Science Foundation Year
- Duration of study
- 1+3/4/5 years
- Year of entry
- 2020 or 2021
- Student loan available, subject to eligibility.
- September and January
The Science Foundation Year is an excellent introduction to studying a science subject at university. The programme is ideal for those who do not quite meet the requirements for a three-year honours degree. The Science Programme gives you access to any of the degrees within the Faculty of Natural Sciences. You'll be fully integrated into university life and the student community from day one.
There are two pathways within the Biology with Science Foundation Year (please note that these pathways have different entry requirements), these are:
Biology pathway (pathway one), which provides a preparatory year for students hoping to progress to Biology at Keele as a Single Honours programme or combined with another subject. Biology at Keele focuses on the amazing world of organisms – from how they’ve evolved to their relationships with the environment and each other. Keele takes a broad approach to biology, examining the diversity of life and its evolution from the geological past. You’ll consider the complexity of biological processes and mechanisms at molecular, cellular, organismal and ecosystem levels, exploring related philosophical and ethical issues. You’ll sample, record and analyse data in the field and in our excellent labs, and learn how biology can help to improve the quality and sustainability of life. Complete this course over three years, or add an extra year with an Applied Life Sciences work placement or a one year Study Abroad Placement between the second and third year.
Veterinary Medicine and Surgery pathway (pathway two), which provides a preparatory year for students hoping to transfer to the Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery (BVetMS) degree at the Harper and Keele Veterinary School. Please note to progress on to this programme from the foundation year, students will be required to pass the Veterinary Medicine and Surgery selection event and successfully complete the Foundation Year at the required threshold grades of 70% in each semester 2 module. Students will also need to have the following work experience; 2 weeks in a vets practice and 4 weeks in an animal environment. The selection event will take place during the Foundation Year. The new Harper & Keele Veterinary School combines the extensive resources of the two universities. The programme is uniquely structured to help students graduate with the required skills to be immediately effective first opinion practitioners in the rapidly changing modern veterinary and animal welfare industries. If you wish to apply for the Foundation pathway for Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery (BVetMS) (pathway two) please state this in the further details box in the choices section of your UCAS application form and also in your personal statement. Please note that we do not offer a January start for this pathway.
The programme enables you to study areas of science that are of interest to you. There are a large number of modules available to choose from, the modules you study will be related to the degree programme you wish to progress on to. In addition, you will study modules relevant to all of the sciences including communication, numerical and computational skills.
Studying a Foundation Year at Keele will give you the opportunity to gain the skills, attributes and confidence to study at degree level.
A Foundation Year could be for you if:
- you would benefit from a year to prepare for entry onto an honours degree
- have non-traditional qualifications
- want to change your subjects
- had a break from education
- want a change of career
- a university experience in a supportive environment
All of the teaching is delivered on the Keele campus by highly qualified academic and professional staff, complemented by an experienced student support team. Teaching methods include lectures, laboratory classes, seminars, workshops and tutorials, and you will make use of state-of-the-art undergraduate teaching facilities and apparatus.
In additional to the University's support network, you will have a personal tutor who will guide and support you through your first year of university study.
Who can apply
UK or EU students from a broad range of backgrounds wishing to take a science degree at Keele.
If you are an international (non-EU) student, please see Keele International Foundation Year/Degree Programme.
Applications can be made through UCAS.
You should apply for a specific subject with a Foundation Year. You can discuss options with a foundation year tutor before arriving at Keele and may be able to change your choice following discussions with foundation year staff.
We are introducing an exciting new curriculum which has been developed in conjunction with the Faculty of Natural Sciences. This will ensure you are fully prepared for your chosen degree.
You will take a combination of modules to a total of 120 credits:
- core modules
- subject-specific modules relating to your intended degree programme after your Foundation Year
- and optional modules offering some free choice
The new curriculum has been designed in consultation with students and subject experts. In Semester 1 you will complete 4 x 15 credit modules which will provide you with subject skills, and numeracy skills, alongside introductions to subject specific modules.
In Semester 2 you will complete 2 x 30 credit modules which will advance your subject knowledge further, preparing you for your continued journey into Year 1.
For single honours students there is a degree of choice for your second subject.
Further details of our new modules for 2020/21 will be published in the new year.
2020 entry requirements
For 2020 entry, you can apply through clearing (see Clearing foundation vacancies here). Entry requirements for our foundation years start from 40 UCAS Tariff points. However, we will also consider applicants who may not have traditional academic qualifications but have work experience or vocational qualifications.
