Course overview

QA Higher Education partners with Holborn Institute to offer an International Foundation Programme taught in Abuja for students who aspire to study an undergraduate programme in the UK. The programme is designed to enable these students to study a programme in Nigeria that builds their subject knowledge and academic English language skills to fully prepare for the study environment and academic culture in the UK.

Upon successfully passing the programme students will receive an unconditional offer to study an undergraduate degree at one or more of QA Higher Education’s partner universities, these include:

  • Northumbria University
  • Solent University
  • Ulster University
  • University of Roehampton

Key facts:

  • Prepare for UK university study and build your academic skills for undergraduate level
  • Study at Holborn Institute in Abuja
  • Guaranteed offer of a place at one of QA Higher Education’s partner universities upon successfully passing the programme
  • 2 and 3 semester programme available depending on your IELTS level
  • September (3 semester) and January (2 semester) start dates

By successfully completing the QA Higher Education International Foundation Programme, you will be well equipped to meet the demands of undergraduate study at a UK university. The programme is specifically designed to support your transition from a High School education or equivalent overseas qualification into level 4 study in the UK. As such, it provides you with substantial support for language development, together with enhancing your ability to work with academic subjects at level 3.

Emphasis is placed on developing your confidence and independence and your ability to learn effectively within the UK’s academic culture. The course also ensures that you have developed effective learning and study skills and are familiar with the types of assessment you will need when you are studying a UK undergraduate course.

Specifically, the programme is designed to prepare you for studying at undergraduate level in the UK. This includes building your skills and confidence in academic English language, and developing your familiarity with learning and teaching environments to prepare you for the classroom environment at UK universities.

How will I be taught?

You will study across 2 or 3 semesters, depending upon your English language ability.

The differences are detailed below:

3 Semester Programme 2 Semester Programme
Which semesters will I study?
  • Semester 0
  • Semester 1
  • Semester 2
  • Semester 1
  • Semester 2
When do I start? September start January start
What English language level do I need? IELTS entry of 4.5 (with no single element below 4.0) IELTS entry of 5.0 (with no single element below 4.5)

Please note: to progress from Semester 0 to Semester 1 you will need to pass all of the Semester 0 modules, achieving a minimum of 40% in each module.

Semester 0 (3 Semester programme only): In Semester 0, you will have English classes timetabled for 20 hours per week. Throughout this Semester you will improve your language levels in grammar and vocabulary as well as core English skills in reading, writing, listening and speaking to prepare you for Semester 1 of the International Foundation Programme.

Semesters 1 and 2 (3 Semester and 2 Semester programmes): In Semester 1 and 2, you will develop your English skills. However, more time will be spent on improving English language levels for undergraduate courses. These Semesters are designed to improve your ability to write essays, read for your studies, develop your ability to understand lectures and take part in discussions and presentations.

Contact hours, self-study and assessment methods

Throughout the programme, you will have 20 hours of teaching per week through lectures, seminars and workshops. You will also be expected to spend a further 10 to 15 hours undertaking homework, assignments and independent study. This is good practice for university study and will help prepare you for your chosen undergraduate programme.

This course is taught by Holborn Institute and awarded by QA Higher Education.

Assessment methods for this course include: exam, coursework, presentation and a practical.

After successful completion of the course, you will be awarded a Certificate of Completion by QA Higher Education which will be recognised by our university partners for entry to your programme of choice, from the range of target degrees open to you.

Following successful completion of your programme and on meeting any other progression requirements set by your chosen university, you will receive an offer of a place to study the degree programme you applied for with one of QA Higher Education’s University partners.

Please see below for a full list of the progression degrees available to you and at which university partner.

