Computing and Mathematics foundation year

Why choose this course?

We recognise that there are many routes to success at degree level. Our Computing and Mathematics Foundation Year specifically caters for those who lack the traditional entry qualifications to join the first year of a science degree. You are likely to be someone with either non-computing/maths-based qualifications, someone who has tried computing/maths-based subjects but has yet to realise their potential or you are a mature student, with skills and experience from employment, who wants to return to education.

The foundation year has the benefit of being part of the extended degree and gives you access to a range of activities and staff on the degree programme that you will continue your studies with.

The foundation year in computing is taught at the University and you'll have access to all its facilities.

You'll develop practical, technical and communication skills, and apply knowledge to real-life problems.

Modules reflect the degree subject you choose but will include one of the following:

  • Computing
  • Mathematics

In addition, you'll take the following two modules:

Professional Success
You'll gain study skills for your degree, look at relevant career options and be introduced to business and project management.

Foundation Project-based Learning
You'll work on independent and group projects in your subject area, developing skills in team working, critical thinking and data handling.

This foundation year is available with these courses:

Choose your pathway

Pathway Attendance UCAS code Year of entry
Foundation 1 year full time UCAS codes are included on the relevant webpage for the course you would like to study 2023
Location Penrhyn Road

Reasons to choose Kingston University

  • In our inKUbator, you can learn directly from the industry. Speakers have been from Sony, Splash Damage, Aardvark Swift, Interactive Selection, CryTek and Unity.
  • Kingston University is an educational partner of Sony through PlayStation First. You'll have the opportunity to develop games for the PlayStation 4. 
  • The Computer Science BSc course is accredited by The Chartered Institute for IT (BCS).

What you will study

The foundation year is designed to provide a supportive environment in which you can build your confidence, whilst developing the academic and technical skills alongside the subject knowledge to continue on to the degree of your choice. 

Modules

Throughout the year you will study a range of subjects relevant to subsequent study in Year 1 of your degree and beyond. These subjects are supported by modules where your study and mathematical skills are developed. The broad scope of subjects is intended to allow study in a range of subject areas and, in some instances, allows flexibility of choice of intended degree route. Subjects start at an elementary level, and there is a strong emphasis on the development of practical skills. In the skills module you will also undertake a project where you focus on a topic relating to your degree subject.

Core modules

Professional Success

30 credits

This is a core module for all students on the Foundation year in Science, Engineering and Computing and is designed to complement and support the subject content of the other modules within the programme. The focus of the module is the development of a range of academic study skills, contextualised to the students chosen subject. This in turn allows students to become independent, resilient and reflective learners who will be able to succeed in subsequent levels of degree study.

The module provides an early appreciation of the career opportunities that their degree leads to, which in turn allows students to determine the employability skills they need to develop. To consolidate employability, the basic principles of Business and Project Management are introduced to students in the context of their chosen degree subject. The personal tutor scheme is embedded within the module and is linked to students development log and aspects of employability.

Foundation Project-Based Learning

30 credits

This is a core module for all students on the Foundation year in Science, Engineering and Computing and is designed to allow students to develop a number of the skills introduced in the Professional Skills module, in particular those relating to critical thinking, problem solving and group work. The focus of the module is in project-based learning as applied to real-world scenarios and/or problems in the degree subject area of the student.

Computing

60 credits

This module is core for all students following a computing-related pathway in the Foundation Year programme. The aim of this module is to introduce key technologies, concepts and theories and provide a platform for subsequent study as a specialist in computing. Students will acquire an understanding enabling them to build, install, configure, maintain and use computer systems in a variety of different real-world contexts. By design, the module has a broad scope that encompasses many sub-disciplines within computing; students will have the opportunity to explore this breadth and consider where their own future specialism may lie.

Mathematics

60 credits

This module is core for all students following the Mathematics pathway in the Foundation Year programme and is designed to allow students to develop competence in a range of mathematical and statistical techniques which they can then apply within a variety of contexts. In particular this prepares students for Level 4 of the Mathematics BSc (Hons) degree and contextualises the application of the topics to solving problems in the real world.

