NCC Level 3 International Foundation Diploma in Higher Education Studies is an alternative qualification to the traditional Advanced Levels. International Foundation studies is becoming popular among students who are inclined towards a more practical approach to higher education preparation. Students will have the additional advantage of qualifying to pursue higher education programmes related to teaching careers and/or educational administrative careers within a period of one year as opposed to taking two years for Advanced Level studies.

The Foundation programme emphasises the development of sound academic writing and research skills including in relation to foundation mathematics while enabling students to develop subject-specific knowledge and skills pertaining to teaching careers. This qualification with the Education pathway will enable students to prepare in a thorough fashion for careers in Teaching and/or Educational Administration while fostering an international outlook.


  • Awarding body
    Pearson Edexcel, UK
  • Duration of The Programme and Intakes
    The standard duration to earn the International Foundation Diploma qualification is one year.
    There will be two intakes every year: January and September
  • The Units (Modules) Offered
    Unit Title
    Credit Weighting
    1. Developing English Language Skills
    30 Credits
    This broad unit focuses on developing the basic skills of students in the aspects of speaking, comprehending, writing and listening of the English language.
    2. English for Academic Purposes
    10 Credits
    This unit prepares students for the academic English skills required for higher education studies in terms reading strategies, academic vocabulary, structuring written work for academic purposes and listening strategies.
    3. Advanced English Language Skills
    20 Credits
    Through this unit students will be able to advance their English language skills in terms of the following: Speaking and presenting to different audiences as per contextual requirements; comprehending general and unfamiliar texts; writing structured, factual, descriptive and explanatory texts, utilising complex linguistic structures and vocabulary; and applying a range of listening strategies in order to understand lengthy predictable discussions, factual presentations and more abstract conversations.
    4. Study and Communication Skills
    20 Credits
    This unit provides students the opportunity to hone their study and communication skills in terms of the following: Taking effective notes from a variety of sources; working out the meaning of unfamiliar content; understanding common steps in producing academic work; producing academic work by utilising a clear drafting process; and appreciating different styles of learning.
    5. Culture Studies
    10 Credits
    This unit will enable students to explore cultural issues in the light of preparation for higher education studies in an international context.
    6. Foundation Mathematics
    10 Credits
    Through this unit students will be able to develop foundational skills in mathematics in terms of performing a range of algebraic calculations, solving a range of basic equations, presenting data in graphical forms, understanding the fundamentals of differential calculus, understanding the fundamentals of integral calculus, understanding measures of dispersion and understanding the fundamentals of probability.

    A further two units must be taken from a choice of four electives:
    7. Introduction to Computer Science
    10 Credits
    This module provides a basic introduction to a range of IT topics including organisation of a computer system, the relationship between hardware and software, applications of computers, databases, networking (with a focus on the Internet), graphics and multimedia.
    8. Introduction to Programming
    10 Credits
    This module exposes students to extensive practical use of the modern programming language Visual Basic, to illustrate the classic programming principles of sequencing, selection and iteration in the context of object-oriented computer programming.
    9. Introduction to Business
    10 Credits
    This module provides an introduction to the purpose, types and organisation of businesses. Students become familiar with a range of business concepts such as basic marketing practices.
    10. Introduction to Accounting and Economics
    10 Credits
    This module introduces the key principles of accounting and economics. Students become accustomed to concepts such as market structures and monetary policy and also learn how to produce simple financial statements
  • Entry Requirements

    Candidates are expected to have successfully completed secondary education in an appropriate range of subjects including C passes for English Language and Mathematics at OLs/IGCSEs.

  • Delivery

    Modes of Delivery: Face to face, Blended learning and Distance Learning

  • Academic Progression Opportunities

    Upon the successful completion of the NCC Level 3 International Foundation Diploma in Higher Education Studies can progress onto the Pearson BTEC Level 4 Professional Diploma in Teaching followed by Pearson BTEC Level 5 Professional Diploma in Advanced Teaching followed by the University of Nottingham MA in Education, all offered at Gateway Graduate School. Please note that students will be required to be in employment when they begin the Pearson BTEC Level 5 Professional Diploma in Advanced Teaching. In order to progress to the MA in Education programme, students will be expected to have gained at least one year’s work experience together with the Pearson BTEC Level 5 Professional Diploma in Advanced Teaching.

  • Career Opportunities

    Upon the successful completion of the programme participants can progress in their teaching careers and/or educational administrative careers or gain entry into the teaching profession within the non-government sector in Sri Lanka.

  • Recognition

    The NCC Level 3 International Foundation Diploma in Higher Education Studies is regulated by the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (OFQUAL) in the UK. As such, it will enable those who have successfully completed the qualification to transfer to various universities across the world for higher education studies.

Contact Details

Head Office

  • No 01 , 36th Lane (Opposite Devi Balika Vidyalaya)
    Colombo 08, Sri Lanka.
  • Tel: +94112695103, +94112695107
  • Hotline: +94772256356, +94777060157
  • Email: [email protected]