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Biomedical Sciences with Foundation Year - BSc (Hons)

Currently viewing course to start in 2023/24 Entry.

You will study very broad subjects in your foundation year, which is designed to prepare you for a range of courses, not just one particular BSc degree. Play a leading role in the prevention and treatment of diseases by studying our Biomedical Sciences with a Foundation Year course....

  • Level Foundation
  • Study mode Full Time
  • Location City South
  • School School of Health Sciences
  • Faculty Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences

Overview

You will study very broad subjects in your foundation year, which is designed to prepare you for a range of courses, not just one particular BSc degree. Play a leading role in the prevention and treatment of diseases by studying our Biomedical Sciences with a Foundation Year course. Delivered at our recently extended, £71 million, state-of-the-art development at City South Campus, you'll develop a range of practical and analytical skills that will prepare you for a challenging and rewarding career in biomedical science.

Please note: entry requirements for degree course

Upon completion of your Foundation Year, if your chosen course is regulated by a professional body such as the HCPC, you will be required to successfully complete the University’s selection process for the specific programme which will include an interview in order to proceed onto year one of the full degree programme. Entry onto year one of the degree programme will also be subject to a satisfactory DBS and Occupational Health Assessment, and spaces available on the course. 

Tailor your Health Sciences Degree

When you successfully complete your Foundation Year, you may be able to progress onto a range of Undergraduate courses at the School of Health Sciences . These include:

  • BSc (Hons) Biomedical Sciences

Why choose a foundation year course?

By studying a foundation year in Health Sciences, your first year will be spent learning a wide range of broad subject areas which then open up opportunities for you to specialise further in your next year –  which would be the first year of a full degree programme. 

You will study very broad subjects in your foundation year, which is designed to prepare you for a range of courses and not just one particular BSc degree. 

So although you are studying a BSc in a specific course – BSc Biomedical Sciences – the foundation year sets you up for a number of other possible degrees starting the following year. It may be that you don’t end up doing a degree in precisely the same subject as your foundation year.

This flexibility is one of the great things about the foundation year category - Health Sciences, allowing you to find out more about your interests and talents before focusing on a three year degree. The foundation year also helps us at BCU to make sure we help to match you to the degree that fits you best.

This course is open to International students.

What's covered in this course?

This biomedical science course with a foundation year will develop you into an employable graduate, with the skills needed to tackle a range of situations and challenges. To achieve this, you will be able to choose form either a work or research placement during your second year, where you can apply theoretical knowledge into practice and gain valuable employability skills.

The course offers a unique insight into human life processes, starting at molecular and cell level and progressing to systems physiology, before ending with disease and health within the population. There is provision within this programme for a sandwich year work placement.

The course will be delivered in a new state-of-the-art building for the School of Health Sciences, which will house first-rate laboratories and teaching facilities.

Why Choose Us?

  • We're the region's largest provider of qualified health and social care professionals to the NHS.
  • You'll benefit from our partnerships across health and social care providers both within the UK and internationally.
  • You'll learn in state-of-the-art environments, with access to our cutting-edge virtual technologies and one of the UK's largest specialist health education libraries.
  • The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has cited the support provided for students on our courses as demonstrating good levels of practice.
  • You'll be based at our City South Campus, which is set for major expansion, including newly built laboratories and equipment that will give you a leading edge when seeking employment.

Similar Courses

Studying with us during the Covid-19 pandemic

The University has put in place measures in response to Covid-19 to allow us to safely deliver our courses. Should the impact of the pandemic continue in future years, any additional or alternative arrangements put in place by the University will be in accordance with the latest government public health advice, health and safety legislation, and the terms and conditions of the student contract.

Open Days

Join us for an on-campus Open Day where you'll be able to explore our campus and facilities in person. Booking for the next event isn’t open yet. Register your interest below and we’ll email you as soon as booking goes live.

Next Open Day: March 2023

Register your interest

Entry Requirements

We accept a range of qualifications, the most popular of which are detailed below.

