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ONCAMPUS Southampton

United Kingdom


For international students wishing to study in England and ease gently into student life, the University of Southampton Pathway Centre provides foundation courses. Foundation programmes are managed by ONCAMPUS Southampton, giving students the chance to get used to student life whilst acquiring the skills and knowledge needed to progress to the undergraduate level.

Students complete a foundation programme, studying for up to 25 hours per week. This provides enough free time for a part-time job to cover everyday living costs. Most foundation courses are completed over one academic year, as students get used to life in Southampton and develop their understanding of colloquial and formal English.

Studying a foundation course, students have access to wellbeing support and university facilities. Each student will follow the pathway most suited to their future plans, being assigned to the Business, Economics, Finance and Management pathway, the Engineering and Physical Sciences pathway, the Humanities and Social Sciences pathway, the Life Sciences pathway or the Art and Design pathway, before progressing on to their chosen degree study course.

ONCAMPUS courses are specifically designed for students that have completed their high school exams in their own country, but do not qualify immediately for degree study in the UK.

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What's new

What's new

The University's Pathway Centre itself is new, only launching in 2021 with the first students beginning their studies in September of that year.

The University of Southampton is ranked 15th in the UK (THE, 2021) and 90th in the QS World Rankings (QS, 2021) placing it in the top 1% globally.

The university has been awarded ‘Home to the world's leading business incubator' (SETSquared ranked no.1 by UBI Global) making it an excellent choice for future entrepreneurs.

For subject rankings it is ranked in the UK top 10 for Marketing (Complete University Guide, 2021), 2nd in the UK for Music and also in the UK top 20 for Art and Design amongst many others.

In April 2021, the University of Southampton was ranked in the top 200 learning institutes in the world in delivering the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals. This ranking measures the impact that universities have on society and communities beyond just teaching and research. Over 1,100 universities were included in the rankings.

The university has also improved its position in the global rankings for Statistics and Operational Research published by QS – it is now viewed as the 33rd best for this subject in the world, and the 7th best in the UK.

The university has also recently announced multiple new research developments that it is involved in. These focus on human health, environmental issues, space travel and more, with many contemporary studies looking at the impact of, and protection against, COVID-19.

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Teaching quality

Teaching quality

Students completing ONCAMPUS courses have access to the same high standards of teaching available throughout the University of Southampton. They also have access to the same facilities, and also to wellbeing support that's tailored to international students.

As a student at the University of Southampton Pathway Centre, an individual learns varied skills that will help them through their time in the UK. As well as developing their written and spoken English language skills, students will learn the time management and study skills needed to complete their degree. Foundation courses provide a gentle introduction to life and study in the UK, so students can adjust to UK culture before they begin degree study.

All students completing a foundation course have a guaranteed opportunity for progression. They can choose to progress to their chosen course of study at the University of Southampton, or to move to a different university that is part of the ONCAMPUS program. In total there are 13 universities within the ONCAMPUS remit, with nine of these being located within the UK.

Students are expected to study three to four subjects as part of their foundation course. They must also study English Language as a compulsory addition. Each subject will require up to five hours of class time every week. Students also have access to subject tutors and to personal tutors who can support them to succeed in independent university study.

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Department structure

Department structure

Students will follow one of five different pathways, tailored to the requirements of the intended future course of study.

These are:

  • Business, Economics, Finance and Management

Students completing this pathway will continue on to courses including (but not limited to) Accounting and Finance, Entrepreneurship, Business Analytics, Economics and Marketing.

  • Engineering and Physical Sciences

After working through this foundation pathway, students can progress to degree-level courses in subjects such as Artificial Intelligence, Civil Engineering, Cyber Security and Data Science.

  • Humanities and Social Sciences

Students following the Humanities and Social Sciences Pathway will be able to progress to degree courses including Ancient History, Archaeology, Law, Languages, Music, Philosophy, Education, Film and Politics.

  • Life Sciences

Students completing the Life Sciences pathway can progress to courses such as Audiology, Conservation, Health Psychology and Genomics.

  • Art and Design

Students on the Art and Design pathway will be offered progression to courses including Fashion Design, Games Design, Art, Graphics, Curation and Fine Art.

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Entry requirements

Entry requirements

To begin an Undergraduate Foundation Programme course, students must be at least 16 years old and must have completed at least 11 years of schooling. They will need an IELTS (International English Language Testing System) level of 5.0 or equivalent. The Foundation Programme offers a year of study before reaching the undergraduate level.

Students wishing to complete a Master's Foundation Programme, before progressing on to a master's degree, must hold a bachelor's degree from a recognised university and there may also be a cognate requirement for some subjects.

If students do not feel that their English language skills are of the standard needed for study in the UK, they can complete an English Language Preparation Programme before starting their foundation course. For this, a student must be at least 16 years old, with an IELTS of 3.5 of equivalent. The English Language Preparation Programme is not available at the University of Southampton, but students can choose to move to Southampton when they're ready for their Undergraduate Foundation Programme.

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Scholarship & funding

Scholarship & funding

Course costs range from around GBP 19,000 to around GBP 25,000. For all programmes, there is a GBP 300 registration fee. All students are required to pay a deposit of GBP 2,200, though this will be refunded.

Students under the age of 18 will be charged a supplementary fee. This fee covers the cost of providing additional support, ensuring that younger students (classed as ‘minors' in the UK) can comfortably adjust to independent living whilst in the UK without their parents. Students under 18 will be given accommodation with other younger students, as well as access to an airport pick-up service and assistance and emergency contacts. Supplementary fees for students under 18 range from GBP 575 to GBP 1,150.

All fees for tuition and accommodation must be paid termly. Students can pay online, and should make their payment at least 30 days before the start of the academic term.

Scholarships are not available for study at the University of Southampton Pathway Centre, though students may be eligible for University of Southampton scholarships once they progress to undergraduate degree-level study.

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ONCAMPUS students at the University of Southampton Pathway Centre will have access to all facilities at the Highfield Campus and other related venues. The Highfield Campus is the main campus for the University of Southampton, with state-of-the-art learning facilities including lecture theatres, private study pods and modern seminar spaces.

The University of Southampton campus includes a cinema, a shop, a bank and healthcare facilities. Students also have access to various gym and sports venues.

Shuttle buses are available for direct transport to the Boldrewood Innovation Campus (for engineering-related courses), the Avenue Campus (for humanities courses) and the Winchester School of Art. The Winchester School of Art includes specialist computer suites, 3D printing facilities, industrial sewing and knitting machines and modern photography studios.

Students are offered ONCAMPUS accommodation, overseen by ONCAMPUS staff who are trained to support the needs of international and foundation students. Minors, under the age of 18, are housed together. All student accommodation is situated close to the Highfield Campus, so students can easily access the facilities on offer.

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Average cost of living in United Kingdom

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Total average cost: £1355

  • £474
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    Daily life
  • £234
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