BSc Chemistry with a Foundation Year

Key facts

This course satisfies the academic requirements for Chartered Chemist (CChem) and Chartered Scientist (CSci).

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Key facts

(Guardian, 2016)


The School of Chemistry prides itself on research excellence across its spectrum of activities, from synthetic chemistry and drug discovery to spectroscopy and analytical and biophysical chemistry, as confirmed by successive Research Assessment Exercises.

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Key facts

(2014 Research Excellence Framework)

This innovative four-year course incorporates a foundation year that will give you the knowledge you need to progress on to our three-year BSc Chemistry degree. Chemistry at UEA has a prestigious reputation - in the most recent Research Excellence Framework (2014), we ranked 4th in the UK for research outputs.

The foundation year is designed to fill gaps in your knowledge, and provide you with the skills you'll need as an undergraduate. You will study core modules in chemistry and mathematics, and select either biology or physics depending on your interests. After this, you're able to continue onto BSc Chemistry, which provides you with an understanding of all aspects of chemistry. You will benefit from substantial laboratory-based teaching to develop your practical skills and, during your final year, you'll be able to undertake a project on a topic of your interest.


Our Chemistry with a Foundation Year programme provides an exceptional opportunity to study for a Chemistry degree for students who do not have our traditional entry requirements. Applications for this course are welcomed from mature students, students who have previously not studied science but wish to take a new career direction and students who have been disadvantaged during their secondary education. All applicants are considered on a case-by case basis and all candidates will be interviewed before being offered a place on the course.

The Foundation Year

During the Foundation Year you will be assigned an adviser from the School of Chemistry who will guide you in making your course choices to ensure your progression on to your degree course of choice. All students will study both Chemistry and Mathematics in both semesters and can then choose to study either Biology or Physics. At the end of the Foundation Year successful students can choose to move, depending on their results, onto a specialist chemistry course of their choice, transfer to one of our Natural Sciences degrees or remain on the BSc in Chemistry.

The Foundation Year offered at UEA is a full-time course taken over one year. The course does not require any previous AS level or A2 level studies in any of the subjects taught.

In the Foundation year, you will take modules worth 120 credits in all. These credits are obtained by passing the module assessments. With 120 credits you can continue onto the degree programme of your choice. Modules are assessed by a mixture of coursework and examination to produce an overall percentage grade and specific module marks. It is these marks, combined with the 120 credits that are taken into consideration when determining progression onto an Honours course.

Full list of Chemistry Degrees Available

Teaching and Assessment

A typical teaching week consists of around 20-25 hours of timetabled study.

This is taught with a combination of lectures, practical laboratory sessions and small-group tutorials and workshops, where you can discuss, in an informal setting, any points which were raised in lectures and find solutions to problem sheets distributed by tutors. You are also encouraged to discuss academic matters with tutors on a one-to-one basis.

In the laboratory, you will carry out experiments, based on the subject matter of your lecture programme. These sessions are supervised by your Lecturers and by postgraduate student demonstrators, who will ensure the safe execution of the experiments and discuss the theory behind them.

Modules are assessed by a combination of coursework and examination. Marks from the Foundation Year do not count towards your final degree classification, but are important for transfers to other degree programmes.

Course Modules

Year 1 (Foundation Year)

Compulsory Study (40 Credits)

  • Introductory Chemistry (semester 1)
  • Further Chemistry (semester 2)

Optional Study A (40 Credits)

Students will be assigned to the relevant mathematics course based on their previous qualifications.

  • Foundation Mathematics (semester 1)
  • Basic Mathematics I (semester 1)
  • Further Foundation mathematics (semester 2)
  • Basic Mathematics II (semester 2)

Optional Study B (40 Credits)

Optional Study B (40 Credits)

  • Introductory Biology (semester 1)
  • Introductory Physics (semester 1)
  • Further Physics (semester 2)
  • Further Biology (semester 2)

For the course profile of your degree of choice, please consult the relevant course pages Chemistry Undergraduate Degrees.


Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules and regular (five-yearly) review of course programmes. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, there will normally be prior consultation of students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff or sabbatical leave. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

Entry Requirements

  • A Level CCC
  • International Baccalaureate 28
  • Scottish Advanced Highers CCC
  • Irish Leaving Certificate CCCCCC or 6 subjects at H3
  • Access Course Pass the Access to HE Diploma.

Entry Requirement

You are required to have Mathematics and English Language at a minimum of Grade C or Grade 4 or above at GCSE.

The typical offer for students studying A levels will be CCC (excluding general studies and critical thinking).  Applicants who have been in continuous education are required to hold a level 3 qualification even if they meet the contextual criteria with regard to the GCSEs.

UEA recognises that some students take a mixture of International Baccalaureate IB or International Baccalaureate Career-related Programme IBCP study rather than the full diploma, taking Higher levels in addition to A levels and/or BTEC qualifications. At UEA we do consider a combination of qualifications for entry, provided a minimum of three qualifications are taken at a higher Level. In addition some degree programmes require specific subjects at a higher level.

Contextual Criteria

We use contextual criteria for entry. Applicants must meet ONE of the following criteria:

  • You have been out of full time education for at least 3 years prior to your application.
  • You have not previously studied more than one science (Chemistry, Biology, Physics or Mathematics) at ‘A’ Level or equivalent.
  • You have been in Local Authority Care.
  • You have previously studied science but your Secondary School had 60% or less students achieving 5+ grade A*-C GCSEs (or equivalent) including English and Maths in 2013 - Data from Department of Education website:

Students for whom English is a Foreign language

We welcome applications from students from all academic backgrounds. We require evidence of proficiency in English (including writing, speaking, listening and reading):

  • IELTS: 6.5 overall (minimum 6.0 in any component)

We also accept a number of other English language tests. Please click here to see our full list.

If you do not meet the University's entry requirements, our INTO Language Learning Centre offers a range of university preparation courses to help you develop the English skills necessary for successful undergraduate study.


The majority of applicants will not be called for an interview and a decision will be made via UCAS Track. However, for some applicants an interview will be requested. You may be called for an interview to help the School of Study, and you, understand if the course is the right choice for you.  The interview will cover topics such as your current studies, reasons for choosing the course and your personal interests and extra-curricular activities.  Where an interview is required the Admissions Service will contact you directly to arrange a convenient time.

Course Open To

UK and EU applicants only

Fees and Funding


Undergraduate University Fees and Financial Support: Home and EU Students

Tuition Fees

Please see our webpage for further information on the current amount of tuition fees payable for Home and EU students and for details of the support available.

Scholarships and Bursaries

We are committed to ensuring that costs do not act as a barrier to those aspiring to come to a world leading university and have developed a funding package to reward those with excellent qualifications and assist those from lower income backgrounds. 

Home/EU - The University of East Anglia offers a range of Bursaries and Scholarships.  To check if you are eligible please visit 


Undergraduate University Fees and Financial Support: International Students

Tuition Fees

Please see our webpage for further information on the current amount of tuition fees payable for International Students.


We offer a range of Scholarships for International Students – please see our website for further information.  

How to Apply

Applications need to be made via the Universities Colleges and Admissions Services (UCAS), using the UCAS Apply option.

UCAS Apply is a secure online application system that allows you to apply for full-time Undergraduate courses at universities and colleges in the United Kingdom. It is made up of different sections that you need to complete. Your application does not have to be completed all at once. The system allows you to leave a section partially completed so you can return to it later and add to or edit any information you have entered. Once your application is complete, it must be sent to UCAS so that they can process it and send it to your chosen universities and colleges.

The UCAS code name and number for the University of East Anglia is EANGL E14.

Further Information

If you would like to discuss your individual circumstances with the Admissions Service prior to applying please do contact us:

Undergraduate Admissions Service
Tel: +44 (0)1603 591515

Please click here to register your details via our Online Enquiry Form.

International candidates are also actively encouraged to access the University's International section of our website.

    Next Steps

    We can’t wait to hear from you. Just pop any questions about this course into the form below and our enquiries team will answer as soon as they can.

    Admissions enquiries: or
    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515