Essential Requirements

88 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level

Level 2 qualifications
GCSE GCSE English Language or English Literature and GCSE Maths at grade C/4 or above. If you do not have these or are not undertaking them, we accept other Level 2 equivalents, or we may ask you to pass BCU's GCSE equivalency tests.
Irish Leaving Certificate (Ordinary Level) See level 3 entry requirements under Irish Leaving Certificate for full details.
Scottish National 5 English Language or English Literature and Maths at grade C or above. If you do not have these or are not undertaking them, we accept other Level 2 equivalents, or we may ask you to pass BCU's GCSE equivalency tests.
Plus one of the following Level 3 (and above) qualifications
A level and Advanced VCE
  • CCD / 88 UCAS points
  • Including Psychology or Science subject at A-level or Level 3 equivalent
  • Psychology or Science subject must be at Grade C
  • Excluding General Studies, Critical Thinking and Extended Project
  • A maximum of 3 subjects are considered. These can be other A-levels or Level 3 equivalents
Access to HE Diploma
  • Science related pathway
  • Pass with 60 credits overall. At least 45 credits at Level 3 with 18 credits at Merit or Distinction (of which 12 must be in a Science or Health related subject)
  • If applying with an Access course you only need GCSE Mathematics and English Language at grade C/4 or above or accepted equivalent. You are not required to hold three GCSEs in total and GCSE Science is not required
  • Pearson BTEC National Extended Diploma (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Extended Diploma (QCF) (2010 - 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Diploma (2002 – 2010)
  • MMM
  • Must be in Applied Science
  • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Diploma (QCF) (2010 – 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Certificate (2002 – 2010)
  • 88 UCAS points
  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification
  • Either the BTEC level 3 National Diploma or the accompanying A-level / level 3 equivalent must be in Psychology or Science subject
  • Pearson BTEC National Foundation Diploma (2016 to present)
  • Pearson BTEC 90-Credit Diploma (QCF) (2010 - 2016)
  • 88 UCAS points
  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification
  • Either the BTEC level 3 National Foundation Diploma or the accompanying A-level / level 3 equivalent must be in Psychology or Science subject
  • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate (2016 – present)
  • Pearson BTEC Subsidiary Diploma (QCF) (2010 - 2016)
  • BTEC Level 3 National Award (2002 - 2010)
  • 88 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)
  • Either the BTEC level 3 National Extended Certificate or one of the accompanying A-levels / level 3 equivalents must be in Psychology or Science subject
  • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Certificate
    (2016 - present)
  • BTEC Level 3 Certificate (QCF)
    (2010 - 2016)
  • 88 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-levels or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)
  • Either the BTEC level 3 National Certificate or one of the accompanying A-levels / level 3 equivalents must be in Psychology or Science subject

International Baccalaureate Diploma

  • Obtain a minimum of 24 points overall with grade 4 or above in at least one Higher Level subject from Group 4 (Biology, Chemistry and Physics)
  • For students who do not already hold a GCSE in Mathematics at Grade C/4 or above, we will accept grade 5 in Maths (Standard Level) from the IB Diploma
  • For students who do not already hold a GCSE in English Language at Grade C/4 or above, we will accept Standard Level English Language (not literature) English A - Grade 4 or above or English B - Grade 5 from the IB

Irish Leaving Certificate (Highers)

  • Pass the Irish Leaving Certificate with a minimum of 88 tariff points, achieved in five Higher level subjects. This must include Maths and English Language taken at either Ordinary level (minimum grade O1-O4 (or A-C/A1-C3)) or Higher level (minimum grade H1-H7 (or A-D/A1-D3))
  • Must include Psychology or Science subject in Higher Level

OCR Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma

  • MMM
  • Must be in Applied Science

OCR Cambridge Technical Diploma

  • 88 UCAS points
  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification
  • Either the OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Diploma or the accompanying A-level / level 3 equivalent must be in Applied Science, Psychology or Science subject
  • OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Foundation Diploma
    (2016 - present)
  • OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Subsidiary Diploma
    (until-2016)
  • 88 UCAS points
  • Considered with one A-level or an equivalent level 3 qualification
  • Either the OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Foundation Diploma or the accompanying A-level / level 3 equivalent must be in Applied Science, Psychology or Science subject
  • OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate
    (2016 – present)
  • OCR Level 3 Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma
    (until 2016)
  • 88 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-level or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)
  • Either the OCR level 3 Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate or one of the accompanying A-levels / level 3 equivalents must be in Applied Science, Psychology or Science subject

