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Foundation in Business

Foundation course

Hear from a Foundation student

UCAS code: N101

Start dates: September 2023 / September 2024

Full time: 1-year foundation course leading to 3-year undergraduate degree (or 4-year undergraduate degree if it involves a work placement or you take a study abroad year)

Location: Headington

Department(s): Oxford Brookes Business School


Get ready to study an undergraduate business degree. This foundation year gives you the essential skills you’ll need for learning at university. It’s ideal if you want to top up your academic skills, or if you’re returning to education after a break.

You can personalise your learning experience by studying modules like Business Fundamentals, Tourism and Global Issues. You’ll also choose an undergraduate module, learning alongside students who are already in their first year of their undergraduate degree.

Completing the programme guarantees you a place on one of our degrees, such as Business and Management or International Hospitality and Tourism Management. During your Foundation, you’ll have opportunities to build your skills and knowledge through a variety of assessment types, including essays and reports, and presentations. Also you’ll get to create films, websites and posters, and write blogs.

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Why Oxford Brookes University?

  • Get ahead

    You can choose an undergraduate module as part of your course, to get a sense of what it’s like to study with us at this level.

  • A global community

    Study alongside a diverse mix of international students, learning from each other's experiences and broadening your horizons.

  • Explore your interests

    We try to schedule classes so you have time to make the most of Oxford and join university societies.

  • Personalise your study

    Everyone is different, so optional modules let you customise your learning and build your experience, so you can study aspects of business you want to pursue.

  • Seamlessly progress to a degree

    You’re guaranteed a spot on one of our undergraduate business programmes when you pass this course.

Course details

Course structure

Over your 2 semesters, you’ll study several compulsory modules. These will give you the confidence for studying at an undergraduate level, while building your academic and research skills. These modules are taught in small groups and include;

  • Business Fundamentals,
  • Economics for Business,
  • Culture and Communication,
  • Extended Research Essay,
  • Critical Thinking and Problem Solving,
  • University Study Skills.

You’ll also pick optional modules that reflect your learning ambitions, and an undergraduate module so you can experience what it’s like to study at this stage. This is a great opportunity to speak to students at this level and hear about their experiences.

Optional foundation modules include Business Fundamentals, Tourism and Hospitality, and Global Issues. Optional undergraduate modules include Global Business Communications and Raising Individual Financial Awareness.

After a year of studying the foundation programme, you’ll have a better insight into what to expect from life as an undergraduate student.

Students in a lecture

Learning and teaching

You will have around 15 class hours per week. Classes are held Monday to Friday (except Bank Holidays), usually between 9am and 4pm. Some subject modules may be between 5pm and 8pm.

You will need to spend at least 20 hours per week on independent study which includes homework, assignments, tutorials, reading and preparation for classes (in groups or individually).


In your foundation year you will be taught by highly qualified academic staff. 

You will gain practice and training in the different kinds of assessment that are common in higher education, for instance essays, reports, individual and group presentations, reflective learning journals and project work.

Study modules

Start this course in September

You can only start this course in September. Your course is 24 weeks so you will study your first semester between September and December and your second semester between January and April.

Year 1

Compulsory modules

Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

Extended Research Essay

Understand the processes of planning, researching and writing a substantial assignment to the standards required for higher education; you will finally submit a 2000-word paper.

Intercultural Communication

Increase your awareness and understanding of how people from diverse backgrounds, including yours, interact with, and interpret, the world around them; prepare yourself for studying in a multicultural university and, in future, living and working as an active citizen in a globalised world.

University Study Skills 2

Economics for Business

Introduction to basic economics, with reference to theory and contemporary issues.

Business Fundamentals

Examines the nature, forms and functions of business organisations and their relationship with the external environments in which they operate.

Optional modules

Maths and Statistics for University Study

Applicants without the appropriate Maths GCSE grade (or equivalent), who wish to progress to a course that requires Maths GCSE (or equivalent), will need to take the compulsory Maths and Statistics module within the foundation year.

Foundation level

  • Business Fundamentals
  • Economics for Business
  • Tourism and Hospitality
  • Global Issues
  • Development Studies
  • Modern Thought
  • English Law

Undergraduate level

  • Foundations of Business
  • Global Business Communications
  • Developing and Planning Events
  • Raising Individual Financial Awareness.

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.

Download course structure chart


When you pass this course, you’ll be guaranteed a place on one of our undergraduate business programmes. Students regularly go on to study our Business and Management, International Hospitality and Tourism Management, and Events Management degrees.

As well as new knowledge, you’ll have also gained skills in team working, time management, personal reflection, and presentation. All of these are highly valuable to employers across various industries.

Your tutors will encourage you to take part in the voluntary and community activities offered by our careers team. We want you to make the most of your time with us, and see all that Oxford has to offer.

Entry requirements

This course is not available to students classed as International for fees purposes.

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: 80

A Level: BB

IB Points: 24


Further offer details

Equivalent qualifications accepted.

Tuition fees

Please see the fees note
Home (UK) full time

International full time

Home (UK) full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees

2022 / 23
Home (UK) full time

International full time

2023 / 24
Home (UK) full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

+44 (0)1865 483088

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

Oxford Brookes University intends to maintain its fees for new and returning Home students at the maximum permitted level.

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.