Engineering and the Environment

Foundation Year Engineering/Physics/Geophysics

The University of Southampton Engineering, Physics and Geophysics Foundation year is a route onto our engineering and science degree programmes for those who do not yet have sufficient skills in mathematics and physics. This programme may suit you if you are studying for A Levels in subjects different to those normally required for these degrees.

It may also interest you if you are a mature applicant, with skills and experience from employment, or if you come from a part of the world where the education system differs from that of the British A Level system. The Foundation Year will provide you with the necessary grounding in these subjects to progress to a range of our engineering degrees or to a degree in physics or geophysics.

Students registered on our programme are full-time members of the University of Southampton student community with access to accommodation within our halls of residence and full use of our recreational, sports, library and IT facilities

Programme Overview

The Foundation Year is the preliminary year of a four or five year degree programme. By applying for this course you are expressing an interest in pursuing one of the following engineering subjects, leading to either a BEng or MEng awards.

  • Acoustical Engineering
  • Aerospace (Aeronautics and Astronautics)
  • Civil Engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Electromechanical Engineering
  • Electronic Engineering
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Geophysics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Physics
  • Ship Science

Successful completion of our Foundation Year will guarantee you a place on one of our engineering programmes or science programmes.

To Apply

Applications should be made through UCAS using the relevant UCAS code for your discipline:

BEng Acoustical Engineering with Foundation Year (H340)

MEng Acoustical Engineering with Foundation Year (H016)

BEng Aeronautics and Astronautics with Foundation Year (H420)

MEng Aeronautics and Astronautics with Foundation Year (H410)

BEng Civil Engineering with Foundation Year (H220)

MEng Civil and Environmental Engineering with Foundation Year (H209)

MEng Civil Engineering with Foundation Year (H413)

MEng Civil Engineering with Year in Industry with Foundation Year (H222)

BSc Computer Science with Foundation Year (I100)

MSc Computer Science with Foundation Year (I101)

BEng Software Engineering with Foundation Year (I300)

MEng Software Engineering with Foundation Year (I303)

BEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering with Foundation Year (H604)

MEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering with Foundation Year (H605)

BEng Electrical Engineering with Foundation Year (H621)

MEng Electrical Engineering with Foundation Year (H622)

BEng Electromechanical Engineering with Foundation Year (H360)

MEng Electromechanical Engineering with Foundation Year (H631)

BEng Electronic Engineering with Foundation Year (H612)

MEng Electronic Engineering with Foundation Year (H613)

MGeophys Geophysics with Foundation Year (F662)

BEng Mechanical Engineering with Foundation Year (H421)

MEng Mechanical Engineering with Foundation Year (J512)

BSc Physics with Foundation Year (F301)

MPyhs Physics with Foundation Year (F305)

BEng Ship Science with Foundation Year (H518)

MEng Ship Science with Foundation Year (H510)

For more information, contact the Engineering, Physics and Geophysics Foundation Admissions Team, tel: +44 (0)23 8059 3113, email: foundyr@soton.ac.uk.

Programme Structure

The programme is a 1-year full-time course integrated with a further 3- or 4-year degree programme.

 

Key facts

  • Guaranteed progression onto chosen undergraduate degree (providing you achieve minimum progression grades)

  • Our engineering courses are ranked in the top 10 in a variety of UK league tables

  • Choice of 12 undergraduate degree disciplines on completion

  • A relevant mixture or theoretical and practical activities form the basis of this programme.

Other University of Southampton sites
Take a look at the Foundation Year brochure

Take a look at the Foundation Year brochure

Meet our students

Eric Joyce

Thumbnail photo of Eric Joyce

“My advice to anyone considering the Foundation Year: If you want to get your career moving in engineering, physics or geophysics and you need to get up to speed on your maths and science, Do it. It changes your life. Fast!”

Other University of Southampton sites

Entry requirements

Typical entry requirements

A Levels:

If you have not taken mathematics and/or physics at A level then you will usually need a Foundation Year. Our offer for students who have studied A-Levels is typically ABB. You will need an aptitude for mathematics, which may be demonstrated by recent study or by taking our Maths Test. All applicants need Grade B in GCSE Maths and Grade C in GCSE English Language, in combination with an NQF Level 3 qualification such as A levels, BTEC, or Access course.

IB:

A typical offer for the IB is 32 points overall. Please note that we cannot accept subjects that make you eligible for direct entry. (This is normally Higher Level Maths and Physics.)

BTEC National Diploma:

Typical offer for National Diploma (18 Units) in an Engineering subject is DDD, to include Distinctions in Mathematics for Technicians and Further Mathematics for Technicians units.

Other Qualifications:

If you have UK qualifications not listed above, your application will be considered on an individual basis.

If you can show a proven ability in mathematics and science, but you come from a region or country where an A level equivalent qualification is not available, you may be considered for the Foundation Year.

