol. 

This ability to reconsider your options and shape your next steps once you’re actually at UEA is something that many of our students find to be the most beneficial part of a Foundation Year. What’s more, you will have a dedicated adviser that will be able to help you with taking these next steps.


Why you should consider a Foundation Year


  • UEA’s Foundation Year courses follow a similar format as subsequent years of study: seminars, lectures, tutorials, lab work – so you get a head start with familiarising yourself with your new higher education learning environment.

  • You may be studying with people from different courses at the same institution, as well as people from the subject specific foundation year, providing a sound support system (you’re all in the same boat!). 

  • Foundation Years give you a chance to get used to university life; assignments, navigating campus, and being a student – these things take time to adjust.

  • You’ll feel ahead of the game compared to your peers on your first year of your undergraduate degree

  • Foundation Year courses usually begin quite broad about the subject, which means you’ll get a solid introduction to your subject area, allowing you to hone in on the area of interest that you wish to progress in your subsequent degree course – giving you the time to figure out what you are really passionate about!

  • You will develop skills that will better prepare you for the subsequent degree course: academic writing, preparing and delivering presentations, exam techniques, report writing and research – all of which are invaluable for the duration of your degree. 




“The best decisions I’ve made so far in my academic career.” – Gabriella, Maths Foundation Year student at UEA


 Things to consider

Foundation Year students will be eligible for a student loan to cover the one year Foundation Year programme as well as the duration of the subsequent degree course (usually four years in total).  Usually when you move from your Foundation Year of study (classed as Year 0) to your main degree (classed as Year 1), you will need to re-apply for Student Finance, so please do ensure you are correctly funded for the duration of your courses.

You will also be eligible for accommodation on UEA campus on your Foundation Year, but this does mean that you won’t be guaranteed accommodation at your Year 1 of your subsequent degree course. It’s always worth checking if you’re eligible for any scholarships or bursaries too – check out our Scholarship finder.

Hear from UEA Foundation Year Students:

Our Foundation Year Courses