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University Pathways
Extended Foundation

Key information

Start dates:
8 April, 24 June and 9 September 2019; 6 January, 6 April and 29 June 2020
Course length:
4–7 terms (including the 3-term Advanced Level Foundation)
Class size range:
Average 21 hours per week (plus homework and private study)

Entry requirements

Completed 10 years of schooling with good results

7 terms: IELTS 4.0* or equivalent
5 terms: IELTS 4.5*
4 terms: IELTS 5.0*
*Entry level and rate of progress will depend on aptitude and will be assessed by Kings.
Minimum age:

Sample pathways for the Extended Foundation at Kings

Sample pathways for the Extended Foundation at Kings

The course

This course is for students with lower language levels who need additional academic development before they can commence the standard 3-term Advanced Level Foundation.

The last three terms of the Extended Foundation have the same curriculum as the Advanced Level Foundation and the first two or three terms are aimed at developing language and study skills. 

External moderation

An Independent Advisory Board is a key element of the rigorous Quality Assurance regime which makes the Extended Foundation so exceptional. 

Exams are set and marked by Kings teachers, but the standards are set by the Independent Advisory Board. This ensures the system is completely fair and the course maintains consistently high standards year after year.

The Board meets three times per year to:

  • ensure best practice is employed in setting and marking examinations and coursework
  • moderate marks where required
  • ensure the consistency of the award across all subjects and from one year to the next
  • hear appeals, if required.

Members of the Board are all distinguished educators from the university and sixth form sectors.

Course structure

Term 1

The first term of the programme will focus on language improvement and study skills. For the remainder of the term a breadth of subjects will be introduced whilst the main focus will continue to be language and study skills. You must pass an external language assessment at a level of IELTS 5.0+/Intermediate in order to progress to term 2.

Term 2

You will now start to study core academic subjects of Maths, English and ICT. You will also choose two elective modules. Alongside this, you will continue to work on language skills.

Term 3 

You will continue to study the three core academic subjects, plus your two elective modules. 

Course content

The academic course content involves a practical approach and provides a carefully developed bridge into UK academic life. As such, it will be more suitable to students who are not able to cope with the rigours of a highly academic A-level programme.

Core modules

1. English language development

You will take a broad skills-based programme, progressing from a general English focus to an academic English focus. You will gain the vocabulary and language skills needed for your chosen pathway. You will also develop essential study skills so you are prepared for the demands of academic programmes at Kings and beyond.

2. Maths enrichment

The programme will enable you to understand basic principles of mathematics up to a level of AS Maths in the areas of numeracy, algebra, geometry and statistics. This programme will ensure you reach the right level of attainment to undertake Foundation Data and, if you are a stronger mathematician, Foundation Maths.

3. Information Computer Technology

This programme comprises a series of basic Microsoft packages – Word, PowerPoint and Excel. You will learn how to understand and interpret statistical information, how to use Microsoft programmes effectively within your subject specialisms and how to incorporate such information within written tasks and presentations.

4. General academic enrichment

You will also follow the general Kings Academic Enrichment Programme as part of the curriculum. This will entail workshops and discussion groups focused on PSHE plus a choice of either Creative Arts or Physical Education.

Elective modules

1. Humanities

This module is a broad-based programme, taking topics and relating them to Human Geography, Politics and History.

At the end of this module you will:

  • be able to explain about which factors affect migration and population growth
  • be able to describe the difference between civil and criminal law in the UK
  • demonstrate an awareness of the EU
  • have an understanding of human rights
  • have developed basic skills to evaluate how real issues affect the world and its people

2. Business and Enterprise

This module uses topics from AS Business and brings in the experience of Young Enterprise.

At the end of this module you will:

  • have developed a general understanding of how businesses are structured
  • have a general awareness of how businesses operate
  • have an understanding of how an organisation meets the needs of their customers
  • have developed your awareness of sources of finance and how to acquire them

3. Scientific Investigation

This module is based on Biology, Physics and Chemistry – enhancing your scientific knowledge across all sciences and using practical laboratory work as the basis for scientific investigation.

At the end of this module you will:

  • have developed your awareness of scientific theoretical knowledge and methods
  • have developed your awareness of principles of physics and have explored the relationship between the theoretical and practical applications
  • have an understanding of chemical atomic structure and bonding
  • have an understanding of the characteristics of living organisms


Assessment is integral to the course. You will have a series of challenging coursework assignments and exams in each subject.

Assessment will be through regular tests, assignment and classwork culminating in a skills-based group of tests in term 1.

In term 2 the tasks work towards the academic IELTS test as well as preparing you for academic work in the future.

Learning outcomes and progression

You will learn how to research and present in spoken and written forms, learn the format of written tasks and how to incorporate tables and other materials into your work

On successful completion of the first 2–3 terms of the Extended Foundation, students will move onto the Advanced Level Foundation component.

After completing the 3-term Foundation, you will be able to start your degree of choice.