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Cymraeg

English & Foundation courses

Health and Life Sciences

Health & Life Science

The Health and Life Sciences International Foundation Programme (IFP) is a mixture of English language and Science based modules, designed for students who want to progress into Cardiff School of Biosciences or Cardiff School of Chemistry, or make an application for certain health-related courses at Cardiff University.

Students who successfully complete the International Foundation Programme in Health & Life Sciences have a range of opportunities available to them.

Automatic progression to undergraduate study

Cardiff School of Biosciences and Cardiff School of Chemistry allow students to progress automatically onto a wide range of undergraduate degree programmes.

These programmes are informed by excellent research-led teaching, supported by outstanding facilities, including modern fully-equipped and spacious laboratories.

Within each degree scheme you are able to make choices so that your degree will reflect your own special interests.

Application for health-related courses

Students are welcome to apply for courses in health-related subjects, including Psychology, Pharmacy and Optometry.

Progression to these courses will be subject to application, interview and obtaining good grades on the IFP. You will receive help and advice on how to apply for this course during your Foundation Programme.

Application for Medicine

All applicants who are offered a place on the IFP for Health & Life Sciences (September 2013 entry) with a view to progressing to a degree course in Medicine (September 2014 entry) will be required to apply through UCAS to meet the 15 October 2013 deadline whilst on the Foundation Programme. In addition, all applicants are required to take the national UK Clinical Aptitude Test (UK-CAT) during July-October 2013. Comprehensive information on this (including specimen test questions) can be found on the UKCAT website (www.ukcat.ac.uk).

Entry to Medicine at Cardiff University is extremely competitive. Progression to Medicine will be subject to application through UCAS, interview and obtaining good grades on the IFP. You will receive help and advice on applying for these courses during your Foundation Programme at Cardiff University.

All IFP applications will be scored equally against all other international applications received.

The overall aim of the English language and study skills input is to help you meet the demands of academic study during your Foundation programme and to prepare you effectively for the academic scheme you will proceed to afterwards.

English Language & Study Skills 1 (10 Credits)

This module aims to improve overall ability in English and to develop academic study skills for immediate use. On completion of the modules, you should be able to:

  • use reading strategies to perform successfully, indicating an understanding of their importance and benefits;
  • demonstrate knowledge of and ability to manipulate the language: be able to produce a variety of sentence forms in structured paragraphs, with attention to accuracy in an academic style;
  • understand listening extracts of differing lengths and types, e.g. dialogues and monologues, social situations, lectures and talks, radio programmes, news interviews, etc;
  • use his/her spoken skills effectively in a range of informal and formal situations, demonstrating an ability to exchange information, discuss, problem solve, express attitudes and justify opinions.

English Language & Study Skills 2 (10 Credits)

This module aims to develop advanced language and study skills; produce confident manipulators of the English language who work very effectively, if not always accurately, at this high level in a culturally acceptable way.

On completion of this module, you will:

  • be expected to use the structures of the language with greater ease and increased fluency;
  • show an increased understanding of the relationship between the language and its culture, and demonstrate an understanding of the use of an appropriate style/register;
  • have acquired a level of English to enable them to cope well with their academic studies across the skill areas.

English for Academic Purposes (10 Credits)

This module aims to teach generic study skills and subject specific study skills.

The module includes using the facilities in the University libraries to locate books and journals, methods for effective reading and note-taking, basic data analysis, producing a variety of written texts using a language style appropriate to the specific subject (Business, Law, Engineering), planning and giving presentations.

British Social & Cultural Environment 1&2 (20 Credits)

This module aims to prepare you for your studies at Cardiff University while developing and consolidating the language and study skills introduced in English Language & Study Skills 1.

On completion of the module you will have an increased awareness of British life and culture and a basic knowledge of the identity and culture of Wales and the nature of its language.

Integrated Study Skills (10 Credits)

This module aims to introduce you to basic computing skills and Cardiff University specific systems and packages and to provide techniques for future improvement, improve overall ability in English and to develop and practise academic study skills for immediate use.

On completion of the module you should be able to:

  • gain access to a range of software packages
  • demonstrate an understanding of how to integrate listening /reading and note-taking skills to construct a written academic text
  • use synthesis skills to produce written work which is correctly referenced, avoiding plagiarism
  • produce a Powerpoint presentation
  • create simple graphs and charts and transfer information for use in a word document

Personal Development Plan

During the course you will also be given the opportunity to complete a Personal Development Plan (PDP) which will improve your ability to understand what and how you are learning and help you reflect on and plan your own learning.

The PDP will help you to get the most out of your student experience by encouraging you to take responsibility for your development and raising your awareness of the variety of opportunities for development.

PDP is not just an important process for your time at university but will prove to be a useful skill throughout your life. Learning and development are continual processes and engaging in PDP will help you to develop a positive attitude to all aspects of learning.

The Health and Life Science specific modules provide a foundation-level introduction to the Science subjects that will be relevant to your future undergraduate studies in Health & Life Sciences.