Undergraduate Degree Additional Requirements
Accounting BA (Hons)
American Studies BA (Hons)
Applied Sport and Exercise Science BSc (Hons)
Applied Sport Science with Coaching BSc (Hons)
Building Surveying BSc (Hons)
Business Management BA (Hons)
Business with Accounting BA (Hons)
Business with Economics BA (Hons)
Business with Entrepreneurship BA (Hons)
Business with Human Resource Management BA (Hons)
Business with International Management BA (Hons)
Business with Logistics and Supply Chain Management BA (Hons)
Business with Marketing Management BA (Hons)
Business with Tourism Management BA (Hons)
Childhood and Early Years Studies (Hons)
Computer and Digital Forensics BSc (Hons)
Computer Networks and Cyber Security BSc (Hons)
Computer Science BSc (Hons)
Criminology and Sociology BSc (Hons)
Criminology BSc (Hons)
English Language and Literature BA (Hons)
English Language Studies BA (Hons)
English Literature BA (Hons)
English Literature and Creative Writing BA (Hons)
English Literature and History BA (Hons)
English Literature and American Studies BA (Hons)
Entrepreneurial Business Management BA (Hons)
Environmental Science BSc (Hons)
Film and Television Studies BA (Hons)
Finance and Investment Management BA (Hons)
Guidance and Counselling BA (Hons)
History and Politics BA (Hons)
History BA (Hons)
History and American Studies BA (Hons)
Human Resource Management BA (Hons)
Information Technology Management for Business BSc (Hons)
International Business Management BA (Hons)
International Relations and Politics BA (Hons)
Journalism and English Literature BA (Hons)
Law LLB (Hons)
Marketing Management BA (Hons)
Mass Communication BA (Hons)
Mass Communication with Advertising BA (Hons)
Mass Communication with Business BA (Hons)
Mass Communication with Public Relations BA (Hons)
Media and Journalism BA (Hons)
Psychology BSc (Hons)
Psychology with Criminology BSc (Hons)
Quantity Surveying BSc (Hons)
Real Estate BSc (Hons)
Sociology BSc (Hons)
Sport Management BSc (Hons)
Tourism and Events Management BA (Hons)

Undergraduate Degree Additional Requirements
Adult Nursing A Level pass (A-E or equivalent) in any Science subject
Ancient History
Anthropology GCSE Science A-C
Biological Sciences A Level pass (A-E or equivalent) in Biology or Chemistry
Biological Sciences (Integrated BSc and MSc) A Level pass (A-E or equivalent) in Biology or Chemistry
Biomedical Science A Level pass (A-E or equivalent) in Biology or Chemistry
Business Management
Business Management and Economics
Business Management and Entrepreneurship
Business Management and Finance
Business Management and Marketing
Classical Civilisation
Creative Writing A Level pass (A-C equivalent) Humanities or English subject
Dance (BA) Students wishing to study this course are required to attend, and successfully pass a dance audition
Dance (BFA) Students wishing to study this course are required to attend, and successfully pass a dance audition
Digital Media
Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies
Early Childhood Studies
Education Studies
English Language and Linguistics
English Literature A Level pass (A-C equivalent) Humanities or English subject
History and Politics
Human Resource Management
International Business
LLB (Hons) Law International Foundation Programme pass grade of 55% required
LLB (Hons) Law and Criminology International Foundation Programme pass grade of 55% required
Marketing Communications
Media, Culture and Identity
Nutrition and Health A Level pass (A-C or equivalents) in a Science subject or Home Economics/Food Nutrition
Philosophy, Religion and Ethics
Psychology and Counselling
Social Anthropology
Sport and Exercise Sciences A Level pass (A-E equivalent) in a Science subject, PE or Psychology
Sport Coaching
Sport Psychology A Level pass (A-E equivalent) in a Science subject, PE or Psychology
Theatre Practices and Production
Therapeutic Psychology
Zoology A Level pass (A-E or equivalent) in any Science subject
Zoology (Integrated BSc and MSc) A Level pass (A-E or equivalent) in any Science subject

Undergraduate Degree Additional Requirements
BA (Hons) Accountancy and Finance Maths GCSE or equivalent Grade C/4
BA (Hons) Acting And Performance Audition required
BA (Hons) Adventure and Outdoor Management TBC
BA (Hons) Animation
BA (Hons) Architectural Design and Technology 2 Relevant Subjects (Maths, Physics, Economics, Design & Technology, Computer Aided Design, Geography etc)
BA (Hons) Beauty Promotion
BA (Hons) Business Management
BA (Hons) Computer Games (Art)
BA (Hons) Computer Games (Design)
BA (Hons) Criminal Investigation with Psychology
BA (Hons) Criminology
BA (Hons) Criminology and Psychology
BA (Hons) Digital Animation
BA (Hons) Digital Music
BA (Hons) English and Creative Writing
BA (Hons) English and Film
BA (Hons) English and Media
BA (Hons) Events Management
BA (Hons) Fashion E-Portfolio required
BA (Hons) Fashion Buying and Merchandising
BA (Hons) Fashion Journalism
BA (Hons) Fashion Media
BA (Hons) Fashion Promotion and Communication E-Portfolio required
BA (Hons) Fashion Styling and Creative Direction E-Portfolio required
BA (Hons) Festival and Event Management
BA (Hons) Film
BA (Hons) Film and Television
BA (Hons) Film Production
BA (Hons) Film Visual Effects
BA (Hons) Football Business Management
BA (Hons) Football Studies
BA (Hons) Graphic Design E-Portfolio required
BA (Hons) Illustration Portfolio viewing required
BA (Hons) Interior Design E-Portfolio required
BA (Hons) Interior Design Decoration E-Portfolio required
BA (Hons) International Air Travel and Tourism Management
BA (Hons) International Tourism Management
BA (Hons) Journalism
BA (Hons) Make-Up and Hair Design E-Portfolio required
BA (Hons) Marketing
BA (Hons) Media Production
BA (Hons) Musical Theatre Audition required
BA (Hons) Photography E-Portfolio required
BA (Hons) Popular Music Performance Audition required
BA (Hons) Product Design E-Portfolio required
BA (Hons) Public Relations and Communication
BA (Hons) Sociology Maths GCSE or equivalent Grade C/4
BA (Hons) Sport Journalism
BA (Hons) Sport Management
BA (Hons) Television Production
BSc (Hons) Computing Strong interest in learning Computer Programming
BSc (Hons) Construction Management
BSc (Hons) Cyber Security Management
BSc (Hons) Maritime Business
BSc (Hons) Psychology Maths GCSE or equivalent Grade C/4
BSc (Hons) Shipping and Port Management
BSc (Hons) Software Engineering Strong interest in learning Computer Programming
LLB (Hons)

