International Foundation in Science, Computing and Engineering

This 6-month programme will prepare you for entry to Year 2 of a Scottish degree at the University of Stirling or the University of Dundee.

Why apply for the International Foundation programme?

  • A route to Year 2 of an undergraduate degree at a leading Scottish university.
  • Equivalent to the first year of a Scottish degree, you can graduate with an honours degree after three years of further study — the same amount of time as direct entry.
  • A programme designed to improve your English language skills, increase your knowledge of academic theory, and develop your understanding of key academic subjects.
  • Develop necessary study and research skills to prepare for undergraduate study.
  • A programme to help you adjust to the challenges of UK higher education.

What is special about this programme?

Studying on a 6-month International Foundation programme means that you will be ready to progress to your degree in September the same academic year.

It offers:

  • A first-year Scottish undergraduate degree programme equivalent qualification.
  • Guaranteed progression to your chosen degree at the University of Stirling or the University of Dundee, subject to meeting progression requirements.
  • A campus-based programme with access to world-class university facilities.
  • University-style teaching with high contact hours and small class sizes.
  • Qualified and experienced teachers.
  • Professional help and support with your application to university.

Teaching methods

Throughout your programme, you will receive advice and feedback from your teachers during seminars and tutorials.

You will also have regular one-to-one tutorial meetings with your personal tutor, where you will discuss your achievements, progress and plan for effective future study. They will be able to answer any questions and provide guidance to ensure your academic success.

Assessment will be through examinations and coursework, including: written assignments, practical exercises, group and individual research projects, presentations and problem-solving exercises.

What will I study?

You will study a range of core modules as well as selection of specialist modules.

The specialist modules you take will depend on the degree programme you intend to progress to.

During this module you may study:

Core modules:

English Language for Academic Purposes

Designed to help you develop your skills and confidence in academic English to operate successfully in an undergraduate university study environment.

Four key skill areas are covered: reading, writing, listening, and speaking.

Introduction to British Culture and Society

Topics covered may include local and national government and politics, legal institutions, geography and sociology of Scotland and the UK, business in the UK and the UK education system.

ICT, Research and Study Skills

Skills covered include time organisation, library and information skills, using and interpreting data, teamwork, problem-solving, examination and revision techniques, presentation skills and avoiding plagiarism.

Workshops include: Word, Excel, PowerPoint, email and web-based learning.

Pure and Applied Mathematics

Develop competence in algebra, geometry and numerical methods. Study functions, graphs and complex numbers as well as numerical mathematics, matrices, vectors and polar coordinates. You’ll also be introduced to the core methods of calculus, differentiation and integration.

Specialist modules:

Biology and Human Physiology

Understand the processes involved in cellular life and their roles in the function, reproduction and development of living organisms. Learn about enzymes, biochemistry of energy production, molecular genetics and the genetics of inheritance.

You’ll also examine the organisation of the human body and its vital biological systems and will learn about classification, evolution, human physiology, plant biology and ecology.


Learn the concepts in physical, inorganic and organic chemistry required for studying at degree level.

The module includes simple elements, atoms and compounds, atomic structure, chemical bonds, energetics, reactions and kinetics, properties of solids, liquids and gases, acids and bases, chemistry of selected elements, chemistry of carbon compounds and an introduction to spectroscopy.

Introduction to Psychology

This module provides an introduction to the following core elements of Psychology: Child Development; Brain and Behaviour; Language and Thinking; Animal Behaviour; Clinical and Abnormal Psychology; Social Psychology and Cognitive Psychology.


The module includes experimental application of theoretical structure techniques, vector based determination of resultant forces, particle circular path motion analysis subject to different forcing conditions, field concepts and electrical/electronic ideas applications in engineering and to fundamental experiments, familiarisation with SI units and mathematical analysis of practical problems.

Principles of Computing

You’ll gain an overview of the systems and software development process; an understanding of programming paradigms and techniques; knowledge of the main components of a computerprogramming environment and programming constructs; and an understanding of testing, verification and reproducibility of behaviour in computer systems.

Please note: Not all modules will be available in each term. All compulsory modules will be offered at least once during the year, and students will be counselled on modules available.

How will I be assessed?

