International Foundation Year

What is the International Foundation Year?

The International Foundation Year prepares you for undergraduate study at Lancaster. You will focus on English language, study skills and academic modules, and start planning for your future career. After your foundation year, you can progress to your chosen degree at Lancaster – one of the UK’s top universities.

Who is the International Foundation Year for?

The International Foundation Year helps ambitious international students hoping to graduate with an undergraduate degree from a top-ranking UK university – but who may not yet meet the entry requirements needed to begin their degree. By completing our programme, students are able to begin their undergraduate degree with confidence. 

How does the International Foundation Year work?

When you apply to the International Study Centre at Lancaster, you choose the undergraduate degree you wish to study upon progression to the University. Following successful completion of your chosen course, as well as achieving the required grades, you will progress to your degree programme at the University.

Your degree aim/selected degree path is not fixed. During your first term at the International Study Centre, you will be asked to select three degree choices. You will receive a conditional offer and this will be made unconditional on successful completion of the course – and on achieving the required progression grades. You will be supported in making appropriate degree choices and submitting your application to the University, including advice on completion of your personal statement. 

International Foundation Year: fees and entry requirements

We want to make sure you're getting the most out of your programme, which is why we offer different entry requirements in order for you to enjoy your learning experience with us. If you need to improve your level of English before starting your International Foundation Year, we offer English Language Preparation to help you to improve your IELTS grade before beginning your pathway programme. Our English Language Preparation programmes have lower entry requirements, so you still have the opportunity to graduate with a degree from Lancaster.

There are different costs associated with each subject pathway, you can find out more about them on our fees page.

Choose your pathway

Business and Management

Lancaster ISC students in the classroom at the ISC

Leading to a degree at one of the top 100 business schools in the world.

Engineering and Computing

An engineering student at Lancaster ISC

Leading to a degree in the Faculty of Science and Technology.


A Lancaster ISC student in the library on campus

Leading to a number of degrees at Lancaster University Law School.

Life Sciences

A Lancaster ISC student in the lab

Leading to a number of undergraduate science degrees at a top university.

Mathematics and Statistics

A lecturer at Lancaster ISC

Leading to an undergraduate degree in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics.

Social Studies

Lancaster ISC students in the library on campus at the university

Leading to a number of degree options in the Faculty of Arts and Social Studies.

Why study the International Foundation Year in the UK?

  • Discover the UK higher education system: You will learn in a university-style environment with group lectures, seminars, tutorials and independent study. Your seminar group will have around 20 students in it.
  • Access career support:You will receive career guidance and support through our CareerAhead service. This helps you to plan for your future career, increase your employability and develop the skills for success – wherever you are in the world.
  • Study in a global language: As well as developing your English skills both in and outside of the classroom, studying your chosen field in English helps you to become globally employable.

Your study options

Join us on campus

Students laughing in classroom at Lancaster University

Find out about studying your programme on campus, what to expect from blended learning and tips for preparing to travel.

Join us virtually

If you are unable to join us on campus for the start of your programme, you can start virtually and join us in the UK later.

Find out more about starting your studies or check the latest COVID-19 information.