Essex Pathways

Mixed group of four students walking along a pathway from the Tony Rich Teaching Centre towards the Hex.

Unlocking your potential

We believe a person’s potential is defined by an attitude of mind: a willingness to learn and collaborate. 

Our Essex Pathways department is a gateway to the University of Essex, helping students without standard entry requirements to grow in confidence, unlock their potential, and nurture their ambitions so they can progress in academic study.

We provide subject specific undergraduate foundation years at our University and equip you with the necessary skills and knowledge to succeed on your chosen course. From the very first moment you arrive, you will feel part of our community and have access to all the facilities our campus has to offer.

Our department welcomes applications from mature students. In the 2020 – 2021 academic year, the proportion of mature students on Essex Pathways courses rose by over 50% compared to the year prior. We offer a range of courses that may not require an Access Course or A-Levels to be eligible for and encourage applications from individuals with non-traditional qualifications.

We work closely with all other departments, schools and centres across the University, and guarantee that a place is secured on your chosen degree course as long as you successfully complete your course with us.

Explore our courses
"We are entirely committed to supporting you to success in your foundation year and beyond. Students work closely with their lecturers, thinking critically, creatively and confidently. They grow and develop together as engaged citizens keen to contribute to both understanding in the subjects which inspire them and to the communities in which they live, work and study."
Fiona Elsted Head of Department, Essex Pathways

a foundation year?

Unlock your potential when you haven't quite got the grades to get started.
Consolidate and develop your subject knowledge and academic skills
Collaborate with experts in their fields committed to supporting you in your studies
76% of students who graduated in 2022/23 and did a foundation year achieved a 1st or 2.1
Female student jumping on the back of male student in a drama class
Woman typing on a laptop
Student being supported by member of staff
Students who have graduated throwing their caps in their air in celebration
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