Open University courses

  • Considered on an individual basis
  • Must be in a science subject

Scottish Higher/Advanced Higher

  • Achieve a minimum of 88 tariff points achieved in either three Advanced Highers or from a combination of two Advanced Highers plus two Highers.
  • Where three Advanced Highers have been taken achieve a minimum of grades DDD.
  • Where a combination of Highers and Advanced Highers have been taken you must achieve (grades of DD in two Advanced Highers plus grades of DD in two Highers).
  • Must include Health and Social Care, Psychology or Science subject at Higher level or above

T-Levels

  • 88 UCAS points (Pass [with C or above in the Core] overall)
  • Must be in Science

Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate - Skills Challenge Certificate (first teaching September 2015)

  • 88 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-level or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)
  • One of the A-level / equivalent qualifications being taken must be in Psychology or Science subject

Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma – Core (awarded until 2016) ESW/KS Combined component

  • 88 UCAS points
  • Considered with two A-level or equivalent level 3 qualification(s)
  • One of the A-level / equivalent qualifications being taken must be in Psychology or Science subject
Other qualifications

If you have a qualification that is not listed in the table please refer to our full entry requirements on UCAS.

Recent relevant study to GCE A-level standard or above must have been completed within five years of the course intake date the applicant is applying for.

Further guidance on tariff points can be found on the UCAS website.

Extra Information for EU/international students
IELTS
  • Applicants who have not received their secondary school education in English will require an overall IELTS score of 6.5, with no subtest below 6.
  • If English is studied at GCSE Level but as a second language, IELTS must be completed to qualify for UK L2 requirement.
International Baccalaureate Diploma (or equivalent, including internationally accredited Foundation courses). 24 points (minimum grade 5 in Higher Level Mathematics) Country-specific entry requirements and qualifications.

Fees & How to Apply

Please select your student status to view fees and apply
  • UK Student
  • International Student

UK students

Annual and modular tuition fees shown are applicable to the first year of study. The University reserves the right to increase fees for subsequent years of study in line with increases in inflation (capped at 5%) or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament. View fees for continuing students.

Award: BSc (Hons)

Starting: Sep 2023

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees
  • Full Time
  • 1 year foundation followed by 3 year degree
  • £9,250 in 2023/24
  • Apply via UCAS

International students

Annual and modular tuition fees shown are applicable to the first year of study. The University reserves the right to increase fees for subsequent years of study in line with increases in inflation (capped at 5%) or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament. View fees for continuing students.

Award: BSc (Hons)

Starting: Sep 2023

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees
  • Full Time
  • 1 year foundation followed by 3 year degree
  • £13,980 in 2023/24

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form and equal opportunities PDF form instead.

Please note, we operate a gathered field for applications to this course, which means that candidates who apply before 26 January will receive a decision on their application by the end of April 2022.

Access to computer equipment

You will require use of a laptop, and most students do prefer to have their own. However, you can borrow a laptop from the university or use one of our shared computer rooms.

Printing

You will receive £5 print credit in each year of your course, available after enrolment.

Field trips

All essential field trips and associated travel costs will be included in your course fees.

Access to Microsoft Office 365

Every student at the University can download a free copy of Microsoft Office 365 to use whilst at university and for 18 months after graduation.

Key Software

You will be able to download SPSS and Nvivo to your home computer to support with your studies and research.

Key subscriptions

Subscriptions to key journals and websites are available through our library.

Free access to Rosetta Stone

All students can sign up to the online learning language platform for free through the Graduate+ scheme.

Excess printing (optional)

Once you have spent your £5 credit, additional printing on campus costs from 5p per sheet.

Books (optional)

All module key texts will be in the University library, but in limited numbers. You may choose to purchase a copy.

Subscriptions (optional)

You may wish to purchase subscriptions to additional journals and websites.

Accommodation and living costs

The cost of accommodation and other living costs are not included within your course fees. More information on the cost of accommodation can be found in our accommodation pages.

Guidance for UK/EU students

UCAS

UK and EU students applying for most undergraduate degree courses in the UK will need to apply through UCAS.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.

Applying through UCAS
 Register with UCAS
 Login to UCAS
 Complete your details
 Select your course
 Write a personal statement
 Get a reference
 Pay your application fee
 Send UCAS your application

Course in Depth

Foundation Year

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits).

Year One

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 120 credits).

Year Two

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 100 credits).

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete at least 20 credits from the following indicative list of OPTIONAL modules.

All core modules are guaranteed to run. Optional modules will vary from year to year and the published list is indicative only.

Year Three

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 80 credits).

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete at least 40 credits from the following indicative list of OPTIONAL modules.

