Course overview

QA Higher Education partners with Holborn Institute to offer an International Foundation Programme taught in Abuja for students who aspire to study an undergraduate programme in the UK. The programme is designed to enable these students to study a programme in Nigeria that builds their subject knowledge and academic English language skills to fully prepare for the study environment and academic culture in the UK.

Upon successfully passing the programme students will receive an unconditional offer to study an undergraduate degree at one or more of QA Higher Education’s partner universities, these include:

  • Northumbria University
  • Solent University
  • Ulster University
  • University of Roehampton

Key facts:

  • Prepare for UK university study and build your academic skills for undergraduate level
  • Study at Holborn Institute in Abuja
  • Guaranteed offer of a place at one of QA Higher Education’s partner universities upon successfully passing the programme
  • 2 and 3 semester programme available depending on your IELTS level
  • September (3 semester) and January (2 semester) start dates

By successfully completing the QA Higher Education International Foundation Programme, you will be well equipped to meet the demands of undergraduate study at a UK university. The programme is specifically designed to support your transition from a High School education or equivalent overseas qualification into level 4 study in the UK. As such, it provides you with substantial support for language development, together with enhancing your ability to work with academic subjects at level 3.

Emphasis is placed on developing your confidence and independence and your ability to learn effectively within the UK’s academic culture. The course also ensures that you have developed effective learning and study skills and are familiar with the types of assessment you will need when you are studying a UK undergraduate course.

Specifically, the programme is designed to prepare you for studying at undergraduate level in the UK. This includes building your skills and confidence in academic English language, and developing your familiarity with learning and teaching environments to prepare you for the classroom environment at UK universities.

How will I be taught?

You will study across 2 or 3 semesters, depending upon your English language ability.

The differences are detailed below:

3 Semester Programme 2 Semester Programme
Which semesters will I study?
  • Semester 0
  • Semester 1
  • Semester 2
  • Semester 1
  • Semester 2
When do I start? September start January start
What English language level do I need? IELTS entry of 4.5 (with no single element below 4.0) IELTS entry of 5.0 (with no single element below 4.5)

Please note: to progress from Semester 0 to Semester 1 you will need to pass all of the Semester 0 modules, achieving a minimum of 40% in each module.

Semester 0 (3 Semester programme only): In Semester 0, you will have English classes timetabled for 20 hours per week. Throughout this Semester you will improve your language levels in grammar and vocabulary as well as core English skills in reading, writing, listening and speaking to prepare you for Semester 1 of the International Foundation Programme.

Semesters 1 and 2 (3 Semester and 2 Semester programmes): In Semester 1 and 2, you will develop your English skills. However, more time will be spent on improving English language levels for undergraduate courses. These Semesters are designed to improve your ability to write essays, read for your studies, develop your ability to understand lectures and take part in discussions and presentations.

Contact hours, self-study and assessment methods

Throughout the programme, you will have 20 hours of teaching per week through lectures, seminars and workshops. You will also be expected to spend a further 10 to 15 hours undertaking homework, assignments and independent study. This is good practice for university study and will help prepare you for your chosen undergraduate programme.

This course is taught by Holborn Institute and awarded by QA Higher Education.

Assessment methods for this course include: exam, coursework, presentation and a practical.

After successful completion of the course, you will be awarded a Certificate of Completion by QA Higher Education which will be recognised by our university partners for entry to your programme of choice, from the range of target degrees open to you.

Following successful completion of your programme and on meeting any other progression requirements set by your chosen university, you will receive an offer of a place to study the degree programme you applied for with one of QA Higher Education’s University partners.

Semester 0 – 3-semester programme only

Understanding Texts – academic reading and vocabulary development (0 credits)

In addition to helping to develop your reading skills, this module introduces you to how to read academic texts and as such it will increase your confidence in using the types of academic materials you will use during your degree.

Academic Communication – listening and speaking in an academic context (0 credits)

Being able to listen effectively in lectures and seminars, both to lecturers and fellow learners, is a key part of the learning process during an undergraduate programme and proficiency is essential if you are to engage fully with the learning opportunities open to you. This module is designed to develop the listening skills of learners, together with their ability to speak fluently and clearly in both general and academic contexts.

Academic Communication – writing in an academic context (0 credits)

This module helps you to develop your ability to structure sentences and paragraphs as well as generally developing the sophistication of your written use of language. These skills are developed in the context of specific practical tasks to help you become accustomed to academic style questions with coherent and well-structured text.

Language in Context (0 credits)

This module focuses on the non-academic use of English in a range of situations including social ones, and use of language in popular literature, media and current affairs.  It is design to develop your confidence in the use of language in domestic, social and work environments.

Semester 1 & 2

Developing and Using Language in an Academic Context (40 credits)

This module underpins the language development that has to take place to take you from your entry level of English through to the level of language skill required for successful study at level 4 of a degree programme. As such the module focuses on the parallel development of the core linguistic skills of reading, writing, speaking and listening.

Maximising Academic Potential (20 credits)

This module is structured to help you gradually develop independence of learning underpinned by the ability to research problems, access and utilise academic resources in a variety of formats.  The module will equip you with a range of useful practical skills around searching and using electronic and paper-based libraries, note taking, referencing and the importance of good academic conduct.

Mastering Grammar and Vocabulary (20 credits)

This module is designed to help you improve your mastery of grammar and to increase your academic lexis. This module equips you with the tools needed to be self-analytical and proactive in your language development, focussing on the development of your grammatical skills and lexis.

Problem Solving using Mathematics and Statistics (20 credits)

This module aims to build the mathematical competence and confidence of learners.  The module adopts an applied approach to developing mathematical skills and confidence through seeking to demonstrate to learners how an understanding of mathematics and statistics can be used to solve a variety of real world problems relevant to a range of business scenarios.

International Business in Context (20 credits)

Through study of international business, what drives and hinders it, its upsides and downsides, this module introduces you to complex real world issues and analyses the effect in a global context.  As such the module offers you an opportunity to engage in study of elements from a range of different academic disciplines as well encouraging the synthesis of this learning to understand why and how international business conduct in a modern global society impacts us both commercially and individually.

Academic entry requirements

  • Successful completion of 12 years of schooling, or GCSE/iGCSE – 5 passes at A-D

We welcome applications from students who have obtained good grades in their upper secondary education. We will also accept students with:

  • WAEC (WASSCE) – Sufficient grades in at least 6 subjects (minimum D including maths for 3 semesters and minimum C including maths for 2 semesters).
  • NECO – Sufficient grades in at least 6 subjects (minimum D including maths for 3 semesters and minimum C including maths for 2 semesters).
  • NABTEB: Sufficient grades in at least 6 subjects (minimum C including maths for 3 semesters and for 2 semesters)

English language requirements

  • 3 semester programme: IELTS 4.5 (with no single element below 4.0)
  • 2 semester programme: IELTS 5.0 (with no single element below 4.5)

Tuition fees:

  • 2 semester: N2,500,000
  • 3 semester: N3,000,000

These tuition fees cover the cost of your course and teaching materials. Holborn Institute also have accommodation options for those choosing to board. Please note accommodation costs are not included in the tuition fees above.

For more information on the course, and how to apply, please contact Holborn Institute using the following details:

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