International Foundation Programme - Engineering

International Foundation Programme - Engineering

12, 9 or 6 months

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Learn about different engineering concepts, the principles of mechanics and the mathematical knowledge required to develop both the theoretical and practical applications of engineering. In addition to the engineering specialism modules, the programme also provides a solid grounding in the core knowledge and skills recognised to prepare you for future study.

Upon successfully passing this programme (subject to progression requirements), you will be guaranteed a place on one of our engineering undergraduate degrees.

Key facts

  • Learn the skills you need to succeed in your undergraduate engineering degree
  • Develop your awareness of engineering and mathematical problems and then test these in a practical workshop
  • Upon successfully completing your International Foundation Programme you will be guaranteed a place on an engineering-based undergraduate degree at Northumbria University
  • Progress on to courses in Automotive Engineering, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Civil Engineering
About this course

What will I study?

This course will introduce you to life studying in the UK and will develop the core academic and English language skills you will need to progress on to an undergraduate degree with Northumbria University.

You will be taught the theory, look at examples and then test out the some of the key learning each week in a workshop or lab space. You will develop a wide range of skills in order to think critically about engineering and various applications of engineering in real-world situations. You will understand how to prepare for practical sessions as well as report on your findings and what they mean.

Study plan

IELTS Oct-Dec Jan-Mar Mar-Jun July-Aug Sept
4.5 International Foundation Programme – Engineering
(12 month)
Start your undergraduate degree at Northumbria University

5.0 International Foundation Programme – Engineering
(9 month)
Summer break
5.0   International Foundation Programme – Engineering
(9 month)
5.5     International Foundation Programme – Engineering
(6 month)

Teaching and Assessment

  • 16-18 hours per week in seminars, lectures, workshops, labs and tutorials
  • 20 – 22 hours independent study – total of a max of 40 hours per week overall study time
  • Assessment: Portfolio tasks, written coursework, examinations
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Upon successful completion and subject to specific entry requirements, you can go on to study a range of Engineering undergraduate degrees at Northumbria University.

To progress and be eligible for entry onto our undergraduate degree programmes you must achieve at least 40% in your International Foundation Programme.

Please note that our undergraduate degrees are currently being reviewed, however, we have previously offered the opportunity for students to progress on to the following courses:

Your progression course
Automotive Engineering BEng (Hons)
Civil Engineering BEng
Construction Management BSc (Hons)
Electrical and Electronic Engineering BEng (Hons)
Mechanical Engineering BEng (Hons)

Alternative progression options

If you would like to progress on to a degree in Art, Design and Media; Business; or Computing, English Language, Law, Media Production, Psychology and Sport subjects, please see our alternative pathway programmes:

Upon successfully passing your programme you will receive a Foundation Diploma in International English for Academic Communication which some other universities may also accept as an entry qualification.

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Academic requirements

  • GCSE/iGCSE – 5 passes at A-C

We welcome applications from students who have obtained good grades in their upper secondary education.

We also now accept the following:

  • China – Successful completion of Senior Middle School 2 with a minimum average of 70% or higher, or successful completion of Senior Middle School 3 with a minimum average of 60% or higher.
  • India – Standard 11 with 55%, Standard 12 with 50%.
  • Malaysia – SPM Malaysia School Certificate, Forecast results accepted – UEC pass grades also accepted.
  • Senegal – Baccalaureate/Baccalaureat Technique 10/20

Depending on your chosen degree course, specific subject requirements may apply. Our team will be able to help confirm the details for you.

For other country specific entry requirements, please check our Entry Requirements. Alternatively, please contact our team who will be able to help you.

English language requirements

There are multiple entry levels to the International Foundation Programme depending on your IELTS level:

  • 4.5 with no single sub score below 4.0, or equivalent, from a UKVI Approved centre will study the 12-month programme
  • 5.0 with no single sub score below 4.0, or equivalent, from a UKVI Approved centre will study the 9-month programme
  • 5.5 with no single sub score below 5.5, or equivalent, from a UKVI Approved centre will study the 6-month programme

Please note that if your qualifications are not in English, we might need certified translations in order to proceed with your application.

Age requirements

You must be over 16 years old

If you are under 18 at the start of the International Foundation Programme, you will need to include with your application a signed consent form by your parent or legal guardian. You can find a copy of this on our How to Apply page.

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All modules are core and worth 20 credits unless specified.

12 and 9 month IFP students only

Term of study will depend on entry point. Students on the 12 month IFP will have 2 periods of this module. 9 month IPF students will have 1 period.

Learn about UK Higher Education culture, and develop the skills to help you thrive at university.

  • Learnt through a number of ways including onsite communicative and task-based learning
  • Develop English language skills to study at university more proactively and independently
  • Explore subject specialisms and the International Foundation Programme as a whole

Students on the 12-month International Foundation Programme will study 2-terms of this module.

All students will study the following modules:

Gain the skills you need to become an independent language learner. Take responsibility for your own language learning, and gain the habits of continuous learning which you will need on your undergraduate program.

  • Develop communicative abilities in English
  • Gain language ability across the main skills of English (speaking, listening, reading and writing)
  • Grammatical knowledge and accuracy in English
  • Vocabulary and fluency in English

Explore broad range of essential study skills such as research and working with sources and use of digital tools.

