Two engineering students working on a project.

International Foundation Year in Engineering, Computing and Life Sciences

Maths and Science modules designed for success at LJMU.

Your pathway to the first year of an engineering degree

The programme includes academic modules, study skills and English language training, providing complete preparation for your undergraduate degree in Engineering.

Is this programme for me?

On the International Foundation Year in Engineering, you will:

  • gain understanding of mechanics and mathematics relevant to your undergraduate study.
  • develop your knowledge of physics and learn about atomic physics, materials, heat and gases and oscillations and waves.
  • if you choose Life Science, you will focus on biology and chemistry, developing their knowledge in key areas such as cell biology, physiological processes in animals and plants, inorganic and organic chemistry, and an overview of contemporary science.

Key facts

  • Two semesters
  • October, November* or January

*Enhanced Induction

View course-specific entry requirements and course fees.

With multiple entry points throughout the year, visit our semester dates page to see when you can join us.

Why study the International Foundation Year in Engineering, Computing and Life Sciences?

  • Upon successful completion of the programme, you will join LJMU which is ranked in the UK top 25 for Civil Engineering and Mechanical Engineering (The Guardian University Guide 2024).
  • You will have the option to progress to professionally-accredited degrees.
  • Develop your English skills, and receive support from a dedicated faculty.

What will you study?

Throughout the two-semester programme, you will study core modules that will improve your subject knowledge and English level.

Core modules

Academic English Skills aims to provide thorough training in the language and related academic skills which will enable international students to best achieve their academic potential at university. Our Academic English programme is validated by UK ENIC, the UK government agency responsible for providing information and expert opinion on qualifications and skills worldwide. 

You will develop awareness and competency in a range of language-related academic skills, including the processes of academic writing, effective and extensive reading strategies, effective participation in seminars and delivery of presentations, and listening to and recording information effectively from lectures. You will also develop the accuracy and range of written and spoken language required to use language effectively and appropriately, with clarity and confidence in an academic context. 

Alongside your classes, your studies will be supported by an online learning platform, providing you with a range of tasks and activities specifically designed to develop and extend your language and academic skills outside the classroom and to give you more control over your own learning. 

You will complete a self-study project on a topic that you will take, in consultation with your tutor, from the academic discipline that you will subsequently study at degree level. This will also include computer skills.

Optional modules

For students wanting to progress to engineering degrees, they will do Applied Maths, Introduction to Engineering, Physics and Pure Maths modules.

For students wanting to progress to life sciences degrees, they will do Maths for Science, Chemistry and Biology modules.

For students wanting to progress to computing degrees, they will do Applied Maths, Coding for Computing, Introduction to Computing, and Pure Maths modules. 

You will be introduced to the relationships between forces, linear motion and energy and the conditions for static equilibrium of a body. You will be provided with an understanding of mathematical modelling of force combinations, non-linear motion and non-uniform motion related to varying forces. The module will enable you to identify the application of theory to practice and develop independent study skills in preparation for progression to engineering programmes.

- Understand key terms and process in cell biology and metabolism.
- Use correct scientific terminology in relation to biological organisms and processes.
- Understand key concepts relating to biological systems.
- Develop skills in learning independently - manage study time and learn actively.

- Understand key ideas in chemistry
- Evaluate and understand key principles
- Understand quantitative aspects of chemical formulae and moles
- Evaluate and demonstrate knowledge of key diagrams

This module builds on the skills learnt in the Semester 1 module Introduction To Computing by ensuring students can utilise their skills to code proficiently.

- Understand the basics of computer systems
- Be able to programme basic coding functions and understand good coding practice
- Understand ethical impacts of using computers, including issues of privacy
- Understand issues relating to cyber security

You will acquire an understanding of how computers can be used to solve mathematics and how mathematics packages may be used to solve engineering problems.

This module provides you with an understanding of mathematics in preparation for studying undergraduate degrees in science. You will develop skill in mathematical application, method and technique.

- Understand basic fundamental physical laws and principles
- Solve problems in physics using appropriate mathematical tools.
- Demonstrate an understanding of concepts in mechanics, materials, waves, Gas Laws, heat transfer, Atomic Physics, electricity and fields.
- Develop skills in learning independently - manage study time and learn actively.

