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What are Foundation and Diploma programs?

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What are Foundation and Diploma programs?

Do you want to study overseas? Do you know what programs and courses are available to you? Is a Foundation or Diploma program the right option? Don’t worry at StudyOverseasNow.com our team is here to help you every step of the way.

Every university maintains a minimum academic and English entry requirement for direct entry. If you fail to achieve the entry criteria, you will need to secure admission at an alternative intuition or apply for a Foundation or Diploma program. For those unsure what a Foundation or Diploma program is, please see below:

Foundation Program – A foundation program is equivalent to the final year of high school.  Once students successfully complete their Foundation program, they enter Year 1 of their chosen degree. For those who do not achieve the required grades, a diploma might be offered instead. Typically, a foundation program will be 8-12 months in duration.

Diploma Program – A diploma program is equivalent to Year 1 of a university degree. Once complete students enter Year 2 of their university degree. This will allow them to join the students who achieved direct entry from the beginning of the course. Typically, a diploma program will be 8-12 months in duration.

Why do students study diploma programs

Foundation and Diploma programs are commonly referred to as pathway programs. In most instances students study for a Foundation or Diploma because they fall into one of the following categories below:

  • Students who do not achieve the required IELTS score for direct entry
  • Students who do not achieve the required academic grades for direct entry
  • Students who would like to enter a medicine program via a foundation year
  • Students who do not complete the pre-requisite subjects for direct entry at high school {math’s, biology, Chemistry, etc..}
  • Students requiring additional support as they transition to a country and education system which is not familiar to them.

Most students do not view a Diploma being equivalent to a Year 1 entry. This is a misconception; students receive a full credit to enter Year 2 following course completion. For many students, a Foundation or Diploma program is the right option given the enhanced English and academic support provided. It’s common for students to encounter challenges when transitioning from their country of origin to an overseas university. Foundation and Diploma programs are specifically designed to provide you with more support via increased contact hours, additional English support, and smaller class sizes. Before selecting your university of choice make sure you research the duration of each course and the number of units required to complete before course progression, this can vary significantly. For example, some universities provide an accelerated 1-year Foundation + Diploma program. This will save a significant amount of time and money whilst overseas. However, a correlation can be observed between students who apply for a packaged program and an increased likelihood of visa rejection. If you receive the correct advice and furnish the required documentation much of this risk can be mitigated.

  Positives Negatives
Foundation
  • Flexible English and academic
  • requirementsMedicine offered as a foundation at several universities
  • Students can change their course of study prior to course completionSmaller Class Sizes
  • Additional support and tutoring available
  • Enhanced focussed on English
  • 4-month fast track option at several universities
  • Receive an additional qualification
  • Most students study on-campus.
  • You will join your class with another year 1 student.
  • Multiple intakes available
  • Repeating your final year of school
  • Minimum grades required for course progression
  • Some foundation programs lead to Diploma only
  • Additional year of study required
  • Increased risk of visa rejection with packaged programs
  • You will join your class when they have
  • Not all universities offer a Foundation program.
Diploma
  • Flexible English and academic entry requirements
  • Smaller class sizes
  • Additional support and tutoring available
  • 8-month fast track options available
  • Multiple intakes available
  • Fees are more affordable than Year 1 direct entry
  • Most students study on-campus
  • Students can study a range of streams following course completion
  • Receive an additional qualification
  • Several academic institutions offer vocational study options
  • Students join their class in Year 2.
    Integration might be problematic
  • Minimum grades required for course progression
  • Increased risk of visa rejection with packaged programs
  • Students must select their course of study for Year 2 before enrolment in Diploma
  • Not all universities offer a Diploma program.

Forte in studying Diploma Courses

When studying for a Foundation or Diploma you will be taught on the same campus as direct entry students. You will receive a student card which provides access to all the universities facilities including a library, sports facilities, and clubs & societies. Make sure you get involved in extra-curricular activities whilst overseas as this is a great way to meet new friends and network for job opportunities.

Some countries limit your ability to change university providers when studying at a Foundation or Diploma program. Before commencing your studies make sure you are confident in your choice, of course, location, and university as transferring may not be possible. 

Please note, that most prestigious and highly ranked universities do not offer Foundation or Diploma programs. Therefore, your only option will be to meet the minimum entry requirements for direct entry. Studying overseas can be a complex, time-consuming, and expensive undertaking. At StudyOverseasNow.com students receive expert advice throughout the consultation and application process. Book a FREE Consultation with an experienced education advisor to find out what options are available to you, click here.

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