All core modules are guaranteed to run. Optional modules will vary from year to year and the published list is indicative only.

Download course specification

Download now

How you'll learn

Our teaching philosophy is focused on enabling students to progress as self-directed learners. You will be encouraged to investigate, to be creative and enterprising, and to think critically about the current and future global challenges faced by modern day scientists. These attributes will be developed within independent subject modules, overseen by a dedicated team of scientists with teaching and research expertise covering the whole range of biomedical sciences disciplines.

You'll be exposed to a number of different teaching and learning styles, as well as a range of assessment types. You will also be able to influence your learning pathway by choosing from a choice of optional modules in your second and final years of study.’

Employability

Enhancing your employability skills

We'll develop you into a work-ready graduate. Employability skills are embedded throughout the programme that will enable you to succeed in careers in science, and which are transferable across a variety of graduate careers

You will also have access to the Universities Graduate+ programme which will provide you with opportunities to engage in extracurricular activities that will help to expand your employability attributes. There are modules in the programme that provide you with opportunities to develop employability skills on work placements or as part of research-focused projects.

Placements

You will have the opportunity to gain valuable work-life skills as part of a placement that will be relevant to biomedical sciences. You'll be offered a choice of placements in educational, industrial or research based settings, but we'll also encourage you to find your own placement that suits your interests and needs.

More about our placement opportunities

International

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

Facilities & Staff

Our Biomedical Sciences students are taught in purpose-built labs at our City South Campus.

Specialist equipment in the labs includes Zeiss interactive digitally-connected microscopes. These microscopes are connected to our IT network so everything you can see in the microscope can also be accessed via an app on our iPads and large screens, giving you a new way to share and discuss microscopy images.

The Zeiss software enables students to take high-definition photographs and videos of the samples on the microscope as well as take accurate measurements of microorganisms or human cells.

Other equipment in the labs includes polymerase chain reaction (PCR) machines (including real-time PCR), protein and DNA electrophoresis equipment, ELISA and a variety of cell-analysis and cell-culture tools.

Simulation Mannequins

We have several Simulation men (SIM men) and Simulation babies (SIM babies) which are leading edge, anatomically correct mannequins used for teaching specific techniques such as advanced adult and paediatric life support skills, acute and high dependency clinical skills, first aid and communication skills.

Simulation Mannequins

SPACE skills practice model

S.P.A.C.E.

SPACE is an innovative practice area all students can access to use equipment and resources to practise a wide range of skills in a safe, welcoming and supportive environment. It provides students with a creative learning environment to get the best educational experience before becoming a health care professional.

S.P.A.C.E.

Learning Facilities

We offer up-to-date, innovative facilities that simulate the real situations that medical staff may come across. These resources are essential in offering students a hands-on introduction to health and social care practice.

Learning Facilities

Nursing - Facilities - Virtual Tour

Virtual Tour

Explore our facilities in 360 panoramas, including welcome videos from key members of staff and Health and Wellbeing student profiles.

Virtual Tour

Doug Ellis Sports Centre

Our £8.5 million Doug Ellis Sports Centre boasts an 80-station fitness suite, an eight-court sports hall, and workout and spinning studios. The centre offers state-of-the-art fitness training equipment and plenty of room for team sports including five-a-side football and cricket. An all-weather pitch adds the finishing touches to the centre.

Visitors to the gym can choose a personalised fitness programme, instructed by qualified fitness trainers, and take advantage of a selection of classes, such as yoga, salsa or body combat.

Doug Ellis Sports Centre website

Our staff

Julie Davis

Foundation Year Lecturer

Julie joined the PDD in 2018 as a Lecturer on the HELS Foundation Year programme.  Prior to joining Birmingham City University, she worked at a number of local FE and HE institutions where she developed and delivered a range of Early Years and Education programmes.

More about Julie

Jessica Lowe

Foundation year lecturer

Jessica joined the PDD in 2019 as a Lecturer on the HELS Foundation Year Programme. Her role is to lead and develop modules to support students on their journey on the Foundation Year Programme. Prior to joining BCU, she has worked in a FE and HE institution teaching students on a range of courses in Early Years and Education from levels 1-5....

More about Jessica

Dr James Barnett

Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences

Dr Barnett joined BCU in 2019, and enjoys teaching on the Biomedical Sciences degree course. He is passionate about science and has had a varied career spending time working in both industry and academia.

More about James