Foundation Degree Business Studies

Foundation degrees combine work-based learning and practical work experience with a university-level understanding of theory.

At the University of South Wales, our Foundation Degree in Business Studies is a higher education qualification strongly linked to the requirements of employers and the workplace.

Study is flexible and balanced with the demands of your job, plus many assessments are based on learning in the workplace.

UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
N102 Full-time 2 Years September Treforest A
UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
N102 Full-time 2 Years September Treforest A

This vocational Business Studies course integrates key aspects of business in the workplace. During the first year, you will study modules that provide a well-rounded knowledge base, giving you the confidence to work as a professional within any organisation. The range of subjects you will study include the business environment, accounting, human resource management, and marketing. In addition to this, you will take two modules that develop the skills, competencies and behaviour needed in the workplace.

Your second year will combine practical experience with business theory to develop an in-depth understanding of business operations, and learn how different areas of a business work together effectively.

You will undertake a work-based learning module where you will put the theory you have learned during your first year into practice. You have the chance to refine and develop your key skills in areas such as critical thinking, reflection and other management behaviours.

Year One

During the first year you will study key modules that will provide you with a well rounded knowledge base and give you the confidence to demonstrate proficiency within any organisation.

  • The Management of Financial Information
  • Foundations in Marketing
  • Work and Organisational Behaviour
  • Academic and Professional Development
  • Economics, Law and Regulations
  • Entrepreneurship and Business Start Up

Year Two

During your second year, the work based learning module will allow you to put into practice the theory you have learned during your first year. Combining real-life practical experience with business theory will inevitably help you to develop an in-depth understanding of business operations and how different areas of a business work together effectively.

  • Work-based learning

You will study the remaining credits from a range of options.


The majority of your learning will rely on interactive seminars, supported by online study materials and some traditional lectures. You will use the latest real-life data and case studies to help you learn, making your studies as relevant as possible to what you will experience in the workplace. Work-based learning modules enable you to demonstrate how your new skills and knowledge are relevant to your workplace.


You will usually have to complete coursework as you progress, and normally sit exams at the end of each academic year.

Entry criteria detail typical offers but USW considers all applications on an individual basis which means that we could make offers based on qualifications, personal profile and experience. Combinations of qualifications are acceptable and other qualifications not listed may also be acceptable.

Typical A-Level Offer


Typical Welsh BACC Offer

Grade C and DE at A Level

Typical BTEC Offer

BTEC Diploma Merit Merit

Typical IB Offer

Pass IB Diploma or two IB Certficates at Higher level.

Typical Access to HE Offer

Pass Diploma with 60 credits overall to include 45 level 3 credits all Passes

Additional Requirements

GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 3 GCSEs including Mathematics and English at Grade C or above, or their equivalent but consideration is given to individual circumstances

International Entry Requirements

We also welcome international applications with equivalent qualifications. Please visit the country specific pages on our international website for exact details.

English Requirements

In general, international applicants will need to have achieved an overall IELTS grade of 6.0 with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component.

However, if you have previously studied through the medium of English IELTS might not be required, but please visit the country specific page on our international website for exact details. If your country is not featured please contact us.

Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

August 2019 - July 2020 Fees

  • Full-time UK and EU:  £8000

  • Full-time International:  £12600 

August 2020 - July 2021 Fees

  • Full-time UK and EU: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.

* Obligatory

Item Cost
This course includes a sixty credit Work Based Learning module which may require the student to travel to and from their placement. The exact cost of this activity is dependent upon the placement's location in relation to the student's place of residence and therefore cannot be determined at this moment in time. Furthermore, depending upon the placement the student may need to purchase suitable attire (e.g. a suit or formal clothing).
Placement expenses: Work placement WBL modules
Students are encouraged to undertake a period of work placement. Students undertaking placement may incur costs associated with travel and expected workplace attire will vary according to the placement.
Other : Text books
Any core textbooks are in e-book format and available in the Library. Students may wish to purchase their own copies.

UK and EU students

Apply via UCAS if you are a UK/EU residing applicant, applying for year 1 of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly

International students

Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK/EU

Apply now 

Admissions statement

You will develop an array of key transferable skills sought after by employers. These include strategic thinking, problem solving, working with others, leadership and negotiation. By combining work-based learning with theory, a foundation degree is ideal for those who wish to work and study. We have a proven record of developing graduates who are ready to progress and succeed in the world of work.

Though your study doesn’t have to end when you achieve your qualification – you could go on to study the BA (Hons) Business Studies degree with an extra year of study at the University.

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.

This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.

Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.

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