Triangle Skip to content
Exit nav

Course overview

Do you have good qualifications but have changed your mind about what you want to study? Nottingham’s foundation course will give you a different way to get on to an undergraduate course. Unlike some UK universities, you are guaranteed progression onto your chosen degree after passing your foundation year.

Designed for UK students, you will study a range of modules in maths, computer methods, electricity and magnetism, mechanics and physics. The degree you choose will depend on the modules you select to study, but you won’t have to make this decision until your second term.

Students who successfully pass the Foundation Programme can progress onto one of a number of BEng/MEng and BSc/MSci degrees in the following departments/schools:


Physical sciences

* Progression onto K100 and K230 courses is subject to submission of a successful portfolio in addition to meeting the normal Foundation progression criteria.

** Progression to degrees in the School of Mathematical Sciences is subject to additional requirements in mathematics modules.

Progression is subject to you having passed at the appropriate level during the Foundation Programme.

Why choose this course?

  • Over 80 degrees to choose from
  • Receive one-to-one support with a personal tutor and mentor
  • You can get involved with the student community from the start

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2021 entry.

UK entry requirements
A level offer BBB
Required subjects

GCSE maths grade 6 (B); GCSE physics grade 5 (B) or GCSE science grade 5 (B) and GCSE Additional Science grade 5 (B); GCSE English grade 4 (C). Please note: a foundation year is available to those with A-level BBB grades in any subjects (except thinking skills, citizenship studies, global perspectives, general studies and critical thinking).

IB score 30

Learning and assessment

How you will learn

Teaching methods

  • Group study
  • Lectures
  • Practical classes
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops

How you will be assessed

Assessment methods

  • Coursework
  • Examinations

Contact time and study hours

On average, you will have around 20 contact hours a week. Combined with coursework and self-study, you may spend over 40 hours a week on your studies.

What is it like studying Foundation Engineering and Physical Sciences at UoN?

Hear what Feroz and Jolene have to say about studying Foundation Engineering and Physical Sciences at UoN.


Experience a wide range of teaching and learning styles – from traditional seminars, lectures and tutorials to state-of-the-art multimedia and electronic learning systems.

There are certain core (compulsory) modules such as computing and mathematics that all students study. The optional modules vary from year to year.

Semester one

Foundation Mathematics 1

This module provides a good grounding in Mathematics.

Engineering and Science

This module focuses on the fundamentals of mechanics and electromagnetism.

Professional, Experimental and Academic Competencies (PEAC)

This module aims to rapidly get you ready for the more challenging Semester 2, explore your destination departments with a team of people with similar interests, learn how university laboratory practical activities are carried out, improve your employability skills and to help prepare you for year 1 and beyond.

Computer Methods (10 credits – core)

This module involves the use of a software environment (MATLAB) to help solve engineering and mathematical problems. MATLAB is a powerful mathematical modelling tool used heavily in industry. Topics include; data structures and formats, plotting of graphical data and programming.

Semester 2

Foundation Mathematics 2

This builds on the work completed in Foundation Mathematics 1.

Applied Engineering and Science

This builds on the work completed in Engineering and Science in Semester-1.

Further Applied Engineering

This is a largely practical module during which you will become proficient in skills such as designing and building circuits.

Engineering Project

You can choose your topic for this independent project from a number of options related to your Destination Departments (Engineering and Science).

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules may change or be updated over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for the latest information on available modules.

Fees and funding

UK students

Per year

International students

Per year
*For full details including fees for part-time students and reduced fees during your time studying abroad or on placement (where applicable), see our fees page.

If you are a student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland starting your course in the 2021/22 academic year, you will pay international tuition fees.

This does not apply to Irish students, who will be charged tuition fees at the same rate as UK students. UK nationals living in the EU, EEA and Switzerland will also continue to be eligible for ‘home’ fee status at UK universities until 31 December 2027.

For further guidance, check our Brexit information for future students.

Scholarships and bursaries

There are scholarships and bursaries available to student which can contribute towards the cost of studying at the University of Nottingham.

  • The University of Nottingham offers international students a wide range of bursaries and scholarships
  • Over one third of our UK students receive our means-tested core bursary, worth up to £2,000 a year

Home students*

Over one third of our UK students receive our means-tested core bursary, worth up to £1,000 a year. Full details can be found on our financial support pages.

* A 'home' student is one who meets certain UK residence criteria. These are the same criteria as apply to eligibility for home funding from Student Finance.


Studying for a degree at the University of Nottingham will provide you with the type of skills and experiences that will prove invaluable in any career, whichever direction you decide to take.

Throughout your time with us, our Careers and Employability Service can work with you to improve your employability skills even further; assisting with job or course applications, searching for appropriate work experience placements and hosting events to bring you closer to a wide range of prospective employers.

Have a look at our careers page for an overview of all the employability support and opportunities that we provide to current students.

The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers (Ranked in the top ten in The Graduate Market in 2013-2020, High Fliers Research).

Dummy placeholder image
" I feel I have gained very valuable experience on all aspects of University and what is needed to succeed. This will help me incredibly in first year. "
Kristian Smith, Engineering and Physical Sciences Foundation Programme

Related courses

The University has been awarded Gold for outstanding teaching and learning

Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) 2017-18


This online prospectus has been drafted in advance of the academic year to which it applies. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content) are likely to occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for the course where there has been an interval between you reading this website and applying.