Frequently Asked Questions

Find quick answers to your questions about our institution, programmes, admissions, and more. We’re here to guide you on your educational journey. Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact our friendly team for assistance.

What is an International Foundation Pathway Programme and why should I study it in the UK? 

Our International Foundation Programmes (IFPs) offer an excellent opportunity for international students to prepare for their undergraduate degree studies at Northumbria University Pathway. The IFP will develop your English language and academic skills, as well as helping you to adjust to life in the UK. 

During your International Foundation Programme, you will:  

  • Develop English language skills relevant to your chosen subject 
  • Study alongside other international students, building strong friendships in the process 
  • Be guided by academics, tutors, and support staff with experience supporting students like you through such an important transition 

An IFP could be the best choice for you if you want to study for a university degree in the UK but do not meet the IELTS or GPA entry requirements for your chosen undergraduate course. 

The programmes are also useful for students with qualifications equivalent to A-levels in their home country who want a smooth transition to the UK university education system. 

Who can choose to study the International Foundation Programme (IFP)?  

International Foundation Programmes at Northumbria University Pathway are for international students who need to: 

  • Improve their English language skills 
  • Bridge educational gaps 
  • Develop their academic readiness for undergraduate degree studies at a UK university.

Why study at Northumbria University Pathway? 

At Northumbria University Pathway, we embrace tomorrow. We pursue new thinking, forge new partnerships, create and exchange new knowledge, and find new solutions. 

Students from all over the world choose Northumbria University for many reasons: 

  • Our academic excellence and ranking in university league tables 
  • The desire to give their career an edge and get ahead in the global job market 
  • The knowledge that they will benefit from a fantastic student experience 

Our range of programmes are designed to help bridge the gap between your current academic/English level and your chosen route of study.  

Learn more about Northumbria University Pathway and why you should choose us.  

What is the difference between our International Foundation Programme and International Year One Business programme? 

The International Foundation Programmes and International Year One Business programme are designed to help international students prepare for undergraduate studies in the UK. However, the length, focus, and curriculum for each course differs.

International Foundation Programme  

An IFP is a thorough foundation year that is taken before undergraduate study and will equip you with the essential academic skills, language competence, and subject-specific knowledge needed to meet the entry criteria for your desired undergraduate degree.

Our International Foundation Programmes are available to start in January, March, and October, giving you more choice over your education.

International Year One Business  

This programme is specifically designed to develop your academic skills and subject specific knowledge alongside your English language skills over the course of your first academic year at university.  

Upon successful completion, and subject to specific requirements, you will be guaranteed a place on the second year of your chosen undergraduate degrees at Northumbria University, allowing you to complete the full degree within the usual 3 years. 

Our International Year One Business programme is available to start in January and October, giving you more choice over your education.

How will I be taught and where will I study? 

We have an extensive range of degrees available, and our Pathway programmes are specifically designed to provide international students tailored support to help them reach degree level.

You will develop English language skills relevant to your subject; study alongside other international students; and be guided by academics, tutors, and support staff with experience in supporting international students through this important transition.   

The International Foundation Programme will: 

  • Prepare you for undergraduate studies in the UK 
  • Build your intercultural skills and help you integrate fully with student life in the UK 
  • Choose from 6 subject-specific Pathway programmes (7 including the International Medical Foundation Diploma), guaranteeing you entry to one of over 75 undergraduate degrees at Northumbria University once you pass  
  • Study in a fully embedded Pathway College where you’ll be a part of university campus life from day one 

Our city campus is in the heart of Newcastle city centre; the perfect place to make the most of your time at university. Learn more in our Northumbria University Pathways Prospectus 

What do I need to know about progression and passing my IFP? 

When you successfully pass your IFP you can progress onto one of over 75 undergraduate degrees at Northumbria University, depending on the Pathway you choose to complete.  

If you don’t meet requirements for progression, we would need to assess this on a case-by-case basis, so it’s best to contact your regional teams who can provide all the care and support with finding the correct option for you. Rest assured, both the academic and recruitment teams are here to help you find the best solution. 

What are the entry requirements for the International Foundation Programme? 

You can find specific entry requirements for courses on our website, including educational qualification requirements, English language entry requirements, and any country or region specific entry requirements. 

Can I apply for an undergraduate degree and the International Foundation Programme at the same time? 

The IFP is designed specifically to help international students transition from their current educational level onto an undergraduate degree programme of their choice. This transition is built into the programme and, upon successful completion of the IFP, you will automatically progress to undergraduate study. There’s no need to duplicate your application for your choice of undergraduate degree. 

The IFP will also help you get a better idea of exactly what you would like to study at undergraduate level so if you also apply for a degree at the same time, you may find that you need to alter your choice after your IFP has completed. 