We have designed this programme to give you a solid foundation in Biology and Chemistry which will be necessary for your undergraduate studies in Health & Life Sciences and to give you the best possible information and assistance for your time as a student in the UK.

Cells & the Chemistry of Life (10 Credits)

The module provides an introduction to the molecular basis of living organisms. After developing an appreciation of the very "molecules of life" the student goes on to learn how these molecules are organised into cells. The concepts taught in the module are fundamental to all aspects of biology.

Genetics, Evolution & Diversity (10 Credits)

This module deals with the structure, function and transmission of genes and with inheritance of genetically controlled characteristics, including more complex patterns of inheritance brought about by linkage and interaction between genes. This is followed by a brief review of the evidence for evolution and a coverage of evolutionary processes. Finally the module provides the student with an introduction to the diversity of living organisms. The theoretical coverage in lectures and tutorials is supplemented by practical classes which allow examination of cell division in plants and animals , analysis of patterns of inheritance for various genetic traits and examination of a diversity of life forms at both the microscopical and whole organism level.

The Way the Body Works (10 Credits)

This module deals with the broad principles of physiology, the nervous system, its nature, structure and function; the cardiovascular system and the roles of the heart, blood vessels and blood; changes in disease; breathing and lung function; the role of the kidneys; the function of the endocrine system and the physiology of reproduction; the digestion and absorption of food; and finally, with motherhood and the physiology of the new-born child.

Fundamental Aspects of Chemistry (10 Credits)

This module is designed to introduce basic description of elemental properties and the periodic table, solid and molecular structures and bonding, and to relate these to electronic structure of atoms. The mole as a unit is introduced so that a quantitative treatment of stoichiometry can be considered. Practical work introduces the use and handling of basic chemical equipment.

Inorganic and Redox Chemistry (10 Credits)

This module treats some basic chemistry of hydrogen and selected elements from the periodic table; simple co-ordination chemistry of metal ions in solution; the ideas of oxidation and reduction in relation to oxidation state changes and electron transfer, and electrode reactions and potentials, are also developed. Practical work examines some of this chemistry and uses oxidation-reduction reactions as a basis for quantitative analysis.

Thermodynamics, Kinetics & Equilibria (10 Credits)

This module provides the basis for a quantitative understanding of (i) the kinetic theory of gases (which is developed to consider the nature of liquids and solids); (ii) equilibria and the concepts of the equilibrium constant and of pH; (iii) energy changes in chemical reactions and the fundamental principles of thermodynamics; (iv) the rates of chemical reactions and the concepts of the rate determining step and the activation energy. Practical work deals with examples of these topics.

Chemistry of Organic Compounds (10 Credits)

This module is designed to introduce the main types of organic compounds by reference to simple systems and to specific compounds of biological, medicinal, and dental importance. The more important reactions of each of these types are described, and are explained in terms of the electronic structure of the functional groups involved. The practical work illustrates the basic techniques involved in the preparation, isolation, and purification of organic compounds.

The course here in Cardiff employs several teaching methods, all chosen to deliver the tuition you need in the best possible way.

Lectures

Lectures allow you to gain a comprehensive base of knowledge. Lecturers make use of a range of resources and facilities to provide the information you need. During lectures you will be given written material (handouts), information about exams and essays, and multi-media presentations. You may even find that you are invited to give your own presentation.

Seminars

These are smaller discussion groups of three to ten students, led by tutors. This is an ideal time to discuss any questions after lectures, and an opportunity to fully understand the subjects you are studying.

Tutorials

You can arrange to meet any tutor to discuss any aspect of the course. For example, if there is something you did not understand in a lecture or seminar, or if you want to discuss the progress of your project or essay - or any other topic you want to talk about. All students are encouraged to speak individually to their tutors if they have any questions or problems; your tutor will always be pleased to see you and happy to help.

Staff/Student Panel

Every department has a staff/student panel which consists of teaching staff and elected student members who meet to discuss academic issues. Any issues that you feel need attention can be alerted to your student representative who will raise the query with the panel. This way the opinions and ideas of students get a hearing which can lead to the way your course is run being changed. This means that each course is constantly being reviewed to make it the best scheme of study available for students.

Assessment

A variety of assessment methods are used including written essays, reports, presentations, project work and final examinations. All written tasks are word processed and normally submitted electronically. You will be awarded a score out of 100 for each module:

  • 40% and above - Pass
  • 50% and above - Merit
  • 65% and above - Distinction
Attendance

Attendance and participation in all classes, lectures, and tutorials on the IFP at Cardiff University are compulsory and essential for academic success. Please note that due to immigration rules, we are required to keep records of attendance.

Students who obtain a pass in their Science modules (40%) and a merit in their English modules (50%) on the IFP can automatically progress into Cardiff School of Biosciences or Cardiff School of Chemistry. Progression into other academic schools will be considered, subject to an application and interview.

