Blog Spotlight International Year One courses at Essex: 7 ways to shape the world
A student walking through long grass on the University of Essex campusA student walking through long grass on the University of Essex campus

International Year One courses at Essex: 7 ways to shape the world

The University of Essex is somewhere that you can truly make a difference. A UK top 30 university (Guardian University Guide 2024), it has twice been awarded a prestigious Queen’s Anniversary Prize recognising the life-changing effects of its pioneering research in Social Sciences, Humanities and Law.

Essex is also ideal if you want to fast-track your degree. Through the University of Essex International College, you can study an International Year One (IYO) and progress straight to the 2nd year of a related undergraduate degree in seven future-shaping fields:

  • Business
  • Computer Science
  • Economics
  • Law
  • Life Sciences
  • Politics and International Relations
  • Psychology

A career in any of these areas could help to give you a voice on some of the most important issues facing society today. If you want to make a positive change in the world, an IYO at Essex could be right for you.

What is an International Year One?

An IYO combines university preparation and English language support with the first year of a bachelor’s degree. You’ll study on campus at the University of Essex International College, with full use of the University’s excellent facilities.

When you pass the course at the required level, you’ll progress straight to Year 2 of your chosen degree, so you won’t lose any time.

IYO in Business

If you want to be a force for change, now is the ideal time to study a degree in Business. There are currently all kinds of changes happening in the world of business, from social pioneering to unprecedented action on climate change.

By studying a degree in a subject like Business Management or Marketing, you can play an important role in promoting ethical business practices, or focus on corporate social responsibility.

The Essex IYO in Business also offers progression to a degree in International Business and Entrepreneurship. A degree in this area could help you develop the skills to set up your own world-changing business or charity!

student using laptop in campus
student holding pen in lecture

IYO in Computer Science

Computer Science is a field that is continually expanding, and it is extremely useful to have a degree in this subject area in today’s technologically advanced society. With a Computer Science degree, you could help explore how artificial intelligence will change the way we live, or become a cyber security specialist and protect confidential data and information.

The IYO in Computer Science leads to 3 exciting degrees at the University of Essex:

Artificial Intelligence
Computer Games
Computer Science

Each of these degrees is accredited by the BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT, and can also be customised with an optional work placement year or a year abroad!

IYO in Economics

The coronavirus outbreak has caused financial hardship for ordinary people and businesses alike. Now more than ever we need to make some tough decisions about how our economies work. A degree in Economics could help you to join the conversation.

You could help shape economic policy at a local or national government level, or become a consultant at a think tank or charity. Either way, this could be your chance to give a voice to disadvantaged communities and help build a fairer society.

An IYO in Economics at Essex could help you start your path to a related career with a degree like Financial Economics or International Economics. All degrees include an optional placement year or a year abroad, so you’ll be able to broaden your horizons, and gain vital work experience.

Why choose the University of Essex?

Top 30 in the UK overall

Guardian University Guide 2024

Top 20 in the world for international outlook

Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2024

4th in the UK for teaching effectiveness

Guardian University Guide 2024

Guaranteed progression to your chosen degree

if you pass your IYO at the required level, with good attendance

IYO in Law

One of the best ways to stand up for what you believe in is with a career in Law. You could become a human rights lawyer, helping some of the most vulnerable people in society. Or you could go into public law, working with governments and organisations to protect the rights of local citizens.

Your lecturers at the University of Essex will be experts in the field, with many of them still actively practising law. In fact, former professor Sir Nigel Rodley was even a member of the UN Human Rights Committee while lecturing at Essex.

The Essex IYO in Law is currently Kaplan’s only Law IYO, so this is a fantastic opportunity to fast-track your path to a career in this sought-after field!

The IYO leads to an LLB at the University, which includes an optional year abroad, so you can learn about legal systems in other countries too. This is ideal if you would like to work in international law.

IYO in Life Sciences

As advances in science and healthcare mean people are living for longer, Life Sciences is becoming an increasingly important field. Learning how the body works, and how it can be healed could help you to truly build a better future for everyone.

Studying Life Sciences could lead you to a fantastic career in life-changing research, or enable you to work for a government body shaping policy. Alternatively, you might go on to a career in academia, sharing your knowledge with the next generation.

The International Year One in Life Sciences at the University of Essex leads to the second year of a degree in Biochemistry, Biomedical Science, Genetics, and Human Biology.

IYO in Politics and International Relations

Politics affects every aspect of our day-to-day lives. If you want to have a direct say on the matters that affect people’s lives, a career in politics could be for you.

degree in Politics is a great way to enter the world of politics and international affairs. Essex is a university with a highly international outlook, and is currently ranked 16th in the UK for International Relations (Guardian University Guide 2024), so it’s a great place to study if you want to make an impact on the world.

The IYO in Politics and International Relations offers progression to degrees such as International Development, and International Relations. A degree in this field could even help you to get a job at a global organisation such as the United Nations (UN)!

Alternatively, you could take a job at a think tank or public body, directing policy at a local or national level.

IYO in Psychology

If you want to devote your career to helping people, Psychology is a great subject to study.
Essex’s accredited degrees in Psychology allow you to graduate with membership of the British Psychological Society (BPS), setting you on the path to practising as a chartered Psychologist.

However this is far from the only career you could pursue: your skills will be relevant to so many fields, from business to sports, and your unique insight into human behaviour could fast-track you to a career in leadership.

The IYO in Psychology offers progression to three degrees accredited by BPS: BA Psychology, BSc Psychology, and BSc Psychology with Cognitive Neuroscience.

Shape your future at the University of Essex

Whether you already have your heart set on a high-flying career, or just want to make your mark on the world, the University of Essex has a place for you.

You’ll benefit from the University’s traditional campus in the grounds of the leafy Wivenhoe Park, as well as the University’s reputation as a leader in research and gold-standard teaching.

But the biggest benefit is the University’s innovative spirit and desire to improve lives at home and abroad. If you can’t wait to get started changing the world, an Essex IYO is the best place to begin.

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