If you already meet the entry criteria and are academically ready for an undergraduate degree, you can apply for your Bachelor’s degree directly and bypass the IFP. There’s no need to apply for both courses at the same time. 

How do I apply for my course? 

You can find out more about applying for the course of your choice in our helpful guide: 9 steps to apply for your Pathway course. 

When will I know if my application is successful? 

Once your application is assessed, your offer will be emailed to you or your educational representative. Please check your applicant portal regularly for important information.

What happens if my application is unsuccessful? 

If, for any reason, your application is unsuccessful, you will receive an email from the Admissions Team.  

If you would like help understanding why your application was unsuccessful, you can reach out to your relevant recruitment team who can review the decision and advise on the reasons and/or appeal processes. 

To help improve the likelihood of your application’s success and avoid disappointment, please read our entry requirements carefully, ensuring that you’re able to meet them before submitting your application. 

What type of visa do I need to apply for? 

A Student Route Visa is the only type of visa that you can study the IFP course on. Other visa types, including Visitor’s Visa and Short-term Study Visa, won’t be considered.  

If you are dependent on a UK student, you can enrol onto the course on their existing dependant visa.  

Please visit Student visa: Overview to find out more. 

How do I apply for a Student Route Visa? 

To apply for a Student Route Visa, you’ll first need to secure an unconditional offer with a deposit payment and request your Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) 

Once you’ve been sent your unconditional offer and your initial deposit has been paid, you will then need to pass a Pre-CAS interview, which is an interview conducted between yourself (the student) and a compliance officer. 

Once you’ve passed the Pre-CAS interview, you then need to submit your CAS documents, consisting of your TB certificate and bank documents.  

Your TB certificate will need to be valid for at least 2 months after your enrolment date. Please note that some countries are TB-exempt and don’t need to show this. 

Your bank documents will need to show that you have enough funds to cover the remaining course fees and living expenses. They’ll also need to show that the funds have been held in the account for a minimum of 28 consecutive days to show a 28-day maturity. If the funds have not matured and you submit your bank documents with your visa application, the visa will be refused.  

Once these documents have been checked and verified, your CAS will then be issued. 

Visit the UKCISA website for more information. 

When will my Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) be issued? 

Your CAS will only be issued once you have passed your Pre-CAS interview and all the relevant checks have been completed. 

If, for any reason, there is a delay receiving your CAS or Visa, you can request an extension from the university. However, please bear in mind that this will be solely at the discretion of the University. 

If your CAS is delayed, you also have the option to defer to the next intake or apply for a refund. 


How much does the International Foundation Programme cost to study in the UK?  

Prices for the IFP may vary – for the full cost of your chosen programme please refer to the tuition fees on the course page of your chosen programme.  

How do I pay for my course and when are the payment deadlines? 

Find out more information about how to pay for your course, including payment deadlines. 

Is any financial support available, such as advice and bursaries/scholarships?  

From choosing a bank account in the UK to budgeting for your course and living expenses, we’ve got you covered. You’ll find plenty of resources and advice to help you manage your money, all of which you can access for free on our website even before you arrive at Northumbria University Pathway. 

We understand that everyone’s budget and financial circumstances are different. When you start studying with us, you can access tailored support and further resources to help you along the way. 

We also offer scholarships and bursaries to eligible students. The amount that you could receive is dependent upon both the programme that you are interested in, your academic qualifications, and more. 

I’m having trouble paying my tuition fees. What can I do? 

We are committed to assisting you in your studies wherever possible. If you are experiencing any unforeseen financial difficulties and think you may be unable to pay your tuition fees, contact the Finance Team for support and advice as soon as possible: 

  • Income Team: +44(0)203-944-4565 
  • Self-funding students: 0203 944 3313

What support is available for international students on and off campus? 

Find out more information about academic, career, financial and wellbeing support 

Are there any societies/activities for students? 

Our Students’ Union has over 100 societies for you to join. From surfing to nursing and the Dance Society, you’re sure to find something you’ll love. If sport is more your game, Northumbria Sport is the perfect place to get fit and have fun.  

Whether you want to challenge yourself and learn something new, join clubs and leagues, or just exercise your body and mind, you’ll be welcomed with open arms.  

Why study in Newcastle? 

Newcastle has a reputation for being both one of the friendliest and liveliest cities in the UK and definitely a great place to be a student. One in six people in the city is a student! 

Find out more about studying in Newcastle. 

How much does accommodation cost? 

The cost of accommodation will vary depending on the option you choose.  

Find out more about the types of accommodation available 

How can I find accommodation? 

We offer a wide range of accommodation options, including ensuite rooms and catered accommodation.  

You can book your choice of available accommodation as soon as you confirm Northumbria University Pathway as your firm/first choice and have received your student portal login details. 

How do I apply and pay for accommodation? 

Find out more about how to apply and pay for your accommodation  

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