Please note that this is an indicative list of modules and is not intended as a definitive list as these could change before your year of entry.

The information above reflects the currently intended course structure and module details. Updates may be made on an annual basis and revised details will be published through Programme Specifications ahead of each academic year. The regulations governing this course are available on our website. If we have insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, this may not be offered.

Entry requirements

Typical offer 2023

32 UCAS points from two Level 3 qualifications.

Candidates are normally required to hold five GCSE subjects at grade C/4 or above, including Mathematics and English Language.

Typical offer 2022

32 UCAS points from two Level 3 qualifications.

Candidates are normally required to hold five GCSE subjects grades A*-C including Mathematics and English Language (or comparable numeric score under the newly reformed GCSE grading).

Additional requirements

Entry on to this course does not require an interview, entrance test, audition or portfolio.

Alternative routes

We will consider a range of alternative Level 3 qualifications or significant experience that are equivalent to the standard offer.

Please note: This is not a standalone course but is an integrated foundation year. Successful completion of the foundation year will enable you to automatically progress onto the first year of your chosen degree. UCAS codes are included on the relevant webpage for the course you would like to study which offer the foundation year option.

International

We welcome applications from International Applicants. View our standard entry requirements from your country.

All non-UK applicants must meet our English language requirements. For this course it is Academic IELTS of 6.0, with no element below 5.5.

Country-specific information

You will find more information on country specific entry requirements in the International section of our website.

Find your country:

Typical offer and UCAS points explained

Like most universities, we use the UCAS Tariff point system for our course entry requirements.

Find out more about UCAS Tariff points and see how A-level, AS level, BTEC Diploma and T-level qualifications translate to the points system.

What our students say

Find out why our students chose Kingston University:

 

Why choose computing at Kingston

View students talking about why they chose a computing course at Kingston University:

 

Teaching and assessment

Teaching uses a variety of approaches including lectures, seminars and tutorials, workshops and computer practical work. Sessions are designed to be active, involving students undertaking small projects and working in groups to solve problems. The use of technology to enhance learning is an important way in which students are supported. Particular emphasis is placed on developing study skills that will help mature applicants who are returning to education and those from non-computing and mathematics backgrounds.

Assessment includes a mixture of coursework and examination. Coursework may take the form of report writing, case studies and presentations with emphasis on real world problems. Examinations take place at the end of the year, giving you the opportunity to settle back into education and into the course. The style of assessment provides a natural progression to Year 1 of your chosen degree.

Guided independent study (self-managed time)

When not attending timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. This typically will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for final assignments. Your independent learning is supported by a range of excellent facilities including online resources, the library and CANVAS, the online virtual learning platform.

Academic support

Our academic support team here at Kingston University provides help in a range of areas.

Dedicated personal tutor

When you arrive, we'll introduce you to your personal tutor. This is the member of academic staff who will provide academic guidance, be a support throughout your time at Kingston and who will show you how to make the best use of all the help and resources that we offer at Kingston University.

Your workload

Type of learning and teaching

Year 1

Year 1
  • Scheduled learning and teaching: 318 hours
  • Guided independent study (self-managed time): 582 hours

How you will be assessed

Type of assessment

Year 1

Year 1
  • Coursework: 53%
  • Practical: 10%
  • Exams: 37%

Feedback summary

We aim to provide feedback on assessments within 20 working days.

Your timetable

Your individualised timetable is normally available to students within 48 hours of enrolment. Whilst we make every effort to ensure timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled learning and teaching can take place on any day of the week between 9am and 6pm. For undergraduate students, Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities, but there may be occasions when this is not possible. Timetables for part-time students will depend on the modules selected.