Mature Applicants:

We welcome applications from Mature applicants (aged over 21). Applicants will need to demonstrate recent study (in the last two years) or work experience relevant to your preferred subject area. Study could include for example an A level, a relevant Level 3 Access course, or a 60 Credit Level 1 Open University module. You will also need to demonstrate an aptitude for Mathematics; applicants may be required to take our own Maths Test. Applicants may also be invited to an individual Interview. Please contact us for more information before applying.

English language

On Monday 10th February 2014 the UKVI (also known as UKBA) suspended the consideration of all student visas where the applicant’s English language proficiency was based on the result of a test administered by ETS (the provider of the TOEFL test). As a result, the University regrets that it cannot currently accept TOEFL tests. The University is awaiting further guidance from UKVI regarding the full terms of the suspension.

If English is not your first language, we ask you to obtain a recognised language qualification. If you can demonstrate that you have achieved IELTS 6.5 with at least 5.5 in each band, or a recognised equivalent, you will be able to join the course without the need for additional English language classes.

If you have achieved IELTS 5.5 with at least 5.5 in each band, or a recognised equivalent, you can take the Language Pathway option. This gives you the specialist extra language tuition to help you succeed in your degree.

If you have not yet reached IELTS 5.5 but plan to be based in Southampton, you could consider taking a separate preparatory language course.

Selection process:

Intake: 140
Average applicants per place: 12

Each application is considered individually. However, you need to demonstrate an aptitude for maths, either through recent study or by taking our Maths Test.

Visit our International Office website or the NARIC website for further information on qualifications.

Modules

Typical course content

Whatever degree you are aiming for, you will take all of the modules listed below. In addition you will be expected to complete coursework in all subjects. The 3- term year is divided into two semesters, each lasting 15 weeks, and modules are two semesters in duration.

 

Year 1

Learning and assessment

Knowledge and Understanding:

Having successfully completed this programme you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • Mathematical methods of algebra, trigonometry, vectors, differential and integral calculus and differential equations
  • The scientific principles relevant to mechanics 
  • The scientific principles relevant to eletric fields and circuits
  • The scientific principles relevant to the exchange and trasnport of energy
  • The English Vocabulary and writing style required for academic study in a scientific or technical discipline

Teaching and learning methods:

You will acquire knowledge and understanding through a mixture of lectures, small group teaching, supported problem solving, tutorials, laboratory work, private study and (assessed and non-assessed) coursework. 

Assessment methods:

You will be assessed through unseen written exams, short tests, assessed coursework in the form of laboratory log books and reports, problems and other set assignments. 

Subject Specific Intellectual Skills:

Having successfully completed this programme you will be able to:

  • Select and apply appropriate mathematical models to solve abstract and real-world problems
  • Use scientific principles in the development of solutions to simple realworld problems
  • Select and use appropriate computer based methods to analyse and present data, reports and other information 

Teaching and learning methods:

Intellectual skills are developed through the teaching and learning programme outlined above. Each course will help you to develop problem solving skills and the ability to apply your knowledge through discussion, example and practice. Students will be given individual feedback and advice on their progress in these areas throughout the programme. 

Assessment methods:

The assessment methods described above place emphasis on your ability to demonstrate the intellectual skills listed here through the production of coherent answers to problems, suitable choices of methods and assumptions.

Computing skills are assessed through computing assignments set throughout the year.

Transferable/General Skills:

Having successfully completed this programme you will be able to:

  • Manage your own learning
  • Solve problems
  • Record, analyse and evaluate data
  • Apply mathematics 

Teaching and learning methods:

These skills are developed in classes and tutorials through discussion and interaction as well as individual and group work. Managing own learning is learnt, rather than taught, through the requirement to organise your private study and to meet the deadlines for submission of work; problem solving is a theme you will find running throughout the course as is application of mathematics. Data recording, analysis and evaluation is developed through practical laboratory and computing sessions.

Assessment methods:

Assessment of these skills is generally integrated into the coursework for the programme. Effective communication, and data recording, analysis and evaluation are important in presenting the outcomes of laboratory work; application of mathematics and problem solving are generally assessed through unseen written examinations and coursework assignments. Managing own learning is not formally assessed. 

Subject Specific Practical Skills:

Having successfully completed this programme you will be able to:

 

  • Manipulate mathematics
  • Communicate effectively through graphical means
  • Use and understand mathematical, scientific and technical language
  • Find and correct errors in your work
  • Use SI units
  • Make realistic estimates of the answers to problems
  • Plan and undertake experimental work, explain results and identify potential errors and their likely effect
  • Use common IT tools 

Teaching and learning methods:

These skills are developed as part of the teaching and learning programme and are integrated into the modules, tutorials and individual work. Individual feedback on progress in developing these skills may be given during personal tutorials and problem solving classes.

Assessment:

The assessment of these skills is integrated into the coursework and examinations you will be required to complete.

Career Opportunities

Successfully completing the Foundation Year gives you guaranteed entry to the majority of our engineering physics and geophysics programmes, most of which carry professional accreditation and offer excellent career prospects.

Graduates who have entered our degrees through the Foundation Year route can progress to a variety of exciting engineering, science and technology roles in the private and public sectors, both in the UK and overseas.