Geology with Foundation Year BSc, 4-5 years

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In geology, the path towards progress isn’t always smooth, nor is it with learning. If you don’t quite have the entry requirements to study geology at Leicester, this STEM Foundation Year degree will show you a different path.

Typical offer
UCAS code

Admissions enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 5281

Course enquiries
Stewart Fishwick
+44 (0)116 252 3810

Geology website

Course description

Course description

This Foundation Year programme is aimed at students who wish to study Geology at the University of Leicester, whose A-level subjects don’t match our entry criteria or who don’t have the necessary entry requirements

Completion of the integrated Foundation Year at the level required will enable you to progress onto the first year of the BSc in Geology, the BSc in Applied and Environmental Geology, the BSc in Geology with Palaeontology or the BSc in Geology with Geophysics.

You will be taught by expert academic staff from across the life and physical sciences.

The course strongly emphasises the development of the study skills that will be necessary for success in your undergraduate studies and beyond. These study skills will be integrated within the course material and take advantage of innovative learning technologies.

  • By completing the Foundation Year you will automatically progress onto the first year of your chosen degree. 
  • The course does not require a maths test for entry, but it will cover the A-level maths syllabus and understanding of this will be measured before you progress. 
  • The course strongly emphasises the development of essential professional and personal skills, which are necessary throughout your studies and beyond. 
  • During your Foundation Year you will join our student community and be able to enjoy all aspects of the University of Leicester student experience. You will be able to join the Students’ Union, use our academic and leisure facilities, live in our accommodation and access all our support services. 
  • You will have a personal tutor to support you. 

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

  • A-levels: BCC (including two science subjects)
  • GCSE: Maths grade B/5

We welcome applicants with other qualifications. Please contact to find out more.

NB. This course is only open to applicants from the UK and other EU countries.

Selection Process

When considering your application, we will look for evidence that you will be able to fulfil the objectives of the course and achieve the standards required. We will take into account a range of factors including previous exam results.

English Language Requirements

IELTS 6.0 or equivalent. If your first language is not English, you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. If you do not yet meet our requirements, our English Language Teaching Unit (ELTU) offers a range of courses to help you to improve your English to the necessary standard.

International Qualifications

Find your country in this list to check equivalent qualifications, scholarships and additional requirements.

Countries list

Fees and funding

Fees and funding

UK and EU Students

Starting in 2019

  • £9,250 in your first year. Tuition fees are subject to government regulations and may change in future years
  • Year in Industry: your fee will be 15% of the full-time tuition fee that applies in that year


You can apply for dedicated bursary schemes run by Aggregate Industries and Carl Zeiss Microscopy. These typically have a total value of £13,500 and include work experience with the sponsor. We also offer £1,700 of bursaries funded by the Holloway Trust for students to develop outreach projects. There are competitive prizes and awards in each year for academic achievement and overall performance.

Find out more about scholarships and funding.

International Students

Please note this course is not available to International (non-EU) students.



All our degrees are accredited by the Geological Society of London, the professional body for geologists in the UK. Their accreditation panel said that our courses are “excellent” and they were “particularly impressed by the amount of fieldwork undertaken.”

Careers and employability

Careers and employability

Our dedicated Careers Tutor is a former industry geologist with many years' experience.

Our annual Geology Careers Day is attended by a wide range of companies from across the geoscience sector.

We provide up-to-date information exclusively for our undergraduates on current vacancies, work experience opportunities and options for further study.

Our excellent links with employers provide great opportunities for vacation or year-out work experience.

Our graduate employment record is excellent. Around a quarter of our graduates go on to do further study on a diverse range of MSc courses, or studying for a PhD. For those going in to work, over 75% are employed in graduate level occupations; the majority within the geoscience sector.

Our Career Development Service is here to support you, with advice on interviews, CVs, work experience, volunteering and more. From Freshers’ Week to Graduation and beyond, they are here to help you reach your professional goals.

Course structure

Foundation Year

Foundation Year


Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year 1

Year 1

You will have a broad introduction to geoscience and discover the role of geology and geoscientists in today's society.


Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year 2

Year 2

Year 2 of the BSc course is your third year at Leicester.

You will learn about more advanced aspects of geosciences such as the structure of the Earth's crust and the applications of geophysical techniques to hydrocarbon exploration.

Core modules

Option modules

Choose one option module from:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Optional Year in Industry

Optional Year in Industry

If you want to, you can take a year out between your second and third years and spend that time working in industry.

