Foundation Year – when you haven’t obtained your secondary school certificate – Motivation Academy

Foundation Year – when you haven’t obtained your secondary school certificate


A Foundation Year (also called a ‘Year Zero’): is it worth it?

You want to study, but you do not meet requirements? You don’t particularly care about a matriculation certificate, but you think studying in the UK could pay off? Your English is not good enough for studying abroad? Or maybe you want to change your major, but you don’t have required qualifications?

If you answered ‘yes’ to at least one of the above questions, a Foundation Year is the right option for you.


What is a Foundation Year?

All British universities offer a Year Zero option for those who are determined to study their dream major, even though they do not meet minimum requirements.

A Foundation Year, also known as a ‘Year Zero’, is a one-year study year allowing you to fill in subject knowledge and language gaps and enhance your chances for going on to study a full degree.


What opportunities does a Foundation Year give you?

You can choose between two options.

You can graduate from a separate college and then decide you want to apply to a different school to complete your degree. In this case, you will not get a student loan to cover the Foundation year.

Alternatively, you can also choose your college beforehand, complete a Foundation Year and continue your studies in the same school. This way you only need to pass the final exam and you get priority in the recruitment process. You are also entitled to get a student loan.

We suggest you choose the second path – your path to success – and we are happy to help you with it.


What are Foundation Year courses?

First, they will help you brush up on your language and knowledge to meet the academic criteria allowing you to begin studies.

Year Zero courses

– academic English: learning to write, read, listen, and speak

– effective learning: getting familiar with British studying system, working with computer, research methodology, using and understanding data, teamwork, solving problems, collecting information and avoiding data copying. And, first and foremost, time management.


The variety of courses depends on a particular major.


Exemplary Foundation Year courses:


– Introduction to Business covers such fields as management and leadership, motivation, business funding in Great Britain, business classification, financial efficiency and annual reporting, impact of economic factors, current trends in business and marketing.

– Accounting Basics: mathematics in business accounting.

– Business Mathematics – using statistics and mathematics in business economy.


Art and Design:

– Art Portfolio: presenting your skills and strengths in various fields

– Formative elements in art, media, and creation process: historical and modern cultural factors of a creation process.

– 2D and 3D Technology: graphics programming, photography and printing, craftwork using wood, metal, and soft materials.

– Digital learning – practical knowledge on Apple software, photography and animation, various types of software used for preparing a portfolio.


Life Sciences:

– Cells and Tissues: anatomy, histology, and physiology basics in theory and laboratory work

– Microbiology and Biomedicine Basics: infections and impact of diseases on population

– Biochemistry Basics: biochemical reactions, human health and diseases

– Chemistry Basics: theory of chemistry, functional groups, molecules, chemical compounds, energetics, thermodynamics


Engineering and Computing:

– Mathematics: engineering and processing data on academic level

– Engineering: theory and practice of mechanics and electrical engineering

– Programming and Problem Solving: practical use of apps and software

– Creative Programming: creating a project based on the knowledge from other courses depending on a major


How much time do the courses consume?

The aim of a Year Zero (also called a ‘Foundation Year’) is filling subject knowledge gaps, therefore the number of hours is slightly bigger than in case of a regular year. Usually there is around 16-20 hours a week. The most important thing is good attendance, so it is worth considering while planning your personal and leisure time.


The main benefits of a Year Zero

A Year Zero is a perfect time to get your grades up, build your portfolio required when applying for art departments, especially for those who don’t feel confident about their fluency in English


– you get an individual tutor, which guarantees constant support

– you are a part of a group consisting of up to 15 people

– your teachers also run academic courses

– you get familiar with the British education system

– you get a chance to integrate with student community by participating in academic life

– you get to know the British culture


Passing a Year Zero final exam is a ticket to your dream studies in the UK. The required average mark is from 50 to 70%, the majority of people meet these standards.


What do you have to do in order to Begin studies at a Year Zero (foundation year)?

The requirements vary depending on a school, e.g.:

– 40-50 % pts from a matriculation exam on a basic level

– minimum 60% pts from a matriculation exam on a basic level and the same or higher result for one or two subjects on an extended level give you a wide variety of choices


Additionally, you have to obtain one of the following language certificates:

– IELTS with a minimum result at 4.5 and 4.0 in particular sections

– Polish matriculation certificate with 50-70% for basic level English or 55% and more for extended level English

– other international certificates such as CAE, CPE, PTE TOEFL, or TOEIC

– IMPORTANT! Some schools offer an IN-HOUSE test or a telephone interview as an equivalent of a diploma.


How much will a Foundation Year cost me?

The cost of a Year Zero is between 6000 and 16000 pounds at the most prestigious universities. For those who plan on starting at a Year Zero and continue their education at the same school (the option two which we strongly suggest), the full cost of studies including a Year Zero is covered by a student loan.

The studies take 4 years, starting at a Foundation Year and ending after a 3-year bachelor’s degree graduation.

This way you don’t have to worry about funding for tuition fees at all.

Before you choose your school and your major, contact us at Motivation Academy and find out if your preferred university allows you for a student loan, as some schools don’t.


The application process

There are several ways to apply to a Year Zero, depending on the particular school.

If you choose the option 2 and associate your Foundation Year and your further education with one school, we can help you with your application: You can find us on Facebook as well.

If you do not meet requirements of a particular school, the option to begin at a Year Zero will be presented to you by the university. If you’re not sure if you are eligible for entry, if you completed all your documents, or if you properly filled out the application form to your dream school, contact us! Here at Motivation Academy we are more than happy to help you and answer all your questions.



Foundation Year, also called a ‘Year Zero’:

– allows you to begin your education at your dream major, even if you haven’t obtained language and matriculation certificates.

– gives you practical skills and teaches you efficiency helping you begin your studies.

– saves your time allowing you to skip the process of getting your matriculation exam marks up

– allows you to enter the academic life at a British university


Motivation Academy is here to help you get your ticket to success by getting you through a recruitment process to a Year Zero combined with further education at the same school, as well as support you in getting a positive decision on your student loan.

Contact us now via Facebook, email: or by telephone: 07949706242.

We are here for you.


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