Cardiff School of Biosciences

Students who obtain a pass in their Science modules (40%) and a merit in their English modules (50%) on the IFP can automatically progress into Cardiff School of Biosciences.

Cardiff School of Biosciences has well-equipped modern laboratories, its own libraries, a Teaching and Learning Resource Centre, study areas with fully up-to-date networked computers, and its own Field Centre set in the Welsh countryside near Newbridge on Wye.

The School offers an extensive range of degree schemes in Biological, Biomedical and Biomolecular Sciences, all of which have recently been assessed by government-sponsored panels and rated as "Excellent" – the highest quality rating available.

Within each degree scheme you are able to make choices so that your degree will reflect your own special interests.

The undergraduate programmes available within Cardiff School of Biosciences:

More information can be found on the School’s website.

Cardiff School of Chemistry

Students who obtain a pass in their Science modules (40%) and a merit in their English modules (50%) on the IFP can automatically progress into Cardiff School of Chemistry.

All the Cardiff University’s Chemistry degree programmes are accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry. The School is located in the Main Building immediately adjacent to the Science Library and conveniently close to the Students’ Union, city centre shops, attractive parklands and university residences.

The School is committed to providing teaching of the very highest quality and provides students with outstanding facilities, including modern fully equipped and spacious laboratories. The curriculum and learning opportunities continue to be updated by research-active staff, with input from both current students and industrialists.

The undergraduate programmes available within Cardiff School of Chemistry:

More information can be found on the School’s website.

Welsh School of Optometry & Vision Sciences

Progression to an undergraduate course in Optometry will be subject to application, interview and obtaining good grades on the IFP. You will receive help and advice on how to apply for this course during your Foundation Programme.

The School of Optometry and Vision Sciences enjoys an international reputation for its activities. Housed in a dedicated £21 million new building, the School boasts state-of-the-art facilities, enabling high quality research and teaching.

The Optometry degree course has been designed to be stimulating, flexible and relevant to the needs of a career in Optometry. Great emphasis is placed on the practical aspects, and you will spend considerable time in our purpose-built clinic which is open to members of the public who require an eye examination.

More information can be found on the School’s website.

Welsh School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences

Progression to an undergraduate course in Pharmacy will be subject to application, interview and obtaining good grades on the IFP. You will receive help and advice on how to apply for this course during your Foundation Programme.

The Welsh School of Pharmacy is among the leaders in clinical skills development in the UK. Accredited by the General Pharmaceutical Council, the Master of Pharmacy degree equips you with a sound knowledge of the pharmaceutical sciences and the necessary skills to proceed confidently into pre-registration training. It also offers you the experience of working closely with pharmacy practitioners and produces graduates highly-qualified for career opportunities in hospital, community, industrial and academic pharmacy. Towards the end of your degree, staff at the School will assist you in finding a pre-registration post. For more than a decade, all of our graduates have secured posts before graduation.

More information can be found on the School’s website.

Cardiff School of Psychology

Progression to an undergraduate course in Psychology will be subject to application, interview and obtaining good grades on the IFP. You will receive help and advice on how to apply for this course during your Foundation Programme.

Cardiff School of Psychology is one of the largest and best departments in the UK. Undergraduate courses are accredited and provide a platform to professional branches of psychology. Teaching is informed by international cutting-edge research and was judged ‘Excellent’ in the last Teaching Quality Assessment. The School consistently obtains the highest scores possible for research.

Students have the opportunity to go on work placements to gain practical experience, in addition to having opportunities to contribute to the School’s laboratory work. Entrance and Merit Scholarships are available to international students.

More information can be found on the School’s website.

Cardiff School of Medicine

Entry to Medicine at Cardiff University is extremely competitive.

Progression to Medicine will be subject to application through UCAS, interview and obtaining good grades on the IFP. You will receive help and advice on applying for these courses during your Foundation Programme at Cardiff University.

All applicants who are offered a place on the IFP for Health & Life Sciences (September 2014 entry) with a view to progressing to a degree course in Medicine (September 2014 entry) will be required to apply through UCAS to meet the 15 October 2013 deadline whilst on the Foundation Programme. In addition, all applicants are required to take the national UK Clinical Aptitude Test (UK-CAT) during July-October 2014. Comprehensive information on this (including specimen test questions) can be found on the UKCAT website (www.ukcat.ac.uk).

Final decisions on applications received for the IFP for Health & Life Sciences for Medicine will be made in early July 2014. All IFP applications will be scored equally against all other international applications received.

The University Hospital of Wales is the third largest hospital in the UK and one of the largest in Europe. World-class research and recent teaching assessments have further strengthened the College’s international reputation for excellence.

The Medical degree scheme provides an integrated curriculum blending basic sciences, delivered principally at Cardiff School of Biosciences, with clinical education, delivered at the Heath Park Campus. The acquisition of clinical skills is provided in hospitals, general practices and community settings throughout Wales, for the entire five years of the course.

More information can be found on the School’s website.

International Foundation Programme