If you choose to do this, you’ll take a module in your second year that will help you to find a work placement and prepare you for the workplace. Throughout your placement, there will be structured support available to you from specialist staff at the University.

You’ll benefit from real-world experience in a commercial setting, enabling you to make an easier transition from studying to working after you finish your degree. It will also strengthen your CV significantly in preparation for entering the graduate labour market. On top of all this, you’ll be paid a salary for your placement.

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Final Year

Final Year

During your final year you will have the opportunity to take your degree in the direction that you want. The core modules will ensure that you are advancing in the essential areas of geology. Optional modules provide the chance to continue with the fundamental principles of geology at an advance level or specialise in the areas that fascinate you.

Core modules

Plus your Dissertation

Field Courses

Choose one field course from:

Option modules

Choose two option modules from:

And two option modules from:

This is the same as Year 3 of the MGeol.

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Why Leicester?

Job prospects are excellent: 95% of our Geology students are employed (or studying for a Masters degree) six months after graduating. (DLHE)

All our degrees are accredited by the Geological Society of London. They said that our courses are “excellent” and they were “particularly impressed by the amount of fieldwork undertaken”.

Your degree will take you to geologically fascinating locations across the UK and further afield, starting with a Year 1 trip to the Isle of Arran.

We have our own dedicated careers tutor with industry experience to deliver an exclusive and tailored Careers Development Programme throughout your degree.

Geology at Leicester

A combination of theory, practical and coursework made Jo industry-ready by the time she graduated.

Teaching and learning

Our courses have a practical emphasis and are based on sound theoretical understanding.

You will be assessed through a combination of coursework, fieldwork, independent reports and projects, seminars, oral and poster presentations and computer-based tests, as well as formal exams.

We place a strong emphasis on safety training, time management, and student initiative.

Your personal tutor will provide you with individually tailored academic support throughout your degree. You will receive non-assessed feedback on every module to help you improve and prepare for your assessed work.

Through the Student-Staff Committee you can raise any issues relating to your studies and suggest course developments.


In your first year you will receive basic geological field training on the Isle of Arran, one of the most geologically varied spots on Earth. Further field trips will take you to:

  • Spain - field mapping and training in advanced sedimentological techniques in an arid terrain.
  • Anglesey - examining and interpreting structurally complex rocks.

And one from the following:

  • Wales - studying the geology, palaeontology and evolution of this Palaeozoic sedimentary basin
  • The Northwest Highlands - exploring classic areas of British geology such as the Moine Thrust zone and the oldest rocks in the UK
  • Tenerife - studying pyroclastic rocks on the third biggest volcano in the world
  • Cornwall – investigating a classic area of economic mineralisation and the environmental consequences of mining
  • The Midlands – hands-on experience of near-surface geophysics and seismology.

Following additional field training in your second year, you will undertake an Independent Field-based Project. This is an exercise in practical, deductive geology which forms an important part of the degree. You choose the field area, allowing you to develop your geological interests. This will enable you to demonstrate your determination, motivation and ability to solve problems based on your own observations, as well as developing your self-confidence and organisational skills.

There will be no additional charges for your course but you will incur expenses in completing your own independent fieldwork which is a requirement of the course. You will undertake this at the end of the second year of your course and the Department will provide partial financial support for this. Your own expenses will depend upon where you decide to undertake your independent fieldwork.

Independent learning

When not attending lectures, seminars or other timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library, preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for exams. To help with your independent learning, you can access the Library and our social study spaces in halls of residence.

Your contact hours will depend on the option modules you select. You can see details of the contact hours on individual module pages.

Academic support

Our Student Learning Development Team provides help in the following areas:

  • study and exam skills
  • academic writing
  • presentations
  • dissertations
  • numerical data skills
  • referencing sources

Our AccessAbility Centre offers support and practical help for students with dyslexia or other specific learning difficulties, including physical, mental health or mobility difficulties, deafness, or visual impairment.

Teaching staff

You will be taught by an experienced teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. PhD research students who have undertaken teacher training may also contribute to the teaching of seminars under the supervision of the module leader. Our teaching is informed by the research we do. You can learn more about our staff by visiting our staff profiles.

Apply now

Course Qualification Duration UCAS Code Availability
Course Geology with Foundation Year Qualification BSc Duration 4 years full-time UCAS Code F669 Availability Apply Now
Course Geology with Foundation Year with Year in Industry Qualification BSc Duration 5 years UCAS Code F669 Availability Apply Now