You will acquire an understanding of mathematics in preparation for studying undergraduate degrees in science and engineering. You will also develop skills in mathematical application, method and technique, as well as independent study skills.

Progress to semester two

To progress to semester two, you need to obtain required grades in modules.

OverallEnglishStudy Skills

Study plan

English language levelSemestersCourse lengthStart dateEnd date
IELTS 4.5 (4.0 in all skills) or IELTS 6.0 (5.5 in all skills) for Pharmacy MPharm progression degree option2 semesters27 weeksOctoberMay
IELTS 4.5 (4.0 in all skills) or IELTS 6.0 (5.5 in all skills) for Pharmacy MPharm progression degree option2 semesters30 weeksNovemberAugust
IELTS 4.5 (4.0 in all skills) or IELTS 6.0 (5.5 in all skills) for Pharmacy MPharm progression degree option2 semesters27 weeksJanuaryAugust

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Save your spot

90% of research

in Sport and Exercise Sciences is classed as world-leading or internationally excellent

(Research Excellence Framework REF 2021)

18th in the UK

for General Engineering

(The Complete University Guide 2024)

17th in the UK

for Forensic Science

(The Complete University Guide 2024)

Progression degrees

Successful completion of this programme leads to a range of undergraduate degrees at LJMU, subject to achieving the required grades. As well as achieving the grades necessary, you will be required to take an Academic English Studies (AES) test at the end of your course. Once you successfully complete this, you will be ready to start your degree at Liverpool John Moores University.

Along with being invited to attend a graduation ceremony organised by the International Study Centre, students who successfully complete their pathway programme will be provided with a transcript and certificate. The award of any certificate is made in line with the Final Transcripts and Awards Certificate Policy and the Certificate and Transcripts for Students on Collaborative Programmes Policy, which are available via the Policy Centre.

Degree Programme NameAwardOverall GradeEnglish Grade
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For more information on your specific course, please visit

Please note:

*The English language entry requirements stated are for information regarding entry to the course. If you require a UK visa to study, depending on the type of visa you need, the English language requirements and valid English tests to satisfy the UK visa criteria may differ.

If you are applying to study in the UK under the Student visa route it may be necessary for you to submit a Secure English Language Test (SELT) as part of your visa application.

Must complete a portfolio comprising of 5 – 8 drawings to be submitted by the end of May of the academic year:

  • Architecture BA (Hons)
  • Interior Architecture BA (Hons)

Must have studied Biology and Chemistry:

  • Biochemistry BSc (Hons)
  • Biomedical Science BSc (Hons)

Must have studied Biology:

  • Biology BSc (Hons)
  • Psychology BSc
  • Wildlife Conservation BSc (Hons)

Must have studied Chemistry:

  • Chemistry BSc (Hons)

Additional requirements

Interview required

Admissions Process

  1. Applications will be assessed, and qualifications will be checked to see that they meet or are predicted to meet our entry requirements.
  2. Applicants that meet this initial criteria will then be sent an assessment by email with full instructions and a deadline for submission.
  3. Shortlisted applicants will be invited to an interview and offers will be made to successful applicants.
  • Assessment required

Further information

  • DBS, Occupational Health requirements

Additional Requirements for Non-UK Students:

  • Criminal Records Check (from your home country)
  • Letter of Good Character (written in English)

Applicants should review the communication from the International Admissions Office who will contact applicants directly with all relevant forms and paperwork. Further information is also available on the fitness to practise web pages.

An international student smiling in Liverpool.

How to apply

See how to apply for a course at the International Study Centre and view the documents you need to provide with your application.

Student smiling in accommodation

International Study Centre

LJMU International Study Centre offers a range of pathway programmes to progress to undergraduate and postgraduate degrees at LJMU.

An LJMU student on graduation day.

Prepare for Success

Join our online preparation course at no extra cost, so that you are ready to thrive academically and culturally in your new environment.

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Our student enrolment advisors are available to answer your questions and help you with your application. We can’t wait to meet you.