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International Foundation Year (IFY)

BLC’s International Foundation Year provides you with an entry route to UK university courses, and the skills required to help you succeed on your chosen degree course.

The International Foundation Year (IFY) is a one year pre-university qualification in business or computing  which includes a significant degree of English language teaching. The qualification is designed to provide you with an entry route to UK university courses.

To complete the qualification you must study and pass eight units.

The qualification consists of the following six core units:

  • Developing English Language Skills - develops your English language skills to be able to communicate effectively beyond simple everyday contexts.
  • Advanced English Language Skills - enables you to put into practice the language you have acquired and develop into an advanced user of English.
  • English for Academic Purposes - develops your understanding and use of the key linguistic skills necessary to engage effectively in an academic environment where you are being taught in Englsh.
  • Study and Communication Skills - equips you with the essential study skills needed to succeed at university level
  • Culture Studies - enables you to gain awareness and increased understanding of other cultures, with a particular focus on student life and studying in the UK
  • Foundation Mathematics - builds upon your existing knowledge in the areas of mathematics whilst introducing new topics appropriate across a range of academic disciplines and for your future career.

A further two units must be taken from a choice of four electives:

  • Introduction to Computing - provides you with a basic introduction to a range of IT topics including databases, networking, graphics and multimedia.
  • Introduction to Programming - exposes you to extensive practical programming in Visual Basic
  • Introduction to Business - provides you with an introduction to different types of business and business topics such as basic marketing practices.
  • Introduction to Accounting and Economics - introduces you to the key principles of accounting and economics.

Optional Module:

  • Introduction to IELTS - prepares you for assessment by the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). This unit does not carry any credits towards the qualifications and is not assessed by NCC Education.

Entry Requirements

For entry onto the BLC IFY qualification you must have:

  • Successfully completed secondary education in an appropriate range of subjects;


  • A valid score of IELTS 4.5 (September entry) or IELTS 5.5 (January entry) or above in the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) examination or equivalent. Alternatively you can take our Standard English Placement Test which is administered by our Accredited Partner Centres.

Start dates

September 2015 and January 2016.


By joining BLC’s IFY you have the benefit of choosing either a guaranteed route to university, or deciding which university you would like to go to once you are in the UK and are familiar with its universities and education system.

Should you choose to apply to a UK university once you studying on the IFY, our BLC University Counsellor will guide you and assist with your application.

Guaranteed University Placement

Successful completion of the International Foundation Year programme will give students access to a wide range of universities and undergraduate degree programmes.

Both Birmingham City University (BCU) and the University of Sussex will guarantee students a place on certain degree programmes when booking their IFY programme (the place is guaranteed following successful completion of the IFY).

Salford University, UCLAN and Worcester University will all provide conditional offer letters for students at the time of booking their IFY programme.

Choice of University Progression routes

Successful completion of the BLC IFY also enables students to progress to selected UK universities.  Examples include the University of the West of English, University of Liverpool, University of Leeds, Kingston University (London) and Oxford Brookes University.  

For the full up to date list of universities, as well as details of progression routes for the US and Canada, contact

Some examples of the degree programmes that you could progress to on successful completion of the IFY are: BA (Hons) Business and Finance, BA (Hons) Accounting and Finance, BSc (Hons) Business and Management, BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering, BEng (Hons) Civil and Architectural Engineering, BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering.

Please contact us directly for more information about degree programmes you can progress to

Why choose to study in Bristol at BLC

Bristol is recognised as a centre of educational excellence and benefits from being home to two world class universities, The University of Bristol and the University of the West of England.  Students on the BLC IFY benefit from studying in a vibrant university city in a centre with a reputation for excellence.

BLC is an established centre of learning in Bristol, with many academic accreditations, and a reputation for quality and innovation.  We have many years experience supporting students in their studies, whether for business or higher education.  Our dedicated student support staff can assist you with accommodation, and providing practical information on adapting to life in the UK.  

You will be taught in small, multi-national classes with no more than 15 students, which is good preparation for the international environment of many UK universities.  The NCC IFY qualification has an excellent success rate (92% pass rate worldwide), due to the high level of support given to students.

Social Programme

Studying on BLC’s IFY will give you access to BLC’s Social Programme.  We offer activities and excursions after classes, in the evening and at weekends.

Join other BLC students and our dedicated BLC Social Programme Leader for a night out, cultural activities or a trip to another UK cities on Saturdays.  (Many of these activities are free with an additional costs for things such as meals, cinema entry or train tickets).

Attending the social programme will help you to meet other students from many different countries, make friends and enable to to get out and about in the UK with confidence.  For full details see this months’ programme.

How to Join our IFY Course

If you're interesting in attending the International Foundation Year course at BLC then get in touch using our contact form of email


  • Entry level IELTS 4.5 or 5.5
  • Start dates in September and January
  • Guaranteed university entry option
  • Wide choice of universities
  • Small class sizes (max 15)
  • Multi-national groups
  • Students aged 18 and above
NCC Accredited Partner

It was interactive, explored different areas and skills related to English

Anis Zeighamnia, Italian, aged 24


Accredited by the British Council Quality English EnglishUk Cambridge English Exam Preparation Centre