  • Acquire the academic literacy and language skills you need to succeed at university
  • Learn writing and presentation skills, and reflection and action planning

Explore the skills that are necessary for preparing you for studying at university and starting your journey into employment.

  • Learn through targeted activities that will help you maximise your presence within both a university context and the wider workplace
  • Develop project management skills include working with others, delegation, participation and reflecting on approaches taken

Use algebra to think logically and break down and solve engineering problems.

  • Study elementary trigonometry and its applications
  • Explore the concepts of calculus and its applications which are relevant throughout engineering
  • Combine algebra with trigonometry to build grounding in solving engineering problems

Explore principles of engineering design, presenting problems and apply your engineering skills and design knowledge to find new solutions.

  • Learn creative design skills (2D and 3D) Develop engineering-specific skills such as project planning, ethics, lab-style reporting, extended group activities
  • Explore principles of materials, structures, and manufacturing
  • Carry out “design, make and test” exercises when designing simple devices

You will take this module after completing the Applied Algebra and Trigonometry module.

Study theoretical aspects of physics (e.g. electricity, energy and mechanics) to identify relevant principles and laws when dealing with problems.

  • Ensure that the engineering problem you are designing or solving will work properly by applying the laws of physics
  • Combine experimental physics with theory and learn to collect and analyse the results of an experiment or investigation to test the theory and report on this
  • Predict what outcomes of engineering design and solve engineering problems

Carry out a project in your subject-specific area and will equip you with the skills and knowledge you need to complete your project successfully.

  • Develop the skills such as time management and research skills
  • Explore the essential steps in the project life cycle and have the opportunity to evaluate and reflect on your (and your fellow students’) progress throughout the project work
  • Gain academic research skills and develop your ability to critically appraise and organise material
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The course information displayed on this page is correct for the academic year 2023/24. We aim to run the course as advertised however, changes may be necessary due to updates to the curriculum (due to academic or industry developments), student demand or UK compliance reasons.

Tuition fee 2024/25

  • IELTS 4.5 will study the 12-month programme: £20,750
  • IELTS 5.0 will study the 9-month programme: £16,750
  • IELTS 5.5 will study the 6-month programme: £11,250

Access to a laptop/PC with a microphone, speakers, webcam and a reliable internet connect is required for accessing your live online sessions.

Included in your Tuition Fees
Academic Support, including the Academic Community of Excellence (ACE) Team 
Careers and Employment Service
Class hours (lectures, seminars and tutorials)
Facilities (computers, on-campus wi-fi, printers, vending machines) 
Library resources, including a large online catalogue of books, journals and other more
Online resources 
Social spaces (quiet study spaces, multi-faith rooms and spaces to socialise) 
Student Support (Welfare Team, Finance Team and more) 

Tuition fees do not include the cost of course books you may choose to purchase, stationery, printing, photocopying, accommodation, living expenses, travel or any other extracurricular activities.

We recommend you allow an additional £300 per annum to buy some of the course texts.

Scholarships and bursaries for international students

Depending on the country you are from, you may be eligible for a country bursary and/or scholarship when studying this programme.

All of our scholarships and bursaries are automatically applied when we process your application and one of our team will be able to confirm your eligibility.

Scholarships and bursaries

Payment plans

If you need support to spread the cost of your tuition, you may be eligible for our payment plan.

Payment plans

How to find out more

Enquire now to find out more information about this course, studying with us, the application process, and to have any other questions you have.

Enquire now

How to apply

When you are ready you can apply online to study the International Foundation Programme – Engineering. Applying online allows you to upload all of your supporting documents and you will automatically receive your student application number.

October 2024
12 month Apply for October
9 month Apply for October
6 month Not Available

Information for disabled applicants

At Northumbria, we welcome applications from disabled students and are committed to ensuring an equal and accessible application journey. Your application will be considered on an equal basis to all other applications. Please contact us if you require any assistance. This website is continually optimised to adhere to accessibility best practice guidelines; tools to assist users with specific accessibility requirements have also been provided. More information is available in our accessibility statement.

We strongly recommend that you submit your application as early as possible to allow you to complete all of the preparations needed to study your programme. After receiving your offer it can take time to arrange your finances and apply for your visa (if required) and it is important that you arrive in good time to enrol on to your course. Please refer to the Dates and Fees page.

You can check more information on how to apply here, including guidelines for the application forms.

Course information

Level of study:
Foundation - NQF Level 3
International Fee:
£20,750 (12 months) £16,750 (9 months) £11,250 (6 months)
Leads to:
Undergraduate degrees in Automotive Engineering, Civil Engineering, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Mechanical Engineering
Entry requirements:
5 GCSE/iGCSE passes at A-C, or equivalent
IELTS requirements:
From IELTS 4.5, with no single element below 4.0, or equivalent, from a UKVI Approved centre
12, 9 or 6 months
Class hours per week:
Average class size:
Assessment methods:
Coursework - portfolios, presentations, essays and in-class tests
Scholarship or bursaries:
Payment plan:
Not available
January, March, October
testimonial image
testimonial image

“The lecturers are so knowledgeable and very interesting. They have helped me to improve my Mathematical and English language skills. They also use a range of teaching methods to support my learning and develop my skillset.”

Babawale Olajire Emmanuel Babalola
International Foundation Programme - Engineering

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