All modules on this course are core.

Understanding Texts – academic reading and vocabulary development (0 credits)

In addition to helping to develop your reading skills, this module introduces you to how to read academic texts and as such it will increase your confidence in using the types of academic materials you will use during your degree.

Academic Communication – listening and speaking in an academic context (0 credits)

Being able to listen effectively in lectures and seminars, both to lecturers and fellow learners, is a key part of the learning process during an undergraduate programme and proficiency is essential if you are to engage fully with the learning opportunities open to you. This module is designed to develop the listening skills of learners, together with their ability to speak fluently and clearly in both general and academic contexts.

Academic Communication – writing in an academic context (0 credits)

This module helps you to develop your ability to structure sentences and paragraphs as well as generally developing the sophistication of your written use of language. These skills are developed in the context of specific practical tasks to help you become accustomed to academic style questions with coherent and well-structured text.

Language in Context (0 credits)

This module focuses on the non-academic use of English in a range of situations including social ones, and use of language in popular literature, media and current affairs. It is design to develop your confidence in the use of language in domestic, social and work environments.


Semester 1 & 2

Developing and Using Language in an Academic Context (40 credits)

This module underpins the language development that has to take place to take you from your entry level of English through to the level of language skill required for successful study at level 4 of a degree programme. As such the module focuses on the parallel development of the core linguistic skills of reading, writing, speaking and listening.

Maximising Academic Potential (20 credits)

This module is structured to help you gradually develop independence of learning underpinned by the ability to research problems, access and utilise academic resources in a variety of formats. The module will equip you with a range of useful practical skills around searching and using electronic and paper-based libraries, note taking, referencing and the importance of good academic conduct.

Mastering Grammar and Vocabulary (20 credits)

This module is designed to help you improve your mastery of grammar and to increase your academic lexis. This module equips you with the tools needed to be self-analytical and proactive in your language development, focussing on the development of your grammatical skills and lexis.

Problem Solving using Mathematics and Statistics (20 credits)

This module aims to build the mathematical competence and confidence of learners. The module adopts an applied approach to developing mathematical skills and confidence through seeking to demonstrate to learners how an understanding of mathematics and statistics can be used to solve a variety of real world problems relevant to a range of business scenarios.

International Business in Context (20 credits)

Through study of international business, what drives and hinders it, its upsides and downsides, this module introduces you to complex real world issues and analyses the effect in a global context. As such the module offers you an opportunity to engage in study of elements from a range of different academic disciplines as well encouraging the synthesis of this learning to understand why and how international business conduct in a modern global society impacts us both commercially and individually.

Academic entry requirements

  • Successful completion of 12 years of schooling, or GCSE/iGCSE – 5 passes at A-D

We welcome applications from students who have obtained good grades in their upper secondary education. We will also accept students with:

  • WAEC (WASSCE) – Sufficient grades in at least 6 subjects (minimum D including maths for 3 semesters and minimum C including maths for 2 semesters).
  • NECO – Sufficient grades in at least 6 subjects (minimum D including maths for 3 semesters and minimum C including maths for 2 semesters).
  • NABTEB: Sufficient grades in at least 6 subjects (minimum C including maths for 3 semesters and for 2 semesters)

English language requirements

  • 3 semester programme: IELTS 4.5 (with no single element below 4.0)
  • 2 semester programme: IELTS 5.0 (with no single element below 4.5)

Tuition fees:

  • 2 semester: N2,500,000
  • 3 semester: N3,000,000

These tuition fees cover the cost of your course and teaching materials. Holborn Institute also have accommodation options for those choosing to board. Please note accommodation costs are not included in the tuition fees above.

For more information on the course, and how to apply, please contact Holborn Institute using the following details:

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