Facilities

There is a wide range of facilities at our Penrhyn Road campus, where this course is based. You will have access to a modern environment with the latest equipment, including computing laboratories - fully equipped with fold-flat LCD screens, data-projection systems and high-spec processors - as well as state-of-the-art hardware and the latest software, including:  

  • development software and tools - such as Linux, Microsoft.net, Dreamweaver, Flash 11, Eclipse, Java 2 Standard and Mobile Editions, tools for Motorola and Nokia phones, UML and CASE tools and NXP Processors Development Kits;
  • Maple, Matlab and SAS (mathematics and statistics software packages used by corporations, governments, universities, etc. across the globe); 
  • Digital Signal Processors (dsPIC Digital Signal Controllers); and 
  • a mix of wireless LAN technologies; the learning resources centre - offering subject libraries, online database subscriptions and resource materials.

Our dedicated team of IT technicians support the labs and are always on hand to provide assistance.

Careers and recruitment advice

The Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing has a specialist employability team. It provides friendly and high-quality careers and recruitment guidance, including advice and sessions on job-seeking skills such as CV preparation, application forms and interview techniques. Specific advice is also available for international students about the UK job market and employers' expectations and requirements.

The team runs employer events throughout the year, including job fairs, key speakers from industry and interviews on campus. These events give you the opportunity to hear from, and network with, employers in an informal setting.

Employability preparation at Kingston University

In addition to building expertise in your own discipline, our courses will also help you to develop key transferable skills that you'll need for professional life or further study once you graduate. 

As well as a range of careers and employability activities at Kingston, we also offer you the chance to apply and develop your skills in live contexts as an integral part of your course. Opportunities include:

  • placements;
  • working or studying abroad;
  • volunteering;
  • peer mentoring roles; and
  • internship opportunities within and outside the University.

In your final year, you'll get the opportunity to complete a major 'capstone' project where you can apply the knowledge and skills you have acquired to a range of real issues in different contexts. This is a great way to learn and is a valuable bridge to employment or further research at masters level.

Who teaches this course?

The course is taught at the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing. Faculty staff have a wide range of experience across research and industry and continue to practice and research at the cutting edge of their discipline. This ensures that our courses are current and industry informed ensuring you get the most relevant and up to date education possible.

Staff will use their experience and professional networks to hone your skills and shape you into the next generation of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) graduates.

Postgraduate students may run or assist in lab sessions and may also contribute to the teaching of seminars under the supervision of the module leader.

Course fees and funding

Fees for this course

Fees are are included on the relevant webpage for the degree course you would like to study.

Note for EU students: UK withdrawal from the European Union

The Government has recently announced that new students from the European Union and Swiss Nationals starting their course after August 2021 will no longer be eligible for a student loan in England for Undergraduate or Postgraduate studies for 2021/22 academic year. This decision only applies to new EU students starting in 2021/22. If you are an existing/continuing EU student, you will continue to be funded until you graduate or withdraw from your course.

Need to know more?

Our undergraduate fees and funding section provides information and advice on money matters.

Additional costs

Depending on the programme of study, there may be extra costs that are not covered by tuition fees which students will need to consider when planning their studies. Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching, assessment and operating University facilities such as the library, access to shared IT equipment and other support services. Accommodation and living costs are not included in our fees. 

Where a course has additional expenses, we make every effort to highlight them. These may include optional field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering), security checks such as DBS, uniforms, specialist clothing or professional memberships.

Textbooks

Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. You may prefer to buy your own copy of key textbooks, this can cost between £50 and £250 per year.

Computer equipment

There are open-access networked computers available across the University, plus laptops available to loan. You may find it useful to have your own PC, laptop or tablet which you can use around campus and in halls of residences. Free WiFi is available on each of the campuses. You may wish to purchase your own computer, which can cost between £100 and £3,000 depending on your course requirements.

Photocopying and printing

In the majority of cases written coursework can be submitted online. There may be instances when you will be required to submit work in a printed format. Printing, binding and photocopying costs are not included in your tuition fees, this may cost up to £100 per year.

Travel

Travel costs are not included in your tuition fees but we do have a free intersite bus service which links the campuses, Surbiton train station, Kingston-upon-Thames train station, Norbiton train station and halls of residence.