Engineering and Physical Sciences Pathway - January

Start date
January 2020
Duration
1 year / 4 years
Course Type
Undergraduate, Foundation
Fees

Annual tuition fee for 2019/20:

£9,250 (EU); £16,740 (Overseas)

Our Foundation Pathways are designed for international students who require a preparatory year prior to UK undergraduate study. Foundation students are guaranteed a place on a University of Birmingham undergraduate programme if they meet the progression requirements.

 

The foundation programme is equivalent in learning to year 13 of the UK education system and provides students with a fully integrated experience; meaning that all of our students are taught by Birmingham academics and have full access to facilities in the University of Birmingham’s stunning Edgbaston campus. 

The College of Engineering and Physical Sciences has a long and proud tradition of educating students from across the globe. We welcome scholars from over 200 countries who contribute to the strong international atmosphere that is a major feature of the college.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects are critically important in the development of our future fuels, materials and machines, and the College plays a significant role in training the next generation of world-class engineers and scientists to solve our future challenges. We have strong links with major UK employers such as Rolls-Royce and Airbus, and our staff and students are at the forefront of research into a wide variety of areas, from working with particle physicists at the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland to using nanotechnology to develop microengines.

 The Engineering and Physical Sciences Pathway will ensure that you are fully prepared for undergraduate study in the UK by providing you with strong academic training and transferable skills. Successful completion of the foundation year will also guarantee you progression onto your chosen degree.

See the Engineering and Physical Sciences January start Pathway progression table 2019-20 for more information about the undergraduate degrees available for a Foundation Pathways student choosing this pathway and the compulsory and optional modules you should undertake.

Why Study this Course?

1. You will study and live in our stunning campus

As a student at the Birmingham International Academy, you will have full access to the University’s facilities including a new sports centre offering up to 200 sports and fitness classes, an award winning museum and art gallery and a new library. There are 40 food and drink outlets on campus providing cuisine from around the world.

2. You will be taught by world-leading academics

The University of Birmingham has 11 Nobel Prize winners and is leading research in physics, rail and health. Studying at Birmingham will challenge and develop you so that you can pursue further study with a good level of academic skill.

3. You will join a community with over 6,500 international students

International students have formed some of the University’s most exciting and vibrant student societies. These societies can support you during your time on campus, whether that be through music, food, religious beliefs or a whole range of other activities from around the world. The Birmingham International Academy also has a dedicated welfare tutor who will help all foundation students with any academic or personal issues they may encounter during their studies.

4. You will be guaranteed a place on one of the University’s undergraduate programmes if you achieve satisfactory grades in your foundation year

Successful completion of one of the four foundation pathways will guarantee you progression onto your chosen undergraduate degree. We want to make sure you’re fully prepared for your undergraduate studies, so each pathway will help you to develop important academic and English language skills.

5. You will be part of an exciting city with people, food and cultures from around the world

Birmingham is the second largest city in the UK. We have people from over 150 nationalities living here and there are restaurants and shops letting you try food from around the world. Birmingham has many mosques, temples and churches, and hosts live music, cultural and sporting events that you can attend (or maybe even participate in), including the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Modules

You will take subject-specific modules from the table below plus one of the Academic English and Study Skills modules (or the Advanced Academic skills) amounting to a total of 120 credits.

When you receive and accept your offer, you will be advised about your module choices. Some undergraduate degrees will have compulsory modules that you should take in your Foundation Pathways' programme.

 
Modules  Credits
Introductory Mathematics   10
Properties of Matter   10
Mechanics and Waves   20
Further Mathematics    20
Foundation Electronic and Electrical Engineering   20
Introductory Computer Science   20
Introductory Chemistry   10
Introductory Organic Chemistry    10
Case Studies in Chemistry   10
Elementary Computer Programming   10
Science and Engineering Laboratories   10

Module descriptions

There are a range of Academic English and Study Skills modules, including advance options.

Introductory Mathematics

This module develops your confidence and knowledge in basic mathematical techniques and skills.

Properties of Matter

In this module you will be introduced to some of the basic structures of matter and how these structures affect material properties and their behaviour and uses in science and engineering.

Mechanics and Waves

The aim of this module is to develop a basic understanding of the principles of mechanics and the fundamental concepts of wave motion.

Further Mathematics

This module builds on the knowledge and skills developed in the Introductory Mathematics module (Term 1). It will cover topics associated with functions, further calculus and numerical methods.

Foundation Electronic and Electrical Engineering

This module aims to develop basic knowledge and skills relevant to electricity and magnetism.

Introductory Chemistry

This module aims to develop a number of fundamental concepts associated with the discipline of Chemistry. This module introduces fundamental features of atomic structure, before extending towards compounds, including concepts of bonding and oxidation states.

Introductory Organic Chemistry

This module aims to develop knowledge and skills in basic organic chemistry and you will be provided with a good grounding in the Organic Spectroscopy module

Introductory Computer Science

The module introduces issues relating to the representation, storage, exchange and manipulation of information and the theoretical and practical aspects of computing.

Fees

Tuition fees for both January 2020 are £16,740 (International Fee) and £9,250 (EU Fee)

This includes:

  • Academic year's tuition fees
  • Books and all classroom equipment

Please see information on available scholarships.

You are required to pay a deposit of GBP £1,000* to confirm acceptance of your place. This amount will be deducted from your tuition fee. Read more information about single payment options.

*Please note: due to government funding systems EU, American and Norwegian students are exempt from the deposit,  along with students funded by a recognised sponsor or scholarship organisation.

