Social Sciences, Business and Law - 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. 

This pathway encompasses those degrees subject areas within our College of Arts and Law and the College of Social Sciences, which includes the highly ranked Birmingham Business School. Both colleges are at the forefront of research and innovation, generating new knowledge about society and transforming this in ways that improve wellbeing. Our programmes in the social sciences, arts and humanities explore every facet of human society and culture, from literary criticism to economics and religion to social policy.

The Social Sciences, Business and Law 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 Social Sciences, Business and Law Pathway SSBL (Jan Start) Progression Table 2019-20 for more information about the undergraduate degrees available for a Foundation Pathways student choosing this pathway and the modules to undertake. Also see Course details 'Why study this Course' for a list of degrees you can study on this pathway.

Why Study this Course?

1. You will study and live on our stunning campus

As a student at the Birmingham International Academy, you are a full member of the Birmingham student community, will access to all University facilities and student events. This includes our sports centre offering up to 200 sports and fitness classes, an award winning museum and art gallery and our library. There are 40 food and drink outlets on campus providing cuisine from around the world.

2. High quality teaching

During your foundation year you will be taught by the same world-leading academics who teach on our undergraduate courses. Birmimgham was awarded a Gold rating in the most recent Teaching Excellence Framework, reinforcing our global reputation as an outstanding higher education provider. 

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

Our students come from all across the world. Birmingham has an outstanding global reputation, and is ranked in the top 100 universities in the world in the QS World University rankings 2020

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 our foundation pathways will guarantee you progression onto your chosen undergraduate degree. We want to make sure you are 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

Social Sciences, Business and Law pathway modules

You will take four subject-specific modules from the list below plus one of the Academic English & Study Skills modules (or Advanced Academic Skills).

The modules listed may be shared by the different pathways, so you will be studying alongside students from other disciplines.

 
Modules  Credits
Politics in a Changing World   20
A Critical Introduction to Law and Legal Skills   20
Business and the Market   20
Quantitative Methods for Business and Economics   20

Module descriptions 

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

Politics in a Changing World

This module will introduce you to the main issues and debates in contemporary international and global affairs and the changing role and position of nation-states in an increasingly globalised world.

A Critical Introduction to Law and Legal Skills

This module will enable students to develop a sound foundational understanding of the structure and practice of key domestic and international law fields. As part of this overall aim, the students will be introduced to core legal skills such as the analysis of statutes, treaties and case-law, critical thinking and problem solving.

These learning outcomes will be achieved via an exploration of specific legal mechanisms and the debates/controversies about their application, contained within a range of legal areas likely to include, but not limited to, the domestic law fields of criminal, public and common law (esp contract and tort law), and international law fields of human rights law, international humanitarian law and refugee law.

The course is suitable both for students intending to pursue an LLB in Law, or those intending to pursue alternative degree courses but who have a general interest in legal systems.

Business and the Market

This module focuses on the relationship between markets and companies under different competitive conditions. How do markets work and differ, and why do these differences matter?

Quantitative Methods for Business and Economics

While this module has a mathematical foundation, it is not simply about developing your mathematical skills. Rather, the purpose of the module is to show you how you can use these skills to improve your understanding of business problems and to help you make business decisions more effectively. 

Fees

The Foundation Pathways Package

The cost of the Foundation Pathways package for January 2020 is £16,740 (International Fee) and £9,250 (EU Fee)

This includes:

  • One 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 our foundation pathways is by a combination of exams, 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 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.

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.

Social Science graduates have pursued a variety of careers including working for national or local governments, international and non-governmental organisations or the media.

Our Business School degrees have long been recognised by major employers across all sectors of the economy, with many of our graduates finding employment in financial services, accounting and a range of management careers.

Law graduates have great career potential, both within and outside the legal profession. Many of our students go on to become solicitors or barristers, or pursue careers in public administration, industry and other professional areas.

Some of our graduates decide to pursue postgraduate study at Birmingham or other leading universities, to specialise in an academic area or train for careers such as law and teaching.