Engineering Foundation

Foundation course

UCAS code: H111

Start dates: September 2024 / September 2025

Full time: 1 year foundation course leading to a 3 or 4-year degree course

Part time: 2 years

Location: Headington

Department(s): School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics

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The demand for engineers is at an all-time high in the UK. By studying our foundation course, you’ll be taking your first step to success. We’ll prepare you for degrees in mechanical, motorsport, and automotive engineering, so you can kickstart your career and become part of this exciting industry.

Technical expertise meets creativity and imagination on this course. You'll explore the basic mathematical and scientific principles in engineering and how they apply to the real world. All of this knowledge will help you bring ideas to life.

Gaining hands-on experience will be important too. You’ll work with real engine components and take part in industry-inspired workshops, with plenty of time spent in our laboratories. At times it will be challenging, but it means you’ll feel ready to join one of our degree programmes by the end of your foundation year.

If you're a motorsports fanatic then there’s no better place to study than Oxford Brookes. We’re connected to the industry and even have our own Formula Student team which you can get involved with as a foundation student.

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Students working together

Why Oxford Brookes University?

  • Oxford Brookes Racing

    Get involved with our Formula Student team. Formula Student (FS) is Europe's most established educational engineering competition and celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2023.

  • At the heart of motorsport

    We have strong connections to local Formula One teams and other automotive factories in the area.

  • International experts

    Our academics are making breakthroughs in a range of research areas including alternative fuels and different manufacturing techniques.

  • Academic collaboration

    Students who progress to a degree subject have even become industrial collaborators on staff research projects.

  • Build a foundation

    This course is designed to prepare you for our degrees in mechanical, motorsport, and automotive engineering.

  • Free language courses

    Free language courses are available to full-time undergraduate and postgraduate students on many of our courses, and can be taken as a credit on some courses.

  • Study abroad

    To find out whether you can study or work abroad while on this course, please email

Course details

Course structure

Every engineer needs excellent mathematics skills. That’s why you’ll complete a double module in maths. Don’t worry, we'll start with the basics, and gradually explore more complex areas. We also cover data analysis and statistics which are also key skills for professionals in this area.

You’ll look at the mechanical principles that underpin engineering, from forces, stresses, and strains, to kinematics, thermodynamics, and experimental techniques. We’ll also explore electronic engineering principles and how these principles come to life in engineering parts, devices, and systems.

By looking at engineering applications, you’ll understand how mechanical and electronic engineering integrate. That’s key for knowing how to use materials, build faster cars and create real change.

We’ve designed this course so you’ll be ready to move on to our degree programme when you finish. With knowledge of the key principles, you’ll be ready to take your learning to the next level and apply your skills to practical design challenges.

Students with lecturer

Learning and teaching

Our teaching methods include:

  • lectures with question-and-answer sessions
  • demonstrations
  • small-group tutorials
  • practical work.

We also use tutorial sheets and assignments to develop your abilities and provide focused feedback. As well as encourage you to work on your own and extend your understanding.


We assess you through a combination of examination and coursework. However, some modules are based wholly on coursework.

Our assessment methods include:

  • assignments
  • library exercises
  • class tests
  • online tests
  • assessed practical work using innovative applications of IT and specialised equipment.

Study modules

Year 1

Compulsory modules

  • Fundamentals and Applications of Technology

    This is your introduction to the fundamental principles of physics for engineering and technology applications. What you’ll study and learn can be brought to life through a design project where you’ll be able to apply your theoretical knowledge to the project you will have designed and built such as a mediaeval siege engine or trebuchet.

  • Engineering Applications

    This is a practical module that will introduce to you aspects of the design and development of mechanical and electrical engineering components, devices and systems. You’ll use a  case study approach and you will use typical engineering products that will aid and develop your understanding of technology in practice.

  • Basic Data Analysis

    You’ll study the fundamental concepts and basic techniques of statistical data analysis. To build your skills in interpretation and analysis, which will help to prepare you for more advanced study into data analysis.

  • Basic Mechanical Engineering Principles

    You will study the basic mechanical engineering principles to build your knowledge and skills  in mechanical engineering. You’ll develop your knowledge to be able to apply these principles to typical engineering components, like devices and systems.

  • Basic Electronic Engineering Principles

    Study and learn the basic electronic engineering principles to start building your understanding and to develop your active knowledge of electronic engineering. You’ll be able to interpret and apply these principles to typical engineering components, like devices and systems.

  • Foundation Engineering Mathematics

    This is your introduction to Engineering Mathematics and its application to real-world problems. This is a post module, which provides you with the mathematics background of GCSE and A-level to support your further study in engineering. 

Please note: As our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from those shown here. The structure of the course may also mean some modules are not available to you.


If you pass this foundation course, we guarantee you a place on one of our engineering degree programmes. Students who progress to a degree subject have even become members of staff for the department after graduating.

Whatever you decide to do next, you’ll get support from the University Career Service. The team can help you research companies and careers, as well as explain how to apply for jobs.

Entry requirements

Wherever possible we make our conditional offers using the UCAS Tariff. The combination of A-level grades listed here would be just one way of achieving the UCAS Tariff points for this course.

Standard offer

UCAS Tariff Points: 56

A Level: CD

IB Points: 24


Further offer details

We welcome applications from candidates with alternative qualifications, and from mature students.

International qualifications and equivalences

Tuition fees

Please see the fees note
Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees

2024 / 25
Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

2025 / 26
Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

+44 (0)1865 534400

Please note, tuition fees for Home students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students in line with an inflationary amount determined by government. Oxford Brookes University intends to maintain its fees for new and returning Home students at the maximum permitted level.

Tuition fees for International students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students. 

The following factors will be taken into account by the University when it is setting the annual fees: inflationary measures such as the retail price indices, projected increases in University costs, changes in the level of funding received from Government sources, admissions statistics and access considerations including the availability of student support. 

How and when to pay

Tuition fee instalments for the semester are due by the Monday of week 1 of each semester. Students are not liable for full fees for that semester if they leave before week 4. If the leaving date is after week 4, full fees for the semester are payable.

  • For information on payment methods please see our Make a Payment page.
  • For information about refunds please visit our Refund policy page

Additional costs

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course are detailed below.

Programme changes:
On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website. For more information, please visit our changes to programmes page.