International Foundation Programme in Social Sciences 2021

The International Foundation Programme in Social Sciences focuses on the skills needed to be a successful social scientist: independent study, formulating and presenting arguments, evaluating literature and interpreting data. Once you have successfully completed this programme, you will be able to progress onto an undergraduate programme.

Location: Aston University, Birmingham

Course type


Course format

No placements


1 academic year (September to June)

UCAS code(s)


Start date

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Entry requirements and fees

Course duration:

  • Foundation programme only: 1 year
  • Foundation programme and 3 year BSc : 4 years
  • Foundation programme and 4 year BSc (including placement or year abroad): 5 years

Academic and age requirements

  • You must have attained excellent grades in your secondary school leaving certificate (Attestat or Year 12) or equivalent. Please use the link below to view standard entry requirements by country.
  • Applicants who will be under 18 years of age at the start of the programme in September will be considered on an individual basis upon receiving parental consent and evidence of a UK based guardian. 

English Language Requirements:

  • You will need a valid IELTS result from an approved UKVI test centre.  We require 5.5 overall (with a minimum of 5.0 in each test).           
  • If you only hold the minimum listed above, you will be required to undertake English language modules as part of the programme. If you already meet the minimum 1st year English language entry requirements for your chosen degree programme, your English Language modules may be substituted with alternative modules.

You can view the entry requirements for your country here 


Tuition fees (2021/2022) for International/EU students:  £14,500*

*Tuition fees are reviewed annually and may increase in subsequent years in line with inflation linked to the Retail Price Index (RPI) to take account of the University’s increased costs of delivering the Programme. When undertaking a placement year a placement year fee applies.

How to apply

The application is submitted onlinePlease select LSS as the University School. It is free of charge to apply.

Together with your online application, you must also:

  • State which undergraduate degree course you would like to progress onto.
  • Supply copies of your academic qualifications achieved so far. If they are not in English, you will need to provide a certified translation into English, as well as copies in the original language. 
  • Provide copies of your English language qualifications (if you have any).
  • Submit one academic letter of recommendation.
  • Give details of the courses you are currently studying, along with any results you are waiting for. 

Course outline

Programme Duration: 1 academic year (September to June)

The International Foundation Programme in Social Sciences focuses on the skills needed to be a successful social scientist: independent study, formulating and presenting arguments, evaluating literature and interpreting data. The programme also gives you an opportunity to sample a number of different social science subjects and topics so that you can broaden your perspective and find out where your passion lies. This programme will consolidate and build upon your existing skills and knowledge to facilitate your transition to a higher education.

This programme offers you the chance to develop a solid foundation for an exciting and rewarding graduate career in the social sciences. You will get a taste for many of the subjects we offer, to help you choose which path you’d like to follow.

Exploring the world of modern politics, you will study topics including international relations and conflict resolution, learning to analyse and evaluate political events and developments.

You will also have the chance to learn about the sociology of identity and inequality, as well as conduct your own research project.

Psychology also forms a key part of the programme as well. You will learn to understand the ways in which cognition, perception and language develop in children, and discover psychological research methods.

All the modules included in the course encourage you to develop skills in critical thinking, and independent study. Classes are designed to stimulate new ways of thinking and approaching topics, leaving you fully prepared to join the School of Social Sciences and Humanities on an undergraduate degree programme.


Core modules
  • Introduction to Data Analysis
  • Identities and Inequalities
  • Social Science Project
  • Professional Skills
  • The World of Modern Politics
Optional modules
  • Leadership and Management
  • Development Psychology
  • Introduction to Accounting and Finance
  • Security Challenges in the International System
  • E-business
  • Understanding the International System

Learning, teaching and assessment

You will have the best of both worlds with the Foundation Programme in Social Sciences at Aston - you will receive plenty of support and guidance from your module tutors, who are also experts in their respective fields of research. You can expect to attend lectures and seminars which support your independent study. You will be assessed by a variety of methods including written coursework, exams and presentations.

Programme Director

Dr Daniel Fitzpatrick

Register your interest

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