Foundation years/Year 0 courses
Foundation years are a great option if you have the talent, ambition and potential to thrive at Birmingham City University but want a little more flexibility and choice than a standard degree.
Foundation years (sometimes called Year 0 courses) are designed for students who don’t meet the entry requirements for a particular degree course, and enable them to develop their learning to an appropriate standard in preparation for Year 1 of the degree.
Most of our undergraduate courses now have a foundation pathway, to help you on your journey to your dream course!
Why study a degree with a foundation year:
- If you want the flexibility of a year’s study on a more general course to find out the best degree choice for you.
- If you have changed your mind about your career since you chose your A-levels or BTECs and need to improve your skills in a different subject area.
- If you would like extra time and support to help you build your knowledge, skills and confidence before starting a full degree.
- If you don’t quite meet our entry requirements but know you have the potential to succeed at university.
Integrated master's degrees
An integrated master’s degree is a four year degree course which combines three years of undergraduate study with an additional fourth year at postgraduate level.
If your qualifications are slightly below those required for direct entry onto a Bachelor’s degree, Foundation degrees may offer an alternative route to a full undergraduate degree.
They are often vacational courses and are normally equivalent to the first two years of a three-year Bachelor’s degree. After completing a Foundation degree, you may be able to take a ‘top-up’ Bachelor’s degree to gain the full undergraduate degree qualification. Our Foundation degrees include Early Years, ICT and Health and Social Care.
Higher National Certificates/Higher National Diplomas
Higher National Certificates (HNC) and Higher National Diplomas (HND) are vocational qualifications which often include practical elements as well as theory. It is often possible to ‘top up’ these qualifications to a Bachelor’s degree through further relevant study.
Certificate/Diploma in Higher Education
These are similar to HNC and HND qualifications in terms of levels of study achieved. They can potentially be ‘topped up’ to a full Bachelor’s degree in a related subject area.
This is a full undergraduate degree qualification. Bachelor’s degrees normally take three or four years to complete on a full-time basis - they can also be studied part-time.
Bachelor’s degrees can have different award titles depending on the subject and nature of the course.
- Bachelor of Science (BSc) qualifications have a particular scientific approach.
- Bachelor of Arts (BA) qualifications are often more arts and humanities focused.
- Bachelor of Education (BEd) courses are a particular type of teacher training degree course, but there are also BA courses which lead to Qualified Teacher Status.
- Bachelor of Law (LLB) courses are qualifying law degrees aimed at those who wish to become solicitors or barristers.
Most Bachelor’s degrees can be studied ‘with honours’ – depicted in the award title as BA (Hons), BSc (Hons), etc. The honours element indicates a higher level of academic achievement.