Whether you have just received your results or wish to return to study call us on 01782 491120 to discuss the foundation year options available to you.
2021 entry requirements
BSc (Hons) Biology
Applicants wishing to progress onto BSc (Hons) Biology are required to have:
- between 40 and 56 UCAS points or from at least 1 A level/level 3 qualification or equivalent, or
- relevant work experience
- GCSE English Language at grade 4 (C), or
- IELTS 5.5 (with 5.5 in all subtests)
- GCSE Mathematics at grade 4 (C) or above
Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery (BVetMS)
Applicants wishing to progress onto Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery (BVetMS) are required to have:
- GCE A Level grades ABC/BBB
- normally a minimum of 5 GCSEs at A/7 including Science and Additional Science (or Biology and Chemistry) with at least B/6 in English Language; Maths and Physics (if taken as a separate GCSE). If you do not have this GCSE profile please contact Admissions for further guidance on email@example.com.
If you wish to apply for the Foundation pathway for Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery (BVetMS) (pathway two) please state this in the further details box in the choices section of your UCAS application form and also in your personal statement.
UCAS programmes with a Science Foundation Year
|Biology (including Veterinary Medicine and Surgery)||C103|
|Chemistry with Medicinal Chemistry||F122|
|Environment and Sustainability||F750|
|Forensic and Analytical Investigation||F413|
|Forensic Science and Criminology||F4L7|
|Physics with Astrophysics||F307|
|Psychology and Education||CX84|
|Psychology with Counselling||C8BF|
If you are applying for a combined honours programme with a Foundation Year, you will study two subjects when you progress to degree level. You can choose a second subject once your place is confirmed.
Please note that after completion of the foundation year in your chosen subject, you will progress to a Bachelor's degree in that subject, with the addition of a second subject as part of the combined honours degree.
How to apply
Visit UCAS for applications for 2020/21 courses.
If you are a UK or EU student, already have your qualifications, are not expecting any further results and only wish to apply to Keele, please contact the Admissions Office directly.
All applications for the International Foundation Year and International Degree Programme can be made through UCAS using the codes below.
UCAS Course Codes
Y002 - International Foundation Year (IFY)
Y008 - International Degree Programme (IDP)
Alternatively, applications can be made directly to the University using the IFY/IDP Application Form or by contacting International Recruitment.
For further information on Science Foundation Year, please contact:
Telephone: +44 (0)1782 733507
Teaching and assessment
The programme will be delivered through a mixture of lectures, tutorials, seminars, workshops, computer classes, laboratory classes and field trips. In addition to group sessions, you are expected to undertake a large amount of independent study and revision.
Students are assessed through a variety of assessment types including:
- Unseen closed and open book examinations
- Examinations may consist of essays, short answer and/or multiple choice questions, and paper comprehension
- Essays and reports
- Class tests taken either conventionally or online
- Research projects
- Oral and poster presentations
- Peer assessment
- Course work assignments consist of short written pieces completed in your own time
- Laboratory reports – structured pro formas and full laboratory reports
Contacts and further information
For further information on Science Foundation Year, please contact:
Telephone: +44 (0)1782 733507
You will take Foundation Year modules to a total CATS credit value of 120.
Progression to the next year of a particular degree programme at Keele depends on passing all modules and obtaining an average mark across the Foundation Year of at least 55%, together with additional threshold marks in specified modules, as follows:
Biochemistry - 55% average and 65% in Chemistry modules
Biomedical Science - 65% average
Neuroscience - 65% average
Mathematics (SH and CH) - 55% average and 55% in Elementary Mathematical Methods I and Elementary Mathematical Methods II and pass all other maths modules
Psychology (SH and CH) - 55% average and 55% in Introduction to Psychology and Introduction to Forensic Psychology
Chemistry - 55% average and 70% in both Chemistry modules
Medicinal Chemistry - 55% average and 70% in both Chemistry modules
Forensic Science - 55% average and 60% in both Chemistry modules
Physics with Astrophysics (SH) - 60% in all Physics and Maths modules and 60% average
Physics with Astrophysics (CH) - 55% in all Physics and Maths modules and 55% average
As to be expected there will be additional costs for textbooks and other course books, an approved calculator, inter-library loans, potential overdue library fines and printing.
Students working in the chemistry and biology laboratories will be required to wear protective equipment. These can be purchased from the University for a total cost of about £15.
Students taking the module ‘Exploiting the Earth’ will be required to provide a £10 deposit with regard to the field trip, returnable on attendance.
Our Course Information Documents (CIDs) are designed to give you all of the details you need to make an informed decision about what and where to study