International Foundation Programme

Students in the classroom

What is the International Foundation Programme?

The one-year academic International Foundation Programme (IFP) is designed to prepare you for success in your undergraduate study in the UK. It is a course designed for students who do not have English as a first language and whose home high school system does not allow them to apply directly to the first year of an undergraduate degree in the UK. The IFP is therefore designed to bridge the gap for international students between high school and undergraduate studies in the UK and is specifically designed for international students who do not meet the University’s academic and/or English language requirements for direct entry to Year 1 of an undergraduate degree.

All of the subject-specific pathways within the International Foundation Programme have been specifically designed to ensure you have the best possible start to your university learning experience. You will improve your academic subject knowledge through attendance at lectures, seminars and tutorials in your chosen subject area in the University Faculties and Schools, and you will develop your academic English language and academic skills in additional classes with the Centre for English Language and Foundation Studies, part of the University Faculty of Arts.

Read more about the programme aims.

Which pathway do I choose?

We offer different academic pathways depending on your future degree choice. Find out which is the best pathway for you:

Pathway choices

Programme structure

On the International Foundation Programme, you will do up to 22 hours per week of supervised study. This will include lectures, tutorials, problem-solving exercise classes, academic language and academic skills classes. Students on the Science Pathway(s) will also have the opportunity to do experiments in the University labs. 

Read more about how the programme is structured.
Read about the IFP+.


When you complete the programme you will be awarded with a Pathway Certificate in Foundation Studies by the University of Bristol. You will also receive a transcript from CELFS stating the modules you studied and the grade achieved.

Read more about certification and progression.

Supporting you while you learn

During your studies with us, you will receive a lot of support from us. We will help you adjust to living and studying in the UK as well as to applying for undergraduate courses at the University of Bristol and other universities. You will also be allocated a personal tutor during your studies who will meet with you regularly throughout the year. 

Information for IFP and IPP students at CELFS



IFP brochure (PDF, 472kB)


We offer a tuition-fee reduction to one IFP applicant each year, via the CELFS Academic Potential Prize

Eduoard BlondelI really liked the teaching staff, who were lovely. Their lessons were really enjoyable and they helped me to write well in English.

Eduoard Blondel, International Foundation Programme in Economics and Finance

See what other students are saying about us.

Did you know?

You will be guaranteed accommodation if you apply before the official closing date.

Find out more

Watch our video to find out what the International Foundation Programme is like from the experiences of previous students: