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International Foundation Programme for Management, Economics and Finance

The International Undergraduate Foundation Programme for Management, Economics and Finance is designed to facilitate the transition from high school to the first year of undergraduate study in a range of academic disciplines including Management, Economics, Financial Economics, Mathematics and other subject combinations, for overseas high school students. It includes a blend of subject related content in various related academic subjects as well as helping to develop the academic skills and language required for effective participation in undergraduate studies.

Students have the possibility to progress directly from foundation to one of the UK’s highest ranking universities. Successful students have the potential to progress onto a Single or Joint Honours degree programme.

We offer flexible subject combinations, as far as possible, depending on the needs of individual students each year.

Student wearing red gown in the Quad

The programme runs from September to June and is divided into two semesters. The first semester includes an academic core of Business, Psychology and Social Sciences to provide exposure to a wide range of academic subject content. Students will also develop appropriate skills for effective academic participation including the nature of academic writing, reading, researching and presenting. Students also develop an extensive academic vocabulary required to comprehend and express complex ideas with subtlety and precision.

In semester two students are able to choose three academic subjects to study in more depth to prepare them for undergraduate study following successful completion of the foundation programme. Typical combinations are Economics, Finance and Mathematics; Management, Finance and Statistics, Management, Economics and Mathematics. Other combinations may be possible in consultation with your programme director. In addition to the specific academic subjects, students continue to develop and refine their competence in dealing with and producing various forms of academic discourse both oral and written.

There are three modules in the first semester and three modules in the second semester.

Semester 1

  • Module 1: Academic Skills for MEF
  • Module 2: Critical Thinking and Research Skills for MEF (Management, Economics and Finance)
  • Module 3: Academic Core

In the first semester, all students will study the same content.

Semester 2

  • Module 4: Integrated Academic Skills for MEF
  • Module 5: Researching and Presenting for MEF
  • Module 6: Academic Electives

In the second semester, all students will study the same subjects in Modules 4 and 5, but will be given the opportunity to choose themes or topics related to their own specific academic subjects. These academic subjects are contained within Module 6 as either compulsory or optional subjects. Students will agree their own options in consultation with the Programme Director.

See MEF Course information 2018-19 (PDF, 3,053 KB) for more details.

Academic evidence

You need to complete high school in your own country and graduate with good grades. Because we accept students from a wide range of countries, we look at each application on an individual basis (as school systems vary greatly from country to country).

You can contact us for specific details about the grades needed from your high school system.

You may apply before your results are available and we can make you a conditional offer.

Language evidence

A minimum of IELTS (Academic) 5.5 overall with no sub-score below 5.0. If you require a visa then your IELTS test must be for UKVI purposes.


You must supply a positive academic reference from your high school, a suitable personal statement and interview successfully with the programme director or another relevant member of staff.

Students are required to achieve at least 14 on our 20 point marking scale in order to progress onto an undergraduate degree programme at the University of St Andrews.

There are many degree and post study options available to our successful foundation students. Popular degree choices include Management, Economics, Financial Economics, Economics and Mathematics. Other degree choices in previous years have included Economics and International Relations, Management and Psychology.

Students also have the potential to gain experience in internships and our graduates have gone on to careers in many fields including banking, financial analysis and entrepreneurship.

Accommodation is included in the International Foundation Programme’s fee package.

Foundation students are allocated a room in a David Russell Apartments (DRA), just a 10-15 minute walk from the Centre for International Foundation Programmes. In each apartment there is a shared kitchen and living space and 5 bedrooms (typically same gender, all foundation students), each with a study area and private toilet and shower.

Bedding pack

A bedding pack is available for collection at David Russell Apartments when students check-in. The bedding pack contains:

  • One duvet (10.5 tog)
  • One duvet cover
  • One flat sheet
  • Two pillows
  • Two pillowcases.


Foundation programme students have a meal plan giving them 14 meals per week during semester (i.e. not during University vacations).

  • Monday to Friday: students are provided with breakfast and an evening meal.
  • Saturday and Sunday: Students are served breakfast and lunch. See sample menus for the 14-meal plan at David Russell Apartments.


Applications for September 2018 are now closed. Applications for September 2019 open on 01 October 2018.

Semester dates: 

Start date: Monday 10 September 2018
Christmas vacation: Saturday 15 December 2018 to Sunday 13 January 2019
Spring vacation: Saturday 16 March 2019 to Sunday 31 March 2019
End date: Friday 07 June 2019

Fees: The all-inclusive fee package for 2018-19 is £25,000. This includes tuition fees, accommodation and meals. For further information see our Fee Package.

CIFP undergraduate brochure (PDF, 8,523 KB)

Meet us in your country

Programme director: Alan Duncan

English Language Teaching
Kennedy Gardens
St Andrews
KY16 9DJ
Scotland, United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (1334) 462257
Fax:+44 (1334) 462270