Please note: Accommodation will incur additional charges to the above fee.

How To Apply

Please review our entry requirements for your country before making your application. 

Applications to start this programme in January 2020 are now closed. Applications for January 2021 will open in early 2020. 

Once applications are open, you can apply by clicking the Apply Now button at the top of this page. This will direct you to our application site, where you can complete the required information, and upload relevant documents to support your application. 

International Requirements



Please visit our country pages for specific entry requirements and study information.


As a Birmingham student you are part of an academic elite and will learn from world-leading experts. In 2017, we received a Gold rating by the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), demonstrating our commitment to providing our students with outstanding teaching. The University of Birmingham is proud to count 11 Nobel Prize winners among our staff and alumni, including three prizes awarded in 2016.

We use a range of teaching methods to help you become an independent and self-motivated learner. You will have access to a comprehensive academic support system that will assist and encourage you, including a welfare tutor who can provide guidance on all academic and non-academic needs.

Your learning will take place in a range of settings, from scheduled teaching in seminars, lectures and small group tutorials, to peer group learning where you may be asked to prepare and deliver a presentation with your classmates.

Academic English and Study Skills

In addition to your academic subject modules you will study on your pathway, you will take a module in Academic English and Study Skills. This will enable you to develop you academic communication. We are a British Council accredited language centre, so you can be assured of the quality of the English language teaching you will receive.

You will be learning in a supportive environment in small classes (maximum 15 students) that are focused on your individual needs. Classes are dynamic, with many opportunities for you to actively develop your communication skills in groups.

Regular one-to-one tutorials provide you with feedback on your progress throughout the module and e-learning workshops allow you to work on specific aspects of academic communication such as constructing arguments and communicating complex ideas. They will also allow you to develop the academic skills needed to thrive in an undergraduate programme at a top 15 UK university.

We will assess your language proficiency at the start of the programme and you will then follow one of two module structures: core or high-level English.

You will take either:

One of three 40-credit modules, or a 20-credit module depending on your current level of English.

Each module will equip you with the English required for your undergraduate degree. All modules will allow students to become familiar with what is expected from excellent Undergraduate students. The lower levels also include work on overall language proficiency.

Please note that all students take one of these modules as an integral part of their foundation year.

You will take a module determined by your initial placement test and your entry qualification (eg IELTS). The decision of the Birmingham International Academy (BIA) is final.

We also offer Presessional English programmes for students who do not yet meet the English language entry requirements.

Presessional courses are offered during term-time and the summer with flexible entry and exit points depending on your current level of English (IELTS score) and the requirements of your main UoB offer for Foundation Pathways.

The length of course you need depends on your existing level of English, and on the score specified in your UoB offer letter.

Assessment Methods

Assessment on the Foundation Pathways is by a combination of exams, laboratory work, coursework exercises, project work and written assignments, depending on the subject. Assessment of your English language progress will be made by the BIA.

If you have made satisfactory progress at the end of your first year at the BIA, and are progressing to an undergraduate degree programme at the University of Birmingham, you will not normally be required to take another English language test.

Progression

Upon successful completion of the appropriate pathway, you will be guaranteed progression to an extensive range of our undergraduate programmes in Arts and Law, Engineering and Physical Sciences, Life and Environmental Sciences, Medical Sciences or Social Sciences. Academic and English language progression requirements apply for each programme. For a small number of programmes you will need to pass an interview, workshop or audition stage.

Teaching methods

Lectures

You will listen to and engage with academics who will introduce you to key facts and ideas in your subject. You may wish to take written notes but most lectures are now recorded, so you can access the information afterwards using our virtual learning environment (VLE).

Seminars

You will be encouraged to present and discuss your ideas in small groups and to debate with other students.

Tutorials

Your tutor will provide continuing academic support and guidance on a one-to-one basis.

Workshops

You will engage in problem-solving sessions facilitated by a member of academic staff; these sessions usually involve students working in groups.

Laboratory-based work

Students on the Engineering and Physical Sciences or Medical, Life and Geo Sciences pathways are likely to get experience analysing real-life problems in a laboratory setting.

Peer group learning

You may be asked by your tutor to direct a lesson or prepare a presentation with your fellow classmates. By interacting with the lesson material, you will remember the content more effectively.


Our Careers Network offers a range of services that will help you identify and work towards your career goals from the day you arrive at Birmingham. This includes a dedicated careers advice and guidance service delivered by experienced and professionally qualified employability consultants and advisors. The University of Birmingham is the second most sought after university by graduate employers. Each year our dedicated Employer Liaison Team organises over 120 employer presentations, graduate recruitment fairs and events. We can also develop work experience opportunities for you, greatly enhancing your employability skills.

Your education at Birmingham will prepare you for a career that has no geographical boundaries. With over 6,500 international students from more than 150 countries, we have one of the largest global student communities in the UK. You will live and study alongside students of all nationalities, enabling you to see the world from a different viewpoint. 31% of our academic staff are non-UK nationals, demonstrating that Birmingham attracts the brightest talent to its academic community from around the globe.

We have longstanding links with universities throughout the world, including membership of Universitas 21, the prestigious consortium of global research-led universities in 16 countries. We have also established networks which promote excellence in global engagement via centres such as the China Institute and Africa Hub.  Once you progress to your undergraduate degree, this network of global partnerships will offer you exciting international opportunities, such as work experience placements and annual summer schools that attract the best students from across the world to engage in an exchange of culture, experience and intellect.