Assessment is both formal and informal. Informally you will receive advice and feedback throughout your programme from your teachers. You will also be assessed by a combination of examinations at the end of each semester, and coursework which may include written assignments, reports, practical exercises, group and individual research projects, presentations and problem-solving exercises.

Academic guidance

You will also receive support from your tutor on personal and academic issues, including advice on your studies and career plans. We will also help with your application and arrange visits to your Academic School so that you can learn more about your chosen degree programme.

How do I qualify?

Academic requirements:

Completion of 12 years of schooling (or the local equivalent to meet the same standard) with good grades. For information about country-specific entry requirements please contact us.

English requirements:

IELTS 5.5 (with a minimum of 5.5 in all subskills) or equivalent.

If you’re coming to the UK to study a course that is no longer than six months, a Short-term Study Visa (STSV) may be more appropriate for you than applying for a Student Tier 4 visa. For more information on accepted qualifications, please see SELT alternatives or contact us for more details.

If you do not meet the minimum English language level you can apply for our Academic English course.

When can I start?


Start date Programme dates Fees

April 2018 start (2 terms)

Term 1: Tue 03 Apr 2018 to Fri 08 Jun 20178

Term 2: Mon 18 Jun 2018 to Fri 24 Aug 2018



Tuition fees do not include:

  • enrolment fee: an additional charge of £150 per academic programme (to be charged upon confirmation)
  • laboratory fee: £400 (for science-based courses, to be charged upon confirmation)
  • textbooks and other learning materials: an additional cost in the region of £240 per academic course

Is accommodation included in the fees?

Accommodation is not included in the fees. View our accommodation options.

How do I pay?

You can pay by bank transfer or by credit card. Please contact us for bank transfer details.

How do I apply?

You can apply online or by post. Find out more about how to apply to INTO University of Stirling.

Where will it take me?

Progression to the University of Stirling

If you successfully complete the relevant International Foundation programme and meet the required progression grades for entry to your selected degree programme, you will be offered conditional entry onto year two of an undergraduate degree programme at the University of Stirling.

This pathway course leads to the following degree programmes at the University of Stirling:

BSc (Hons) Animal Biology
BSc (Hons) Aquaculture
BSc (Hons) Biology
BSc (Hons) Biology and Mathematics
BSc (Hons) Biology and Psychology
BSc (Hons) Business Computing
BSc (Hons) Cell Biology
BSc (Hons) Computing Science
BSc (Hons) Computing Science and Mathematics
BSc (Hons) Conservation Biology and Management
BSc (Hons) Ecology
BSc (Hons) Environmental Geography
BSc (Hons) Environmental Science
BSc (Hons) Environmental Science and Mathematics
BSc (Hons) Information Systems
BSc (Hons) Marine Biology
BSc (Hons) Mathematics and its Applications
BSc (Hons) Mathematics and Psychology
BSc (Hons) Psychology
BSc (Hons) Software Engineering

Please note: This information is correct to the best of our knowledge at time of writing but is subject to change.

Progression to the University of Dundee

On completion of the 6-month International Foundation you will be guaranteed entry onto year two of an undergraduate degree programme at the University of Dundee, subject to meeting the minimum progression requirements.

This pathway course leads to the following degree programmes at the University of Dundee:

BEng (Hons) Civil Engineering
MEng (Hons) Civil Engineering
BEng (Hons) Electronic Engineering
BEng (Hons) Electronic Engineering and Physics
BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering
BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering with Renewables
BSc (Hons) Pharmacology

Please note: This information is correct to the best of our knowledge at time of writing but is subject to change.

Progression to other Scottish universities

If you do not meet the progression requirements above for entry or intend to progress to a degree programme that is not offered, our Placement Services team will assist you with your application to another Scottish progression option. You will also be able to apply to other universities in the UK.

Our progression guarantee

We guarantee to find you a place to study on an appropriate degree and university if you successfully complete your International Foundation programme, follow professional advice offered by INTO staff and meet minimum attendance requirements.

As a successful pathway student, you’ll have access to a number of university progression options. Each progression option will follow a specific pathway and specific requirements for both English/study skills and overall grade. You’ll also find some courses have specific requirements, such as:

  • successfully completing an interview;
  • having previously studied a relevant discipline;
  • having previously completed a degree; or
  • having IELTS 6.0 or equivalent in English language.
General, UK and China enquiries: +44 (0)1273 876 040 [email protected]
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